Archive for the ‘Landrover’ Category

Completed Driver Improvement

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

I’ve completed a Driver Improvement course today (which was mandated because of a prang last year). I was part of a group of about a dozen other trainees, undertaking the course at the behest of the Surrey Police – the option being possible prosecution for careless driving. On balance it was, I thought, worth the cost involved and the time out to see what it would entail – and how much I had forgotton, perhaps, the the thirty one years since I passed my driving test.

On balance it was actually rather informative – and the day of practical driving with an advanced instructor highlighted a few areas which need further work. The classroom session was a bit dreary – but there was a nice bunch of people to work through the exercises analysing situations and there were a few short but informative video snippets. I’m not convinced about the way the issues of speeding are presented – I think it’s just the wild over simplification and mixing up the physics of speed that annoy me. Have no doubt – the film of a car trying to stop in front of a dummy at various speeds was salutory nevertheless.

I enjoyed the practical sessions in the car – although trying to think what you did wrong yourself was pretty difficult – but the lack of attention to the speedo and occasional lapses of mirror work were pretty obvious. I really liked trying to do the commentary of what was going on ahead of you – although remembering the correct words to describe some of the signs (even though I knew what they meant) was jolly hard work. That’s something I can practice more in the future. The key is really to look even further ahead than you might ever do otherwise.

Overall I think the idea of “Training, not punishment” is pretty sound. Everyone of us came away feeling that they’d learnt something, and we all came away with more to aim for in the future to be a better driver.

Oh yes – Six Pounds for a pathetic ham sandwich was appalling. Zero marks to DeVere for that rip-off. White sliced bread (not that day’s delivery, I’m sure), pre-packed thin sliced ham, a bit of chutney and a pile of dorritos was not worth it.

Green Laning in the Surrey Hills

Monday, August 30th, 2010

Today I took the Landrover and a friend from the village for a small green laning expedition. Guy has a Jeep, and was wondering what all the fuss was about – so I offered a few weeks ago to go out with him to see what it was like.

Landrover in the sunshine on Leith Hill

Green Laning in Surrey

We did a few lanes – past Coldharbour cricket pitch towards Leith Hill Tower and then back to the road, Coldharbour to Wooton – a long and varied track with some awesome views of Dorking, and then we went to Ranmore and trundled gently down to the back of East Horsley.
That was three attractive and relatively straightforward runs – Guy got a chance to drive, and we had a very pleasant afternoon out in the sunshine. Not very muddy, and we met a small convoy of various Landrovers on the Leith Hill track. Plenty of walkers and some crazy cycle riders who whizzed past without warning.

The River Mole at Betchworth

Friday, February 26th, 2010

Much, well a little, excitement on the way to work this morning – the River Mole at Betchworth had flooded the road, both sides of the bridge, so the Landy was the ideal vehicle to drive through. Sadly, though, it was only about a foot deep – so no problems at all, and no other cars seemed to be having any problems.

The water had subsided by the time I came home in the evening – but the weather forecast suggests that there might be more rain on Sunday so perhaps there will be another chance after that. Hope so!

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James May and the Landrover

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

I just wanted to include this link to words by James May about the Landrover Defender.  In case you don’t know, that’s what I drive.  Just great fun.  I love thinking that I can go absolutely anywhere (and with the TD5, sometimes quite fast!)

P717 JKO Crashed near Reigate on Flanchford Road in August 2007

P717 JKO Crashed near Reigate on Flanchford Road in August 2007

Remember, they are tough motors: you can do this to them and walk away (no, actually I climbed out of the sunroof!) with only a broken thumb.  This is the one I rolled on a back road near Reigate in the summer of 2007.

When looking for a replacement I wasn’t too sure if the dealer sitting next to me on a test drive was too happy that he’d asked why I was looking for a new one.

More snow and chaos on the roads

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

Woke up this morning to new snow – another 2″ or so, which has fallen during the night.  Set off for work in the Landrover at 0800hrs, and although the roads are quite drivable and the landy coped just fine, the traffic was a nightmare.  By the time I got to Betchworth the pass through the North Downs at Pebblecombe was closed, the A25 movement going East was like driving in cold treacle – and the radio reports of the M25 junction at Reigate was that it was virtually gridlocked.  Decided best course was to return and WFH today.

Now I’m stuck trying to get Citrix to work the way I want!

Still #uksnow RH5 1/10