By: Blonde Two

Well dear Blondees and Blondettes, today the Two Blondes’ official Dartmoor walking season begins again.  We have a slightly unusual calendar, we walk youngsters through all four seasons, take them on their first camp in March, walk most of June and July and then have a month off in August.  There always are lots of ups and down both emotional and physical – and at the end of it all we often find that we have made a whole bunch of new young friends.

Today we have twenty new faces with us, all keen to please, all eager and all desperate to see their names on the Ten Tors team list. It is an absolute pleasure introducing new people to Dartmoor, especially young ones.  They don’t always like it to start with – maybe it is something to do with the freezing fingers, the knee deep bogs or the long slogs up hills.  Eventually though Dartmoor’s wildness and the freedom it gives gets under their skin, just like it does with all of us.  For those that stick with it, it won’t be too many years before they too are saying, “I get Dartmoor.”

Today we have some walls, a bridge, some ruins, a couple of burial chambers and a missing path to find.  I love teaching navigation, it is a deeply incomprehensible art to start with but one of those things that suddenly “clicks” and can turn a simple walk into a treasure hunt.  No big tors to climb, no rivers to cross and no bogs to trot today.  Just a good walk with some good kids.  What a shame we will only be able to take six of them with us to Ten Tors.