With all the things that have been going on in the world the last eighteen months, Brexit and Covid has changed our lives here in the U.K. we have missed out on our winter trips and not been able to catch up with friends and family here in the U.K. even when we had the four winter months off. All the planets just didn’t line up. Covid has a lot to answer for.

So when we got a message from our friend Katie saying she wanted to come and see us we were very happy. We met Katie at one of the Hot Rod shows we used to go to. She parked next to us with her then husband and a little bundle called Jack, well he was quite a sizeable bundle to be honest, don’t know what she was feeding him on.

That was eleven years ago and over the years her life has changed and along came Tilly also. We have stayed in touch and nearly every year she would come down to Devon with her kids to see us and we would all have a great time.

She has always camped and the kids would help, I even nicknamed Jack Pegboy because he always wanted to do the pegs. We were always there to help with the tent also. I still don’t know how she got everything in the car or if she left anything at home.

We found her a campsite near us because the site we work on does not take tents and she booked it up for a three day break with the kids and her new husband to be Sean who just happens to like a beer and mountain biking so it was going to be a good break. It also coincided with our days off. I love it when a plan comes together.

The campsite is on the edge of lake Trawsfynydd and is run by a very laid back couple. They have a cottage to let, two small cabins and two tent fields. They only allow a small number of tents on each field so everyone has so much room. There’s a bench and a fire pit by each area and the views are fantastic.

View from campsite

Katie rang to say they had arrived so we give them time to set up and then went round to see them. It had been three years since we had seen them all so a good catch up was well overdue. Jack and Tilly had grown up so much since we last saw them. Jack was all excited because I was taking him and Sean to the bike park the next day and Nikki was going to go for a walk with Katie and Tilly.

The cottage to rent.

We had tea with them which Katie had made and the fire pit was going to keep the midges away. I forgot to say Katie makes the best chocolate brownies and has always made some for me when she comes to see us as she knows I quite like chocolate. Jack and Tilly are always extra nice to me when they come out so I say yes to them having one.

The next day we went round mid morning, loaded the bikes up etc and off we went to the bike park. The boys on their bikes and the girls went off for a walk to see the waterfall. I picked an easy bike trail for us as they had not been before. Sean loved it and Jack loved it even though he fell off three times but he got back up dusted himself down and carried on. Eight miles later we’re back at the car, Jack did really well considering he is only eleven and not really rode any bike parks before. The girls returned from their walk and they enjoyed that. Little Tilly did really well.

Home for a shower while Nikki and Tilly went off to Tesco to get some BBQ food as the forecast was good. Back to the campsite and get the BBQ fired up, we were all starving.

I often bike past the campsite that’s how I knew it was there and just past it on the edge of the lake is an old derelict boathouse which I always wondered how to get to it for some photos. While looking around the campsite I went round a corner and there it was just along from the cottage. So I had to walk up to it and get some photos. It’s well past its best date but still makes great photos.

Old boathouse

Back to the BBQ and another good evening. The next day was their last day so we stayed at home to catch up on things to do and they had a day to themselves before they came over to us in the evening and we all went to the pub for a beer and food. And then said our goodbyes. So good to catch up with them all.

Refurbed boat and old boathouse

Other news is I have just had my bike serviced and some new bits fitted that I had managed to wear out with my sort of riding. And this morning I went to the bike park at 6.30am and did 24 miles. 24 does not sound far but most of that was off road on narrow rocky tracks that only mountain goats would venture onto and some nice downhill sections. It was on a trail called the Beast and it was a very hard ride with lots of knarly bits. But I tamed the Beast.

Looking for the beast