4x4 Adventures Ltd Taunton, Somerset
Winter Wales Laning and Social Weekend
10th February 18
Words by James Trembath, pictures and video by Richard Watson

Its snowing! Fantastic, what a great way to start our Recces in the days preceding out Wales Laning and Social Weekend. Each year we run a one day night stop over social laning weekend based out of Llandrindrod and the Metrople Hotel in Mid wales. We meet our guests on the Saturday evening for a ‘formal’ group meal before the actual trip taking place on the Sunday. We run the trips from 0900 – 1800hrs and this year covered approx. 130-140 miles (depending on the group you were in) We also had the extra benefit of the snow for 2018 making for some fantastic changes to the scenery.

The team arrived on site Friday lunchtime, where after checking routes with local authorities we headed out to recce a couple of lanes close to the hotel. As expected water levels were high so we were straight into out backup plan on routes to avoid the fords and river crossings we deemed to be either too deep or two fast, working on the assumption of a 500mm wading capability. Saturday we completed nearly 200miles of recce, clearing the odd windblown tree/branches and confirming the ground conditions/status of the lanes we intended to use. We had quite a few turnarounds again on Saturday with water levels remaining high. As they say time is seldom wasted on recce. We made it back to the hotel around 1830hrs giving us 30mins for the turnaround (and swim!) prior to bar meet and dinner.

As ever the Metropole looked after us well. Some of the guests had taken full advantage of the early check-in using the pool/gymn/spa facilities from lunchtime Saturday so were refreshed ready for the dinner Saturday evening. We are fortunate enough to have private dinning for our four course included meal and we certainly well catered for from Meat to Fish to Vegetarian options as you would expect from a top class hotel.

Sunday morning saw yet more Snow and with more forecast for the day ahead. We conducted our pre-drive brief inside so at least we didn’t start too cold! Most were in Land Rovers after (all although Harry in his P30 and Ollie in his Shogun were both keen to point out how hot and dry they were throughout the whole day) We had to adjust our planned routes to accommodate the weather and vehicles we had now seen and checked which did mean we had approx. 30miles more tarmac than previous years but the time split was about the same. We also ensured the interlocking tarmac sections went via the best views and scenery we could get with a good mix of driving for all.

The route Sunday turned out to be superb. The snow covered Valleys adding to the authenticity of been away from it all and making the most of what our wonderful countryside has to offer. The tracks were still all passable without problems and the ford crossings we used remained drivable in standard vehicles so thankfully no turning around (which is always something that plays on your mind!) Take a moment to view the clips and photographs from both our recce and the actual trip as linked in below, we will be running this popular trip again next February so if your interested register with us soon to avoid disappointment as we limit this to eight customers vehicles.

A video of the weekend

Some pictures from the weekend