Hello again - this is my first 'dodgy' blog. That is, I am not really writing it from the stated location. I have fudged a bit to make sure Dartmouth appears on my travel map. Check out the pictures - Darmouth and surrounds is really lovely. I left Plymouth at around 8.30 pm on Sunday evening after visiting Russell's ship and enjoying Chinese takeaway in the sportsground. I felt very privileged to walk through the large naval base on the Plymouth docks to get to the Aussie frigate, and on the way saw some amazing sights.
We had earlier been surprised to land in the middle of the 'Plymouth Mega Ride 2009' the culmination of which was held on what is referred to as "The Hoe" - the main headland at Plymouth and that no-one could tell me why is so named. This location is anly a few yards (can't talk metric over here) from our hotel. the Mega ride consisted of about 1000 motorcycles of various shapes and sizes travelling in convoy to this spot in aid of charity. See the photo of the scooter.
On leaving Plymouth i decided I was sick of motorways and entered "always avoid motorways" into the GPS. This resulted in my travelling along some very narrow, windy country lanes (all sealed surface though) and entering Dartmouth along the side of a hill the back way. Amazing these roads are on a map at all.
When I arrived in the town there were couples strolling around hand in hand everywhere, and the place looked like a postcard. it felt much older and more original than Plymouth, which has old and new areas. Dartmouth would be a lovely spot to stay for a few days. The GPS told me there was a campground back along the coast 10 miles so I took off along the windy coastal roads in the dark. When I "reached my destination" as the voice says, once again it had lead me to a campsite that did not allow tents. I had noticed a maggot (camper van) parked in a carpark back along the beach, so I rode up next to it and knocked on the door. Inside was a German couple who, rather than being intimidated by the Ducati rumbling in, asked all about the bike and told me about the many bikes they had owned. They lent me a torch and said it was OK to camp there.
Check out the views around the campsite in the morning - free camping English style.
In the morning after a breakfast stop in Dartmouth I set out for Brighton.