Bounty Lake (Etang des Chères), Sarthe Department, Sunday 29th December 2013

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Lovely sunny and warm Sunday at Bounty Lake

Lovely sunny and warm Sunday at Bounty Lake

 

We’ve decided to try out this lake about 6 miles (9km) south of Le Mans to see if Adonis is a bit more successful with his fishing, as he hasn’t been very lucky lately. We have provisionally booked for 2 days, but might push another night if weather holds. It’s very quiet here and the British couple in charge, Bob and Les, are very friendly and welcoming. We have water, electricity, a hot shower, the sun has been shining all day and it felt quite warm in the van without any heating until now, 5.30pm, so it’s been a good day.

 

Fishing at last!

Fishing at last!

 

This is, however, the first nice day we’ve had since we left home on Thursday morning, as the weather turned very windy and wet in the evening at Wissant, with the van rocking in the middle of the night, waking us up. In the morning, we saw a branch from one of the trees behind the van had been broken off and had caught in the branches of the adjacent tree, so lucky it didn’t damage either the motorhome or the house in whose garden it stood.

 

A very windy night at Wissant left us this broken branch behind motorhome

A very windy night at Wissant left us this broken branch behind motorhome

 

We followed the same route south as in October half-term, stopping at the motorhome aire at Buchy, just north of Rouen, as we had really liked it then. As we arrived by lunchtime, we took Beano for his afternoon walk through the market town, but as we got to the centre, he was spooked by something and, while I was taking pictures of the market place and Christmas decorations, he managed to pull the lead off Adonis’s hand and I saw him running for his life in the middle of the road heading straight for an on-coming car. I screamed and Adonis waved his arms about to stop the traffic and Beano ran to the pavement, heading uphill back to the M.H. Aire. I ran after him, but he was too far in front and I would have never caught him if it hadn’t been for a kind young couple who saw him coming and luckily stopped him and kept him until I got to them, breathless but relieved to have got him back safe. So we took him back to the van and left him there with his food and water and we went out again to enjoy a coffee at one of the local bars and to continue taking photos of this charming little town. I think that from now on we will remember Buchy as the place where Beano ran off and I nearly had a heart attack!

 

Beano on the lead before he ran off

Beano on the lead in Buchy before he ran off

 

 A Christmassy Buchy

A Christmassy Buchy

 

Welcome to Buchy

Welcome to Buchy

 

The old market place at Buchy

The old market place at Buchy

 

 

Buchy's Townhall

Buchy’s Townhall

 

On Saturday morning, we bought our baguette and cake from one of the boulangeries in town and continued on south, still round the north and eastern side of Rouen, as the Pont Mathilde is still closed until the summer of 2014, and followed the usual route down to Alençon on the D438 and from there on the D338 to La Hutte, where we headed west for about 4 miles on the D310 to Fresnay-sur-Sarthe, where we stopped at the motorhome aire by the circus school which John and Julie had told us about, right by the old railway station. This was very pleasant, but the water had been turned off, so we bought 2 5-gallon bottles of water at the nearby Le Mutant supermarket, just to be on the safe side.

 

Motorhome aire by circus school at Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

Motorhome aire by circus school at Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

 

Once again, we went to explore the town, but this time we kept a firm grip on Beano’s lead and we even carried him in our arms for a bit when we was reluctant to walk and was pulling back too much.

 

The river Sarthe had burst its banks

The river Sarthe had burst its banks

 

We were amazed to see that the river Sarthe had burst its banks again and quite a few houses seemed to have their gardens and outbuilding under water or badly flooded, so we were worried that Bounty lake, just a few miles down the road, might be the same, but luckily we are all right here.

 

A flooded Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

A flooded Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

 

Flooded gardens and outbuildings

Flooded gardens and outbuildings

 

Flooded Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

Flooded Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

 

Fresnay-sur-Sarthe is a really charming town and we have fond memories of our first summer holiday in the van back in 2010 when we watched the Football Worldcup final between Spain and Holland and how friendly the campsite manager had been, giving out free beers to everyone. We hadn’t come back since, so I am glad we have now, and we should return again in the summer and enjoy a swim in the river, like we did with Pepo and Bramble 3 years ago.

