Mystery of the Dartmoor Tors
(18 June 2012)
A joint study by Durham University, Exmoor University and Stockton Riverside College published in the journal Quaternary Science Reviews, has revealed that the Dartmoor landscape was in fact formed by glaciers, which contradicts the long standing belief that ice caps did not exist on the Dartmoor terrain.
The study found evidence of ice age activity including several glacial features such as landforms known as moraines, using observations on the ground and using aerial photography. Evidence showed for the first time that naturally castellated stone outcrops known as tors were survivors of this glacial past and that the glacier ice helps to shape its distinctive landscape.
The Geography Department’s Professor David Evans commented that "A landscape that has been regarded as a classic example of non-glacial cold processes was in fact covered by a glacial ice cap…..the evidence for which is so subtle that researchers had missed it for over 100 years."