Isaac wanted to plan this week’s caching and was keen to head back to the North West for a change as we’ve not been caching there for ages. Ironically enough, Saturday morning dawned and Isaac woke up full of a cold and shivering. He thus stayed at home keeping warm as going out caching in the snow and cold was not wise.
I set off up the M6 and was soon parking up near VTT2 to the east of the old vehicle test track in Leyland. There was quite a dusting of snow in the area with everywhere looking very white and all paths looking very slippy. I put my layers on to keep warm on the walk and set off.
The first cache was right by where I parked and a nice quick find. I could not decide whether to do the series clockwise or anti-clockwise but as the next nearest cache was just south of where I was, I went that way (clockwise). Needless to say I soon realised I was doing the series in reverse but that’s not a problem as there is no bonus cache to find at the end of the walk.
The next part of the walk took me over a park area with only one dog walker in sight. The series then took me along a little used PF to the west of the test track (the main reason for the series appears to be to encourage the use of this path as it’s hardly used otherwise).
All the caches were quick easy finds with really good co-ords. It’s a shame Isaac was not with me as quite a few of the containers were fun and he’d have enjoyed finding them. I was soon back at the Jeep and feeling pleased with myself as I’d bagged the 12 caches in just over an hour – not bad going even though I do say so myself :-).
Next on the list for today was Nandad’s F.A.B. Thuderbirds series just to the NW of Preston. I’d read good things about this series and it’s even been awarded the NW Caching ‘Cache Du Jour’ award so I knew I’d be in for a treat.
The hardest bit was finding somewhere to park the Jeep while I walked round the caches. Plan A was the TomTom which lead me to a blocked off road some distance south of cache #1. Plan B was to use the parking co-ords on the cache page (why I’d not just used these in the first place is beyond me!). This failed too as I ended up at another blocked road to the north of the co-ords and with nowhere to park. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong here with all the blocked roads, but decided for the manual option of Plan C, which was to pick a suburban road near to cache #1 and then use Memory Map to guide me down some likely looking (and not blocked off) roads. This worked a treat I’m glad to say!
The first cache was a quick find. The next part of the walk was not clear from the OS maps on my Oregon so I again went with the manual option and walked down the main road looking for a likely path heading towards GZ. This worked well and I was soon walking alongside a frozen canal and some lovely locks.
Several easy finds then ensued with the only problem being me missing the obvious path alongside the canal a bit further on and going over a field to find myself on the wrong side of a double barbed wire fence from where I needed to be! A stile was close-by so I used that to get round to GZ for another easy find.
All too soon I was at the far end of the walk and headed off over the fields to the canal which would take me along the rest of the series, to the bonus cache and ultimately back to the Jeep.
The rest of the series was easy and I was soon calculating the bonus co-ords, which was an easy find. A really nice hide too! As I was walking back to the Jeep from the bonus cache it started snowing, which was the perfect ending to the series and really put me in a Christmas mood :-).
I still had quite a bit of time left so I headed off to tackle some of the many drive-by’s between here and Kirkham, near Blackpool. Not a lot to report on these ones apart from:
- I gave up on one cache as it was a micro in woodland with leaves and snow covering everything. Not my idea of fun.
- A great little micro by a tree statue in the centre of Kirkham with muggles everywhere. A really nice cache location but a tricky one to actually get hold of as the muggles were non-stop. I got there in the end though.
- A cache by a lovely old windmill that has been made into a house. What a cracking place to have a bedroom at the top of the windmill!
- Two caches which clearly were not there and even after several DNF’s by experienced cachers and a Needs Maintenance note over a month ago, the cache owner has not done anything or even posted an intention to do anything. They have not logged on since August so I assume the caches have been abandoned and have posted a Needs Archiving log on both of them.
The last cache of the day was right by J3 of the M55 and a handy place to start my journey home.
41 finds for the day and some really fun caching, although I’d rather have had Isaac with me since he planned the trip.