By: Blonde Two
Last weekend (stunningly sunny), Mr B2 and I decided that we would like to take our bivvy adventures further and have a go at bivvying on a beach. It sounds great doesn’t it, sea views, fresh air, crabs biting your toes, sand in your sleeping bag…
We packed up a couple of rucksacks with just the basics, you know the sort of thing: Bivvy bags, lightweight sleeping bags (Big Orange sulked after being told he was being left at home), a stove, lots of water, snorkels (in case we had misjudged the tide) and an enormous picnic. After that we sat down to decide which beach we would like to sleep on. First we went through all of our local beaches (we maybe do not realise how lucky we are to have such things). We didn’t have much success:
Beach A: Jam-packed with tourists (probably all night).
Beach B: Rats hiding in the rocks (I have seen them).
Beach C: No beach at high tide (3 a.m.)
Beach D: Frequented by local teenagers (I have probably taught them).
So then we decided to venture further afield and into the stunning territory of the South Hams. For those of you who don’t know South Devon, the South Hams is the lovely area between Plymouth and Torbay and nudging up onto South Dartmoor; it is a place of rolling farmland, pleasing coastline, expensive real estate, hidden coves and summer Londoners.
Perfect, you might think, for our bivvy adventure. Park the car, enjoy a walk along the coast path, have a swim and then settle down for a night of peace, quiet and stars. Rather disappointingly, things didn’t go quite to plan (mainly I think, because we hadn’t composed the right plan).
Beach E: Couldn’t get the car anywhere near to the coast path because of the volume of holiday traffic (I know, we were holiday traffic too).
Beach F: No overnight parking in the coast path carpark (we are far too well-behaved to break any rules).
Beach G: Too near civilisation and no overnight parking.
Beach H: No anything allowed at all!
Now I understand that there are very good reasons why we have such rules. You only have to witness the litter and behaviour carnage that happens at Spitchwick on Dartmoor, to see what could happen when they are broken; but I have to say that when we arrived home, defeated in our objective, I felt a bit disappointed with my adopted county. Maybe it is time to consider a move to New Zealand, or Scotland, Scotland would be nearer, and both have lots of beaches. Or maybe I will just go and live behind a rock on Dartmoor!
PS The sign in the picture above did make me laugh. This particular beach was at the end of a road so narrow and bendy, that anyone who had managed to get a caravan, coach or trailer down there surely deserved a free cup of tea and a warm welcome.