Tag Archives: with kitty

Forty In The Bag

Trad: 39 Multi: 1
Walked: 12 miles

I teamed up with Kitty!! and Mr Crow for another outing today. We decided to go for the latest section of Essex Way caches to be revived, between Cressing and Coggeshall. Handy having two cars, leaving one at each end.

The Long Path Ahead
The Long Path Ahead

Most of the pots were easy enough but one or two needed a bit more of a search.

Hmm. Where's The Cache?
Hmm. Where’s The Cache?

Mr Crow was usually up ahead so we often spotted him grovelling in a bush or behind a telegraph pole before emerging with a pot in hand.

Mr Crow Found It
Mr Crow Found It

We spotted some fluffy friends along the way – Alpacas, I think.

Fuzzy Locals!
Fuzzy Locals!

Occasionally, when Mr Crow couldn’t find one, Kitty would dive in and have a look instead. I think I got to look for a couple!

Send Kitty In...
Send Kitty In…

We enjoyed our walk and the views – especially the rickety old bridge along the river.

Kitty & Crow Near Coggeshall
Kitty & Crow Near Coggeshall

There was also a hilarious incident at No. 18, which is probably best explained by reading my log. A fave for sure! Forty in the bag today, but that was definitely the most memorable.

Climbing & Wading With Kitty

Trad: 6
Walked: 4 miles

Kitty and I may be ladies who are approaching a certain age, but we’re not beyond having a little adventure from time to time. Today as Kitty’s birthday, and we had earmarked a few highter DT caches to have a got it – either with a ladder or our waders.

With an aggregate age of 100, the pair of us decided that pure tree climbs were rather too much for us, so we came “tooled up” and ready to scale new heights. This D5/T5 was soon in the bag – and we replaced a soggy log while we were about it.

Up There Somewhere!
Up There Somewhere!
Soggy Damp Log - We Replaced It
Soggy Damp Log – We Replaced It

Bouyed by our success, we headed to the next target with renewed vigour. This time it was my turn to go up the tree. Undoing the pot one-handed was OK but doing it up again was rather tricky!

The Little Prize :-)
The Little Prize 🙂

We had scouted out Do Look Down!!!, a wading cache, a few weeks ago but didn’t have our gear with us. So we came well prepared today. Kitty went in first to grab the cache, then it was my turn to put it back again.

Kitty Goes In First
Kitty Goes In First
My Turn
My Turn

Marvellous! Job done. I’m looking rather pleased with myself to have bagged this D2.5/D4.5 pot!

Done It! :-)
Done It! 🙂

Our final location was around an old gravel pit at Bradwell. I had had a little trad on my GPS for ages, which I picked up quickly on the way – only to discover when I got home that it had been archived the day before due to a non-responsive CO to maintenance! Ah well, it’s still there.

Then we walked around to the main attraction. Gone Fishing!! 4. The GPS was all over the place around GZ but we hacked our way through lots of brambles and eventually got to somewhere which fitted the hints. Kitty gamely walked the plank. I wasn’t going anywhere near it. But to no avail. We scouted another one, much thinner and more feeble, but decided that couldn’t be it. On reflection, it probably was, but neither of us was keen to teeter out on that one, with the evil-looking black gloop below. Hmmm. Might have to give up on this one after all! It was a disappointing end to the outing, but we know our limits!

Still There!
Still There!
Miserable Failure!
Miserable Failure!

Amwell Amble & Tiptree Totter

Trad: 4 Multi: 1 Puzzle: 6 Challenge: 1
Walked: 5 miles

Today’s outing was a brief solo foray into Hertfordshire to pick up some caches around Amwell, followed by a nice walk around Tiptree Heath back in Essex with geo-buddy Kitty.

My first target in Amwell was a Challenge cache, Spread the Love Challenge (UK) all about resuscitating unloved caches which haven’t been found for over a year. Well I qualified easily enough, but also noted that this cache itself had been unfound since 5th September 2015, even though someone had tried in the interim. Challenge Accepted!

