Adventure is what you want it to be

“Adventure is anything you want it to be, don’t let others define this for you. There is no right or wrong way to have an adventure”

– Mike and Shannon Mills

Winter is a quiet time of year for this sort of blog! Even my Insta account has temporarily run out of pictures (very sad!).

EDIT: it is now late May and we have traveled all over, both on our own and with the and Rover club and to some shows too. So apologies it’s taken me so long to post this. A new job is taking up much of my time these days.

However……a change is afoot! Against my initial (and better) judgement we  invested in a camper van last November. My initial (and some may say) natural reaction coming from a huge Land Rover fan was ‘campervan, how on earth will we greenlane in that?’. But the more I thought about it the more it dawned on me that I’ve never actually taken any one of my overland trailers proper greenlaning in any case so chances of me missing out by owning a campervan were probably minimal.  So as the pros and cons abounded I decided it would be a good thing for the family in terms of our ongoing travel dreams.

Afterall, we’ll still have Daisy, our trusty Discovery 3 won’t we? Or so we thought, but that’s a whole other story – she is currently big sick and I can’t decide whether to keep her or sell her.

Our intention is to buy a driveaway awning. Then we can use it as extra room for van, especially handy as a giant play pen for Aly so we can keep her safe now she is into toddler mode. It will also be our sleeping area when we have the Land Rover which will typically be at LR shows and the like.

I’m totally sold on the vanlife style of travel now. Don’t get me wrong if the budget had stretched to a 4×4 Sprinter I’d have taken one in a heartbeat – best of both worlds then. For now though, the flexibility the van has afforded us has far exceeded my expectations, in particular, not needing to worry about the weather during our harsh winter. Literally a case of grabbing an overnight bag , jumping in and picking a spot on the map to travel too. The van itself is totally self-sufficient with heater, water, toilet, cooking facilities so no matter where we end up and no matter the weather and temperature outside we will always be wrapped up snug and warm inside whilst watching old episodes of The Long Way Round on the odd occasion when our Vision Plus aerial won’t pick up a signal. I’ve also included a bag of snow chains, a decent tow rope, shovel and some other recovery gear in the spacious storage area. I’m confident that unless I bury it up to it’s axles it’ll cope happily with the odd slippery gravel track or wet grass pitch.

My favourite part by far though has to be the external gas point where I can plug in our gas BBQ and have instant outside cooking facilities. It’s not had much use yet but in the summer it’s going to be so well used it’ll need servicing by next Autumn! The BBQ itself is a Campingaz Party Grill 600. It packs up into it’s own case and literally takes minutes to set up and pack up and comes with several different options for cooking, it has hot plate, griddle pot stand and can be used as an over with the lid on. To date, it’s made us pizza and a very nice shepherds pie. The only thing about it that slightly perplexes me is that the instructions tell me to fill the base up with water each time before I use it. if anyone knows why that is, do please let us know. If I get the chance and if you want to see it, I’ll get a decent review done of this soon.

EDIT: I did my research I now know that its to stop any fat that drips over the side to not stick and therefore make it much easier to clean…..which it does.

So for now, check out some of the piccies below and we’ll see you on the road sometime. The van will have our OLO logo on it soon so keep your eyes peeled.

At very gusty (40mph to be precise) Spring Adventure Overland Show.

Outdoor cooking on the gad BBQ. L + M pie 🙂 near Ross on Wye

On the shores of Tintagel in Cornwall.

Lands End looking out to the US.

Chilling at the end of yet another fun packed adventure.

I love this. Subtle reminder to ourselves each time we step outside.

Cornwall again, perhaps near Bude.

And this just goes to show we can still travel in a convoy with the Land Rover club.

 

Classic Land Rover Show

Day 1

We arrived late due to me over-running in work and immediately  upon arrival we remembered our ‘point to note’ from the 2017 show! Do arrive early so you can get on the show side of the camp site. You see whilst the show is one of our faves, the campsite is less than ideal. That is to say it is sort of divided in two by a huge earthen mound. If you happen to find yourself arriving late you will almost certainly end up having to stay on the car park side if the camp site (yes, I said car park, literally!). And from that side you have no view of the show at all until you’ve climbed the earth mound which is vast enough for many campers but than you have a full unbridled view of the rest of the campsite and the fabulous showground being watched over by the equally magnificent British Motor Museum and the Collections Centre. Anyway, it was setup tent, get baby fed and off to land of nod, pour few swift vodkas and with not even time for a fire bed time for us too.

Day 2

We spent most of the day watching the excellent selection of classic and historic vehicles in the arena. The Classic always manages to pull in such a great selection. On more than one occasion I feel my mind wandering off to our own Welsh Festival of Land Rovers that’s organised for Mid May and I think to myself if we can even muster a fraction of what this show can we’ll have done ourselves proud. At this point I wish I had brought my drone, thinking that I would have got some great aerial shots but the thing I always worry about is falling foul of the law when flying too close to crowds with the minimum being 150 meters away. Too far for any decent shots to show the vehicles off at least.

At the Adventure Overland Show the DJ in his converted Land Rover came by the name of 4×4 Traks, this time it was the turn of Beat n Trak. Great ideas, basically a Land Rover 110 Defender with a raising roof and a set of decks thrown in the back. I also got to meet Nick Enston of Instagram landroverphotoalbum fame no less (www.instagram.com/landroverphotoalbum). Little did we know that we’d soon meet again after that on a trip down a popular Welsh lane with the team form a rather well known Land Rover mag.

Day 3

Lazy morning followed by another visit to the arena where  today’s events looked slightly different to yesterdays. Beat N Track had competition today with the regular trio and the amazing sounds of My Favorite Things, a period group that perfectly suits the show. Last but by now means least what trip to this show would be complete without a visit to the museum and having the opportunity to walk past the iconic 166 HUE. By the way whilst a visit to the museum is a must many of the people I spoke to seem to have missed out the collections centre all together where actually there are some Land Rovers in there that’ll really knock your socks off. Honest, you absolutely must go into both buildings.