Time is flying away with us or so it seems. Only a month ago we were in Pendine at the Hot Rod meet. Our next weekend planned event was to take the camper out somewhere. I don’t like it just sat there for long and it had been sat for three months because of being so busy and bank holidays etc.

So we decided we would go to a site in Brecon, just over an hours drive. It gives the camper a run out and gets us off site for the weekend. We have been to Brecon a very long time ago so could not remember much about it so the plan was hatched.

The site we chose was just outside Brecon, about a 20 minute walk along the canal path. We got to the site about 5.15 pm booked in pitched up, chairs out and cold beer and wine in hand and slumped in the chairs and watched the world go by. The sun was out and life was good.

Lazy morning the next day, just chilling and deciding what time to walk into Brecon. The plan was to walk into Brecon, stroll around and then find a nice pub to treat ourselves to a meal out. Like all good plans it didn’t go to plan.

Where you start the walk from the site you have to navigate across to busy roads on a roundabout to get to the canal path. This was fun in its own right as the cars just don’t seem to want to stop and let two elderly peaple cross the road. Eventually we got across the two roads and onto the safety of the canal path.

I must admit I like canal towpaths, it’s so peaceful and life slows down, everyone on the canal boats waves and shouts good morning or on this day good afternoon.

Reflecting on life

Some of the boats or barges as they’re called are lived in, some are rented out for cruises up and down the canal while others seem to be a bit neglected which is a real shame. Twenty minutes of walking and we were at the Brecon basin which is where the canal ends. A loverly row of cottages and a few barges moored up. And the start of the town of Brecon.

Brecon Basin
Another view

Off into the town we went. We had been told about a number of pubs to look out for while we were strolling around. Brecon itself was to me just like any other town. I don’t really like shops etc. But it was ok apart from the fact we could not find a pub we liked the look off. Most of them were sports bars which means they would have big TV’s on showing football etc. That’s the last thing I want when I am having a meal and a bite to eat. It was such a nice day and we wanted to sit outside in a pub garden but none of the pubs had gardens.

It was early afternoon and we were planning on going to a pub at about 5ish so there was a huge big time difference. We had walked around Brecon, not found a pub we liked so it was decision time. Thinking we were going to end up starving and not wanting to just roam about Brecon for hours I suggested we go to the local butcher buy some BBQ food go back to the camper and have a BBQ in the sun. Great plan says Nikki so that’s what we did.

A great selection of food and on our way back to the camper. As we strolled along, me with the thought of all that loverly BBQ food and cold beer in my mind, Nikki with the taste of the wine in her mind. All of a sudden we heard our names being called out, and turned around to see some friends who were also out walking their dog along the canal path. So we walked and talked and then said our goodbyes at the canal bridge. Was good to see them. Then we had to navigate the two roads again carefully. The last thing we wanted was to be run over with all that BBQ food, can you imagine the mess that would make and how confusing it would be for the paramedics etc trying to decide which piece was human and which piece was from a animal.

We survived and lived to eat our food and drink our cool drinks in the outside with no noisy TV’s, watching the sun go down. A good time was had by all.

Our pitch

Sunday morning I got up early and decided I was going to go back on the canal path but on my bike while Nikki was happy to just chill out. See you in a hour I said as I peddled of to navigate the dreaded road again, but it was early and I was on my bike so all went well. I went the opposite way to we walked the day before and as the canal wound it’s way along I kept saying to myself I will just go around that bend and then another bend appeared so on and on I went.

I then thought I better turn around and go back so my hour that I was going to be out for turned into nearly three hours and 28 miles. Nikki had thought I had fallen in the canal but she was not worried as she knows I can swim. Monday morning it was time to start the camper up and head back to work for 1pm We had enjoyed our little weekend break.

Two weeks later on our weekend off we started the camper up and headed for Pandy in Monmouthshire. This is about an hour and a half away but there was good reason to go here. One of the reasons to go here was some friends run the site so it would be good to catch up with them and they had promised us they would cook us a meal. The other reason was less than two miles from the site is a downhill bike park called Black mountain bike park which I was very keen to get to.

We got to the site at about 6.15pm and pitched up and then went to find our friends and enjoy a nice chilli and a beer or two with them. The next day we just chilled out in the sun again. Well I did go out on my bike for a short spin just to check out where the bike park was for Sunday. And we went for a stroll around the site and a short river walk.

Old railway bridge

The Bike park opened at 10am so Sunday I am all prepared, booked online and signed the waiver and off I go with Nikki shouting take it easy. It was a hot day, the conditions were perfect, the trails were bone dry and very very fast. To anyone that doesn’t know about bike parks this is what happens. This particular one being a downhill park. They have a uplift service which is a tractor with a huge big bike rack on the trailer behind that takes you up to the top of the mountain where the trails begin or you can peddle up or walk up. It cost more for the uplift service so I just went for the day ticket to pedal/ walk up.

Two miles after leaving the campsite I got booked in they give me a brief and I was off, pedalling up the track to the top of the mountain. At the top you have the choice of various trails, all graded Blue, red Black or pro line. And the idea is you just go off on which one you want and get to bottom of the mountain. The trails include jumps, berms, rocks, trees etc. you come down quicker than you go up that’s for sure.

My first run I took it easy not knowing the trails. I managed about 7 runs before I was knackered from going up and down the mountain which was about 14 miles and 3000ft of elevation. It’s actually quite hard coming down because you have to concentrate so much and you are thinking all the time and watching the lines of the trails. I must admit I nearly lost it a couple of times on one of the jumps but I survived and rode back to the camper with a big grin from ear to ear. I slept well Sunday evening .

So that’s us up to date, the weather is still good, long may it last.

Happy place