The preparation runs continue this time with a trip to Ireland. The trip started with a run down to Stranrar visiting friends in Dumfries with an overnight stop in a senic layby overlooking the Solway firth to expand my wild camping experience, that worked well but a tip for the future is to look for a campsite earlier than 9pm at night. The ferry crossing was smooth and I was able to call in to see my family on the way down stopping for a photo op in front of the many oil rigs layed up in Belfast.
On the second night I was again wild camping, this time on a beach near Rostrevor, the ground looked firm but when I drove over the surface covering of stone the mud underneath gave way so for the first time diff lock and low ratio box was needed to pull me out of the mud and onto the firmer high ground of the beach. I woke up at 6am to a lot of quacking to find that the tide comes in a long way in this estuary and the water was lapping a few feet from the wheels of Nelson and the track in (yes the one with the soft mud under the stones) was actually under about a foot of water. Once again my trusty BFG AT tyres coupled with low ratio and diff lock got me out of the pickle without churning up too much of the pretty scenery or squashing any of the ducks !
On to Rostrevor and the very nice camp site there to meet up with my brothers and Colin, Nelson quickly developed a fan club and many tours of the set up were needed. We were there for a long run over the Morne mountians, in the picture below we look quite happy as this was at the start, it was another story once we got to the end, I was struggling to walk for a few days.
Overall the trip went well, Nelson was overall quite well behaved and a few nights of wild camping and another country under our belts, minor stuff is a poor earth or aerial routing giving some interference on the radio reception so that goes on the snag list as does the need to make the tent midge proof as we got bitten to bits at the campsite. Colin had his first shot of driving from the boat to Edinburgh and quite enjoyed it all round.