I must have got a taste for not running last week as I managed to do a little more no running again this week. There was unfortunately no cycling this weekend by way of exercise, but I did manage to get an upper body workout… otherwise known as driving a LandRover about 20km along a beach yesterday.
It all started on Saturday night when James, Kerry, Dani and I took off to the local National Park. It was dark by the time we arrived but these guys really DO have all the gear and camp was set up, complete with a Bolognese bubbling away on the stove, within about half an hour.
Having tucked away a few beers and a HUGE delicious plate of spaghetti, my accommodation was a really smart & luxurious roof tent on the Landie… which was much easier to see the next morning.
After a superb breakfast of freshly-made pancakes, complete with honey, cinnamon, lemon & banana, we were joined by James & Kerry’s friends Tony & Anna (with their son Baz and Tony’s mother Rosie) in their Landie for a drive along soft inland sand tracks to the end of the island, where we had lunch on the beach.
With the tide turned, rising and pushing us up the beach into the softer sand, Tony invited me to drive his Landie back to terra firma.
With all my ice-driving and low traction limit-handling experience, I expected this to be straightforward… it was anything but. The sand, with its varying textures, ruts and folds, pulls on the tyres in really strange ways and you are constantly fighting the steering wheel. You also have to keep the wheels spinning quickly in order to get the car to float on the sand, otherwise it bogs down really rapidly.
Quite frankly, it’s HARD work… especially as we had about 20km to cover! I have a new appreciation for the guys that do the Paris-Dakar race!
Having reached the exit from the beach, beating the tide by only a short time, we needed to drive 7km back along sand tracks to pick up the trailer and James allowed me to drive both there and back in his Landie for comparison.
Despite being off-road, the trailer is hardly noticeable most of the time except when the going gets really tough. Here you need to be super quick to slow down for big bumps or super-super quick to change down to keep the momentum going.
Once back on the tarmac, all that was left to do was to drop the trailer off and watch the sun set as we headed for home… 24 super-FUN-packed hours!