Our last day and night in France.
24th April 2019 St. Saire to Aire du Parc d’ Olhain 145km
Bacon butties this morning as the light fills the van, it’s a lovely start to the day as we set off. A couple of things need doing today, the van really needs a good wash and a tyre pressure checks. We’ve done a lot of long, challenging driving of late so we should make sure the tyres are in good order. The French do a lot of good things and one of those is car washes. They are the best. Prices range from 8 to 12 euros but they go through the works, debris removal, hot cream wash, hot rinse and a protector. Excellent. She comes out shining, next the tyres. We have always struggled with this at some garages. The air machines can be a bit hit and miss and sometimes we end up taking more out than putting in. Thank god for emergency foot pump. We never learn but we will next time out and by a good quality, reliable foot pump. The one we use is a bit on the small side, not quite a bicycle pump, but almost.
The place we are going to today is about an hour or so from Calais. In the forest, it is a paid for aire that backs onto a campsite that also is full of outdoor attractions such as tree top walks, a “GO APE” style course, (to be fit for that), the world’s biggest tree net system and many many kilometres of cycling and walking trails. The drive is a couple of hours so we are pleased to arrive and have our pick of the spots to settle into.
Once in, we have a good walk around the site and the attractions. It’s a fabulous place, excellent. There are lots of cycle routes so H decides that we will do a 6km ‘easy’ cycle through ‘nature’. Our bikes and backsides will take some recovering. It was great fun but after heavy rains the tracks that where once mud had dried out leaving some deep ruts in the cycle path. Very bumpy. Easy? Hmmm maybe. Nature? Yes the clue was in the name. Lots of dodging tree branches, bushes, swarms of hovering insects and dodgy cycle tracks. Good though.
Back at the van H has asked that her brakes are looked at. Bit late now but Del spend a bit of time tweaking and adjusting so that they are not permanently ON and squeak like an old bus. They have a nice little bike wash station here as well.
The campsite is empty so we have all the shower and toilet facilities basically to ourselves.
All in all a pleasant stay and a very nice location, very quite and peaceful. Should sleep well tonight. Tomorrow we plan to go through Belgium to get to Holland.