Sunday, 27 November 2016

Christmas Fayre with the Yorkshire 2018 Committee

We'd offered to help out at the Yorkshire 2018 Christmas Fayre today so we made our way across the Pennines to Halifax.  It's only about an hour away from where we live so we were soon there.
M62 summit in glorious sunshine
Arriving in the fog

We arrived at 9.30am and got stuck in straight away helping to set up.  I got the children’s craft corner ready and we were given the task of blowing up nearly 200 balloons.  I’m pretty hopeless at balloon blowing, Mark used to play the trumpet in his youth so has the technique just right and along with Big Fish they blew up all the balloons between them, along with some really keen little 'helpers' .  I’m better suited to tying the balloons so that was my job..... I never want to see another balloon!

The room was soon starting to take shape and before we knew it 11.00 came round and the doors were opened.

To paraphrase Meat Loaf...
I'll buy anything purple but I won't buy that!

This is more like it!

I then moved into the kitchen to help prepare bacon butties with the rest of the kitchen team.
Who was responsible??!

The bacon butties were a massive hit and went down really well, it was lovely when people came back to say how much they’d enjoyed them, well worth the effort and a good fundraiser too.

Also another great success was that you could by a mega mug for £6 and have free refills of tea or coffee all day – this was hugely popular.

Santa put in an appearance later on but it would seem I was on the naughty list so didn't get to sit on his knee!
Regional hampers

The best one (Lancashire)

Another good idea for a fundraiser was the hamper raffle.  Cachers from different counties could contribute to a hamper to raffle off at the fayre.  A few of us got together in Lancashire and put together a fab hamper – it was hard coming up with original ideas but I contributed some Uncle Joe’s treacle caramels, Lancashire Sauce and a book of Lancashire recipes.  There were hampers from Scotland, Essex, Warwickshire … oh and Yorkshire of course

Purple is my favourite colour so I didn’t take much persuading to buy lots of mega merch.

On Friday evening I got in from work about 7pm and just about had time to decorate the cakes ready for the buffet.  There was a lovely spread of food that cachers had generously donated.

The event was so much fun, we enjoyed every minute of it, we made lots of new friends and it was great to catch up with some old friends too.

As much as I don’t want 2018 to roll around too fast I really can’t wait for the 2018 Mega event.


We stayed overnight in our camper van and on our way home from Halifax we’d planned to take a detour to do Soldier’s Lump virtual.  On the way we stopped off to do Xanthic Rock in Beaumont Park an earthcache in an amazing Victorian Park.

Beaumont Park was Huddersfield's first public park and was opened in 1879, this was such an amazing place and great to explore.



Unfortunately all the old buildings have been demolished.  The council decided that due to the cost of renovating the buildings it was best to demolish them.

This was definitely another one of those ‘if it weren’t for caching’ places.

Then next stop, Soldier's Lump Virtual.

Thoroughly enjoyed the walk to Soldiers Lump virtual across the moors.  The route took you along a short section of the Pennine Way and was paved most of the way but the flagstones were quite slippery in places.   There were large patches of snow on the route which were left over from a downfall earlier in the week.

Another fun weekend in the campervan….. we’re hoping next week to get back up to the lakes weather permitting.

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Northumberland and Tyne & Wear Weekend

The weekend weather looked pretty wet again for the lakes so yet another weekend we couldn’t continue our Wainwright bagging.  So the next thing lined up on our to-do list was a trip to the North East where the weather looked fairly dry.


We set off late afternoon on Friday and decided to break up the journey by stopping off to play the Historic Carlisle wherigo.  It was dark when we arrived but was easily doable.  It was a very informative town trail style wherigo, the sort we really like, it took us to some really interesting locations and was a fun way to spend the evening before continuing our  journey to Northumberland.


We woke to a very light smattering of snow, but apparently not as much as we’d had back home!

First stop of the day was LQ: Northumberland, then we bagged a couple of trigpoints before finding an old cache from 2002.

 This was situated down a very narrow gated lane so I had to jump in and out to open and close the gates.

Then off to LQ: Tyne & Wear via a virtual.  We are gradually working our way through the Little Quest series, it’s taken us a long time to do and to-date we've found 28 out of the 47.  Although we’ve completed all the counties a long time ago we have still to complete the LQ series but we’re really enjoying picking them off slowly but surely.
LQ: Tyne and Wear

We rounded off the day by completing the Tynemouth Trail virtual, this was a great way to spend the evening.

We stopped off on our way round to enjoy a chippy tea at Longsands Fish Bar – we’d highly recommend it, generous sized portions of fish and chips and it was lovely to be able to sit in so we could get warmed up before continuing on the trail.


Up bright and early and enjoyed a walk around Hartley Bay and Collywell Bay. We got talking to a couple that were staying near us in their camper van, we've met some lovely people since we've had ours.

When planning our trip to the area we had hoped to be able to visit St Mary’s Island, an island only accessible at low tide, but we were unsure if our visit would coincide with low tide.  After walking out to the earthcache at Hartley Bay we came back to the camper and could see that the causeway to the island was still under the sea so we figured that once we’d walked the ¾ mile down to Curry’s Point the tide should have gone out enough to walk across.
Tide still in

Shouldn't be long now

We arrived at the causeway at about 9.15, according to the sign we should be able to walk across the causeway from 9.30. By 9.30 the sea was still covering part of the causeway and as the sea was quite choppy it was difficult to see how deep the water was, so we gave it another 5 minutes and steadily made our way across in our wellies.

Mark making his way across
After a short walk we were on the island.  The lighthouse was closed but we did think that £3.15 per adult was rather extortionate so wouldn’t have paid to go up anyway.  We enjoyed a walk around the island and there were signs asking you not to get within 50m of the seals on the island so we were hopeful that we may see some but after doing a full circuit we didn’t see any.  There was a cache to find though so that was a bonus.  Another one of those ‘if it weren’t for Geocaching’ kind of places.

Chilly wind glad I've got my parka

Next stop was a couple of wherigos in Newcastle, this took quite some time and then before dark we stopped off at Marsden Bay in South Shields to do an Earthcache.  This has to be one of the most amazing places for unusual rock formations - and will definitely come back to explore more of this coast in the future.

We had hoped to look around National Trust Souter Lighthouse, it was built in 1871 and was the first lighthouse in the world purpose built to use electricity.  Unfortunately it had just closed as we arrived.  Oh well, another reason to come back in the future.

We played another wherigo on the way home and this made us much later leaving than we'd anticipated.  The weather had taken a turn for the worst, our route was diverted which added on a good hour to the journey and we hit thick fog once we reached Cumbria - we were really glad to get home.