This Page

has been moved to new address

Mogs Travels

Sorry for inconvenience...

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
Mogs Travels: September 2008

Mogs Travels

Monday, September 29, 2008

new phone

Hi. This is just a quick test post sent from my new mobile. I haven't got the hang of proper mobile blogging as I an online with the wifi at home. Its a sign of old age that new phones are such a struggle to learn.

Touratech Travel Event

Touratech had an open weekend, what they called a "Travel Event" , at their showroom at Ystradgynlais. We went along on Sunday as it's not too far from here. There was a good turnout, mostly of BMW's and plenty of people seem to have camped there overnight. There was a 10% discount in the shop so LB bought a few bits and pieces. There were also a number of talks during the day. We listened to Austin Vince of Mondo Enduro fame who chatted about their second trip, Terra Circa. He was a good speaker with a lovely dry sense of humour. Charlie Boorman was the star turn & was interviewed on stage. He came over as a really nice guy. He even took a mobile phone call from one of his daughters whilst on stage which I thought was great. A small auction of books and lids afterwards raised a fair amount of money for the Welsh Air Ambulance. Finally we joined one of the guided road rides led by Kevin & Julia Saunders, the round the world record breakers. Our ride was somewhat shorter than round the world, just 60 miles of mainly good upland B roads and very enjoyable. All in all a good day out and one that I would recommend if they do it again next year


Labels: ,

Friday, September 26, 2008

Loch Fyne Restaurant

Had a lovely meal out tonight with a couple of close friends who we haven't seen for ages. We ate at one of these restaurants and had a great time. They're basically fish and seafood restaurants but with a few meat dishes.We all started with the oysters, as there's an R in the month! Sadly rumours about oysters seem not to be true particularly if you drink alcohol too. At least that's what LB tells me; he has to watch Dave Gilmour on tv now rather than being driven to heights of passion and desire! :) Anyway main course for me was yellowfin tuna carpaccio ( ie raw!) with mint salsa, which was delicious. It's a pity LB isn't particularly keen on seafood as I think I would enjoy Japanese food though we have never tried it.

We tend not to eat out much so this was a real treat. We even had a taxi for once so could both enjoy the vino. It was nice to catch up with our friends too. It's so easy for time to slip by and to lose touch with people. We'll arrange another get together in a month or two.



Thursday, September 25, 2008

ChainSpeed Ltd

Just a quick ps to the Autocom post and a plug for Sam Wray at Chainspeed. He is an authorised Autocom dealer who has set up on his own in deepest Carmarthenshire. He fitted the units on the BM's for us and has given excellent service at reasonable prices. Whenever we have mail-ordered stuff from him it has arrived next day. It's also a pleasant scenic ride to his old farmhouse.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Autocom Radios

We are off to France next week. LB will be riding his GS and I will be on the Blade. Back last November we treated ourselves to some Autocom radio systems while visiting the bike show. These were the Pro 300's with the Kenwood Pro Talk TK-3201 radios which we have had wired in to the two GS's. This system worked well for our long summer tour as we were able to wire the Zumo GPS to LB's bike and both radios took power from the bikes so we didn't have to worry about recharging the batteries. I don't want the expense of duplicating this on the Blade as most of the time I won't use it for long tours & I won't have GPS on it. I am therefore going to use the simple option, as shown in the photo. I will use my existing radio but with the battery attached, I already have a headset in my lid so have just bought the connecting cable which will use the blue connector to plug into a push to talk (PTT) button, which is now attached to the bars of the Blade by a couple of cable ties. We had a test run last night with me inside the garage and LB outside and it worked ok. There's rather a lot of excess cable but this will stuff into my tankbag.

We had avoided radios for many years as we thought they'd be distracting. I had eventually got fed up of jumping up and down, waving my arms and flashing my lights when I could see LB, in front, taking the wrong route. It's been a great improvement, especially as LB now has a GPS and I don't. He can relay to me the Zumo instructions and I can tell him roadsigns etc that I see. We don't use it for general chit chat much but it is nice to be in touch. We didn't fancy the French trip without it. We're setting off next Wednesday so watch this space for our next travel reports!


Labels: ,

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Happy 90th Birthday, Dad

My Dad is 90 tomorrow! We had a family Sunday lunch for him today and, as his passion is his garden, we got him a garden birthday cake. Here he is cutting it with Mum looking on.

He is very fit for his age, perhaps due to all the gardening he does, so we are looking forward to many more birthday meals for him. His other hobby is reading so he went home with presents of a stack of books, together with a jigsaw and chocolates. That should keep him busy over the winter months!



Thursday, September 18, 2008

Red Light District.

We now have our very own in the back garden!

Ours is thanks to the electric parasol patio heater/lights and is purely for the purposes of eating drinking and socialising. The usual activities associated with red light districts will not be happening! Two friends & fellow bikers, L & S, called around yesterday evening to join us for a bbq and to compare notes on our summer holidays. It was all arranged at the last minute and, as always seems to be the case with unplanned impromptu get-togethers, was a great success. Just hope S's head wasn't too bad this morning!


