Devon Life

Upper Dart

As autumn rolls on, the space between the summer’s excesses and winter work speeds on and on. When it’s time, I head back for some Devon life on Dartmoor. My normal residence at the River Dart Country Park starts in late October, with weeks of courses, lots of demand for performance coaching. All this relies on the autumn rains, sometimes it comes and other times its spare, its the luck of the draw. My visits are in batches, the first of which it was wet, and the days on the river were great, all mainly work, but I got in a West Dart, Erme and East Okement outside coaching. Check out my autumn colours too, that Palm FXr PFD is just so, so fine.
sunrise in the forest
Image Satu Vänskä-Westgarth –
autumn run away
Image Satu Vänskä-Westgarth –

When the rain does not come, the weather is dry, clean and bright at times, a phenomena known as northern blocking, means its colder days but dry. Not ideal for the work, I even had to postpone some for January, which is leaving 60+ paddlers in 16 days on the river to a tight schedule. Alas only work for me in the New Year. At least I have the southern summer to enjoy soon after. More of that next time. The family joined me in Devon for the second trip, and the little lady enjoyed country walks and farm animals, granny came to visit and all in all it was wonderful.

Satu biking
Cardingham Cafe
Image Satu Vänskä-Westgarth –

With the dry days, my attentions turn to biking, as the UK has some of the best enduro style trails around. Satu enjoyed too, and the new routes at Cardinham Forest and the Woodlands Cafe, in Cornwall are excellent. Certainly worth a visit, and I have already been back several times on the bike trails. Normally I hit Haldon Forest Park as it’s local, but for me Cardinham is a better spot, bigger trails and longer rides, on what is excellent flowing tracks.

Totnes Christmas Market
Image Satu Vänskä-Westgarth –

Another Devon highlight on the run up to Christmas is the Totnes Night Market. Totnes’s main street, called Fore Street is full of local businesses, and during the night market, the whole place is full of addiitonal stalls with local fare and great gifts too. The toy shop had a bubble machine and the little lady was over joyed at the spectacle.


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