Fingle Woods (National Trust/Woodland Trust), Drewsteignton, Dartmoor National Park

Fingle Woods (National Trust/Woodland Trust), Drewsteignton, Dartmoor National Park

Fingle Woods is the collective term for the woodland running between Fingle Bridge and Dunsford Nature Reserve in the north eastern section of Dartmoor National Park. The woods were opened to the public in March 2014. Whilst we've been exploring the woods since that time, we were told by National Trust workers that waymarkers, information boards and car parking areas were being added at the time of writing. Members of the team at Holiday in Dartmoor live in the area and we'll add more information to this listing as we continue to research and photograph the woods.

To walk along the south bank of the River Teign through the woods, we'd recommend starting from the large parking areas at Fingle Bridge. On the south side of the River Teign, just beyond a block of public toilets, is a wide path that follows the course of the river as it flows east through Fingle Woods to Clifford Bridge and then into Dunsford Nature Reserve. It takes about two hours to walk from Fingle Bridge to Clifford Bridge and back again. You'll see waymarkers with green arrows on them along this walk. The track is relatively flat and in good condition so it's easy walking. In many parts of the woods, the track runs next to the river. At the end of Fingle Woods, near Clifford Bridge, it's more like a dirt road. In parts, the wooded valley walls tower above you. The water can be beautifully clear.

To visit Wooston Castle Hillfort, also start from the parking areas at Fingle Bridge and follow the River Teign east. You'll come to a turning area from which three paths extend. Take the middle path and follow the waymarkers with white arrows up the wall of the valley. Wooston Castle is unmistakable near the top of the path. Note that you can walk down to Wooston Castle from parking areas just off the road that skirts the southern boundary of Fingle Woods. Look for the place name Wooston on the Ordnance Survey Explorer OL28 'Dartmoor' map. The two car parking areas are there. It's a very easy walk to the hillfort from either car parking area.

There are waymarkers with black arrows in Halls Cleave and Cod Wood that extends east towards Dunsford Nature Reserve and Steps Bridge. We visited on a rainy day so will return to photograph this section of Fingle Woods.

These waymarkers are a great help when exploring the woods which are vast. However, we were told by the National Trust workers that all the woods were open. There are a huge number of forestry tracks to explore. For example, if you want to go off the beaten track, climb the steep path from Fingle Bridge to Cranbrook Castle Hillfort. At the top of the steep climb, you'll see a forestry track heading left, or east, across Charles Wood into the upper section of Hore Wood. It's an amazing place reminiscent of the wooded landscapes in Canada. There are no signs but plenty of tracks to follow.