Tag Archives: Cobb BBQ

Summer..

What an amazing summer we’ve had here in England, as a family we’ve made the most of getting out and about in Bumblebee for as many weekends away as possible. Our daughter Stella is now walking which has put a whole different slant on the camping experience!

This year we’ve made a few changes to our setup.

Firstly we have replaced the little life arc 2 with a sun essentials baby / toddler pop up UV sleep shade.

It’s about a third smaller than the little life arc 2 which means it’s a lot easier to get in the van once the cab bunk is in place, we’ve also padded out the camp bunk with two pillows and hard plastic sheets to create a flatter base. As its a bit smaller it leaves a good bit of space on the cab bunk we have some extra storage and Stella sleeps well in it, you can buy them new but I’d have a look on ebay, I won this one for £7.50 and they are £80.00 new!

Another small addition we have made to Stella’s sleeping arrangements has been a cab curtain, ordered from Van-X.

It was very easy to fit and means that when Stella goes to bed we can draw the curtain and she not’s visually disturbed by us should we need to get anything out of the van, like beer from the fridge for instance! We used to put a cover over the Arc2 a bit like you do a cover over a birdcage, the problem with that is it severely restricts airflow which isn’t a suffocation concern, more a heat concern, now with the curtain Stella benefits from all the air circulation in the cab, happy baby means happy parents!

Whenever we travelled we used to take a drive away awning with us to put all our stuff in, most of our summer weekends have been spent at a lovely little place we found in Penshurst, it’s not a well publicised site and has very little in way of facilities, there is one shower and toilet a short walk away, it’s easier to bring your own so more akin to off grid wild camping.

We’ve spent pretty much every other weekend there over the summer with our friends and we’ve had the best weather for it, very lazy days with food and fires at night

As we’ve been parked up for the weekend we’ve swapped the drive away awning for a Khyam sun canopy, we also invested in a Kampa commander field kitchen so we can have a kitchen setup under the awning which you can kind of see from this photo.

It’s nice to be able to stand up while making a cup of tea and it also means I can cook bacon without making the van smell like the local cafe! The setup works well in the drive away awning too, I’ve set it up beside a door I don’t use which I open while cooking to ventilate. Two clear Perspex curver boxes fit nicely on the shelf underneath the stove and if you don’t put the shelves up the 36ltr soft cool box from decathlon fits under there perfectly. I can’t recommend one of these cool boxes enough, has kept all our food cooler for longer that a traditional hard case box and when your down it folds down to a fifth of it’s size to store.

2018 also saw the formation of our very own VW / camping club know as the VeeDub McDubFace club. The main reason for this was to secure a club camping spot at bugjam as we had over 20 people in various vehicles coming away for the weekend. The weather was glorious compared to last years washout and i think it’s safe to say everyone had a great weekend, roll on next year!

Our final trip of summer was a visit to Cornwall and Devon, for the first part of the trip we rolled out the big awning as the weather was very changeable..

I also took an electric blow heater with me which came in handy on more than one occasion keeping as all warm in the awning. It’s a great awning but it’s also a mission to put up and take down, more accurately, pegging down is what takes the time. We had a great time in Bude catching up with friends, going out on a fishing boat and cooking fresh lobster and mackerel caught that day on the cobb BBQ ,thank you Stuart!

The weather in Devon got off to a cooler start but that didn’t stop us going to the beach

The weather improved considerably over the coming days and I even went in the sea, up to my knees at least!

It really has been a great summer and it’s been great being away with the family, if you have a small child or two and want to try camping in a tent or motorhome, do it, by far it’s the best part of our year and Stella absolutely loves being outside, she’s experienced so many things she wouldn’t have done being stuck by a pool or being indoors watching endless repeats of Duggee, I hope our adventures inspire you on to adventures of your own and if you have any questions about life in a campervan with a small child, drop me a line 🙂

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Le wikkid beach

The beach at Biscarosse turned out to be pretty awesome.

  
The weather was just as awesome, the sun shone all day so much so we had to deploy our well travelled brolly from Ibiza gifted to us from our friends Darran and Cinzia 

  
The surf here is really good too so we grabbed our boards and I felt compelled to put my wetsuit on for a couple of reasons, one, to prevent board rash, two, so my back didn’t get sunburnt and three, other people were wearing them. 

I remember when I first bought this wetsuit and when I  put it on I looked like a right tit, you’ll be pleased to know this is still the case. 

  
It was great to catch some waves and lie about in the sun, after soaking up plenty of rays we headed back to the van to grab the Cobb for a sunset BBQ, I took a picture from the van to show you the view we have when chilling by the van. 

