Long way off, but toe in the water time.

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mds141
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by mds141 »

Sounds good to me Phil, give me something to spend my redundancy money on!! :D
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by mike22861 »

Sounds good to me I'd be up for that
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

This assumes everyone organises their own crossing. I'd suggest a rendezvous at Dieppe and convoy drive from there so we don't arrive piecemeal at the Chateau...

I'm checking an alternative plan: A block booking at a Hotel in Bayeux or similar. Watch this space.
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

I have made further enquiries and there are a few issues with renting out the Chateau(x) - mainly to do with them wanting a full week at that time. Something that is prohibitive in my opinion. Also it's a hell of a responsibility.

Some have voiced a little disappointment that the trip isn't more of a 'road trip' á la BXagon 2009 and Citroen Classic Challenge 2012 as well as the upcoming CCC Ecosse 2013... something I can empathise with. The Normandy event is therefore in danger of being neither one thing or another. What's more the area's going to be flooded with Battlefield Tour outfits (I have been looking into their tours and some, to be honest, look quite good), so if visiting the sites and getting some enlightenment regarding the Invasion is for you, then maybe it's already there for those interested. I might be doing a visit at that time but not on a formally arranged basis. Maybe if anyone's particularly keen to do it too as well we can communicate via e-mail?

If, on the other hand you fancy a 'Challenging' drive through interesting French landscapes and villages etc. maybe there's something else to consider...

As well as here, please visit https://www.facebook.com/CitroenClassic?ref=ts" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; for further communiqués.

Phil
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citsncycles
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by citsncycles »

I must admit that looking into it I had decided that it wasn't what I was wanting to do, but was happy you were prepared to organise such an event as it may have attracted the attendance of people who wouldn't want to be driving day after day with a different stop each night. I know a few people said as much while you were organising the Classic Challenge, so the fact you've had some disappointment voiced about this event only shows that you cannot please everyone all the time.

I've not thought much about trips etc. that I may want to do next year, mainly because I'm still busy trying to decide what exactly I'm doing this year, but If I come up with any ideas for you road trip fans I'll post it up.
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

citsncycles wrote:...but was happy you were prepared to organise such an event as it may have attracted the attendance of people who wouldn't want to be driving day after day with a different stop each night. I know a few people said as much while you were organising the Classic Challenge....
Well, I've decided driving day after day with a different stop (most) nights IS what I want to do, so that's had a lot to do with my decision. If others want to organise a trip to Normandy or wherever along the lines I originally considered then that's fine. And maybe I'd go along too. It's just that I wouldn't be able to devote the time and dedication it takes to organising such a thing if I'm being honest. I've decided in my steadily advancing years, that I can't please all of the people... so I'll just please myself (so to speak :) ) and if anyone else wants to join in then that's brilliant!

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Vanny
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Vanny »

What I quite like doing on a long tour is to randomly pick some where to stop for a maybe 2 days, and use it as a hub to just go exploring. It's not uncommon to find some local tourist information and head to some site a half days drive away. On these sort of outings is where I've seen the most amazing villages and had by far the best meal of my life! Well worth trying if you want to add a little spontaneity to a tour!

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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

I tend to agree Vanny. The best bits are often the spontaneous - unplanned - bits. You need a framework/plan obviously but the next road trip (that I plan) will be loosely arranged. One aspect that's a double-edged sword is the tendency to 'convoy'. It's great snaking up mountain roads (as pictures from the CCChallenge attest) but less fun if you are all winging it navigation-wise and mistakes get made.. as happened a few times on the last couple of days of that event. Tempers can get frayed and it can get a bit distracting if not frankly, tedious to keep stopping/slowing to let stragglers catch up - and if the 'leader' cocks up that error is obviously compounded by those following. But on balance it isn't a big deal given the overall adventure; with adequate CB communications (something that eluded us on the CCC) most issues will be sorted - the BXagon was good in that respect. Going back to the BXagon, our biggest pain in the arse was locating our overnight hotel. Some of these budget hotels are Lord Lucanesque in their ability to vanish. That's one aspect of the planning that would need sharpening up. It happened on one of the stop-overs on the CCC (2nd night, south of Lyon) because I'd placed the marker for it on the wrong place on our map! (Not helped by the hopeless description on their website too)... Another lesson learned.

So, the idea of two-nighters in 'an area' with a selection of back up choices for places to stay is interesting. I'll have a think.

I am keen to catch up on how planning is going (or is done) for the Scottish adventure in June. Then, post CCCEcosse, see what lessons have been learned.
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Vanny
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Vanny »

Philip Chidlow wrote: One aspect that's a double-edged sword is the tendency to 'convoy'.
One should never convoy in a group of more than 5, and frankly 3 cars are plenty. The real trick is NOT to use sat-nav as they usually cause more problems than a paper map (well until you get into a city), and to have a good set of way points/meeting times. I guess that is why classic rallys work so well!

We normally manage with a set of cheapo walkie talkies and a couple of sets of batteries, but then there are normally only 3 of us. It gets rather interesting when your driving 500 miles a day for 4 weeks!

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citsncycles
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by citsncycles »

I'd certianly second the comment about sat nav - great for getting from place to place, but the time spent waiting in car parks while people tried to get a rout out of sat navs that didn't involve Peage was staggering, although the rest of us usually used the time to chat, top up fluids or watch the scenery.
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

In the tradition of the BXagon and the CCC (and the forthcoming 'Ecosse), I think the next one I organise will be around the 2,000-2,500 mile range over a week to nine days.

