Another Walk-A Wide Prospect-Lundy Island and the Bristol Channel-Davidstow-The Turnpike-Road again-The Moors-Miles of Heath-A Change of Geology-A By-way to Callington-South Petherwin - The Lanes-Lezant- The Sportsman's Arms Carthamartha Rocks-Callington-Up Kit Hill-Hingston Down-Newbridge-View of the Tamar-The Woods-Morwell Rocks-Magnificent River Scenery-Morwellham-Commerce and Solitude-Copper versus Trees-Calstock-Cothele-A Feudal Mansion-Household Gear of the Olden Time-A Stroll in the Woods-The Old ChapelSir Richard Edgcumbe's Escape-Lessons in Proverbs-A Trip Down the River A Lively Party-Pentillie Castle-Hall's Hole-Saltash -The Railway Bridge-The Hamoaze-Devonport-By Rail again -Ivy Bridge-Totness-Down the Dart-Dartmouth again-The Church and Castle-Mount Boone-Farewell to the Sea - Berry Pomeroy Castle-Ruins and Foliage-Buckfastleigh-The Lanes— Dartmoor-A Wild Valley-Laborious Progress-The Hospitable Farm-Keep a Kindness Going-Dartmeet-The Tors-Superstitions -The Prison-Ashburton-Chudleigh-Haldon Hills-ExeterTaunton-Back to London.

AGAIN a bright morning. After an early breakfast I started for Callington, a walk of nearly thirty miles. You take the road at the upper extremity of Boscastle, and though already at a great elevation, the road continues to rise for greater part of the way to Davidstow. The view takes in an imposing sweep of hills rounding steeply off into deep and narrow valleys, clothed with wood and gorse. By crossing a couple of fields on the left you may see Minster church, snugly embosomed among trees in one of the lesser hollows. You remark the tall headlands keeping watch over the sea, the lone church on the hill, the lanes and the slopes waving with

Enjoy the
Enjoy the prospect while


grass and grain. can, for there are miles of Cornish waste awaiting you. At the turn in the road where you get the last look you will think it finer than before, owing to the increased elevation. Still higher, and you get the view to the north-east,

far up the Bristol Channel, past a succession of points melting away into the blue. Yonder rises Lundy Island, a bold dark mass in the midst of the sea. There you see miles of fields traversed by a gleaming road in the hollow, towards Stratton. The fences by the roadside, built of earth and stone, are from three to four feet thick, and small arches are left here and there for the passage of sheep. When not in use, they are stopped by a wedge of turf or a big stone. From the road you turn into the lanes, and from the lanes you emerge on the waste. There is the church-tower of Davidstow on' the right, and presently you come to the main turnpikeroad at twelve and a half miles from Launceston. The same which we quitted at Camelford two days ago.

Now unlock the mental storehouse and recite the old ballads or poems, or passages of favourite authors you find therein; for you have in succession Wilsey Down, Coose Moor, and Laneast Down, mile after mile of wild moorland; to the right and left, behind and before. Yet flowers adorn it, rills sparkle in the gravelly hollows, and the breeze sweeps across fresh and inspiriting, and fraught with all that makes health a delight. And what though the scene be monotonous, it imparts a sense of boundless freedom. Your recitations will be of the liveliest; and you will perhaps think that Gilpin made a mistake when he turned back from hence in despair.

There is a touch of alacrity about the peasantry in this neighbourhood which I had not remarked else

where: they have something to say to you in passing; and if only "Good day, Sur," a friendliness of tone is apparent. You will meet many a one on the way coming from the cross tracks on the moors; and buxom damsels riding. I saw more women on horseback in Cornwall than ever before.

Rising and falling goes the road across the long black undulations. From one of the highest you get a comprehensive view of the Rowtor and Brown Willy group -ridges 'and cones pinnacled with granite-and a peep of Dartmoor to the east. Features to be remembered when far away. And you pass from one geological formation to another; from the schistose which predominates in Cornwall, to the carboniferous a line traced from Boscastle half-way to Tavistock would represent the boundary of the two with tolerable accuracy. And by-and-by you become aware of the change in the altered features of the landscape: trees, hedges, and fertile fields succeed to the untamed moors. Unless you have a special desire to see Launceston, take the lane on the right between three and four miles from the town, which will save you nearly two hours' walking on the way to Callington. No fear of going astray. Steer for Kit Hill, that conspicuous cone seen from every opening; it is just in the rear of the town. You will not repent leaving the high road, for the lane winds among pleasing rural scenery, in which you see indications that Devonshire is not far off. Through the village of South Petherwin, and then hill and dale, high hedges, overhanging trees, and banks a very jungle of weeds and flowers. There is the red sandstone again, and here and there in the gaps and hollows the most exquisite drapery of ferns. Bare rock, trickling water, and sunshine, and

you have an interweaving of maiden-hair and hart'stongue which art cannot imitate or pen describe. Lezant, another secluded village, comes next; and shortly afterwards you strike the turnpike-road about half-way between Launceston and Callington, where stands an inn-the Sportsman's Arms-well known in the neighbourhood, and the only one met with for miles.

From Boscastle was a long stretch, necessitating both rest and refreshment. After sitting about an hour I made a little excursion to the Carthamartha Rocks. A mile up the lane, immediately opposite the inn, you come to a field on the left, across which runs a path to the top of the rocks. These are perpendicular limestone cliffs, bursting from the slope, and overlooking the curving vale of Tamar for a long distance. Now your eye feasts on wood-nay, forests. The sides of the hills as they dip down to the river are hung with trees-oak and birch-that hide the stream, and form vast amphitheatres of foliage. The opposite shore is Devonshire. I made my way down to the river through the wood, and walked for a mile along its shady brink, listening to its lively ripple; and then returning to the inn for my knapsack, went on to Callington. A long ascent of four miles, and a descent of two miles into a hacked and haggard mining district, and your walk is over. Throughout the day I had skirted the great granite district; and had the evening not been so far advanced, should have seen the Cheesewring away on the right while descending to the town.

The next morning, before breakfast, I went up Kit Hill. The approach is by a lane a short distance out on the road to Launceston. The great cone rises with an easy slope, covered with coarse grass and furze, and

strewn with lumps of rock-granite again; and in half an hour you may reach the summit, 1067 feet in height. The view takes in a wide circle in all directions: to Dartmoor on one side; far over the brown Cornish moors on the other, the country of the mines; and fields innumerable, and patches of green downs; the fertile vale of Tamar, and away to Plymouth and the blue sea of the English Channel. And the hill itself standing amid the great circle of the barren and the fruitful. As you roam around the brow you see remains of buildings, numerous old mine shafts, and the ruins of the windmill by which the machinery was kept going till the works were abandoned. The cost of excavating the hard rock was greater than the profit. You may descend on the side towards Hingston Down, and save a mile or two by not returning to the town.

Though early, the morning was already sultry. The day, in fact, was one of the hottest of the summer, the temperature being 87°; under which circumstances you may be pardoned for wishing to shorten your walk. It was scorching on the unsheltered Down where those mythical Saxons, Hengist and Horsa, are said to have once gained a great victory. From the former of the two the present name, Hingston, is derived. Every step brought me nearer to the woods; and what a blessed shade was that of the first plantation on the top of the hill above Newbridge, where I stretched myself for half an hour on the cool grass! While descending the hill you get charming peeps at the scenery of the valleyglimpses of green woods that rouse expectation, and here and there evidences of mining industry. You see a large, light water-wheel spinning round among the trees, doing nothing apparently but amuse itself.

« VorigeDoorgaan »