Waking up to snow in Cornwall on Wednesday morning, we were skeptical about starting our drive up to Devon this week…
For the days before our pre-planned ‘roadtrip’ (to Dartmoor for a few nights, and then supposedly on up to York to see my sister for her birthday this weekend), we’d both been watching the weather forecast in anticipation. This ‘Beast From The East’ Siberian snow storm was due to hit the South West the very same day we were planning to leave…
And sure enough, the snow arrived on time on Wednesday morning, covering most of south Cornwall in a thin but chaotic blanket of white. Predictably, this resulted in widespread panic and people slipping and sliding in their cars and causing accidents on the roads…
Determined not to have to cancel our trip (and also excited to see what Dartmoor looked like in the snow) we waited for a gap in the snowfall and took to the main roads after lunch. Weirdly, everywhere past Truro was totally clear with not a snowflake in sight – in fact we had beautiful blue skies while driving up!
Wondering what all the commotion about, we arrived at our AirBnB in Princetown without any weather problems holding us up. This was to be our cosy respite from the impending snow storm that was planned to hit the UK properly on Thursday, and it provided us the perfect comfortable space to snuggle up with the dogs.
As you can see, The Garden Rooms was beautifully decorated and immaculately clean, with all the facilities we could possibly need and a large enclosed garden for the dogs to sniff around in. It also had an outdoor hot tub, turned on and awaiting us on our arrival, and best of all – was only a 2 minute walk to access the miles and miles of surrounding moorland for long walks and doggy play time!
As we made our way onto the moors, the wind started picking up, and the first signs of Devon snow floated around us.
Princetown is Dartmoor’s highest village, at around 435m above sea level, and is actually one of the highest villages in the whole of the UK too. Famously, it is the site of Dartmoor Prison, and as such, is pretty much miles from anywhere!
This means that even from the highest points, all you can see is just mile and miles of moorland stretched out in front of you. It’s truly stunning!
After our windy walk, we headed back to our AirBnB, stocked up with plenty of food for the next couple of days from the supermarket, ate our dinner and settled down to watch Netflix. But not before taking a night time dip in the enormous outdoor hot tub!
…And on Thursday morning, we awoke to this!
With a good few inches of snowfall overnight, the patio and garden were covered, with not a blade of grass managing to peep through. Of course, we immediately wanted to get outside to play in it!
It was bitterly cold, due to the 60mph gales making the -3 temperatures feel more like -10, and whilst Maizy loved leaping about in the drifts and build up, Pepper was less impressed with the whole thing…
So we made our morning walk quick and headed to the local pub, The Plume of Feathers.
There are actually a couple of pubs in Princetown and nearby, but our host, Alex’s mum, and a couple of people on Instagram had all recommended The Plume of Feathers to us, so we had to give it a go!
The top recommendation on the menu? The pies! We ordered two and got some treats for the dogs to enjoy at our feet while we ate, too.
Back at The Garden Rooms after lunch, we gathered up some blankets and settled in for our snow day, binge-watching the entire series of The Sinner on Netflix (would definitely recommend if you love a good psychological crime drama!), and sipping on hot chocolates.
The next morning, we were due to leave Dartmoor and drive up to York to see my sister. However, with Thursday’s news of people spending up to 15 hours stuck on motorways up and down the country, and the horrific pile-ups and crashes happening due to icy conditions on the roads, we had to make a decision.
The snow hadn’t eased off by the morning, and there were still warnings of icy roads and motorway hold ups in the midlands, so we called the second part of our trip off. To be honest, we were even questioning whether we’d be able to get out of Princetown at all!
The wind was up to 67mph up on the moors, which was blowing the freshly fallen powdery snow up into snow drifts and banks around the roads, making it nearly impossible to get out of the moors. However, we somehow managed to find ourselves travelling behind a tractor, who was plowing the roads clear in front of us – very useful!
As soon as we got off the moors and into Tavistock, the main roads were totally cleared, and as we drove further into Cornwall, the snow had seemingly pretty much melted. It was sad to leave the snow behind, and of course I did wonder if maybe we could have made it up to York after all, but I’m glad we got home safe in the end anyway!
Seriously, what is it with me and getting stuck in the snow this year??