 

Walking in charming Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

Walking in charming Fresnay-sur-Sarthe

 

Today’s been a short drive from Fresnay-sur-Sarthe, back on the D338 and round Le Mans, past the 24-hour racing circuit and back on the D338 to Lake Bounty. We arrived by 11am, with plenty of time for mid-morning coffee and cake, showers and even fishing before lunch!

 

Our parking spot at Lake Bounty, just a few meters away from the fishing area

Our parking spot at Lake Bounty, just a few meters away from the fishing area

 

We hope the weather holds so that we can keep on enjoying the walks around the lake, the fishing and, most importantly, relaxing in the sun.

10 responses »

  1. So a mixed break then, bad weather and a lucky escape at Wissant. We are glad that Beano is OK, dogs are more trouble than children. Amazing photos from Fresnay of the floods, We’re glad that you found the aire by the circus school, it’s very handy for the shop isn’t it? John and Julie

  2. Yes, I was glad to get back home! we felt sad to see Fresnay like that: lots of people will have a lot of cleaning up to do, just like here. The aire was great and we were thankful to you both for the tip again, like in Berck. It was great having the supermarket just round the corner and that’s where we bought our water. It’ll be nice to see it in the sun again. I can’t believe how hot it was back in 2010 and that we were actually swimming in the river! Hope you two are keeping well and to see you at Easter. We’ll be going back to Lac de Leon in the south west (2 swimming pools (indoor and outdoor) and jacuzzi and very reasonably priced too! Happy travels!

  3. The pictures are amazing! Sad to hear about the flooding, and maybe a bit jealous. The water resources board here is meeting to decide when we need to start rationing water. It’s been so long since we got measurable rain.
    It is so nice to come home, too, no matter how good, eventful the trip!

    • It is the same old story: some have too much and some too little! We complain about what a wet country we live in, but I don’t think we would like to be without water. I feel for you there. I still remember when I was little living in Spain and we had a drought in 1974, with only water on tap for about 2 hours a day. We had to walk to the nearest natural fountain in a farm about 1km away and queue up for ages to fill our buckets so that we could cook and flush the toilet. I am one of 10 children, so we had to fill up a few buckets and kept going backwards and forwards to the fountain. When the water was turned on, we had to fill up the bathtub, pots and pan and use it for all kinds of things.

      Having said all that, if your house is flooded, you don’t just get rain water, but sewage as well, so everything has to be thrown out, wait for your house to dry out, which can take months, as it happened to my colleague back in 2012, and redecorate. Insurance pays, but it takes time.

      I hope you won’t suffer too much inconvenience and enjoy the rain when you get it.

      • I’ve had friends whose homes were destroyed by gloods and hurricanes, I do not wish for that; it would be lovely to take a bit of rain off someone’s hands. It won’t happen quite yet, but probably spring, we’ll be rationing. The state will determine how much each household gets to use for the regular price, and then anything used over that there will be a steep penalty for, and we’ll be asked not to water the lawns. It’s a bummer. Maybe 5 or 6 years ago, we had so much rain, it’ rained 25 of the 31 days of March…still we were in a drought by summer. It’s pretty much the way things work in California.
        K

  4. Your trip seemed to have ups and downs with the weather. I did enjoy seeing the area you were visiting, Bounty Lake looks like a very peaceful place to spend time fishing. Wishing you all the best with your travels this year. :)

    • Thank you, Karen. We are due to go away again in mid February, but I am not so sure I want to go now. I think I’d rather wait for warmer weather at Easter, when we have a longer holiday and can go further south.

  5. Such a more relaxing walk without Beano running off like a mad dog. I can’t even imagine how panicked you were when he took off and nearly got run over. The trials and tribulations of a young dog, but with loving patience he will stay close to your side.

    • Let’s hope so. He’s now recovering from an operation on his leg, as he jumped from my son’s arms and injured the joint between the tibia and the knee. No walks for 4-6 weeks!!! :-(

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