Lazy evenings spent watching the thousand faces of a lake change with the weather and time of day. Our time in the middle of Cornwall on Bodmin Moor was filled to the brim with a whole load of nothingness, a bit of local grub from the butchers round the corner, and a touch of floating in a boat on a lake as the stars appeared. Did someone say bliss?
Bodmin Moor has a reputation for being grey, bleak and wet. Of boggy marsh’s and weather so bad you can’t see to the end of your arm. I beg to differ. Get it right and Bodmin Moor is clear and warm, with wildlife in every gorse bush and on every tree.
The moor can be heaven on earth if you look closely enough, especially if you find yourself with a stay in a shipping container on your own private lake, with Brown Willy, Cornwall’s highest point, peaking over the clay tips masquerading as mountains in your eye-line.
For me, a stay at The Lake, hidden behind a padlocked fence with military warnings all over it, was the perfect getaway from reality. At The Lake there is little phone signal, no TV, no internet, no plug sockets to charge your phones; just you, your companion, the hundreds of swifts swooping over the water and the perfect silence that resets your stress levels to zero.
We could have stayed at the shipping container, kitted out with a kitchen, a shower which uses water from the lake, the comfiest bed imaginable and a BBQ for alfresco dining, the whole time we’d set aside to relax here, but we’re not the kind of people who do sitting down for long periods of time very well. So we hopped in the car and headed for St Neot, donned our walking boots and head out on the 5 and a half mile, Two Valleys walk.
The hike smashed all my preconceptions of Bodmin – we walked through ancient, gnarled woodlands and by rivers trenched deep between valleys – far from my previous experiences on the moor, where mizzle and rain on exposed tors were the main event!
Two and half hours away from our little pocket of solitude was enough, so we stocked up on food and spent the night picnicking on BBQd steak and veggies, watching the sun bathe the lake in orange and enjoy the perfect space we’d somehow been lucky enough to find.
Of course, with a boat to play with, it would have been rude to not board our ship with a bottle of grog and float around as the stars came out, so, armed with some Prosecco and all the time in the world to sit and drift and bob and talk and drink, we did just those things on a lake as calm as glass.
Want to stay at The Lake? Head on over to coolcamping.co.uk. Prices start at £100 per night in the winter, and £125 per night in high season. If you want use of the boat, throw another £25 per night on top (trust me, it’s worth it!). Rupert and Fran, the owners, stock you up on a welcome pack of wine, bread, milk and butter to set you off and there are supermarkets nearby for your shop – because take it from me, you won’t want to leave to eat out when you’ve got this beauty of a place to eat at!