Dartmoor, Pomps and me
Sometimes things just break......... Whether its the weather, the scoot, yourself or the plan, Sometimes it just does. This time it was the plan and like all good adventures its often the breaking plan that makes for the better times.
A crowded calendar and family or work commitments meant the group were unable to take on a trip to the South Coast as previously advertised so that left Pompey and myself. Eager to just get away and seizing the chance to just get out on the bikes we set off for a Saturday night camp, South somewhere. Now, Since the birth of my little girl life has turned a little sketchy in terms of timings and tardiness. I was late getting up, late getting the bike fuelled and even later to get out on the road. Dave was moaning as normal and to be honest I don't blame him. He moaned even more when we both ground out our exhausts on the roundabout at Bridgey - - I hate that thing, its just dangerous.
Our plan was to head to Teignmouth for the day to get a glimpse of the SWSC rally being held there and then head back up into Dartmoor for a spot of wild camping. We had already reviewed a couple of spots, courtesy of Google earth but by the time we hit Exeter via the A38 and had an obligatory burger on route, time was against. The day tickets available at the rally would close at 6 pm so we abandoned the rally option. Never mind, we had our gear and pretty self sufficient so a detour to the wilds of Dartmoor was hastily re-organised and it was a lovely evening anyway.
A lovely ride followed out over the moors which took us to Widdecombe in the Moor. A place I had passed many times but tended to neglect for further treats but here was finally a chance to sample its quaint Dartmoor cheer and beer up close. Now, as stated above wild camping was going to be the order of the day but our route took us to far North for our previously planned pitch so decided instead to seek out one of the 3 only sites on Dartmoor that looked wild. The first we tried was full of kids doing the ten toors and once the owner had seen Pomps and his manic grin were suddenly closed. Luckily we were recommended another site that was a few miles further and in striking distance of a boozer so sorted.
A fantastic camp site at Conningford was the place and at £5 per night cannot be missed in the future. A river side pitch was sorted (always a good way to drown out the sound of snoring is a river rushing by). Dave was happy as they even had a 'bog' with paper???
A few tinnies downed and then off to the 'Old Inn' for a couple of pints and a hearty meal. This really is a fantastic pub and is thoroughly recommended if your in the area. Pompey as always these days was on heat and spent the evening explaining what he was going to do to almost anything in a skirt that passed our table. It did make me giggle. That said there was a couple of crackers (if I was 15 years younger!!). Fed and watered , an early night was in order (not without a Pink Floyd Lullaby for Pomps first) as the weather the next day was going to be lovely and it made a lot of sense to not waste it with a mashed head.
Dartmoor is wonderful place if its sunny but I've been there so many times when you can hardly see your hand in front of your face. This Sunday the weather was superb and was a joy to just poodle along at 40 mph and take in the vast views and wildlife. It was a shame we could not have spent more time there - absolutely stunning and the scoots were running superb. In fact the roads across to Crediton are some of the best in the South West with massive sweeping corners and great tarmac for grip. Sunshine all the way home and a big smile from ear to ear by the time I headed back through my front door.
I really do love these little one-nighters and we shall do a fair few more in the coming year. In fact we should definitely take in Dartmoor before that fog descends again.
In fact.........It would make a great Icicles destination with freezing fog...
Cheers Dave - a great trip and great companion.