4x4 Adventures Ltd Taunton, Somerset
Wellington Drive Round Day – 1st Dec 19
Words and Pictures by James Trembath

Unfortunately we had two very late cancellations for our first Drive Round at Bampton today. The good news was it meant we could not only attempt the three new to us sections but also travel that much quicker being a smaller group. In total we covered approx 16miles of interlocking tracks and public rights of way over the course of the day.

Running with Tim as the recovery vehicle and tail end Charlie we had Kevin Williams in his CJ17, big, yellow and likes to drink, the truck that is! Very modified with front and rear winch and very capable. In contrast the two standard 90s out with us belonging to Peter Brindle, who first joined us for driver training 3 years ago, and Paul Radford in his Blue 90 looked decidedly, well, standard. But they more than held their own!

With wet ground conditions and some of the field borders being particularly slippery there was great deal of fun and learning to be had by all throughout the course of the day.

The new sections proved entertaining, one being a sharp drop down through conifers onto the road (we had marshalls to guide us down and control traffic), a standard vehicle on 31s just clears the bottom without catching the bumper – its steep that last bit!

We also made use of the section created early November. A short mud run followed by a U turn and up a jus about manageable section next to the mud run down. Testing and needing commitment. Once the first vehicle had helped clear the route down the remainder drove it (with commitment), just needing a short winch up over a small bank on the 2nd part of the U bend. Paul Radford had a cracking drive here, if the bend hadn’t thrown him slightly wide on the return it would have been a clean slate and home winch free!

Peter had his first glimpse of Middle wood with the associated axle twists and bomb holes – a scarily satisfying and testing drive which is not for the faint hearted! Peter’s standard setup soft top made a very creditable effort, just requiring a few run ups on the very last section when running out of suspension travel. Satisfaction all-round on safely completing the section.

We had little bit of time to explore the bumps and dips at the end of the Sunken Road drive before heading out across the farm yard and to what was the last river drive. Moving quick and making the most of the available light saw us on Warren Hills to finish the day. With the light dropping and not wishing to put the ‘last lane of the day’ syndrome on anyone we called it day at that stage. Everyone suitable muddy, tired and vehicles working – a good day out in the countryside.

Some pictures from the day