Labels: ,

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Delightful Derbyshire

On Saturday 13th ( yes, I'm still running 3 days behind!) the Tossers had a rideout through Derbyshire's Peak District. After an initial briefing in Lumb Farm's carpark 50 odd bikes set off through some narrow but scenic roads over the peaks. The open countryside gave spectacular views when you could take your eyes off the tight and twisty roads. Wandering sheep and highland cattle added to the excitement! Being dropped off as a marker enabled me to take a few photos of the following bikes . Unfortunately early in the afternoon a group of about half a dozen of us lost the rest. We took a turn up and over the famous Cat & Fiddle run and stopped off for a cold drink at the pub on the top, whose clientèle seemed to be solely bikers, before heading for home. Another splendid evening followed although I was somewhat the worse for wear the next morning! On Sunday PW, LB and I followed the main roads through the Welsh Marches to get home by mid afternoon. All in all a very enjoyable weekend, they're a great bunch of people, the riding was good fun and food and facilities were excellent. Roll on the next UKGSer meet!


Labels: ,

Monday, September 15, 2008

Wonderful Wales

Friday 12 September ( ok it's Monday but I'm a bit behind with this blog!) With our friend and fellow GSer, PW, we took the scenic route to Ripley Derbyshire where the UKGSer's forum were having a weekend get together. Sensible people would take the motorways and cover the 170 miles in about two and a half hours but look what they would be missing!

Keeping to virtually empty B & C roads we crossed the uplands of Central Wales, over Mynydd Epynt in the south and the Cambrian Mountains further north. The photo was taken at Aber Cywarch looking back down the Dyfi Valley. Later we skirted the beautiful and isolated Lake Vyrnwy, filled by this summer's heavy rains and with a dramatic overflow of excess water over the dam wall. Minor roads from there led through agricultural land to Oswestry where the fine Welsh weather deserted us and the rain descended. At this point, having already spent nearly five hours on the journey, we cut our losses and took the the main roads to our destination, Lumb Farm, where we soon had the tent pitched and settled ourselves in the bar to enjoy the evening with old friends, and new.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Garden Makeover - Finished!!

At last! It has been much delayed, largely due to the appalling weather this summer, but it was worth waiting for. Strangely now it's finished it really feels part of the house & us, as if it's always been there. We've been enjoying working in it, mowing the lawn, hoeing the borders, setting out the furniture and generally putting the finishing touches. For those of you who've not read the whole of this blog you'll find previous posts about the process here. Now look at what we have!

The lawn looks a bit ragged. It has been too wet to cut and grew very long so when we did manage to get the mower out yesterday LB cut it fairly high to start with. It's wonderful having 100% grass out there rather than the 95% moss that existed previously. I'm going to have some tubs of flowers on the patios eventually but probably not till next year now. LB and I had BBQ out there yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed sitting at the table surveying our domain!

Anyway if anyone in south east Wales is wondering who did it for us it's by a small company called X-Vision which is just starting out. It's run by Martin Dykstra who is currently building a website. I'll post the link when it's available.


Labels: ,

Friday, September 5, 2008

Weather for Ducks

We met these delightful little ducks last Friday. LB's cousin bought them recently as pets & they live in his back garden. I'm just thinking they must be feeling very at home there today after this mornings torrential rain.

We seemed to have developed a pond in our front garden bed and a river is flowing down the lane at the side of the house. According to the news there has been flooding locally this morning and road closures due to the rain.

Checking with the met office website I see we had 170% of the average August rainfall this year. It looks as though September could well follow suit. apparently 4" of rain has fallen in the past 48 hours & we've hardly had a dry day since the end of July. It's very frustrating but I hope it's just due to natural variation in the weather. I have read that global warming could bring cold wet summers to western Britain as the jet stream will move further south. I hope not. We tend to forget how far north we are here as we're used to such a temperate climate. We're off camping for the weekend in a weeks time so fingers crossed it will dry up by then!



Wednesday, September 3, 2008

HID Lights

It has been gently pointed out to me today, that when posting here about upgrading bikes' lights with HID lights I failed to put a link to the bulb kits in the blog. Apologies to Les, and for all you people wondering where we got them from, please look here.

This seems an opportune time to review our experience of them. They're brilliant! (Sorry, no pun intended!) Headlights serve two purposes, to let you be seen and to help you see. These bulbs do both extremely well. We have done many thousands of miles with them, mostly by day but also at night. As LB and I generally ride together I know how visible he is. Not only are the lights bright they are also very white and stand out against other headlights. Even when riding with a group of bikers I can always pick him out. Last May at the GS meet at the Baskerville Hall he even stood out against other HID fitted bikes as, unusually, he has HID accessory lights fitted on his engine bars as well as headlights. Importantly neither of us has been flashed by any on coming traffic because of them. They obviously don't cause any glare to oncoming drivers.

At night they give a big area of light, much like daylight as they're so white. I can't praise them enough. Initially I was reluctant to have them as they're so expensive but I now think they are well worth it. I tried taking photos of my bike before and after fitting. Both photos were taken in late afternoon. Unfortunately I used an automatic camera which compensated for the bright light by making it look darker than it was. Here's the photos, anyway, for you to see the difference.

First is my bike with original lights

Then mine with HIDs

Finally LB's with his HID headlights and accessory lights


Labels: , , ,