My Tortrekker website derives from my love of Dartmoor. The largest wilderness in southern England and a designated national park, Dartmoor occupies the central part of the county of Devon in south-west England. The mainly rocky summits of many of Dartmoor’s hills are known as ‘tors’. When I was a young boy in Scotland, I read story books about a group of children and their adventures in Devon. The Dartmoor tors were a prominent feature of many of the stories. I never thought that one day, as a grown man, I would live in Devon and walk among them, as I do often, with my wife and two little terriers.
Living on Dartmoor is a direct result of joining the Royal Marines as a teenager and relocating from Glasgow to Devon where I have spent the majority of my adult life. Royal Marines undergo a good deal of their recruit training on and around Dartmoor; it’s an ideal place to develop fieldcraft, weapons skills and physical fitness. Some, like me, find that after yomping and exercising on it for a living, Dartmoor – figuratively as well as literally – gets under one’s skin. Consequently, I am rarely happier than when gazing in awe and admiration at its wide open spaces, its river valleys, its famous ponies and farm livestock and of course the vast skies.
Now in late middle age and happily retired, much of my time is spent reading about and photographing Dartmoor. Someone once suggested that I write a blog and after a little thought I decided… why not? That is the main purpose of this website, to share experiences and thoughts, along with photographs of the moor, its wildlife, geography and occasionally some of its people. I hope you enjoy my site and come back to see later additions. I’d appreciate comments, whether positive or negative. As long as they are constructive I will learn and hopefully improve it.