Sunday, 18 October 2015

White Water CC Site

Having finished work early, we set off on a sunny Friday to White Water CC site at Stockton on Tees. We arrived to a warm welcome from the friendly wardens. The majority of the pitches are grass and we were loaned some anti-slip mats to put our wheels/ramps on in case it rained. The campsite was almost full so we picked one of the few plots left which was near a caravan storage area. The site was (as all CC sites are) maintained to a high standard, clean and tidy. It has a large shower/toilet block and also a games room. We pitched up and sat out enjoying the sunshine, marvelling at how warm it was for the beginning of October.
On Friday tea time there is a fish and chip van in the visitor’s car park. We didn’t partake but it was very popular - we even saw someone pull up who wasn’t from the site but had made a special trip for his tea! Near the entrance of the site there is a Premier Inn with a Beefeater restaurant so we headed there for our tea. We enjoyed a lovely meal and then headed out for a little wander. Behind the Beefeater is a nature reserve and in front of the Beefeater, at the bottom of a grassy bank is a man made, white water rafting site. We had a brief look then headed back to Monty, ready to explore properly the next day.

The next morning was quite foggy. Every day had started like this recently and had then burned off into a hot, sunny day so we had high hopes. At the Beefeater last night we had noticed that they did breakfast so we headed over. There is a continental buffet (croissants, muffins, cereals , toast etc) or for a little extra you can have the full English cooked to order (unlimited) and visit the buffet if you still have room! Having thoroughly enjoyed our breakfast we walked down to the white water raft centre. This is a man made course using tides from the nearby River Tees.

You can walk all the way round the course and cross a bridge to walk round the middle. Quite a few people of all ages were on the course, practising their rolls and battling the rapids. Apparently it is sometimes used for rescue training and also for films/dramas - all the action without the risks. It is a really clever set up with Archimedes screws the size of buses which also generate power.

We turned to look at the nearby River Tees and there were 4 seals in there! It is a popular place for them to come and feed when the salmon are migrating upstream.

There are steps to help the salmon up and this area was so popular that they had to put anti seal bars on the steps to stop them sitting on the steps and eating them all. We also saw a kingfisher whose colours in real life were fabulous - even more vivid with the naked eye than in pictures. We walked along the river towards Stockton-on-Tees where there were ducks and swans to feed. They are building a Go Ape or similar climbing frame here by the river. We also walked in the other direction towards Middlesbrough on a path along the river. Sadly the fog showed no sign of lifting and it was a much chillier day. We then had a walk into the nature reserve. We only saw a moor hen but apparently early in the morning you can sometimes see deer. Later that evening we had a walk again around the rapids although it was much calmer now as the rapids had been switched off and the ducks and swans had ventured onto the water. The next morning, as I was handing our toilet and barrier key in a chap was asking if he could extend his stay - how I wished we could too but sadly it was back to work for us.