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Durham University

Department of Geography

News Archive

Mystery of the Dartmoor Tors

(18 June 2012)

Sittaford Tor Valley

Moraine in valley to south of Sittaford Tor with glacially
transported surface boulder (see inset)

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."