I wandered around for ages and eventually found the box, very sorry for itself, a little way from the co-ords and only just as described by the hint. The contents were pretty soggy.

Soggy Box
Soggy Box

However, I unfolded the log and was delighted to find nobody else had signed the book since the last recorded find online – so I had just managed to Resuscitate The Resuscitator Cache! Do I get extra points for that?

Yay! Resuscitate The Resuscitator Cache :-)
Yay! Resuscitate The Resuscitator Cache 🙂

Since I was in the area, and there were some other interesting caches nearby, I made it a little circular walk to pick up a few more. The next one was placed close to the marker for the Greenwich Meridian – but the GPS seemed to think this was a little way off the correct location for E/W 0° 00.000!

GPS At The Post
GPS At The Post

There was a bit of fine industrial architecture too; the old Victorian Pumping Station along the New River.

Pumped Up At The Pumping Sation
Pumped Up At The Pumping Sation

Having finished my walk in Herts, I had a rendez-vous planned with Kitty in Tiptree Heath, to search out a quartet of Mr Crow’s puzzles relating to the tree carvings in the area. There were some great examples. Not sure this lady wanted to be disturbed though!

Do Not Disturb The Lady
Do Not Disturb The Lady

Talking of Crows – Corvus plasticus was guarding one of his other puzzles which we had also solved. With the aid of a ladder we had in the car, we soon made quick work of finding the pot and wresting it from the avian beak!

Corvus plasticus Is At Home
Corvus plasticus Is At Home

Our final port of call this evening was Sing It Again Rod (Encour), an audio conundrum by Fenners1984. We had both had a hand in solving it, so a joint find was a nice way to round off our outing.

Essex 100 – Loop 5

Trad: 40 Puzzle: 4
Walked: 12 miles

I had a day off caching yesterday, as I had to go to London for work. But today I went out for a great 44-cache stroll around Mr Crow‘s Essex 100 – Loop 5 between Tollsebury, Salcott and Tolleshunt D’Arcy. Neither myself nor Kitty had previously done this section of the extended series, and Crow said it needed a maintenance walk, so we agreed to wander round and replace any missing pots where necessary. In the end it was a splendid day out.

Lovely Blue Sky
Lovely Blue Sky

For reasons I never really understood, Kitty had kidnapped Mr Crow’s Raccoon and was threatening to post it back to him. We just couldn’t fit the damned thing through the slot!

Unexpected Critter In The Posting Area
Unexpected Critter In The Posting Area

This penguin was a rather more modest critter found lurking in one of the pots.

Funky Penguin In The Cache
Funky Penguin In The Cache

We ended our walk just as some glorious light was highlighting the fields, with moody sky behind. We were glad to get back to the car!

Amazing Golden Light
Amazing Golden Light

Day #313 – Brainiacs Or Maniacs?

Trad: 11
Walked: 7.3 miles

I was out today with my co-conspirator Kitty!! We decided to revisit some of the hideous DNF’s we had had on Run Around’s Takely Trail a few weeks ago. Thankfully, we managed to turn all but one into a nice smiley – phew!

Grassy Hell!
Grassy Hell!
Slithery Dude
Slithery Dude

Satisfied with that achievement (for the moment), we headed towards Braintree to look for Up The Wood – a cache up a tree. Neither of us are keen climbers, so we had come prepared – a stepladder and Larry The Litterpicker solved the problem quickly!

Larry Helps Up A Tree
Larry Helps Up A Tree

Those were all really just hors d’oeuvres to the main event – Brain Tunnel by flossregularly. This had been on Kitty’s wishlist for ages, but it hadn’t really registered on mine for some reason. But I was very keen when she suggested an expedition in our waders!

Ready For Action!
Ready For Action!

We had seen how easily it was to fall flat on your face from previous finders’ photos (Infinson, I mean you!) so we found ourselves two big sticks to steady our progress. The bottom of the river Brain was very silty and we made slow progress along the spidery tunnel. I was just concentrating on keeping upright, but Kitty was imagining all sorts of horror below the water as we slowly picked our way along!

Kitty Signs The Log
Kitty Signs The Log

Eventually we spotted the telltale glint in our head torches, and found the cache. Huge care was taken not to drop anything in the water! I looked quite frightening but was glad I could get a photo to prove I went down there.

Apparition In Brain Tunnel
Apparition In Brain Tunnel

It was with much relief that we emerged, blinking, into the daylight once more, euphoric that we had survived in the silt and stayed upright. It was still quite a job to pull ourselves up the slippery bank, I nearly fell back in but just about retained my dignity!

Made It Out Alive - Relief!
Made It Out Alive – Relief!

It was great fun, and all the better to be living on the “edge” of our comfort zones again! This one didn’t fill in a new DT square for me, but it was still a hoot.

Day #298 – Stoaty McStoat Face

Trad: 3
Walked: 2.4 miles

Kitty!! and I attempted It Takes Two in Basildon a couple of months ago, but it was missing. A return mission was scheduled for today, it having been replaced recently. This time it was a lightning quick find (we had taken the right gear with us!) which filled another DT square for me – D4/T4.5. Just five to go now!

Stoaty McStoat Face!
Stoaty McStoat Face!
Well Equipped!
Well Equipped!

Here’s what’s left of my DT grid after today’s finds:

DT Grid, 19th May 2016
DT Grid, 19th May 2016

After that success, we headed around the park for a few more that one or the other hadn’t found. But it took at least half an hour to locate the elusive twit at Holy Cross Perching – just as we were about to give up, I spotted the little blighter! Phew!

Being Watched
Being Watched

Day #292 – Fabulous Friday!

Trad: 9 Multi: 1 Puzzle: 3 Earth: 1
Walked: 11.7 miles

I had a Fabulous Friday out caching in Kent today with Kitty!! and Mr Crow. We centred our activities around Cliffe and Cliffe Woods initially, taking in a multi Church Micro, Earthcache and several excellent trads.

St Helen's, Cliffe
St Helen’s, Cliffe

The Charnel House was an interesting Earth cache to visit.

The Charnel House, Cliffe
The Charnel House, Cliffe

Torpedoes Again was located at Cliffe Fort.

Jetty At Cliffe Fort
Jetty At Cliffe Fort

However, the main point of our trip today was to pick up two caches in new DT squares for us all. The first was Earth Engine. I’ve had the co-ords for this one for a few months, but today was the perfect day for a visit. The sun was shining, there was a cool breeze and the walk from the car park was spectacular. Initially, it looked very daunting, but once we found a sensible way in, wasn’t too bad at all.

Earth Engine - A Way In
Earth Engine – A Way In

Of course, we had to take a few pictures from the top! And that was the D3.5/T4.5 box ticked off the list.

Atop Earth Engine
Atop Earth Engine

Finally, we had to visit Shrek – his swamp was on the outskirts of Maidstone, and we came prepared. The perfect place to christen our new waders!

In Shrek's Swamp!
In Shrek’s Swamp!

Kitty and I gingerly edged our way through the gloop to GZ while Mr Crow stayed on dry land, guarding our stuff and taking pictures of the escapade. I also managed a pic at GZ with my phone, without dropping it or the log sheet into the mire. And that was the rather satisfying D4.5/T5 box done too!

Found Shrek
Found Shrek

We triumphantly celebrated our Grand Day Out with dinner and a pint at a nearby pub, before heading home, weary but satisfied with our achievements.

Day #252 – Best Day Yet

Trad: 73 Multi: 1 Earth: 1
Walked: 15.1 miles

Yesterday I hastily arranged an outing with Kitty!! and Mr Crow to do some more of the revived Essex Way caches today. We started a little bit west of Pleshey (at No. 21) and finished at Great Leighs (No. 75).

Which Way To The Essex Way?
Which Way To The Essex Way?

The track was mainly easy going, with few mud patches along the way. We met a some bikers along the way who were churning up the track.

Dirt Bikers Pass By
Dirt Bikers Pass By

Ray did a lot of the finding as he went striding ahead, while Anne & I enjoyed the walk – occasionally having to come to the rescue to find a difficult one which eluded him!

