Touring: North Wales and North Yorkshire

st4

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This is my big holiday tour this. I had planned to visit Wales for a while and a chat with members here, and the talkphotography forum made me concede that there are other places to tour other than North West Scotland and I went last year and it was a resounding success.

Before arriving in Wales, I met up with NW merc for a chat, bite and to discuss photography, then I bought a pop up tent and made for the A5 into Wales.

I literally had this set up in about 3 minutes, it just pops up, put the tent pegs in and you are done


DSC_0001 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

It was to be home for the next three days, which as we come to, wasn't.

I was recommended a place called Llandwyn Island which is out nr Newborough, Angelsey. I had a delightful run down more of the A5 and onto the A55 briefly and then off nr Caernarfon.

The sunset was particularly appealing


DSC_0041 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

And this was where the problem lied. Its out on a tidal causeway, so its an Island some of the time, and wasn't an Island when I went there, but was an Island when I wanted to come off. There really wasn't a lot I could do, but with shorts and T shirt for protection and a strongish wind, it wasn't going to be comfortable. Luckily I found some wood and made a shelter as the moon light was strong enough to see


DSC_0054 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I think I even managed maybe 30mins sleep under this thing I made, but it was awfully uncomfortable and my tent with blankets, sleeping bags was the Ritz in comparison. About 330am I had enough, and tried to make a bid for freedom, and I was in luck. 2 mile walk later with the moon light, I re acquainted myself with the skip, drove up to Bangor, bought some diesel, chocolate and drove up to Capel Curig, where I planned to do a sunrise. I popped the seat back, slept for about an hour, missed the sunrise, but the light was crap, so went for a wee drive.

Here is me, the "morning after"


DSC_0059 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I drove back to the tent. Slept, woke up and found myself drawn to the "Evo triangle". The Evo Triange sadly is getting resurfaced by laying chippings down, so you cannot enjoy it as 10mph is the limit before you here that awful pinking sound that means bye bye paint, and hello rust.

Once of it, you can increase speed to the NSL where appropriate and enjoy the curves, sweeps that it offers. On first thoughts it doesn't seem that challenging a set of roads, but there are a few mid corner bumps and off camber turns with bumps that will weed out a bad car from a good one. And I have a good one.

Here she is enjoying it


DSC_0062 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

The next stop was Lake Vyrnwy which is south of Bala in Mid Wales apparently. There are two ways in, the direct back road way in, or the boring main road way in. Back road wins!!!!



DSC_0065 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I really like Lake Vyrnwn but the light really doesn't show it in the best light (no pun intended)


DSC_0073 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I'll be back, and probably make an overnight trip here as you need the morning and evening light, and bar the trecherous roads in and out, its probably a great winter spot too.

There is an Epic road which I cannot remember the name of, but the C sport came alive just below the NSL on, great twists and turns and such fun I had


DSC_0080 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

The next stop was lunch at Porthmadog and a wee look at the Ffestiniog narrow gauge railway. This could be my future method of sight seeing, I have grown over the past few days fascinated in train travel and the doors it can open for me....


DSC_0094 (1) by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

And does Portmeirion really need any introduction.....will I be a prisoner in months/years to come? Its a reminder that one mans vision can acheive so much, a whole Italian town, in sunny Wales.


DSC_0148 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Near here there is a beach called Black rock sands, and you can drive your car on it. Perfect photographic opportunity, don't know how those tyre marks got there....something to do with Scandinavian flicks, opposite lock etc. Not I, not the skip, someone else with an identical car maybe.....


DSC_0180 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I took a nice run up via Bledgedert and back over Capel Curig and back to where I was in the morning


DSC_0190 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Windows down, enjoying the fresh air, there was no finer place to be, and no finer car to be in


DSC_0191 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Not a bad day on the fuel.

Was in bed for ten, up at 5am to try a sunrise...and fail. I drove to Llyn Crafnant to take a morning shot, failed because of the light and the midges were horrific, a week on I can still show you the bites and my leg had gone large Polka dot, covered in these bites.


DSC_0207 (1) by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

From here I drove around a bit, and accidentally damaged my taillight reversing, Merparts fitted a new one and all was well. I went to Llyn Ogwen and the weather was worse!!!!


