Yorkshire Dales for the next three days, we’ve been before but not to Hawes so we were really looking forward to exploring it.
Just two hours away for us but couldn’t get on the site until 12. We tried to pack and load up Pod at a slower pace and actually succeeded with only half an hour to spare before we set off.
Still get excited when we take Pod on the road. She’s in for a service in a couple of weeks and we will probably still feel the same about that.. well, one of us will do.
Anyway, back to Hawes. We’d avidly been checking the weather reports and it seemed to bode well for us, as we set off the sun was out and the roads were pretty clear which meant we arrived at Hawes only a few minutes after 12 and to find ourselves third in a queue.
Long story short, as it’s covered in a prior blog, we’d discovered damp cushions and bed boards on our last two trips so our thinking caps came out, slats and holes were the result and implemented.
We’d tested it at home, without divulging which way the weight was shared out, 28 stone was put across it for a short period and all seemed good. A trip away would answer any questions and would either be a success or we’d be paying for it with bruised bottoms and egos.
Walking past the outside seating area and in through the main door we were met by seated areas on both sides, one end had the coal fire going at full throttle so we naturally migrated in that direction. Didn’t spot any local beers so decided upon their guest ale, Silver Hare. 2 pints were bought and we grabbed the seating area next to the fire.
Through the pub window we watched the world go by, cosy next to the fire surrounded by the delicious smells coming from the food which was being served up to people around us. The menu looked great, all local produce on offer and reasonable priced, wasn’t for us on this occasion as we had steak and stir-fry waiting for us back at Pod.
Back at Pod we soon had the OS map out and looked for a walk that was possible from the site, there were a few in the area but our aim on this occasion was to do a walk under 10k. We weren’t sure we were capable of it but we had to give it a go, so one was picked from the village which in our usual style took us on a small loop out and back again. .
Clouds were forming but as long as the sun made an appearance it was still very warm so the awning was opened up and dinner was served as the sun began to move past us and down over Hawes.
This was followed by a short walk to the one shower block but it was spotlessly clean and those showers were brilliant, hot and powerful, perfect.
Now came bedtime, we were both pretty confident as we climbed onto the bed and under the duvet, we soon snuggled down to attempt a good nights sleep in the hope neither of us woke with a start to find ourselves on the floor between the bed boxes. It wasn’t seen as an issue as the slats we’d made were nearly three times the width of those supplied in caravans of today. Thankfully we succeeded and both woke refreshed for the day ahead.
Temperatures were also due to drop to 2deg so we’d had the small fan heater on timer, only for 15 minutes every hour and this was fully turned off at 2am.
As is habit with most we looked out of the window to see what the weather held in store but we were pleasantly surprised to see blue skies and the very retro looking Carlight. We both wondered what it was like in the inside and decided to try and wangle a peek, we just had to find the right opportunity.
As we planned to do a ‘leisurely’ walk we weren’t for rushing, once breakfast was out of the way we set about sorting our backpacks and picnic lunch, if we stuck to our plan there was a possibility we would return before lunch, but as our track record has shown, we really aren’t that good at doing short, so best to go prepared.
Sandwiches were in the process of being made when MrB popped his head round the door to say ‘quick ! tidy up.. someone’s asked to have a nosey round Pod’. Walking slowly behind him towards the van were the owners of the Carlight, it seemed they were as curious about Pod as we were about their van.
Let’s face it, there isn’t a lot to tidy in Pod, so a quick shake of the duvet and we were done.
They were impressed with the layout and loved our living arrangements and once we moved over to their van we found we had a lot of similarities.
The Carlight is a two birth with a small kitchen area at the rear and storage for a portapotty but no bathroom. They had a nice gas fire situated in the middle of the van but opted for a small electric fan heater.
The seating area at the front of the van when made into single beds reached 6’6” in length or could be put into a nice sized double if wanted.
The fixtures and fittings were the originals although the gas lamps had been modified to electric, what amazed us the most was the quality of the fabric which made up the seating, so plush, thick and delicately patterned. The seating was also made up from a proper sprung mattress, again all original and in such good condition.
Just goes to show, with 50 years between the Pod and Carlight we may be one of the new kids on the block but the Carlight was still going strong.
We said our goodbyes as they were packing up to head off to another site and we set about gearing up for our walk.
Our route took us out of the site and towards Hawes, the sun was out and rain at the moment didn’t seem to be a thing we needed to consider. The path took us past the church and into open farmland, we soon entered the very small village of Gayle and once over the bridge we followed the road up and out along the river.
About an hour later we saw a path which went down to the right and back over the river, it looked like it would take us back towards Gayle. Decision time, do we take the path back or carry on in our usual style, weather conditions were good and it all lent its self to a longer walk, but we managed to talk ourselves round and took the route on offer.
Once back in Gayle it didn’t take us long to find ourselves back in Hawes and we decided to call into the local shop for a lunchtime treat, even though we had our packed lunch with us. Couldn’t resist buying a few unusual ales either, we were on holiday after all.
On checking our route we had covered just under 9 kilometres in 2 ½ hrs, we were pleased with this, not sure it would become a regular thing but it was a good experience and something to measure future walks on.
Lots of reading and snoozing followed, the sun was glorious but as soon as it disappeared behind a cloud the temperature dropped sum what. Didn’t deter us from sitting out and the awning remained open to the elements.
A little later curry and rice were served up and those ales went down very well with it, closely followed by local strawberries and cream. MrB went to do the dishes and LB cleaned the kitchen area, once these jobs were done the rest of those ales went down very well whilst relaxing and chatting as the sun went down.
Woke to a light frost but we’d slept soundly throughout. Nice cup of tea in bed followed by breakfast and the task of packing up Pod began.
Didn’t take long and the time came to take a look at the slats. We were confident they hadn’t moved and didn’t expect the cushions to have faired any worse so we videoed the unveiling. It’s on our FB page and YouTube should your curiosity get the better of you.
All went according to plan and the slats, along with the drilled holes in the bed box had preformed brilliantly. Great space saver with the slats and it looked and felt like a dry bed box.
Back on the road ahead of schedule and on our way home. Next adventure in 4 weeks time, off to Buxton for a few more adventures, hopefully.