4x4 Adventures Ltd Taunton, Somerset
Winter Wales Laning and Social Weekend
22nd/23rd Feb 20
Words and pictures by James Trembath
Lead Vehicles Mark Morgan/James Trembath, Tim Jones/Cherise Jones

Crazy that another year has passed and we are already heading back to the Metropole Hotel in Llandrindod Mid wales for our social laning weekend. Crazy weather to go with it too with another server weather warning due for the weekend with rain! Thankfully the majority of the rock based lanes we drive are well maintained with good drainage ditches so the depth of water is controlled to a certain extent! Just as well we had a thorough recce planned!

This year we had several returning customers requesting to join us on part of the recce on the Saturday. We also wanted to ensure returning customers would be entertained so with the temporary closure on Strata Florida (for part of it) not to mention the possibility of water issues on that route we branched out slightly further afield to look a greater range of lanes higher up the country. These we tackled on the Friday after driving up from the South West.

A great deal of surface water had caused some erosion on some of the newer routes making them a little too tricky for an unknown customer/vehicle combination. Some of the newer routes provided us with stunning scenery and a sustainable surface to provide a good alternative. Friday’s recce was definitely worth the time. Saturday saw us up around the Red Kite visitor centre and driving the routes there in preparation for Sundays led day. With one section being too deep to drive we bypassed that route and found alternative tarmac routes to link us back in. Again recce proving vital. It should be noted this was without the rain they were predicting for Saturday evening!

The Metropole Hotel looked after us well with private dinning for Friday night with those arriving early to attend on the recce Saturday and a private function room for all of us Saturday evening. The staff were attentive and as efficient as ever with a good menu choice over both evenings. They had also provided us with our own tables for separate dining at Breakfast. All these little touches help to bring the group together and get people talking. Post the brief Saturday evening all attendees are given coloured stickers to determine their groups so they know who to look out for and can have the various discussions on whether Adams Toyota is better than Chris’ 110…….

Sunday saw us in the car park for final convoy briefing at 0930hrs and immediate departure. Both groups running circular routes returning to the Metropole with a planned finish 1700-1800hrs. Each route covering between 100 and 140miles. In essence a fully packed day. CBs all tuned in and the groups were off at 0945hrs.

Our route involved taking a few return customers up on the Northern Lanes we had recced on the Friday. The longer of the two routes we had planned for the day but certainly worth the effort. The ground conditions were good despite the amount of surface water – which did cause us a slight hiccup not bring able to see the edge of the tracks at times. I believe we had a total of three vehicles slipping off the side of the track throughout the course of the weekend. Once we had travelled up even the rain let up for the rest of the day, the wind didn’t but then it was Wales after all! Just check out the pictures of the stunning photography of vehicles and landscape. Wales really is a wonderful lovely varied Country.

Some pictures from the weekend