1500 mile tour around the UK

Our Elans were built to be driven and not all of us want to to use them on Track Days. If you use, or plan to use, your Elan as a Grand Tourer and have completed or are planning some great trips then inspire the rest of us with the details.

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1500 mile tour around the UK

Postby Fetnas » Mon 14.09.2009, 16:45

The Saturday just passed (12/9) marked the end of 2 weeks of touring around the UK in the elan with my feiance, camping most of the time with the occational stay in a hotel or B&B when the weather was a bit to wet! The first day basically invovled getting out of London and into the country side, we headed north and ended up at a camp site near Rutland Water, the sky was clear and the sun was shining, but that was to change!

The next day started well and we headed to Northampton to visit a museum we'd heard about then up to Stoke-on-trent to visit friends. Unfortunatly we drove into the mother of all storm fronts (I later learn't it was the tail end of a cyclone from America) it was absolutly chicking it down! I'd only had the elan out in some light showers before but this really tested the seals. Some water came in at the bottom of the windscreen (the sealant has split, temporarily fixed with black electrical tape and blu-tack) but a pleasant surprise, only a few drips came in at the top of the A pillars! The passenger wiper also tried to shed it's blade when the wipers were on high but a quick tweak with some plyers sorted that out.

The next day we were driving through the peaks district and it was still raining! This did not bode well for the camping plans. Our GPS decided to take us on a bit of a magical mystery tour along some rather disused one lane roads in this area, a trend that it was destined to repeat, which required some cautious driving. At the end of the day we ended up in a hotel in Buxton as all the campsites we could find were flooded! Probably a good thing in the end!

(This is looking like a bit of a long post so I'll cut down on the details)

It was still grey the next day but the rain had mostly stopped as we headed up to York, then on to Robin Hood's Bay where the GPS again took us down a tiny coutry lane, this time with grass growing along the middle! Now this is where the driving got really fun and the coutry side spectacular, we headed across to Keswick through the Yorkshire Dales and over the Buttertubs Pass (Clakson had mentioned this area once so I had to check it out) an amazing bit of road made even better by the fact the cloud was breaking up making the hills glow green! One thing I found out about the car, it's got more grip than I've got courage, at least on those sort of twisty unfamilar roads and I love it. :-D

We spent a couple of days in the Lakes district, again a fabulous area with some great roads, just mind the sheep, and excellent vistas before heading south down the west coast and into northern Wales, where we drove into another almighty storm front! Thankfully that was the last of the bad weather as the rest of our time in Wales was blue skys and sun. One thing I've got to say about Wales, the road surface is MUCH smoother than England, even the tiny back country lanes with the blind crest, blind corners and moss growing across the road were better than many English A roads (the GPS decided to have some fun with us again).

We traversed Wales from Snowdonia to Ironbridge where much to my surprise, whilst we were walking, a gleaming white M100 elan drove by! Before this we'd only passed 2 other Loti. It was an S2 (I think) with a blue hood and Elise tail lights reg K9 JEA, are they on the forum? By this stage my car was looking rather mud splattered compared to this fine example. We continued on down through wales to Cardiff before hitting the M4 back to London.

A brilliant trip with only a couple of car related issues, the car developed a miss fire under load at over 3500 RPM (looks like I'll have to get some new coils) the hand break got progressively worse to the point where a friendly Landrover driver tied a rope to the elan in a mildly sloping carpark (there was a note on the window to untie the elan before driving off) and some bastard kids in Cockermouth stole my tyre valve caps as they had the Lotus logo on them!

The Elan is a great little car that makes a suprisingly good tourer for 2 people and their camping gear. In the end we drove through all the national parks in England and Wales and would highly recommend these areas to anyone, not just Lotus owners! 8)
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Re: 1500 mile tour around the UK

Postby Gazza » Mon 14.09.2009, 16:50

K9 is an SE owned by Ade on here.

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Re: 1500 mile tour around the UK

Postby Dave Eds » Mon 14.09.2009, 21:24

Nice one Stefan - you Aussies certainly like an adventure!

Glad to see an Elan being used, and enjoyed.
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Re: 1500 mile tour around the UK

Postby Fetnas » Tue 15.09.2009, 11:55

Yes Dave, us Aussies do liek an adventure. When you've come half way round the world, you can't stop there, you've got to keep going! :-D

I've attached a couple of photos to help illistrate the trip.
Attachments
Welsh country lane.JPG
Welsh country lane.JPG (99.85 KiB) Viewed 1781 times
Lakes District.JPG
Lakes District.JPG (36.98 KiB) Viewed 1781 times
Yorkshire Dales.JPG
(58.73 KiB) Not downloaded yet
Knowledge is realizing that the street is one-way, wisdom is looking both directions anyway
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