A plan is forming in my mind...
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Mike E (uk)
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Mike E (uk) »

I agree with Vanny, 3 cars is a good 'convoy' group, as speeds are much easier to match.
It is more fun than on your own, especially when you can communicate on the CB.

It also gives folks more to discuss in the evenings as each group has different experiences.

With a passenger, a combination of sat nav and paper map gives the best on-the-fly planning.
With no co passenger though, sat nav use dominates.

It is also reassuring when travelling with other cars because you have help at hand when problems occur.

I think it would be good to have a 'sat nav free' day in some remote region, where everyone only has the same map and meeting points to reach in the shortest distance travelled, or similar.
A daily challenge such as this would add further interest to a long trip.

I have had an idea for a while for an organised event of 'Retro navigation in Retro Cars'.

This would be where only roads that existed in, say 1965 can be driven on. Participants get target locations and a copy of the old map + a compass, but no other data or sat nav.

A £15 GPS trip recorder from Clas Olsen enables checking/scoring at the end using google maps.

I have a bunch of old maps I have been keeping in case I ever get round to this.

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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

Sounds fascinating, and fun. UK or continent?
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citsncycles
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by citsncycles »

Sounds good to me. At a cycle camp in Northinberland one group who liked to do their own thing couldn't work out why they were always finding the A1 unexpectedly until we pointed out to them their map predated it!
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Philip Chidlow
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Re: Long way off, but toe in the water time.

Post by Philip Chidlow »

UPDATE

Hi everybody. I trust this year finds you well, if not particularly warm ;)

Some of you are going on the Scottish adventure which looks like it'll be a hoot; I wish I was but can't - preparing to get eldest daughter off to University, Liz and mine's 25th Wedding Anniversary, some debts to pay off etc... all conspire to make this a conspicuously Citroën-less 2013 for me...

But inevitably my mind turns to 2014 and what to do?

I fully intend that my current Chevron-drought will be brought to an end within the next 12 months and although I have considered all manner of Citroëns as a possible candidate in all honesty only the BX really hits the spot, closely followed by the GS and XM. We'll have to see.

Although some aspects were not ideal (some to do with errors or shortfalls in planning, others to do with unforeseen developments - e.g the torrential 'experience' that was the run from Nice to Montpellier in 2009), the BXagon and CCC were hugely memorable and fun and I guess a few might want to do something similar over the Channel at some point. I know I do.

As you can see form this thread, I made a bit of a rash announcement that I'd try to get a Normandy trip sorted to coincide with the DDay commemorations, but this isn't going to happen now. A number of factors came into play, not least the timing (including term dates) and the fact nowhere decent would allow us to rent for less than a week without paying a big premium. Anyway apart from that it just didn't include enough driving as far as I was concerned.

I find myself looking back at the BXagon and fondly remembering (apart from a couple of hours one night *groan*) the stop-over in Alaigne. Not so much the place itself (fine though it was) but its location. Even though I don't drink much now lol, I would, at some point like to repeat a visit to La Gaulloise and the area around Limoux etc.

This got me thinking; when I stayed near Carcassonne a couple of years back we visited Cathar country; Rennes la Chateau, Montsegur and some lovely places like Mirepoix and so on. And it was not only fascinating but some great driving country. Add to this the ascent we did on the BXagon into the Pyrenees (Aix-les-Therems and along to St.Girons and so on, and we have the makings of another memorable adventure.

The trouble is distance. It is around 1100 kms (700 miles) to Alaigne via the fastest route from Calais - if you avoid the toll roads where practical. Add into that a decent route that takes in good stopover(s) and a crossing of the Millau bridge (something we should do if we can) and you're talking 1200 km plus. Once at Alaigne, we have to arrange camping to keep costs down, but that's something I'm sure could be sorted, and then we can use it as a base for two or three nights to explore the region. The return trip should not be too arduous and should (I think) get us to places like Auch, Agen, Bergerac, Perigeux to Limoges through some of the most beautiful countryside in France... So assume another 1300km back. Add to that another 1000kms in the Pyrenees and it adds up to a trip of maybe 3500 kms (say 2,200 miles).

How long to allow? Well, assuming we all start from Calais at breakfast time, and head to Gien campsite (for instance) that's about 490kms (310 miles) that's a full day. The next day another 500kms to Rodez; a place I've always wanted to visit. Next morning it's over the Millau bridge by about 10am and then across country through the wonderful Parc naturel régional du Haut-Languedoc to Alaigne - another full day albeit only 260kms.

Given that pace we'll want three nights in the Pyrenees and head on back cross-country again (another three nights preferably), that's a total of eight nights in France. Less than the BXagon, but in CCC territory.

This takes us across parts we've not been on previous events but does, clearly, take us back to familiar bits. I did consider another Alpine adventure, but the SW and it's climate beckons :)

Before I go any further I'd love to know what you all think. Most importantly; When???

Phil

PS Costs: Camping etc. as per CCC experience. Fuel for the adventure will be a big cost at possibly £400-440 but there's no alternative if a road trip is what we're doing! And there's plenty of time to squirrel away some £££s.
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