By: Blonde Two

There are many tales of ghosts and apparitions on Dartmoor, but I never thought that I would have one to tell of my own.  There are a few places on the moor that unsettle the hairs on the back of your neck, but on the whole Dartmoor at night is a friendly place.

Which is why, when Mr B2 and I bivvied on Saturday night.  I snuggled down into my multiple bags without any thought of spooks and ghouls.  There is something utterly amazing about drifting in and out of sleep whilst watching the stars above you.  Only a dullard could fail to feel content at the experience.

I estimate that it was about two in the morning when I woke up needing the loo.  I sat up in my multiple bag system and rubbed my eyes.  The moor had misted over and visibility was down to about twenty metres.  The stars had gone.

I looked over to my right and saw, amidst the flat, grassy landscape, something upright.  It was just a blur to start with.  I didn’t have my glasses on, but gradually, with a bit more eye rubbing, a distinct shape started to emerge.

It was the shape of a Dartmoor walker.  You would recognise the type if you saw him.  A tall man, used to striding across the moor.  He had a rucksack on his back and was wearing shorts and gaiters.  Although I was puzzled as to why someone would be crossing a particularly wet bit of moor at night without a torch, I didn’t have any worries about his intentions.  He was a protective character, I felt like I knew him.

I considered calling out or waking Mr B2 up, but neither of those seemed like the right thing to do.  I sat for a while and watched the figure.  He could have been moving across the moor, or the mist could have been moving across him.  I felt like we were two kindred spirits, sharing the same space but keeping our distance from each other.

Now I want to believe what I experienced that night.  I like the idea of a ‘Guardian of the Moor’.  You might choose to believe it too.

OR

You might be interested to hear that, when I eventually turned my torch on, my Guardian of the Moor disappeared and my walking pole came into view.  I had stuck it in the ground earlier and completely forgotten about it.DSC_3686