Friday, 10 March 2017

Our Continuing time at Woolacombe

Our Continuing Time at Woolacombe

Thursday 2nd to Thursday 9th March 2017

Well, I really haven't got much to write home about this week, because as it was our last week at Woolacombe Golden Coast Holiday Park,  we seemed to have exhausted most of the interesting things that there are to do around here.   Therefore, we've mostly been on replay mode and repeated some of our previous activities just to pass the time, but that isn't to say we haven't enjoyed our outings.  Additionally, the weather wasn't really on our side - there were more scary gale force winds that at times made us feel like T4rdis2 was a big cocktail shaker, or that we might tip over altogether, and along with that, we had the pleasure of frequent bouts of ferocious rain and hail.

Old Lime Kiln
Having said all that, on Thursday (2nd) the sun shone for most of the day, so to make the most of it we cycled out to the Tarka Trail again, but this time we were very careful to take a different route so that we would avoid the lane were we'd previously found a πŸ„πŸ’© lake!  Once on the trail we dawdled along in the warm 🌞 doing a bit more bird spotting, and paused for coffee by one of the ancient lime kilns that date back to the 1800's.  Then it was on towards Fremington Quay where a Heritage centre and cafe are housed in the old station buildings, however as usual we'd got our own food with us so we didn't stop - (but we did decide we might go back in a day or two for lunch).

Eventually, we arrived once again in Instow, and as we'd enjoyed it so much on our previous visit, we choose the same bench again for our resting place while we gobbled our picnic - overlooking the confluence of the River Taw and Torridge.

Then it was back down the Tarka Trail until we got as far as Braunton, and from there we headed for Croyde, however on the way we got soaked through to the skin by the only passing rouge shower deluge of the day!  But, even though we were 'dripping'  we still took the time to take a last break sitting on a wall high up above the beautiful Saunton Sands, and then it was home  via Marine Drive and Woolacombe, thus completing a 40 mile circuit!

On Friday (3rd) it had to be shopping!  There's a very good shop on the site but it's a tad expensive, and as Lidl is only a 4 mile bike ride down the hill in Ilfracombe, off we went.  I suppose really our plan had been to linger in the town a while, but with more heavy rain forecast for the afternoon we were quite keen to beat it home, and additionally, I'd developed a touch of 'man flu', so another soaking didn't appeal!  So that task was quickly completed, but while we were stowing our goodies away we had another visit from our πŸ¦†πŸ¦†πŸ¦†quacking friends who I took pity on with some old bread.  And then just before putting our feet up for the afternoon John nipped out and managed to fix the garage door - it's good to know it's now secure and we're not at risk of losing it any time soon!

Saturday (4th) was another shower dodging day - we walked over the muddy fields down to Woolacombe and spent all of £3.20 on lunch - a big bag of chips which we shared while overlooking some massive waves!  And then in the afternoon we treated ourselves to a cream tea and did a bit of forward planning for when we leave here.  However, that turned out to be quite challenging because a lot of campsites are still shut, and those that are open are fairly busy - thus we must have phoned at least a dozen places to secure homes for the rest of March!

Sunday 5th turned out to be another day of bone shaking high winds and rain so we decided to stay in and have a lazy one, and the only time I stirred out of the door was to take advantage of the sites sauna in the afternoon.  Having said that I spent a fair bit of my time cooking,  and in the near future I'm hopping I'll get round to posting some of my 'T4rdis2 Recipes' on a separate page on this blog.  We enjoyed stilton and broccoli soup for lunch, and a lovely lamb pot roast (in our slow cooker) for tea. And how did John spend his time - well mostly doing  even more 'plotting'😨 for our ongoing outings!

On Monday we thought we were going to be confined to quarters again because from the moment we roused from our πŸ˜΄πŸ’€πŸ˜΄ (about 8.30) the rain hammered down unmercifully - but then suddenly about 1    ish it stopped and allowed glimmers of 🌀 to peek through the clouds.  Now the question was - should we have lunch before we go out? or should we go out and have lunch?  We chose the later, so with grumbling hungry tums we hurried down the track to Ilfracombe where we nipped into The Admiral Collingwood's for a pie and a 🍺, before heading into the town to buy a few essential stores for T4rdis2.
Then all we had to do was complete the 8 mile circuit to get home before the next deluge hit - but we needn't have worried, because by the time we were on the last mile the sun had won the battle with the clouds, and was helping us to make us over warm in our winter waterproof wrappings!

Sadly, Tuesday was just a write off, with more miserable weather, so probably the least said the better!

For Wednesday nothing much to say except it was horrible again, but we do want to wish  .....
'A very happy Birthday to Louise - Hope you got lots of lovely pressiesπŸŽ‚πŸΈπŸ˜˜
Fremington Quay Cafe

Thursday - Hooray - a bit of sunshine at last - in fact the day was really just like a summer one, and after being 'shut in' for the last 2 days we were definitely going to make the most of it!  So 'What should we do?' In the end our activity was influenced by the fact  that today was our last in this area, so as we'd enjoyed the Tarka Trail so much there was really very little competition! We were soon mounted up on our bikes and peddling back towards the estuary, but instead of our usual picnic we'd decided to treat ourselves to lunch at the Cafe at Fremington Quay!

However, we couldn't break with to many of our usual traditions, so our trusty flask was filled with hot coffee and this was partly guzzled when we took our first break in the warm sunshine and indulged in a little 'twitching πŸ¦πŸ¦†πŸ§πŸ¦' along the estuary banks.   And it was here, that along with the usual wading birds, we were treated to the rare site of a Spoonbill fishing for his dinner.  

This resulted in a considerable delay before we could tear ourselves away and resume our journey, but maybe that made us enjoy our lovely lunch even more.  We arrived at Fremington Station Cafe at about 2pm and ordered jacket potatoes, but when they arrived they by far exceeded our expectations, the only bad thing was that the portions were so large we couldn't manage to fit one of their exceedingly lovely looking deserts in!

Anyway, with stodged tums we resumed our journey, and proceeded along exactly the same route we'd used on Thursday - but this time it was much better because we were peddling in 🌞😎.  And being creatures of habit, we stopped of in the same place for our afternoon coffee and cake - overlooking Saunton Sands.  However, on this occasion the view was different!  The tide was almost fully in, and for our additional entertainment several 🐬🐬🐬🐬🐬were swimming in the bay.
Our last night was a clear one!

Finally, it was back home via Woolacombe from where we had a two mile uphill ride to complete our 32 mile circuit - I think that must have been the hardest bit!  But when we arrived home there was no peace for the wicked - we still had to rally round and start getting things packed up ready to move on tomorrow - Oh it is a hard life!!

Anyway, that's all for now.
Take Care 😘

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