27 November 2012


I haven't dared go down to the river while the rain has been torrential, but this afternoon I decided to risk it. Not cascading over the bank but running very high and fast. I always panic as Snippet trots along the bank and skips over stones mid-stream. One false move and he'd be washed away. He's not a water dog and has never swum. He prefers to tear the bank up with his teeth searching for rodents....not something we encourage obviously!

This is the Teign, which comes out at Teignmouth and has different pronunciations within the settlements along its way to the sea. Around here, it's known as the 'Teen', At Teignmouth it becomes 'Tin'mouth and in Drewsteignton is Drews'tane'ton. Here we are pretty close to its source and this section is the North Teign. It is possible than Teign comes from the Celtic word for water: Ta. 

A sense of speed here!

This is one of the two clapper bridges over this section of the Teign, the second of which is at the top of this post; there is a third close by over Wallabrook, a stream which joins the Teign at this point. Clapper comes from the Anglo Saxon 'cleaca' which meant bridging the stepping stones. The top one is a more classic example but I love this little one where the river narrows and the water gushes. 

The sky today was battleship grey; the kind of light that means having to turn the lights on when you get up and not turning them off all day. The camera has unfortunately lightened it, which I didn't realise until I downloaded them. These from yesterday are better in that respect:

Trigger's field is the one in the middle so you can see how exposed it is. The shelter belt of trees beyond proved very useful today protecting me from the biting North Easterly wind as I walked down to the river which you can see snaking into the distance. I met the ponies yesterday too and numbers 10 and 3 were very sweet together. They must be at least four months apart but are the same size!

I'm afraid you will be seeing a lot of our little Nuthatch over the coming months as I can't resist him.....or her. Not quite sure on that front.

And finally, a couple of Snippet; one looking like no breed I've ever seen and the other in the 70 mile an hour winds on Sunday. Until next time...........have a good rest of the week.


  1. That last photo made me laugh - Dog In A Gale!!!

    I love EVERY photo you take of the moor, some more than others, but they have me there in a jiffy. Thank you.

    Hope that Trigger hasn't blown away in the gales, or floated away, come to that!

    Loved the clapper bridge to Nowhere . . . Except, that it definitely would have been Somewhere in the past.

  2. That last photo is so funny. Poor Snippet!

    The nuthatches are lovely, ours have been taking nuts out of the feeders and off to a stash somewhere. I will try and get a photo.

    The ponies look a bit weather beaten too!

  3. BB - that little clapper bridge is very strange and leads to the funny island between the Teign and Wallabrook. It has metal strapping and a huge metal bolt through it and looks more like a foot bridge than one for pack horses or anything larger which would have used the other two presumably.

    Trigger is fine amazingly. Had his feet trimmed yesterday and they're in excellent condition despite the wet. Glad to transport you as ever!

    Rusty Duck - His fur looked better than mine when I took my hood off I can tell you! The ponies aren't as photogenic as they were are they...

  4. I loved the ones of the rocks and river! What lovely photos! Your shots truly convey the bleakness that the Moors have in the Winter months.

    I find my camera lightens a picture also. Discouraging when you are trying to take an atmospheric photo. I'll go into Microsoft Office Picture Manager that has a useful editing program and correct the light or darkness of a photo.

  5. Oh Snippet is so adorable. As my American friend would say, he is a "Bitza".
    I particularly loved the photos of the little Nuthatch.

  6. Gail - Bleak but lovely I'm sure you'll agree.

    Kath - Glad you like the Nuthatch. The camera has opened a whole new world of close up bird examination!

  7. Lovely, lovely photos yet again. I feel I am there walking with you!

    Are you tempted to paint the nuthatch? Those colours are so beautiful.

  8. When the setting of an English story includes a 'moor' I've always pictured somewhere rather bleak and windswept. Amazingly your photos remind me of the vast expanses of sagebrush high desert in Wyoming--without the mountains which there tower in the distance.
    When I next re-read 'Jamica Inn' I should come back and view your photos to put myself in the proper scenery.

  9. DW - absolutely. I just need to get one posing exactly as I want him and I'll have a go. I love their colouring so I hope I can do it justice.

    YCF - Very glad you like need a picture to go with your identity!

    MM - I guess it is quite desert-like in winter. Today I saw two crows but no other living thing. It's a long time since I read Jamaica Inn!


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