Ray Goes Troll Hunting!
Ray Goes Troll Hunting!

We were pleased with our 52-cache haul at Great Leighs and retired to the lovely Snug Café in High Easter for a well-earned pot of tea and a panini.

Phew! 52 Caches Done
Phew! 52 Caches Done

While we were refuelling, I mentioned that I needed 75 caches for a challenge cache and Anne suggested it was worth keeping going as I was 2/3rds of the way there already. So they dropped me at Good Easter to walk another section which they had already completed.

I bagged another 18 caches along this stretch, and realised I was still 5 short of my target, so I stopped off for some drive by caches on the way home. The first was Pleshey Boulders, a new Earthcache which has only been published for a few days.

Pleshey Boulders
Pleshey Boulders

A few more finds around Chelmsford, finishing at Sandford Mill Lock, finally brought up my best total for the day, 75 caches, and qualified me for another Challenge Cache. Plus, I also earned my 72 finds in a day geocoin, which has been sitting unactivated at home for a few months! I think that makes it a Grand Day Out.

Well-Earned Gong
Well-Earned Gong

Day #238 – An Impromptu Afternoon

Trad: 5 Multi: 1 Puzzle: 1
Walked: 2.7 miles

I just popped round to Kitty’s to drop some stuff off this afternoon. But it turned into a cup of tea and cake, and then an impromptu caching trip around Bowers Gifford to find a few boxes.

CM818 - Bowers Gifford
CM818 – Bowers Gifford

An old Church Micro which we both had on our to do list was 818 – Bowers Gifford. We soon found the information and were rewarded with a nice big box a little walk away.

A Nice Big Box
A Nice Big Box

Watchers Of The Marsh was a great hide in an old pillbox, which Kitty quickly sniffed out. Clever cat!

Kitty On Guard Duty!
Kitty On Guard Duty!

So we had a great, unexpected outing, it’s always nice when that happens.

Day #231 – Devil’s Porridge, Plus

Trad: 2 Whereigo: 1
Walked: 5.6 miles

I’m on a bit of a roll with Whereigos at the moment. The Devil’s Porridge in Wat Tyler Country Park by Grimmserscotting has been on my radar for a while. So when Kitty!! suggested a caching outing today and asked if I had ideas for a location, we decided to head to Pitsea and try it out.

Little People
Little People

The Whereigo was excellent, one of the best I’ve done to date. It told us the history of the old munitions and dynamite factory which used to stand on the site, through the narration of Grimmerscotting’s Great Grandfather, Ted Baker, who used to work there. It was a really well put together story and much more engaging than just walking around the footpaths reading the notice boards which are scattered about.

The only trouble we had was getting into the right location for Zone 13 – but we were fore-warned from previous logs. Kitty rather gamely bushwhacked our way through with her secateurs and determination!

Bushwhacking To Zone 13
Bushwhacking To Zone 13

Eventually we arrived at the right spot so we could continue our journey – nothing was going go stop us at this point! But the selfie below does show we looked rather relieved to have got this far!

Relief! We Made It!
Relief! We Made It!

We had nearly completed our mission when there was a nasty incident with Kitty!! being mauled by a mutant Cockroach along the path…

Kitty Gets Mauled By A Giant Cockroach!
Kitty Gets Mauled By A Giant Cockroach!

She managed to escape its clutches and we homed in on the final prize, a lovely, big, well-stocked ammo box hidden in a corner of the park where few visitors would venture.

The Final Prize
The Final Prize

So there was quite a lot of effort involved, but it was a really rewarding cache to complete. All too often, people want the instant gratification of a cache-and-dash, but sometimes slowing down and working for your reward really pays off in satisfaction value.

To celebrate our success, we stopped off in Pitsea for the SideTracked hide which Kitty!! found almost immediately. Thank God, as I, and many others, have DNF’d it recently! We bumped into another couple of cachers who were looking for it at GZ who were also very glad of Kitty’s cache-sniffing abilities.

After an expensive trip to Go Outdoors nearby, we picked up another Church Micro in Vange on the way back to Kitty’s for tea and cake.