Teign Gorge Circular Walk (Fingle Bridge to Castle Drogo), Chagford, Dartmoor National Park

Teign Gorge Circular Walk (Fingle Bridge to Castle Drogo), Chagford, Dartmoor National Park

Walking one of Dartmoor's most beautiful gorges

In our opinion, this ranks as one of the best walks in Dartmoor National Park. We've walked it on hundreds of occasions in all seasons and it's always a joy. The walk is by Castle Drogo so, when visiting the National Trust property, make sure you plan a few extra hours to complete the circular walk.

 

How far is it and how long will it take?

The walk is roughly 6 km/4 m in length.

The Ordnance Survey app states that this takes about 1.30 hrs. We tend to cover a Dartmoor mile in 30 mins so plan for 2 hrs to enjoy the views and take photos.

 

What's the walking like?

The walking is mostly flat and easy. There's a very steep ascent at the beginning of the walk to get you up to the top of the gorge as you walk away from Fingle Bridge. There's a smaller ascent on the gorge floor (with rock steps and metal railings) as you follow the River Teign back to Fingle Bridge.

 

Is there a path?

Yes, you're walking very well defined, good paths.

 

Is it well signposted?

Yes, there are lots of signposts. That said, we'd always recommend taking Ordnance Survey or Harvey Mountain Map mapping with you. It's a popular walk so there are usually plenty of people to point you in the right direction.

 

Fingle Bridge Inn and the National Trust's Castle Drogo

The walk starts/ends at Fingle Bridge Inn. It's a great pub walk. There's a beauitful pub garden lining the River Teign at Fingle Bridge Inn and Fingle Bridge.

The National Trust's Castle Drogo is located at the western end of the walk. It has a cafe and visitor centre so you take a short diversion to enjoy a cream tea.

 

Teign Gorge and the weather

We'd recommend visiting on a sunny day. The views from the path that runs along the top of the gorge are stunning.

That said, it's also great in snow, mist and even rain. It's a very atmospheric place.

 

Start at Fingle Bridge and Fingle Bridge Inn near the pretty village Drewsteignton

Head for the pretty village Drewsteignton. From there, a narrow road runs down to the local beauty spot Fingle Bridge and Fingle Bridge Inn. It's a popular place so there's plenty of parking on either side of the bridge. Note that there are public toilets across Fingle Bridge on the south bank of the River Teign.

 

Steep ascent to the top of the Teign Gorge

To begin, walk back up the narrow road running between Drewsteignton and Fingle Bridge. About a hundred metres up the road from Fingle Bridge, you'll see a sign to your left pointing to a steep hill. This takes you up the north wall of the gorge. The ascent will get your heart pumping but once you're at the top of the gorge wall, the path is flat and the views stunning along the Teign Gorge to the high moors around Hangingstone Hill.

 

Hunter's Path to Sharp Tor and the National Trust's Castle Drogo

Follow the path in the direction of Castle Drogo (National Trust). Local signs mark this path as the Hunter's Path.

You'll come to a series of rocky outcrops. The largest is called Sharp Tor (Teign Gorge/North East Dartmoor). The views of Castle Drogo, the Chagford area and the high moors from Fernworthy Forest to Hangingstone Hill and then Cosdon Hill are amazing. In winter months, you'll see the River Teign running way below.

 

Iron Bridge and Fisherman's Path

From Sharp Tor, the path arcs below Castle Drogo. You'll come to the mouth of the gorge. The main path runs right, downhill where it connects with a road. This road leads to a path that takes you to the gorge floor and the north bank of the River Teign. The path that runs along this north bank of the river is called the Fisherman's Path.

You'll see Iron Bridge. Do not cross it. Follow the Fisherman's Path along the north bank past Salmon Leaps, Castle Drogo Weir and Drewe's Pool where people wild swim. There's a small ascent over a rocky outcrop but steps and an iron railing are provided. From there, you walk along the bank of the river to Fingle Bridge.

 

Avoiding the crowds

Given its extreme beauty, the Teign Gorge can get very crowded so if you can walk during the week or outside of school term time we'd recommend you do so.