Route: Beat the Leat: Dartmoor to Devonport via Devonport Leat (United Kingdom)

Submitted by Emma.Brock on Fri, 03/19/2021 - 10:02am
United Kingdom
53.2 km
Vertical Gain
480 m

This route follows the Devonport Leat from start to finish, that's Dartmoor to Devonport. It was constructed in the 1790s to carry fresh drinking water from the high ground of Dartmoor to the expanding dockyards at Plymouth Dock, hence the name.

The Devonport Leat begins a short distance to the north of Wistman's Wood National Nature Reserve, one of the highest Oakwoods in Britain. From this point, water still flows through the leat until it reaches Burrator Reservoir. But before you reach this point the route passes through more woodlands and over moors to Princetown and Nuns Cross, well know points of interest on Dartmoor.

For the remainder of the route over Dartmoor and through Plymouth some points of the leat are still visible, but have since dried up. Also due to the expansion of Plymouth's City Centre and the heavy bombing during the war, some parts of the leat no longer exist and have since been replaced and covered over by roads and housing estates. However, you can still find some glimpses of the past in the form of street names that make reference to leat, for example 'Leatfield Drive'. 

This route is a beautiful route over Dartmoor and it is only thanks to the Dartmoor Preservation Association that so much of the leat and the route remains in tact. It is also a great way to explore parts of the city that hold the key to a point in history that is being forgotten and lost.

To find out more on the history of Devonport Leat visit :

And for more details on the route, including grid references and photographs visit: Dartmoor CAM


GPS Track