08/01/2016 - 19:07


Exploration of the fringes of the areas we begin to become aquainted with can lead us to find intriguing new elements of the landscape. One such jaunt in the woods below Mel Tor opened my eyes to such wonders.



The wooded slopes of the sinuous Upper Dart, from an outcrop of Mel Tor.




It was with curiosity that I wandered into these woods, for the first time, that cover the steep sided valley of the Dart below Mel Tor. Sunlight periodically appearing between the sleet, hail and rain downpours of a winter's morning. As soon as I stepped into the wild wood I was struck by the enchanting nature of things and it was a joy to explore. It's wonderful that such pockets of wildness exist unchanged by humans. No paths through, and a rugged scramble to get into but it is common land, a place to invite a curious wandering.




I reached this point and was struck by the flow of the anthropomorphic form of the oak. The transient light from the left and the flow into this space and rightwards, appealed to me in it's energy. A wonderful moment in a place that has a great sense of what the ancient Dartmoor Forest would have been like.




The rains returned and as they fell,  I  felt compelled to make another composition - looking southwards through the oaks.




These sylvan sentinels with the adornment of epyphytic lichens and mosses were enchanting, full of tacticle charm in their varied textures. The aromas of the peaty soil & aeons of leaf litter filled the air in the few moments when the gusts abated for a few moments... and one could hear again the song of the wild river far below, churning through a series of whitewater rapids. It is without doubt in my mind a spell-binding place to explore - an immersion for the senses and it is, I am sure, a place I shalll return to again.


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