|ARRIVAL AT THE BROCKENHURST CAMPSITE|
We left the Coombe Bissett site at about 11.00hrs and we had a wonderful ride down to Fordingbridge and out into the New Forest.
There were lots of other cyclists out riding on the forest roads and the majority waved a greeting and the sun continued to shine.
As we were riding along we were passed in both directions by lots of lovely Jaguar cars out on a Sunday club run, all members of the Jaguar Owners Club I think.
I had read a leaflet at the Coombe Bissett campsite about a Jaguar event that was being run through the forest from the Beaulieu Motor Museum.
We saw E-Types...420s....XJ6...XJS etc etc.
If we hadn't been enjoying our ride so much I might have stopped and taken some pictures.
Both Peter and I agreed that the ride through the forest was really enjoyable helped along by the fact that the sun continued to shine... Within a couple of hours we had arrived at the Brockenhurst site.
By now the sky had clouded over and it was obvious that it was going to rain soon.
The site manager told us that the sites in the forest were closed due to the rain of the past few days causing water logging on the pitches.
However as we were on bikes and only had small tents he allowed us to pitch up.
There was only one other camper on the site who was a regular visitor by all accounts and he was in a motorhome and was restricted to the gravel drive area due to the flooded pitches.
|THE ONLY OTHER CAMPER ON THE SITE|
Once the rain had begun it continued almost solidly for the next 40 hours.
We managed to walk into Brockenhurst town later on the Sunday afternoon trying to dodge the rain as much as possible.
We needed to get to a shop in order to top up our supplies and it was a good thing that we did considering what happened next.
|WATER LOGGED CAMPSITE PITCHES|
We had arranged to meet JD at the Lymington ferry port at midday on the Monday before going across to the Isle of Wight for a few days.
Come the Monday morning it was still raining solidly and the forecast was for more of the same, with winds gusting up to sixty miles an hour.
We had to make a decision.....do we continue with our plans or abandon.
After all this was planned to be an easy spring touring trip not a challenge in wet and windy conditions.
I spoke to JD on the phone and he felt that we would be better off cancelling the trip as the weather forecast was for more of the same and getting worse not better.
Peter and I agreed and decided that we would cancel our plans.
We now had a minor problem as neither of us fancied packing the tents and all our gear away in the torrential rain and then cycling home in it - after all we were both warm and cosy in our tents and we had supplies with us so we stayed put...... it wasn't the first time that we have been tent bound on one of our trips together.
|VIEW ONE- THE TENTS PORCH|
I had two views to look at - one was into the tents porch for cooking etc and the other was inside the inner tent all nice and bright orange.
Being inside the inner of a Hilleberg Akto tent always makes you feel that it is a nice bright sunny day outside due to the orange material....only the constant sound of rain on the outer tent gave the game away.
|VIEW TWO- INSIDE THE INNER TENT|
The manager refused payment for this extra night allowing us to stay free of charge...he realized that we were effectively being forced to stay by the bad weather and he agreed that it would have been madness to have tried to travel home in such bad conditions.
|PETER TRAPPED IN HIS TENT- SEE THE LOOK OF BOREDOM|
It was showing a break in the weather during the morning, so that was what we planned to do.....get away fairly early and try to get home before the next front of bad weather swept in.
On the Tuesday morning the forecast seemed to be accurate as the rain had stopped and there was even some sunshine.
I left the site at just after 09.40hrs and managed to get home before the rain started again. I arrived home at 11.35 hours and within the hour the rain started to move in again.
Peter left the site shortly after me and apparently the rain just started again as he arrived home.
A bit of a shame that our trip had to be cut short, but seeing how the weather has been since our return we are all agreed that we made the right decision.