King Arthur’s Hall!
An aerial shot of King Arthur’s Hall from Historic Cornwall website.
As January draws to a close and February hovers on the horizon, I reflect on our first month of 2013. At Darrynane it has been an exciting time and it has gone so quickly. Our new website is up and running and I have started blogging. So if you want to hear more, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
We are closing The Lodge for a few weeks in February to upgrade the bathroom. We are keeping the bath. By the time we have finished it will look very swish.
The bird life around Darrynane this month has been fantastic. We have moved one of our bird tables to the small pond outside our kitchen window. It’s a real time waster watching the comings and goings, but a lovely warming sight to see. There are a number of shrubs surrounding the table providing a safe place for the smaller birds to fly to if a predator or larger bird appears. We have seen many species including: Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Black Cap, Bullfinch, Buzzard, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Dunnock, Greater Spotted Woodpecker, Jay, Long Tailed Tit, Robin, Ring Collared Dove, Starlings, Wood pigeon and Wren. I’ve also witnessed a Goldfinch, up the road, not in our garden. At night and early morning we have heard the Owls calling to one another, we need to learn to recognise the the different species. I know many of our guests enjoy watching the bird life at Darrynane – it’s nice to enjoy them too.
We walk on Bodmin Moor most mornings and some evenings and every day is different. We have several short walks about 5 minutes drive from Darrynane cottages, which take from 20 – 40 minutes depending how far we go. They can also be extended much further if time allows. The first one to tell you about is: King Arthur’s Hall. This is an open moorland walk. Leave Darrynane and head up through the village towards the moor over the cattle grid and pass Lady Down on your right. At the crossroad turn left. Follow this road towards the water works, just before you get there park up on the left. There is no designated car park. Set off over Emblance Downs to King Arthur’s Hall, a small, fenced wetland area believed to have been one of King Arthur’s favourite places, hence its name. No one seems to know its original use. If we are in a hurry we walk around the Hall and back to the car. If time is no object it is possible to walk over King Arthur’s Downs towards Middle Moor Cross and back around Alex Tor. This takes about 1.5 hours, depending on how fast you walk. Given enough time and energy Rough Tor can be reached from this walk over Louden Hill – we’ve never made it that far.
Each time we walk here it provides something new to enjoy. On Sunday we set off with a few moorland ponies munching grass around us. The wind blew hard disturbing a trio of Snipe who flew up into a gust calling as they rose. One our way back a flock of Lapwings soared overhead dipping and rising on the winds before landing in a nearby field. Seagulls too enjoyed the windy weather high above us screeching at one another.
That’s the first of our walks. Over the coming months I’ll tell you about others we enjoy. The great beauty of most of them is they can be as short or as long as you want them to be and when it’s over there’s nothing nicer then heading home to a cosy cottage with a log burner stove at Darrynane.