By: Blonde Two

Most of us love a circular walk. There is something entirely satisfying about starting off somewhere, covering some distance and then arriving, as if by magic, back where you started. Dartmoor circular walks can be particularly satisfying both to plan and to undertake with tors, bogs and rivers all making excellent points of interest.

Which is maybe why I was so intrigued, whilst enjoying an early autumn perambulation around Dartmoor’s Yarner Wood with Mr B2, to find this particular circle on the map.

Copyright Ordnance Survey 2017

It had to be investigated of course. As we followed the tracks and enjoyed the first hints of woodland autumn, my mind debated what we might find, such a prestigious-looking circle must surely have once been for important carriages or surrounded either a fascinating folly or a dangerous gully (note the absence of both on the map!). I wasn’t really paying much attention to the navigation (this can be a big mistake in woodland) I had the map with me and had noted our time and direction into the woods but not much else, which might explain why we initially, happily ambled straight past the circle.

Once we had consulted the oracle (in the form of my phone and OS Maps), we found the circle and excused ourselves for missing it because the path was as green as the surrounding spaces and only just visible. It was an enjoyable stroll around the mulberry bush, but the purpose of the circular path remained a mystery. There was, in fact, no mulberry bush, just a rather pretty set of trees, which looked very much like all the other pretty sets of trees that surrounded them.

I am sure there is a Dartmoor and Yarner Woods expert out there who can enlighten me.

PS I also liked the look of the square reservoir at the top of the map snippet… square walks, however, are entirely a different kettle of fish to circular ones.