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Archive for November, 2008

Frustrated geocacher!

On Thursday, we had to go to my Uncle George’s funeral in Grappenhall, near Warrington.

As you do, I’d checked which caches we have not found nearby and downloaded them to the Oregon. I did not know if we’d have time to find any of them but you never know…

By the time we got there, we had to go straight to the church so as not to be late. I knew there was a cache by the canal on the road into the village and sure enough, we drove past it on the way. I resisted stopping to find it as being late for funeral’s is not nice.

After the funeral, we headed off in the funeral procession to the crematorium at Walton. We passed the cache again – I could literally see where it was likely to be as we drove past.

As we approached the crem, I could also see where one of the Walton towpath caches we needed to find was, but did not have time to stop for that either. Hmmmm…

After the crem, we headed off for the do at a pub near Grappenhall and you guessed it, we passed the cache again, but did not have time to stop.

After the do, there was absolutely no way we were going home without finding the cache as it had frustrated me all day. Thankfully it was an easy find and we were soon on our way, very happy to have found it.

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On Saturday we fancied another good long walk and the chance to go for two circular walks near to each other, whilst also finally bagging the LQ West Midlands cache was too good to resist.

After a quick drive to the cache area via the M6 Toll we arrived at the first cache of the day. This was a dead easy drive-by with the trickiest thing being finding somewhere to ark the Jeep. We then found LQ West Midlands (now a normal lock ‘n’ lock box but the original was more elaborate – we still don’t know what it was and are very curious).

Next on the list was the Middle England series, near Meriden, the rumoured centre of England. The first one was missing but we’d emailed the cache owners during the week to check if it contained details we needed for the bonus cache. As part of this we offered to pop a new micro in for the cache, to save the cache owner a trip out.

The walk round the caches was really lovely, with lots of great views and a variety of terrain. We stopped to eat our soup and sandwiches about half way round, with some great views over an old quarry area. All too soon we were back at the Jeep and on our way to the next area.

On the way to the Webbie Womble series, we stopped to find a Wykenwizard cache – Wot No Mud. This was down an old road that is now blocked off and used as a bridleway. We don’t usually do multi’s when away from home and did not realise this was a multi-puzzle cache until we arrived at the first stage. Not to worry as the final cache was only about 500ft further on so no hassle at all.

We then parked in a familiar spot in Hampton on Arden (we’d parked here ages ago to do a few now archived caches) and set off for the Webbie Womble. Another really nice circular walk although very muddy in parts. We just found the bonus cache in the last remains of daylight but still fancied a few more caches before giving up for the day.

A quick check of Memory Map revealed 5 easy drive-by / cache and dashes not too far away so we set off to find them. All were found with no problems and the last put us handily right by a junction for the M42 and the journey home.

Tonight was the cubs bonfire and fireworks at the Newport Showgrounds so we headed off to the in-laws in Blymhill for some tea, before going to meet Mrs Bolas Heathens and Freya for the fireworks.

Yet another fab day caching. We absolutely love the circular walks with lots of caches to find on the way.

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We had another great day’s caching on Saturday. This week we fancied a good long walk in the countryside so the area just south of Birmingham, near Redditch stood out as there are several new trails to get our teeth into.

We started the day with some “What’s Wrong With Bromsgrove” caches – two dead easy drive-by’s which were at places the cache setter liked when they were a child.

We moved over to do a short trail of 5 caches not too far away. A great walk – we particularly enjoyed the cache by the ford and just had to drive the Jeep through the ford later on :-). Unfortunately we had yet another run in with a NIMBY who did not like us parking on a quiet lane. I should be starting to get paranoid about my parking by now as this is the third run in we’ve had in as many weeks! Each time we have parked really considerately and left tons of space for farm machinery to get past. I guess some people just don’t like their lanes being used.

A short drive through Redditch later (how the heck do you get on the dual carriageway that runs West / East through the town?) and we were at the Webbie Walkabout caches. This is a set of 10 or so caches on a circular walk in lovely countryside, just how we like them. We loved the walk and the changing scenery – our only complaint would be that all the caches were micros :-(. At least the bonus cache was a Small, which was good.

Then it was on to the final feature of the day – the Oversley Trail near Alcester. On the way we spotted a Sidetracked cache by the road in Wootten Wawen so stopped to find it (and how do you say Wootten Wawen without sounding like Jonathan Ross??).

Before we set off, we sat down on a handy bench near the first in the series to have our soup and sandwiches. We’d decided to use the bikes for this series as it looked bike-able on Google Earth and Isaac has been told by the Doctor not to do too much walking, while the tendons in his ankle heal.

All started well, apart from me not paying attention and riding right into a bush on the narrow path – ouch! We continued up the side of the beautiful woods, finding the caches as we passed them. It was then that we realised the clocks had gone back last weekend and it was going dark – and more importantly, we’d left the torches in the Jeep – doh!

We ended up doing the rest of the series in the dark, with the light of the PDA to help. We must have been up to date on our carrot’s as once your eyes got adjusted to things we could see really well. After doing the bonus cache, we bumped into the cache owner himself, who had come out to say hello as we’d spoken to him as a PAF earlier. Great to meet you again Mark :-).

On the way back up to the M42 and onwards to home, we spotted another cache as we drove by, so stopped to find it.

A great day out in some beautiful countryside.

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