Loot here reporting in for the Yorkshire Boys (plus two escaped
Lancastrians, the Tills). After traveling over on the Hull/Rotterdam
ferry our party of 8 jeeps and some of the Manchester boys we made a
steady journey to the rally start and hotel, come on you don`t think
we were daft enough to sleep in tents!
was the jump off point saturday morning. In 1944 this was held by the
German SS and the Americans had a right ding dong routing them out.
After a late night
testing the Belgian beer with a few of the locals "Hands across
the water" and all that, Saturdays route was 65km of snow covered
tracks and roads through stunning countryside, I`ve taken part in the
winter rally for the last 8 or 9 years and it just gets better.
The Belgians sure know
how to run an event with every road juction marked with arrows and a
road book supplied, no pressure to be anywhere on time, it's a case of
drive, chill and enjoy.
had a slow morning run as the larger vehicles suffered from wheel spin
in the snow and ice but with bulldog sprit we all took to
pushing............... "ever pushed a GMC out of a ditch?"
All this added to the enjoyment, our dinner time stop was La Roche.
This is a small town located in a deep gorge with a river running
through, it was a late dinner at 3 oclock due to hold ups.
La Roche realy took a
pounding in 1944 when it was heavily bombed by the Americans in a plan
to route out the Germans. There are some great pictures in the museum
there and the guy who owns it is always very helpfull in answering any
questions, it's worth a vist if you're in that part of the world.
night is party night, after a warm up in the swimming pool and a sauna
and all being very reserved we popped down to the disco and night club
where our Belgian hosts had live entertainment, "a right good
night" as they say in this part of the world.
was a shorter run out with just the morning route, at this point I
must note that it's still snowing and the drifts across some of the
farm tracks are jeep bonnet height!
small breakaway group stopped out, not returning for the dinnertime
meal at the hotel as we wanted to get in as much jeep mileage as we
We spent the afternoon
on near impassable lanes, at one point we had to A-bar two jeeps
together for 8 wheel drive up one snow covered track. Sunday night was
an early one, with a pizza in a local restaurant.
On monday morning we
traveled to Luxembourg to the museum in the centre of Diekirch, again
worth a vist. Sadly two or three of the rooms where closed for central
heating to be fitted but the rest was excellent, again off on the road
and up into the Netherlands for our overnight stop at Overloon to the
Marshall museum. This is now housed in Liberty park.
holds one of the best collections of vehicles outside the US and a
must for military vehicle enthusiasts, it is all kept in a massive
heated building with large dioramas, wide walkways and fantastic
If you look it up on
the web the information is not up to the overwelming display of
machines from early war right through the 50's and into the 80's and
Our goup then had to
say goodbye the foreign lands and return to old blighty and the real
Over the years I`ve
learned that events are made by people and people make the event and
for one I can say that the Belgium Military Vehicle Trust are some of
the most welcoming people you`ll find.
DONE BMVT and THANK YOU to all the organizers and participents
..............PS if you've got military vehicles, don't park it up for
the winter get out there and use it!
Article by John Gray