DSC_0219 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I got a breakfast, went back to bed. Drove over to Conwy falls and I had another disaster, camera fell over and the lens snapped, good job I carry a few ones. This was my superzoom and a one I used a lot. its parting gift to me


DSC_0231 (1) by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I drove over to Conwy, which is nowhere near Conwy falls, looked at the castle, had lunch


DSC_0245 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

and I was due to meet a chap from TP at Llyn Nantile, looking onto Snowdon.

Lets just say, that was a jolly good idea and some local knowledge is very handy and he was a top chap and would love him to contribute to our photography thread.


DSC_0322 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Nicer than Scotland?


DSC_0340 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Dunno, but I will be back in Wales again, I know that.

The next day I packed up and pop up tents are a pig to put away, I don't think I done it right, but got it down, but it takes up more room than my boot does, so the back seats need to go down. Mercedes estates are very well thought out, with built in load restrictors so in no time at all, my loads were safe and all in....


DSC_0342 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I was due to meet some friends in the Lake district for more touring, but with the weather as it was, we aimed East to Robin Hoods bay, I know I've toured the area a lot, but its nice. My pals aren't car people like me so drive very pleasant and not very basic Hyundais


DSC_0350 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

These are good cars and the I30 very comfortable, spacious, well made inside and well trimmed and has climate, cruise, steering wheel controls for the stereo. I'd really not consider Ford and VX when you can get these cars. For non car people these are the new mass market cars.

However, as I am a car person, we loaded my mates dog into the C class and went for a drive over Blakey ridge and Sleights Moor road. I never, as a serial non dog lover, ever thought I'd see the day where a dog would be in my car, but she was loaded into her cage first, then in, so no dog marks or hairs got in my car.

The next day we explored Scarborough, in the rain and you can see the erosion, whole houses would fall into the see one day. Naturally I couldn't expose the skip to such danger, so we went in one of the Korean cars....LOL


DSC_0355 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

In the evening the weather picked up at Robin Hoods bay and its a lovely place to camp and go for a summer holiday


DSC_0358 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

Even had fish and chips at the Magpie in Whitby. IMHO over priced and over rated, I would personally not go back....

And just because I first discovered Wales and North Yorks in the "shed" doesn't mean you are shed free


DSC_0414 - Version 2 by stephentaylor4@hotmail.com, on Flickr

I'd of course rather they were all silver and grey like my car, but for those of you who like coloured cars, this is as close as you'll ever get to seeing one in my threads....

It was a good tour and I saw some forum members for lunch in a much better fish and chips place called Tritons off the A64. Now they are worth writing home about.

I trust the journey up the A1 and A74M needs no introduction?
 

EmilysDad

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Good photo's ;)

I know what you mean about putting pop up tents back in their bag. A mate & I tried for age to sort his out. In the end it was folded up & shoved in his boot quickly shutting the boot lid to keep it from escaping! :lol: :lol:
 
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st4

st4

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I've managed to half fold it, and get the ties it comes with around it, but it goes smaller but can live with folding it down to its present size.

Next time, and it may be a while off ;) I think sleeping in the car is easier and if you need to shower etc, go to a local swimming pool and wash there....
 

BEJ

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Glad you found the back way into lake Vernwy. Not a fast road but interesting.
You seem to have missed the waterfalls in the Ogwen valley, just down from Ogwen cottage ( cafe and car park ), very photogenic.
I can see that I will have to take you on a tour in the SLK, but NO tents, I'm much too old for that kind of thing. Give me a good old fashioned pub with rooms any time.

:lol::lol::lol::lol:
 
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Great post and pictures as usual, Steve. Some fantastic scenery on the tour. Makes me want to get a decent camera once again.
 

Pathfinder

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Taking the car on the salty sand was a big mistake. There is no cure to the rust damage it will cause. Good photos though.
 

The Pan Man

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Steve you have a gift with that camera. You also have a PM from me.
 

Pathfinder

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I was thinking more of the brakes, backplates, brake pipe fittings etc. They rot quickly with salt.

Reallly good pictures I will add
 
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Andy.M

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Don't think I'd panic about the car rusting away :lol
When all's said and done , you only live once. I bet that was great driving on the beach!!
 
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st4

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Don't think I'd panic about the car rusting away :lol
When all's said and done , you only live once. I bet that was great driving on the beach!!

A riot, probably some of the most fun I've ever had in a car, doing that donut and balancing the car all the way round.

What fun, black rock sands is nr Porthmadog, do it!!!!
 

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