  
This aire is pretty popular, this is our bit, loads of motor homes! Despite how busy it looks it’s really quite peaceful. 

  
One thing I have noticed is there are T4’s everywhere, each campsite or Aire we visit there is always at least one T4, Eurovans they call them, there are a few kicking about here. 

  
We headed off over the dunes to set the Cobb up and have a sunset bbqs, it was about a ten minute walk from the van, the dunes were substantial, you can just about see Lolly in this picture. 

  
Ever since we have owned the Cobb, when explaining to people how versatile it is we always mention you can cook pizzas on it despite never having actually cooked one, we can now confidently say the the Cobb cooks a wikkid pizza! 

  
The sunset here was quite spectacular, totally worth lugging the BBQ up the dune and then walking back through the forest of darkness and doom. 

  
Once we got back to the van I read Lolly a few chapters from the Martian and then we crashed, the following morning we got up looking forward to spending a day exploring and hanging out in our favourite place so far, then Lolly’s mum called to ask us what time we’d be arriving in St Emillion as they were on their way, bugger, slight clerical error, off to St Emillion we go then! 

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Le Cycle

We decided to ride to a lighthouse not too far from where we are staying, it’s called Phare De Baleines. 

  
The ride took about 20 minutes or so, nothing tiring. 

The great thing about this lighthouse is you can go in it, all the way to top which is awesome. Lolly and I consider ourselves reasonably fit which is a good job as there’s a whole load of stairs to climb. 

  
In what seemed like no more than a couple of minutes we were at the top enjoying the view. 

  
All around the lighthouse there is lots of information which I’m sure is very interesting but it’s all in French which is no good to me as I’m lazy and only speak English with a hint of poor Spanish. 

We descended from the top and on my way down couldn’t help think of my mate Quincy at work, he’d be bricking it coming down these steps, not a fan of heights!

There is a beach below and we took a wander along that for a while before laying down and soaking up some sun watching the tide come in really quickly. It was at this point I insisted Lolly took a picture of me in the awesome tshirt she made so I could show you all, it’s marvellous!

  
All around the approach to the light house are gift shops and restaurants, all the restaurants were all heaving so we bugged out to find somewhere else to eat. 

After riding around in circles for ages we eventually game to a little town square. 

  

After a quick walk about we found a nice restaurant, got a table and found we had missed lunch so settled for a cocktail and beer. 

We thought we might find a beach bar that did snacks so we jumped on the bikes and headed up the coast, we didn’t find any bars but we did find some ruins from WW2, they look like gun placements installed by the Germans to defend the coast, thankfully they look a lot less menacing than in their heyday but a reminder that even this peaceful and idyllic island was touched by the horror of war. 

  
  

  We left this beach and made for home discussing what to have for dinner, we came across a supermarket, bought some local beer, pork chops and Turkey fillets and unanimously decided on a beach BBQ. 

Lauren seasoned up the meat,  packed up the Cobb, tongs and all the other manly beach things I would need and we set off.  
Right behind where we are staying there is a beach that looks rubbish when the tide is out, when it’s in the place is completely transformed, we found ourselves a little a spot and got cooking. 

  
There is a sign that says no bbqs which we completely ignored, the Cobb we use is pretty contained so it’s no real threat to dry shrubland behind us. 

As the sun went down so did the temperature and we huddled up covered in blankets, hoodies and looking generally like a couple of beach hobos. 

  
The food was great, there was hardly anyone on the beach and the sunset was spectacular, as good as any Ibiza sunset!

  
We covered a lot of ground in a day and I’d put strava on to see how far we’d been, I didn’t think it was that far!

  

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Viva la highlands!

 

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We’ve returned from our trip to the Lake District and Scotland, the eagle eyed amongst will have noticed there has been little activity on the blog front.

Unfortunately the internet or mobile internet was a bit of a mystery item in all the locations we visited plus we were having so much fun I didn’t really fancy sitting down in front of a computer as I do every working day!

The trip was great and i’ve spent a bit of time writing up our adventures, i’ve broken the report up into three sections based on where we were staying, click on each link for a report.

Ullswater

Glentrool

Loch Lomond

We’ve also had a chance to road test two of the items we bought for the van, the Cobb bbq and a Duvalay mattress, click here for the Cobb and here for the Duvalay reviews.

The van ran like a dream (aside from a leakjy sunroof) and our round trip total was 1090 miles on 2 tanks of diesel.

I hope you enjoy the reports and any feedback would be great.

Nice one!

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