Cornwall to Wales via Dartmoor
Trev’s TT Trip 2018 Part Four
In case you have missed any of the previous instalments you can find them below, if not keep reading.
After Mick cooked us a couple of bacon sangas for breakfast we hit the road via the Torpoint Twisties. This is apparently a regular haunt of weekend warriors in the south of England, and one that has claimed more than a few lives.
We then wound our way up in to Dartmoor National Park in Devon which quickly opened out into windswept open moorlands. This landscape was a little reminiscent of the highest and barest plains in the Australian high country, such as the section above Kiandra in the Snowy Mountains. But somehow appearing as even more barren, despite obviously being more lush, as much as that seems a contradiction in terms…
There is not a lot up there apart from wildlife, and that includes horses and ponies roaming wild along with thousands of sheep who, for the most part, seem pretty road smart. It is quite enjoyable though and I would recommend a detour through the moors if you get a chance when visiting.
Various bends open out to new vistas or a fresh surprise, such as a pub appearing from the middle of nowhere that we happened upon at Two Bridges.
Ancient tracks that have been made into roads wind their way to various places such as the Bronze Age settlement of Grimspound. The remnants of which still remain some 3000 years later in the shape of the base stones of long gone roundhouses still clearly evident in the landscape.
We then made for Canonteign Falls only to find that it had opening and closing hours, and that we were a little bit too late to make the cut off to be allowed in to the walking tracks that lead to the falls.
Thus back on the road it was to head out of the moors and skirt above Blackdown and Mendip Hills before bypassing Bristol then crossing the River Severn and up into Wales. This was now mainly highway running thus I dialled in the softer suspension set-up on the Explorer 1200 and just enjoyed the scenery.
After leaving the highway we then headed up towards the Brecon Beacons to take up our digs at an AirBnB at the impossible to pronounce Ystradgynlais. The name of the AirBnB itself, ‘Plas Cilybebyll’, also featured the traditional Welsh language naming that appears on almost every street sign in Wales alongside the regular English nomenclature, as they strive to keep their native Cambrian language alive and in popular use.
A 14th century Manor House, Plas Cilybebyll was just amazing. The AirBnB lodgings were on the adjacent old bakehouse which while maintaining the outwardly old world charm, also houses all the mod-cons inside.
This would be our digs for the next three nights and what absolutely bloody amazing digs they were. After arriving late in the evening we headed to a local pub for dinner then brought some grog and groceries on the way home.
Our reason for staying in the one place for so long was that we were about to embark on a two-day ‘Triumph Adventure Experience’ in the Brecon Beacons National Park. And apart from going riding on the Triumph Adventure Experience, we never left Plas Cilybebyll again as it proved too good to want to leave.
We simply cooked up in the well appointed kitchen and enjoyed drinks in the main living area, a room that I liked and enjoyed more than any room I have ever spent time in. Yes we paid for it, and thus I am not just talking up a journo freebie.
The hosts were brilliant, the place comfortable and well appointed, but also with a little something else so rarely found, but hard to put a finger on. It made quite an impression. Next time I find myself in Wales I will stay at Plas Cilybebyll again.
Check out this video of Plas Cilybebyll and surroundings
A place like this so close to a motorcycle expedition experience also would allow one to break away to enjoy the Triumph Adventure Experience with the family in tow, leaving them to enjoy the delights of Play Cilybebyll or explore the roads and towns around the Brecon Beacons themselves, while you head off and play in the hills.
I will detail the Triumph Adventure experience in part five of the tales that detail this epic journey which then heads across to Ireland, before ferrying to the Isle of Man for the TT and then back across to England’s Lake and Peak Districts.