Monday, 14 April 2014

First camping

We were a bit depleted in numbers for our first camp of the season. We'd never been able to get us altogether in the first place and then the cold weather and busy schedules further reduced us, but those of us who got there were very pleased we did.

We headed up to the east Moors, at the top of a hill by some woods, and we pretty much had the site to ourselves. A couple of hardy caravans appeared, but as one of them spent more time on adjusting their satellite dish than leveling their caravan, and there was never another soul playing in the field, we embraced the role as sole occupants.

And very nice it was too!

The kids had fun making complicated structures in the long grass areas using all available camping furniture (Nathaniel most often made an M6 péage), flying kites and tearing around on bikes. We ambled into the woods with saws and axes and the children carried a surprisingly large amount of wood back for the fire!

I spent a rather chilly first night debating whether 13 years was quite a long time to expect a Eurohike sleeping bag to last, but everyone else was warm enough. (NB The answer is yes - I need a new sleeping bag!) So the next morning we had our customary extended breakfast (several courses over a good many hours), and then headed down to the north beach to play. The weather wasn't entirely encouraging, but we are not easily put off, we just found a sheltered place for lunch before we started the digging.

And yes, we did get me and Ian in as well! Unfortunately, the tides were not in our favour, so we were disappointed not to be able to use our customary stream for building excavations. Instead I drew mazes;

And we started the complicated of backwards excavations - where you start at the water's edge and dig away from the incoming tide. The engineering is slightly less elegant, but it's still good fun!

The sun obligingly came out and we removed hats and scarves and gloves and basked a bit.

And then, before we knew it, there was no sand left to play on.

So we headed home, made fire, cremated meat, chatted to hens and horses and had a warmer night. And all in all, it was a most satisfactory start to the season!

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