Monday, 31 August 2009

Campsite Review – North York Moors

CAMPSITE: Pexton Moor Farm

LOCATION: Near Dalby Forest on the North York Moors, Yorkshire, United Kingdom

COST: £10 for two people with one very small tent and a car

WOULD I GO AGAIN: Yes, despite showers (see below)

WHEN VISITED: August 2009

GOOD FOR: The entrance to Dalby Forest is right opposite the campsite. At the time of our visit it cost £7 to go into the forest with a car, but from this campsite, you can enter the forest and enjoy its walks on foot for free. Pickering is also very close for supplies.


ABLUTIONS: This campsite promised so much. The site itself wasn’t bad and the bathroom block was warm, the toilets clean and the shower hot. However, the shower was one of those press-button ones on a timer. Most showers like this are timed to go off after five or so minutes. This one went off after about 1 minute, which was very annoying and most unsatisfactory. The total score for this campsite’s shower would have been 7, but because of the short timer I don’t feel I can give it more than 3.

THOUGHTS: The main space at this campsite, right near the ablution block is quite small so I was asked, when I phoned to make the booking, if I minded being in the overflow field, and warned that being in the overflow field meant a bit of a walk to the ablution block. The field itself wasn’t bad, though the grass could have done with a mow. There was a drinking water tap in the overflow field, and the walk to the ablution block wasn’t too bad, although I would advise you to take a torch if you go there around dusk. I went to shower as it was getting dark and did not take a torch. By the time I’d finished showering it was pitch black, so I started to, rather hesitantly, walk back to the overflow field, and ended up walking into a large pile of gravel which made me rather dirty. A second trip to the showers ensued and whilst I cleaned myself up I considered my options and sent a rather hopeful text message to my husband, who was safely in the tent, to ask him to come meet me with a torch. His phone was in the car, not the tent at the time, so he didn’t get the message. I walked out of the ablution block and prayed, asking the Lord what I should do. And He provided the answer! A man with a bright torch came out of the men’s bathroom and started walking towards the overflow field. He kindly let me walk with him and I made it safely back unharmed and clean!

“Funny Sign Friday” and other new things

I’ve decided I’d like to try extend the currently very limited range of topics that I talk about on this blog and to try post more often. One idea for how to do this was recently presented to me in a series of photos that some family members took, which included a number of funny signs. So, I’m initiating a new series on this blog called “Funny Sign Friday” – every Friday I’ll post one or more funny signs and possibly a little write-up about them too.

I’ve also decided to start writing campsite reviews. I love camping and do so regularly, so I figured, “why not write about that too?” Now before I start doing these reviews I need to lay out some caveats and ground rules. The reviews will probably be posted sporadically, as dictated by the fact that our camping equipment is suitable only for the summer and by the fickle British weather (yes, we are fair-weather campers…). The twist on these reviews is that I’m going to concentrate on the ablution facilities. Why? Well, there are many great expanses of lovely soft grass upon which to place a tent (for free) around Britain, where wild-camping is not illegal. So, I figure all you really pay for when you camp here is the shower and toilets, and so it is upon this basis that campsites should be judged… We don’t have a caravan, or chemical toilet or even fancy cooking equipment, so whilst facilities for these may be important for some people, I’m afraid they just don’t cross my radar enough for me to consider them…or write about them…or even be faintly qualified to comment on them, so I probably won’t. I may also chuck in the odd review of campsites outside Britain (where sometimes wild camping is illegal so the campsite itself becomes a little more important than just the showers) – it all just depends on where I go. I’ll try include photos, but can’t always guarantee these (sometimes the reviews will be for campsites I’ve visited in the past, where I may not have taken pictures).