Drizzlecombe Stone Rows
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
HERITAGE HIGHLIGHTS: The Bone Stone is the largest standing stone on Dartmoor
The name Drizzlecombe sounds unappealing, but its roots are not nearly so drab; it comes from the word combe, for a valley, and 'Drishel', for a thrush, so the actual meaning is 'valley of the thrush'.
Three stone rows are laid out along the slope of Hartor Hill, each row terminated by a tall standing stone at one end and a cairn at the other. The rows are aligned southwest to northeast, with the standing stone at the southwest end and the cairn at the northeast. Between the terminus stones and cairns are small stones aligned in rows. Most of these stones are quite small, less than 0.5 metres high.
running almost parallel to the eastern row is the north row, a single row but much longer, with about 70 low stones arranged over 150 metres. The north row terminates in a much small standing stone, about 2.4 metres in height.
It seems likely that all 3 stone rows were built at the same time, during the Bronze Age.
On the same spur of land where you will find the stone rows are the remains of at least 5 settlement sites and a large number of cairns in addition to a stone-walled cist.
If you are lucky you will see Dartmoor ponies wandering among the stone rows. I was delighted to see a herd of ponies walking through the rows when I visited, followed by a pair of cows who stopped to rub their flanks on the standing stones.
VisitingThe easiest way to reach Drizzlecombe is to take the lane leading due east out of Sheepstor village. The lane terminates at a parking area. A footpath leads east from the end of the lane, then forks. Either branch will do. The most northerly branch leads up a spur of Hartor Hill where it joins another trail leading back down Drizzle Combe. After a few hundred yards you have to leave the trail and climb the low rise to the stone rows, which are easily visible.
You can return the same way or make it into a circular walk by rejoining the footpath and turning north at Ditzworthy Warren House before returning to the car park. As with all excursions on Dartmoor, an OS map is very useful, and please do take sensible precautions with footwear!
Do take the time to explore Sheepstor, used by director Steven Spielberg for his film War Horse.
About Drizzlecombe Stone Rows
Address: Sheepstor, Devon, England
Attraction Type: Prehistoric Site
Location: Parking area at the end of a lane just east of Sheepstor village at SX578673. An OS map is essential!
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
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Nearest Accommodation to Drizzlecombe Stone Rows: