Day #36 – No Mud!

Traditional: 6
Walked: 2.7 miles

31st August 2015
31st August 2015

Alistair and I had a bit of unfinished business in Maldon today. It was spitting with rain again so we decided some more urban caches were on the menu. Half a dozen trads looked like just the ticket.

Alistair needed a D5 to complete his 2015 Geocaching Road Trip challenges so we picked GSI HQ as a target. It wasn’t long before he had it in his sticky paw – he’s a seasoned pro, having been caching since October 2002!

Another one on my hit list was Hard Drive – one which had had me stumped a couple of times. But a quiet, rainy Sunday afternoon seemed the perfect time to attempt it again as GZ is usually buzzing and overlooked by muggles during the week. In the end, it was me who put my hand on it pretty quickly – ignoring the stupid hint and believing my GPS!

Eventually, we found ourselves on the Quayside again. Alistair found the micro close to the old Buoy, which I had bagged a while back. One more for him on the way back to the car and that was our caching day done.

Old Buoy
Old Buoy

Day #35 – Urban Hides In Maldon

Traditional: 12 Multi: 1 Puzzle: 2
Walked: 6.4 miles

30th August 2015
30th August 2015
Alien Guarding A Cache
Alien Guarding A Cache

Alistair was staying again for a few days after the BBQ yesterday. The weather today looked rather iffy so we decided to try some urban caches around Maldon. They were mostly straightforward hides but the two puzzles and multi all had Pirate themes. I had solved the puzzles a few days ago so it was nice to find them so quickly.

One of the other caches was being guarded by this rather helpful little Alien.

Viking Boat
Viking Boat

Day #34 – Hidden Park

Traditional: 1
Walked: 2.7 miles

29th August 2015
29th August 2015

I had intended to go with Alistair to find a set of puzzle caches I had solved around St. Albans, after the annual Geek Steam BBQ. But in the end we didn’t have the time (and the weather wasn’t up to it). So it was a good job I had found a “banker” cache before the BBQ just in case. Hidden Park was an easy find.

Geek Steam BBQ
Geek Steam BBQ

Day #31 – Combing The Haystack

Traditional: 1
Walked: 4.2 miles

26th August 2015
26th August 2015

Another cache I decided to revisit after DNF’ing a while ago, A Metaphorical Needle In The Proverbial Haystack. I completely fouled this up the first time and have been ignoring it ever since! I was nearly barking up the wrong tree again this time, having mis-interpreted the clue.

This time I decided to trust the GPS rather than taking notice of the hint. And there it was. Yay!

There was some lovely evening light along the footpath at the side of the Golf Course.

Needle In A Haystack
Near The Needle In A Haystack

Day #30 – Musical Dual

Puzzle: 1
Walked: 10 miles

25th August 2015
25th August 2015

Time to pick up another cache from the solved puzzles list, Beatles vs Stones. I had a long walk to this one because I wanted to stretch my legs rather than taking the car to a nearer point and having a shorter walk.

Nothing to do with the cache but I found a few interesting bits of graffiti and some rusty fences on the way.

4 Graffiti
4 Graffiti
Spraycan
Spraycan
Rusty Fence And Bramble
Rusty Fence And Bramble

Day #28 – A Gricer’s Delight

Trad: 15 Multi: 2 Puzzle: 6 Event: 1
Walked: 7.6 miles

23rd August 2015
23rd August 2015
Take A Seat!
Take A Seat!

I had a basy day’s caching today, back to the Halstead area to pick up some more gillywig solved puzzles and some others I was passing on the way. One of gillywig’s puzzles which I have enjoyed the most is Armchair Gricer – all about Trainspotting! Right up my street. I had immense fun solving it and wasn’t at all sure what to expect once I got to GZ – apparently just a thicket from the outside! Here’s what I found waiting for me…

Not only was the cache “container” in keeping with the whole puzzle theme, but so was the actual log book, mocked up to look like a Gricer’s trainspotting book!

Gricer's Log
Gricer’s Log

Another fantastic puzzle was Steel Steam Stars – again railway themed but also about photography – so doubly up my street. The final cache was an old film developing tank with a micro hidden inside. That’s what I love about gillywig puzzles – the whole puzzle is so carefully put together right down to the themed hide at the end. And my find was a 13-month revival for the cache which has been waiting patiently to be found since July 2014.

I filled in another square of my D/T grid today finding A Goose Is For Life, Not Just For Christmas – a 2.5/3.5 which had me wading in a little river in my wellies. Great fun!

I noticed a new BEASTMARSTA cache had been published yesterday along my planned route and although I knew I had no chance at FTF (the locals are too keen for me to have achieved that!), I was pleasantly surprised to be Third To Find – and get a little wooden medal for my troubles. It was a nice big old ammo box too. Co-incidentally it was my 3300th find – and my quickest hundred to date at only 8 days.

Third To Find!
Third To Find!

The main point of the afternoon was visiting the meetup to thank the UK Essex Mega Committee in Halstead. There were lots of laughs and a lovely cake!

Third To Find!
Third To Find!

Yorkie managed to Skype into the meet from his hospital bed after his big accident – he was even wearing his Committee t-shirt! What a pro…

Yorkie From This Hospital Bed
Yorkie From This Hospital Bed

Gilly had prepared a magnificent cake!

Yorkie From This Hospital Bed
Gilly and the cake

We make short work of it….

Cutting The Cake
Cutting The Cake

Day #27 – The Essex Way: 047-075

Trad: 26 Multi: 1 Letterbox: 1
Walked: 9.75 miles

22nd August 2015
22nd August 2015

The latest stretch of The Essex Way I tackled today was a long walk from High Ongar to Fyfield with a return by some parallel footpaths.

This lovely old tree was close to the start of my route:

Gnarly Tree In Ongar
Gnarly Tree In Ongar

And the big blue skies continued until the final hide on the outskirts of Fyfield:

A Lonely Cloud
A Lonely Cloud