Thirteen pupils from Mount Kelly, organised into three teams (Year 9, Year 10, and Year 11/12), successfully completed this year’s Abbot’s Way walk across Dartmoor. The route, a sponsored event organised and manned by the Tavistock & District Outdoor Education Forum, begins at Buckfast Abbey and covers almost 23 miles of challenging walking, following the ancient route used by monks travelling from the abbey at Buckfast to Tavistock Abbey.
Having met at 06:15 on Sunday morning for a quick kit check, the pupils climbed onto minibuses for the drive to Buckfast as daylight dawned on a very grey and misty day. Once registered, the three teams set off and made their way via country lanes to Cross Furzes and the edge of the open moor. The thick mist and drizzle did not lift much during the morning, but the pupils coped admirably with the conditions and established a brisk, steady pace.
Around six hours later all three teams were met at Nun’s Cross by Mr Morrell and Mrs Kelly and were still in remarkably good spirits, despite the rather miserable weather. Another hour or so saw them pass through Princetown, then onto Merrivale, before the final climb of the day up onto Whitchurch Down and into Tavistock to finish at Tavistock College.
All of the teams finished between 16:30 and 17:00, with aching legs and sore feet, but also a fully justified sense of achievement at having completed the challenge. All that remained was to collect their certificates and Cornish pasties before heading home for a well-earned rest.
Article by Chris Morrell, Teacher of English (College)
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