By: Blonde Two

We all knew what was coming on Wednesday night. The wind had been gusting around my house all day and it seemed unlikely that up on Dartmoor at over 300 metres higher and in a spot that is breezy on the calmest of days, it was going to be any less exciting. Yellow is a pretty colour, usually associated with daffodils, sunshine and naughty Jelly Babies but when it comes to weather warnings, yellow should be taken seriously.

We arrived at our car park early to meet our night navigation trainees (the car only did mild rocking at this point). I take my hat off to them (I wished I had put it on that night) for turning up at all in such horrid weather, they had looked at the forecast too, so knew what they were in for. If a night could have been made to demonstrate the need for confident navigation skills it was this one. It was the darkest I have seen Dartmoor for a long time, the sideways rain seemed capable of getting in any crevice and the wind was keen to steal any maps and compasses that weren’t closely guarded. In short, Wednesday night (and we did keep it short) was a good lesson in ‘how it could all go wrong’.

But it didn’t of course, our trainees demonstrated perseverance in abundance and, at all times, kept a sense of humour about proceedings. We had perhaps the shortest (distance) and loudest (the weather not us) Dartmoor walk of all time but managed to pack in a lot of navigation tips, find an invisible cairn, say ‘hello’ to the Dartmoor Christmas Tree and do some excellent distance measuring. It was probably type two fun for everyone, but it was type two fun at its very best!

We Blondes would like to say a hearty, ‘well done’ to all of our Wild Wednesday trainees. All of them had traveled a fair way to get to Dartmoor and all of them were great to work with.

P.S. I apologise for the lack of pictures… it was one of those ‘wrap your camera up safely’ kind of nights!

P.P.S. I have just remembered an even shorter night navigation exercise.

If you are interested in experiencing night navigation on Dartmoor (day time navigation is also available) take a look at our ‘workshops’ page. We will be adding more workshop dates soon and are happy to arrange bespoke training to suit your requirements. Get in touch today for more information.