Rackenford and Knowstone Moors

About this route

This wonderful, but wild and windswept, site is one of the largest remaining areas of Culm grassland. This rare habitat once dominated the landscape of northern Devon. It consists of a mixture of wet grassland, heath, bog and scrub and supports a wide diversity of wildlife. The reserve has a rich flora, including such species as heath spotted orchid, marsh violet, devils bit scabious, bog asphodel and bogbean. The animal life is also abundant. The reserve supports 28 species of butterflies, including the rare marsh fritillary, and a variety of birds including curlew, stonechat and willow warbler and, in winter, woodcock and snipe. Red deer are a common sight.

Getting Around

By car: Approach the reserve from the A361 North Devon Link Road. The reserve can be seen either side of the road approximately 14km from Tiverton and can be accessed from Moortown Cross. There are several parking sites scattered around the site.

Free access over the entire reserve but few trails or paths. The ground can be both rough and very wet. The Two Moors Way, a long-distance walking trail passes through Knowstone Moor.
Largely rough ground with few trails or paths.

Interesting information

Rackenford and Knowstone Moors are a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a Special Area of Conservation (SAC).

Photo of moorland at Knowstone Moor
Knowstone Moor Copyright Martin Bodman, licenced for further use - see geograph.org.uk

You can explore more in this area

Photo of the Two Moors Way path across moorland with a granite way marker in the foreground

Two Moors Way (Devon’s Coast to Co..

Running for just over 100 miles/160km between Ivybridge in the south and Lynmouth in the north, this famous path links