Take a tour of the Foray team’s favourite trips out
For a chance to win an amazing survival pack worth over £325, head over to our Facebook page by clicking here, and enter in to our latest competition!
With its great range of SUVs, among them the third generation Kuga that has just launched, it’s obvious that Ford caters for people who like the great outdoors.
With that in mind, we have a great competition running on Facebook to win £325 or survival gear. Here’s a suggestion for a few trips to enjoy your new Ford – not all of them require the full Monty of kit but you can never be too prepared when heading for the great outdoors.
And remember that if you are heading for some of Britain’s wilder spots, you should always wear appropriate clothing, remembering that the weather can change dramatically almost immediately, leave details of your route and anticipated time of return with someone who can send help if you are delayed. Learn how to read a map, use a compass, and don’t rely on GPS in your phone to find your way.
Close to home we have the New Forest, a National Park that offers shaded woods, open heathland, and plenty of space for walking or cycling (only take bikes on the approved cycle routes to avoid habitat damage). With excellent facilities such as pubs and tearooms it’s easy to find a snack or meal but pack a picnic and head off into the serenity of woods absolutely packed with wildlife species.
The Lake District is much further afield – you may need our prize kit to survive the M6 roadworks on the way there! But with the choice of shoreline sites, boating, or some real climbing country in the fells you can get all the exercise you need. If you like the heights but not the climb you can pass 1,100 ft above sea level in the comfort of your Ford at junction 39 near Shap.
West country hot spots for outdoor enthusiasts are Dartmoor and Exmoor, both world-renowned for their wild country and wild ponies. Secret valleys, historic houses, picturesque villages, and superb hostelries abound along with wide open views from the many summits that challenge your hiking ability. Remember to keep within your skills levels as fog descends at a moment’s notice so items from our survival kit could be perfect companions.
Wayford Wood is popular with families from Chard and Crewkerne and, it seems, with fairies judging by the number of fairy doors in the woods many trees. The wood’s trustees have asked for no more doors but that won’t stop full-size humans having a magical day out.
Ham Hill near Yeovil is so special it rates a big mention in the book on the A303, subtitled Highway to the Sun, by Tom Fort that accompanied the BBC film about the road that’s a vital artery to the West Country from London, even though it starts nowhere in particular and ends in the same way! Ham Hill, on the other hand, is a country park crowned by spectacular views of the surrounding countryside.
Ninesprings Country Park is almost in the heart of Yeovil and offers 127 acres of natural parkland. There is woodland, a lake, streams, flat open grass, and a play area along with plenty of woodland trails, some hilly. The open flat area is ideal for ball games, kites, and picnics and there is a cycleway along the old railway network.
The Quantock Hills form an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty close to Taunton and stretching all the way to the coast near the villages of East and West Quantoxhead. Rolling open landscapes and stunning seashore rock formations catch the eye and there are regular organised walks for those who like to stretch their legs.
The Isle of Purbeck feels like an island but is actually a peninsula with heathland, spectacular shorelines, the rugged appeal of Corfe Castle, a steam railway, and the RSPB reserve at Arne, recently featured in the Autumnwatch and Winterwatch BBC TV Series with Chris Packham. Carpets of wild garlic and bluebells will soon be a feature of the woods while cowslip meadows will revive memories of days gone by.
Blandford Forest is set between the villages of Winterbourne Stickland and Shillingstone, deep in the Dorset countryside. With steep ridges and vigorous footpath routes, it’s easy to get some good exercise without having to cover too much distance! This has got to be Hardy Country at its best, with twisting lanes and even main roads that seem to follow tortuous routes. What a great place to take your new Ford SUV!