20 July, 2013

Back Home

Us at the most northerly (accessible) point of land in
Japan: Cape Soya.
Yes, we arrived home yesterday afternoon and we're gradually getting settled back into home. It's been a fabulous journey, one that we'll remember for many years.

Great weather

We had great weather, it only rained on us twice but neither time significantly affected our plans. We only have to pack up in the rain once. It was also pleasantly warm during the day. The coldest we experienced was about 9 degrees and that was on our first night in Sapporo, which has confused the boys, who all assumed that the farther north we went the colder it would be. Most days were in the 20s.

Team work

People have queried our sanity in doing such a trip, whether we could relax while changing campsites every two or three days. And the truth is yes. When everyone cooperated and helped (which was more often than not), it wasn't hard to set up or pack up. In total, less than two hours most times, if we worked quickly it was closer to one hour. Lots of hands make light work is the truth. And by the end of the trip most of the jobs were known to all of us, except packing the car which remained exclusively David's job.

Cape Soya
Because the sun gets up so early (it's light from about 3am), we all went to bed at the same time, often between 8 and 8.30 not too long after it got dark. Then, with eye masks, we managed to sleep till 6 or 7 most days. Therefore we actually were getting more rest and sleep than usual.

David cooking one of our lovely breakfasts: pancakes.
Additionally, because it takes more thought to just do the daily tasks of camping like cook, it is hard to think of anything else but what you're immediately doing. Therefore we've been able to largely leave our daily work worries behind and get a good mental rest. Tending fires to cook your dinner is pretty therapeutic!

Again, because no one had any other things to be at or do, everyone tended to get involved in the tasks that needed to be done. We also insisted on a rotation of helpers for washing up and drying (one parent and one child). That provided some great conversations with the boys.


Nope, we had no disasters. No accidents. No visits to hospitals.

The only equipment failure we had was a hole in an air bed on the last couple of nights and we needed to replace our single gas burner (not a great expense) that succumbed to high winds, we think, and stopped working. One windy night we had to go out to fix our annex three times and in the end took it down for the next night, because it was so difficult to sleep with it flapping around.

An attempt at photographing the sunset at one of our camping spots near the beach.
Our eldest was bitten repeatedly by something about 10 days ago and has developed a nasty looking rash across a 4 cm circle on his calf. We had that looked at today at the dermatologist and hopefully that will subside soon.

One place had large bees flying around. That froze our crew and made it difficult for us to pack up camp because our helpers panicked easily. Tempers weren't good that day, but no one was actually bitten.

However, all in all, it was a fairly easy trip.


I wrote about our journey as we went, more than 8,000 words, and I took more than 500 photos too! I'm planning to gradually document our journey here bit by bit, rather than dump the whole thing on you at once! So watch this space in the coming weeks.
David and my favourite campsite: Tentolando at
Abashiri. It represented best value for money as well
as being able to score some great shade in the mornings.

Glad to be home

Yes, we're glad to be home. I was a little reluctant to finish our camping. I was enjoying it so much and the time went quickly. However it is nice to be home, with all the comforts of home. Tokyo's weather has even been kind to us, not presenting us with the blistering mid or high 30s of last week. Today it's been about 30 and very liveable.

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