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Dartmoor Walk
Cosdon Beacon from South Zeal

Nat Park - Dartmoor

County/Area - Devon

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 6.5 miles / 10.6 km

Ascent - 1200 feet / 364 metres

Time - 4 hours 30 minutes

Grade - easy/mod

Start - OS grid reference SX651934
Lat 50.724518 // Long -3.912569
Postcode EX20 2JX (approx. location only)

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Cosdon Beacon from South Zeal
Click thumbnails for larger images.

Cosdon Hill or Cosdon Beacon is the most north-easterly of the high Dartmoor hills and as one might expect provides some excellent views. This route is mostly easy to follow although careful navigation in the early stages of the walk through a maze of lanes does require care. It is also worth noting that in poor visibility good map reading and compass skills are necessary.

The start is the car park (grid ref. SX651934) at the southern end of South Zeal village. Exit the car park and turn right along the road. Take the first road on your right and continue to reach a crossroads. Go straight across. You are now on a signed bridleway walking west. Bear left at the first junction and continue ahead to a 'cross-roads' with a footpath on your right (grid ref. SX645931). Ignore the track heading south and continue in westerly direction to reach a T-junction (grid ref. SX643930). Here bear left and continue between walls to reach open country. Passing a number of smaller enclosed fields on your left take the slopes of Cosdon Hill rise to your left. Take the path (one of many on this hill) making a beeline for the summit and the Beacon with its trig point (grid ref. SX636915).

The onward route heads just west of south and you should take the easiest path making for the summit of Little Hound Tor (grid ref. SX632899) passing a shallow col before reaching the highest point. Descend south to a junction of bridleways (grid ref. SX632896) and an adjacent stone circle. Here turn sharp left and follow the clear bridleway as it heads northeast across the moor. The route passes through a walled section with small enclosures to your left before crossing a short area of open moorland. The way ahead then passes between walls again. At a junction (grid ref. SX645929) bear right to reach the crossroads at grid ref. SX645931 encountered on the outward route. Turn right here and follow the outward route back to the car.

For the return, retrace your tracks back down the river bed, turn right at the cross-roads, and then continue on this track (past where you originally met it) until eventually joining back to the way marked footpath. At a cross-roads (Grid ref SJ 237 476) bear left and you should recognise the path that led to the stile at the beginning of the walk. Follow the original path back to the car park.

Please maintain social distancing - keep at least 2 metres away from other walkers

Covid 19 Update for Walkers

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Walking on Dartmoor

Walking on DartmoorThis guidebook contains route descriptions for 42 day walks in the Dartmoor National Park and its surrounding area. The walks all vary in length from 2 to 12 miles long and each route is graded by difficulty from easy to moderate or hard. Most of the walks are circular with a few longer routes that are linear and involve ascents of tors.
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