After a few setbacks we finally left Leeds and were Arran bound, due to arrive at Lochranza campsite Wednesday afternoon.
We had decided to complete the journey over 2 days having a stopover somewhere enroute. Being an ostrich sort of person I hadn’t really considered where we would stay on Tuesday evening…..just somewhere. Luckily I am married to “Google Gary” who for several weeks had been on line investigating all the possibilities and permutations and these depended upon which route we took once we hit the M6.
As we tottered up the A66 looking at the glorious views it provided we agreed to head for Dumfries and then to a little harbour close by called Glencaple. This would leave us about 80 miles to do the following morning to Ardrossan where we were catching the 12:30 ferry to Brodick on Arran.
Gary had found out about this stopover from the Brit Stops book
http://www.britstops.com/welcome.php and then had checked it out on other sites where it had been given great reviews.
Those reviews did not deceive. It was a beautiful spot with glorious views looking out towards the Solway Firth.
Although it was mid week in late April the car park’s designated space for 5 motorhomes was already busy by the time we arrived at about 4pm, but we did manage to squeeze in.This was despite the fact that 2 vans had been badly parked and, with their owners nowhere to be seen were occupying more space than was their due. No wonder motorhomers often get a bad press!
The stopover is provided by the local council and has designated space for 5 motorhomes. An honesty box with information about the site which includes a request that motorhomes only park in the designated area is in a prominent position. There is no accompanying recommendation regarding the amount of donation, but we thought that for this delightful spot £5 should be a minimum. If the site is full then there is the option to go to Castle Corner which is about 3 miles away and has space for 7 motorhomes.
There are clean toilets in the car park which are supposed to be locked overnight but when we were there seemed to remain open all the time. A cafe/ restaurant is adjacent to the car park and opposite is a pub, the Nith Hotel.
We ate in the pub that evening and had a very enjoyable meal.
We had, for us an early start the next day and reached Ardrossan with enough time to stock up with provisions and fuel at the ASDA, which is very conveniently placed next door to the ferry port, long before embarkation was due to start.
As we were there quite early we were just about first in the motorhome queue for the ferry. For once, we didn’t seem to have to wait too long once boarding began, before it was our turn. But Quelle Domage! When Gary was beckoned forwards and he turned the ignition on the scary red ECU light came on which we know means bad engine trouble.
What should we do? If we didn’t move we would be in the way, if we did there was a slight possibility that we would wreck the engine……..
What did we do?
We drove onto the ferry promising ourselves that on the other side at Brodick as soon as possible we would park up and investigate the cause of the menacing red light.
With great trepidation we restarted the van when it came time to depart the ferry at Brodick hoping against hope that the red light was just a glitch and it would have disappeared…..but no, it was still there.
Brodick was very busy and we struggled to find anywhere to park our long vehicle. Finally we staggered into the Coop car park which was rammed. Gary was driving and I as navigator got him stuck in a dead end by the recycling bins.
Tempers were becoming fractured. I jumped out to see him reverse out of the dead end…..he revved the engine hard twice…not in anger as I erroneously thought……and miraculously…… the red light cleared and we were on our way again.
It was only 14 windy, twisty miles to Lochranza through stunning coastal scenery past Goatfell, over the tops and we were finally there on site and pitched up!
Phew! What a view. It was definitely worth it!