On Saturday we planned a return visit to the area just to the south of Derby.
This time we would be just a bit further north than we were last week, concentrating on the EBE series near the lovely village of Etwall. If we have time, we’ll move onto the SS series on the outskirts of Derby itself and then maybe some of JustAlan’s letter series if time permits.
First stop was the centre of Etwall to get the details from the cemetery that we needed to start the EBE series off. There was another cache nearby at the Leisure Centre so it would have been rude not to grab that one first.
Details all noted from the cemetery, we headed off in the Jeep to the first cache on the EBE series. This was a nice easy drive-by. We then headed down to the end of the lane to park up and head off on foot for the rest of the circular walk.
The first part of the walk took us along the back of the HUGE Toyota factory – it really is a lot more scenic than it sounds though as they have done a great job with landscaping. No hard finds and the co-ords were good at all of the caches.
Along the way we found what has to be the weirdest cache container yet – a shop dummy painted in camo colours and with a cache stuffed down it’s neck. It goes to show, you can get *anything* used as a cache container in these parts, which all adds to the fun :-).
The rest of the walk was lovely, with some great views over the area from the higher points, lots of quick finds and one or two extra caches that were not in the series along the way. All too soon we were back at the Jeep and heading off for the next set of caches.
We re-positioned to just north of Etwall and headed off along a National Cycleway on our bikes for some more caches. The cycleway followed the route of an old railway line and made for some very easy cycling.
We started with a puzzle cache, then two Traditional’s followed by The Web Rat’s 4 new TRR sneaky hide series. This series has no cache size stated, no clues, no other details, nothing. It’s all about very sneaky hides and testing your cacher’s instinct. Just the kind of caching we really enjoy!
We found 3 out of the 4 and despite a look on the way out and the way back to the Jeep, we could not spot the fourth one. No problems as I bet the series will be extended so it’s no hassle to come back for another look when we do the other new caches.
We then headed off to try the SS series which are around a park on the southern suburbs of Derby. The area for the first two was almost head high in nettles which did not look promising. We arrived at GZ for the first one to see it was a micro in ivy and there was loads of ivy. We hate these kind of un-inventive hides as they are no fun so gave it a miss and moved on to the next one. This was deep in nettles and really hard to get to. We gave it up without trying further as bush-wacking nettles for a cache that could be anywhere is no fun.
We did not want to risk spending any more time getting disappointed on the series (I’m sure it’s a lot better than we thought – there are just too many nettles for these kind of hides this time of year) so made an executive decision between us to move to a totally different area and try some caches there. JustAlan had finished off his alphabet puzzle series (we’d done A-N on a previous trip) and they were in lovely countryside, so off we set.
We then spent a lovely couple of hours zooming round beautiful country lanes going from cache to cache. All were quick finds in nice locations and no nettles anywhere near them. We bagged a couple of other caches on the way round and ended up not far from the A50 and a handy route back home.
37 finds for the day and some great fun containers to boot. We managed the whole day in t-shirts for the first time this year as the sun was out all day – perfect!