The start of the academic year is always busy, with time spent on preparation of lessons, marking initial assessments, settling in new students, and plenty of admin tasks. As such, I didn’t manage to get out to Dartmoor for several weeks since my last visit to Cuckoo Rock and Hingston Hill Stone Circle. However, I took the opportunity to escape on a very warm October Saturday, and during this visit I walked to Windy Post, a place in which water gently passes in a leat beside a stone cross.
In his book Dartmoor 365, John Hayward describes this location:
‘This fine seven foot (2.1m) cross with an octagonal shaft is probably more recent than many others marking ancient tracks across the Moor, but nevertheless it must have been standing here for not much less than 500 years.’
Tim Sandles, on the Legendary Dartmoor website, suggests that Windy Post:
‘was to act as a marker of the Tavistock to Ashburton trans-moor track which in effect was an early medieval route which connected Buckfast and Tavistock abbeys.’
Sandles also mentions how Pixies Cross (which I visited earlier in the summer) could have been included in this route.
I spent a couple of hours in the area of Windy Post, primarily with the intention of finding a few geocaches. Along the way I was able to walk along Pew Tor and spot the formidable Vixen Tor (N5). Before Christmas I hope to tick off a few more of the squares, including Sampford Spiney (O4) to the south. Hopefully I will find a few chances amongst the hustle and bustle of the academic calendar.