Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Through spells and litanies. The oak tops entangle.

The title is from a 6th century poem 'Cad Goddeu' (Welsh: The Battle of the Trees).  Some of my favourite places on Dartmoor are what's left of the ancient oak forests, which tend to nestle in some  of the remote and high river valleys of Dartmoor. There are only three of these anciant oak forests lelf on Dartmoor and this one lies along the River Erme valley at about 1000 feet in altitude. The wood consists mainly of stunted and gnarled pedunculate oak trees that grow from between moss-covered boulders. Due to the altitude the trees are particuarly short in height (some are only 10 feet high) and and covered with epiphytic mosses, lichens and ferns. After some fishing along the River Erme we wild camped near the edge of the wood.On a side note I always find it hard to capture woodlands with a camera as they are difficult to expose for due to the high contrast and while this is by no means a great photo of the wood, I hope to have to captured some of the wood's mystical and gnarled qualities.

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