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#41495 - 10/08/05 02:45 PM Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
Text_Fish Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/08/05
Posts: 1
Hello, some friends and I are planning on walking 'The Two Moors Way' from top to bottom of Dartmoor. Although we should be able to make it to a town for dinner, we're not very experienced with long walks so were wondering if anybody here has any advice regarding food and drink. Obviously we want to travel light so would prefer not to carry cooking equipment or cumbersome packages. I pressume there are certain lightweight foods well suited to walkers.

Anything spring instantly to mind?

Ta.

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#41496 - 10/08/05 05:48 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
argonaut Offline
Member

Registered: 19/11/04
Posts: 430
Loc: peterborough. uk
If you are wild camping, watch out for the Wildcats. Black Panthers have also been spotted on the moor. BE AWARE.
_________________________
Cheers....Argo.

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#41497 - 06/10/05 07:38 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
johndog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/10/05
Posts: 3
Loc: calstock,cornwall,england
Quote:
Originally posted by argonaut:
If you are wild camping, watch out for the Wildcats. Black Panthers have also been spotted on the moor. BE AWARE.


Remind me Argonut, when was the last attack by a cat of any size on Dartmoor? Stop scaring the children.

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#41498 - 06/10/05 11:00 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
Oldun Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 1750
Loc: Renens, Vaud, Switzerland
Text fish. I assume that you and your friends live near Dartmoor and are familiar with its unpredictability, especially at this time of the year. If you are not familiar with it and are not experienced in long moor walks or navigation, then find another area to walk in until you are experienced and fit. I am not trying to be rude, but inexperienced people have died on this moor.

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#41499 - 07/10/05 03:30 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
argonaut Offline
Member

Registered: 19/11/04
Posts: 430
Loc: peterborough. uk
Oldun.............John dog says "stop scaring the Children", so why bother, he knows it all.
_________________________
Cheers....Argo.

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#41500 - 07/10/05 04:47 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
tonyk Offline
Full Member

Registered: 16/02/04
Posts: 1033
Loc: UK
Quote:
I pressume there are certain lightweight foods well suited to walkers.

Anything spring instantly to mind?

Ta.[/B]


Complan and cold soup.

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#41501 - 07/10/05 10:39 PM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
johndog Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/10/05
Posts: 3
Loc: calstock,cornwall,england
Quote:
Originally posted by argonaut:
Oldun.............John dog says "stop scaring the Children", so why bother, he knows it all.


No Argonut,I do not know it all. But I do know the difference between the sense in the comment from Oldun (I have walked on Dartmoor for 30 years and would agree with all he says) and the rubbish you spout about big cats.

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#41502 - 08/10/05 10:09 AM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
argonaut Offline
Member

Registered: 19/11/04
Posts: 430
Loc: peterborough. uk
John, just repeating what ive seen in papers and on TV news, dont have 1st hand knowledge, its part of the country i havent explored, but there is photo evidence of huge cats, and also a black panther. as for scaring the children, if they come across one on the moor they WILL be scared.
_________________________
Cheers....Argo.

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#41503 - 08/10/05 11:16 AM Re: Advice for newbie Dartmoor walkers
argonaut Offline
Member

Registered: 19/11/04
Posts: 430
Loc: peterborough. uk
Text_fish....some info for you, take it or leave it.


As with any wild expanse of land there have been many reports and sightings of 'Big Cats' on Dartmoor. People talk of 'The Beast of Dartmoor' when more likely as not it should be 'The Beasts of Dartmoor'. Talk to any body that spends a lot of time on the moor and the chances are that they have seen or heard something related to a big cat or know somebody that has. I have never seen a big cat but near Dick's Well I have seen paw prints. The old story is that paw prints are usually left by a big dog and rain has enlarged them. The ones I saw were large and clearly showed long claws, the rain could not have enlarged them because they were frozen and the edges of the print were 'crisp' and showing no sign of deterioration. I have seen ponies and sheep with their throats torn out down by Dendles Wood. A friend has been lucky enough to have spotted one near the ruins of Doetor Farm. He related how he was returning from a days walk and it was getting towards dusk when he came past the old farm. Something made him stop and look back and he clearly saw a large light brown cat. It had climbed up onto a low wall about a 100 yards away and stood for a couple of seconds looking directly at him. The animal then slowly flicked its long tail a couple of times and in his words, "nonchantly leapt off the wall and loped off."

Considering the size of Dartmoor and the numbers of livestock that graze there it has everything for a big cat to survive. The isolation would mean that very little would disturb such a creature and the sheep and ponies would provide an excellent meat source. It is thought that the introduction of the 1976 Dangerous Animals Act was a contributing factor in the appearance of the big cats. The act required any owner of such an animal to obtain a license from the local authorities and ensure it was kept in secure conditions. Some owners did not or could not obtain the licenses and so simply released the animals in the wild. It is not known whether any of them actually bred or how many survived in their new environments but sightings regularly occur.

Dartmoor sightings have varied from big black cats through big beige cats to a lion. In November 1998 a young male lion was spotted near to Wrangaton and a paw print was found which was deemed to be that of a lion by a big cat specialist from the Dartmoor Wildlife Park. At the time the police had to deter would be 'Big Game Hunters' who were stalking the beast with shotguns, armed officers then conducted a fruitless search of their own, no more has been heard of the 'Dartmoor Lion'. Listed below are just a few of the reported sightings and big cat stories, incidentally, in the league table of big cat reports Devon comes fourth in the UK.



1988

Dartmoor - Large skull found on the moor, possibly that of a Puma - later thought to have come from a big cat skin rug.

May - Widecombe-in-the Moor - Farmer shot a Leopard Cat that was attacking his poultry. The animal was thought to have escaped from a travellers camp.


1997

Mar – Holne - big cat sighted

July – Between Two Bridges and Princetown - big cat sighted


1998

March - Butterdon Hill - big cat sighted

October - Giant’s Basin - Boys were camping on the moor and were awoken by strange noises. In the morning they found evidence that two big cats had clawed through the outer tent.

November - Cheston nr Wrangaton - lion sighting.

November - Dousland - huge tooth marks found in a tin of cat food, rubbish sacks torn apart and large paw print left which wildlife experts believe to be a puma’s.


1999

November - Cornwood - a large 'puma-like' cat sighted.


Done a search on the DARTMOOR COUNTRY PARK site, and thats from them.
But no doubt john dog will tell you its a load of rubbish.
_________________________
Cheers....Argo.

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