I’ve finally opened my BAM (bivvy-a-month) 2019 account, I missed January unfortunately. I decided it would be a good time to start getting out more regularly, plus I need to start prepping for the WRT in May.
I decided to stay local to home (20 miles max) so headed up to a local area littered with bridle ways, double and single track, un-adopted roads, and all manner of remnants of the areas industrial past. I started off on Saturday afternoon, and used a route I’ve not tried before and, to be honest, probably won’t use again, it was quite boring and there was too much traffic. I’m not sure what it is about Welsh b-roads that attracts idiot drivers in crap little hatchbacks. Answers on a postcard?
I arrived in the rough vicinity of my proposed camping spot quite early, so took advantage of the local pub (think Slaughtered Lamb), to grab a pint of Diet Coke and use the facilities. I did enquire as to whether they were serving food, to which the answer was a hesitant, “Not really…” I’m not really sure what that meant, I just nodded politely and finished my drink.
I jumped back on the bike and went for a wander around the local trails, stopping for a quick photo opp at the old kilns.
The spot I was planning to visit had been recommend by a patron of the BearBones parish, and I’m glad I took the advice. It’s an old disused quarry, which is good and bad. Good because there’s plenty of level areas and plateaus to pitch on, bad because there’s plenty of stone under the topsoil, so getting the stakes in can be a challenge.
As the boozer wasn’t doing any food I was going to try the Adventure Expedition dehydrated meal I’d picked up, minced beef hotpot apparently. Well that’s what it said on the label. I can only describe it as tasteless goopy stuff with bits in. I won’t be going down that route again, the boil in the bag meals are much tastier, although they are heavier, or better yet, just find a local chippy / pub (that serves food).
Anyway, back to the trip, the new tent worked like a charm. Stood up to the wind and rain, albeit light rain. As my kit isn’t really “4 season”, I’d decided to take two sleeping mats; the 7cm karrimor lilo mat to provide comfort and keep me off the floor, AND the 3cm Vango self-inflating mat to go inside the sleeping bag and provide some insulation. Despite the obvious weight and volume penalty, the combination of both mats worked brilliantly, I was comfortable and warm all night. All in all, the kit is standing up to the abuse I throw at it, however the KTM is definitely due a service, the gears were all over the place so a trip to the LBS is in order.
Stay tuned for the next trip out, sooner rather than later I hope.