26-28/6/16. As you will have seen from earlier today, we had a bit of excitement overnight. We are fine and just about dry. Actually there was very little that got wet because our stuff was mainly in the inner tent which is protected by the groundsheet extending up the “walls” or in the panniers (which, being German, are waterproof). One item which did go for a swim was Christine’s Kindle. After not working at all initially, it now seems to be OK, albeit with the occasional hiccough.
The rain started about 9 pm last night and sounded torrential (but it always sounds loud when you are in the tent) waking us several times. Having been dreaming about roads flooding, Stephen woke at about 4 am and realised that the groundsheet was bulging around the back pads that we sleep on. Looking out into the main part of the tent we could see an inch of water. This suggested that we should move pretty damn quickly! Fortunately the rain eased off at that point and we were able to carry everything into the shelter without it getting soaked while in transit.
The rain came back and continued until early afternoon, but not as heavily as in the night. In the daylight, which is about 4.30 am at this time of year in Japan, we could see that we had sited the tent in the biggest puddle! Perhaps the rainy season was not the best time of year to come!!
Of course, all of this was after spending an extra day near Ise on Saturday because of the forecast heavy rain – which didn’t materialise, other than a few spots!
We had a very pleasant ride to the ferry at Toba on Sunday morning, managing to stay on minor roads most of the way until we reached the Ise-Shima National Park (which was where the recent G7 Summit was held – I wonder if we will vote to leave that organisation next!). The road into the park was quite busy (and hilly) but there was a footpath which we could use.
The ferry took us across the mouth of the bay to a small village called Irago where there was a large hotel with an adjacent campsite. It turned out that the campsite was only open on Saturday nights! However, after some persuasion they took pity on us and opened it especially for us – which involved turning the water in the filthy toilets back on and collecting ¥3,600 (£24 – or considerably more depending on how badly the pound is doing today) from us. It was a rip off to be honest.
The next morning the sun was shining in a cloudless sky and by 6.15 the tent was too hot for even Christine to lie in any longer so we packed quickly and got under way along the coast. For long stretches we were able to follow a “cycle road” which was mostly of excellent quality. By midday it was really hot and Christine was starting to wilt in the sun. We found a shady spot to sit which was frequented by a group of hang gliders – they must be mad throwing themselves off a cliff with only a few bits of string supporting them!
While we were eating lunch and cooling down a little, a light haze appeared which took the edge off the heat and we were able to resume. Unfortunately the cycle road soon ended and the route became more hilly for a while which slowed us down.
Eventually we reached the outskirts of Kosai where the road levelled out and, crossing a bridge came to the paddling pool – sorry, campsite – which was a very reasonable ¥820 (under £6) for a night (and included a free bath at 4 am!).