Thursday, 5 August 2010

Highest and Oldest - Caching in Scotland

GCF0 Scotland's First has been on our to-do list since 2007 when we noticed that a pair of local(ish) cachers had found it as their 800th cache.

The Mega Event being held in Perth gave us the excuse we needed to go to Scotland.
However, nothing's quite that straight forward with us.
The whole family were keen to climb Ben Nevis and while there we thought we may as well do GC1T7V1 Three Peaks Challenge Bonus

But! In order to do the TPC, we needed to visit GCY0N0 on Snowdon and GCWMVG Scafell Pike

We managed to do a day trip to Snowdon in April and we'd planned to visit Scafell Pike in June but a sudden bout of sickness in the family meant we had to call it off halfway up the M6!

So, the plan was revised: call in at Scafell on the way to Perth. Simple!

Wendesday 28th July: Left home and travelled up to Kendal arriving at caravan site at about

Thursday 29th July
: Left caravan at site drove to Scafell Pike. Climbed Scafell and returned to the caravan via Hardknot Pass.
Scafell Pike Summit

View of Wast Water

Friday 30 July: Continued North into Scotland, set up camp at Milnathort before heading to the Mega In The Park event.

Saturday 31 July: Attended the very well organised Mega Scotland: The UK's 3rd Mega event with a few thousand other cachers!
Signal and friend...
Sunday 1st August: Continued North to a camp site near Crainlarich. We paid our site fee (an extortionate £20) and set up camp and headed up the road to GCF0 Scotland's First. This cache is insanely tough. We parked at the side of the road and followed a track about three quarters of a mile until heading straight up the hillside. The grass was very wet and it involved more or less crawling 0.6 of a mile up to GZ.
The cache is the original container and log book which makes it pretty special!

Ben More thataway! 
View from GCF0

After arriving back at the caravan we decided that there was no point in staying there for the night so packed everything away and drove up to Fort William
This was a surreal journey; driving through The Highlands in the seemingly endless twilight and arriving at Glen Nevis at 23:30

Monday 2nd August: Got early, paid site fees and discussed the weather with the site staff. Although Ben Nevis was shrouded in cloud it looked like it was going to be a dry day.
The walk up Ben Nevis is a very long trudge of about five miles. Just as we reached the war memorial at the summit Steven recognised someone, it was delta123 from Holland whom we had met at the Mega in Perth!
Delta123 and Mr Delta68 on Ben Nevis

Pegz, Drempels and Mrs Delta68 at Ben Nevis summit

We now had all the information for the GC1T7V1 Three Peaks Challenge Bonus and we were very keen to find that one next. We found the cache easily enough but the container was very badly damaged so we bought a peach jar replacement from Morrisons and restocked it with a dry logbook and whatever we could salvage

Tuesday 3rd August: Seemed like a good nice idea to visit Inverness. Getting there took all day as we stopped to do caches by Loch Ness on the way. Once at Inverness, we realised that for the sake of another 20 mile drive we could colour in Aberdeenshire on the county map. We had no PQs for that area to had to rely on getting details with the iPhone and ended up doing Water of Life - Benromach - this being our new most Northerly cache ever. 95 miles from our caravan at Glen Nevis!!
Wednesday 4th August: The plan: drive back down South and stop overnight in Cumbria.
Predictably, we decided to drive straight home! Yes, all 450 miles.
We did call in at Isn't That Nice! and a few other caches on the way though.

A great whistle-stop tour of Scotland and we would love to visit again sometime.