Saturday, 27 December 2014

In search of A Good Walk - we set off to Mojacar

After a ridiculously early start - by our current standards, probably
Fun tepee tiles on El Quinto shower block 
luxuriously tardy to anyone else - at quarter past nine yesterday morning, we arrived 135ish miles away at Camping El Quinto, just outside Mojacar in plenty of time for lunch. The reason for our hasty departure from Camping Florantilles was not skipping the bill - everyone has to pay up front there (!) - but that we needed to arrive at El Quinto before Recepcion closed for siesta at 1pm. They don't reopen again until after 5pm and we didn't fancy waiting around outside for hours unable to get in and set up. Dave had emailed ahead and Marina had said we would be welcome to pull in but please not to select a pitch without assistance. It turned out that, due to our wanting to stay here at least three weeks, there were only three available pitches from which we could choose. The campsite is less than half full right now but I guess it is going to get a lot busier come the beginning of January.

We chose to return to Mojacar again so soon because we know there is lots of good walking here. We keep talking about having been here 'last year' overlooking that our previous stay at nearby Sopalmo was only in February so still 'this year' at the moment! El Quinto was recommended to Dave by someone he got chatting to at the washing up sinks at Florantilles. It's amazing how much one can learn about other campers and their travels over a bowl of washing up! It is situated on the 'other side' of Mojacar from Sopalmo and we are now within 15 minutes walk of the town on the hillside. The difference of only 5 or 6 miles has opened up a whole new vista of walks right from our doorstep. Dave was told how pretty El Quinto is and the information was right. The large pitches are delineated by shrubs and small trees, all of which are green and leafy not overpruned skeletons. There are cute little garden areas for sitting and relaxing and everywhere is neat and clean. There's only one small sanitary block so it might be a case of picking our shower times when the site gets busy. However it has everything we need and lots of good pressure hot water at the turn of a tap - bliss! I think we're going to like it here.

We have had a couple of problems with Bailey recently and are wondering if bits are starting to wear out already. Both are water related - the Truma water heater and water pump. The water heater appeared to blow when we arrived at Florantilles. We switched it on and all the electrics promptly went off. Dave untripped us at the external electric box. Switching the water heater on again now just tripped its own circuit in the caravan. We've checked the fuses but can't see into them! We've stopped trying the water heater on the electric, but Dave's considering trying it on the gas here. Forums suggest a variety of potential problems including the demise of the element. Hopefully it will be something as 'simple' to fix as this because, although we don't use it that often, instant hot water in Bailey is very useful at times.

The Truma water pump was very loud when we first bought Bailey, to the extent that people on neighbouring pitches sometimes commented! Not having had one before, we didn't know what they were supposed to sound like, but realised they probably weren't intended to be heard three pitches away. Over the months of last winter's travels the pump quietened down and we hardly noticed it. Now, however, it has started whining on for ages after we turn a tap off. I think the pump itself is wearing out. It's fine when then Aqua Roll is full, but once it gets below about a third remaining, the water pressure falls significantly which I guess is why the pump keeps whining - it's taking so much longer to refill the pipes. Fortunately a spare water pump was one of the precautionary purchases we made at John's Cross before we set out again this year. At the price, I think the current one should last longer so we're going to hang on with it as long as we can bear the noise - or as long as it keeps going anyway!


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