Saturday, 14 July 2018

Geonord 2018

We attended Geonord last year and we'd enjoyed it so much we decided that we'd definitely try and return this year to the Geonord Sunset event.  We realised timing would be tricky though as we would be on holiday in Austria/Slovenia the week before and with limited holiday left from work we'd only be able to make a weekend of it.  The plan was to drive down to Folkestone on Friday afternoon after work ready for an early crossing on Saturday morning on Le Shuttle.

What should have been a 4-5 hour journey took nearer to 8 hours as there were a number of lane closures on the motorway at different points.

We detoured to Dover first of all to do an Earthcache - we'd already done it on the way to Geonord last year but when we got home we couldn't find the answers or even the photo we'd taken.   So we decided to return and do it again.  It was a bit dark but we managed by torchlight.

We had 3 hours sleep then headed to the Eurotunnel terminal to wait for our crossing.

We arrived at the mega event at about 8am and there was loads of room to park, people were starting to arrive and the car park soon filled up.

After the most important business of the day - Cycling to the Boulangerie for cakes and pastries - we headed to the event venue.  It was already in full swing when we got there about 10am.

Signing the 'log book'
Log book
Always nice to bump into good friends
Last year the event had been held at an aerodrome and all the lab caches had been outside, this year the venue was a sports hall and all the lab caches were indoors and with the number of people trying to do them meant that it was very tricky to get to them so they took quite some time to complete.

It was really hot and crowded in the hall so we ventured outside and enjoyed chatting to lots of caching friends from the UK.

After spending a couple of hours at the event we headed off on our bikes to find some caches around Dunkirk.

We were keen to find the new wherigos on the dunes but the sun was quite hot so we decided to wait until later in the afternoon before starting them because of the intense heat.

We set off about 3pm and took plenty of water.  We bumped into quite a few cachers just finishing, most of them said how tough going it was walking in the dunes with the heat of the sun.

It was very hot but not as bad as we were expecting and we completed the 4.25 mile walk in 2 hours.  Really enjoyed the series.

After hiking in sand with sun cream on we needed to have a shower so it was the perfect opportunity to test out our new camp shower.  We've used a solar shower before but it wasn't the best, after a lot of research we invested in a USB shower and it's perfect!

En suite shower


Up bright and early to an amazing view

After breakfast we enjoyed a walk along the beach before joining lots of other cachers for a CITO on the beach which gave us a chance to explore the WW2 bunkers and find a few caches along the dunes.

We found quite a bit of litter and our bag was soon full so we headed back to where we started.

It was lovely to bump into our caching friend Arnokovic, a cacher from Paris and also a Groundspeak volunteer.  We met him in the US while doing Power Island GC35 in Captain Mike's boat, it was great to catch up with him again. Such a small world as we also bumped into DutchTrolls a couple of Dutch cachers we met while doing GC28 Beverly and Cache42bears - 2 German cachers we first met back in 2014 at the Catalunya Mega Event, they came to our event in Andorra and have since bumped into them a few times at various Megas and Gigas.... that's what I really love about this hobby, we've made some great friends over the years.

All too soon it was time to head to the Eurotunnel terminal and start the long drive back home.....

Stopping off for a couple of breaks on the way home to stretch our legs ....

A brilliant weekend, definitely want to venture further into France in our campervan next time... stay tuned 👧👨🚐

Saturday, 7 July 2018

Summer, Sun & Fun 2018

In July last year we saw that a Mega Event had been published in Austria and as we had yet to attend one in Austria we thought it would be fun to go along.

In September, we spotted some flights at the right price so booked our hotel and decided to plan a longer holiday around it.  

We had a lovely holiday in Sol in Austria back in 1992 and a brief visit in 2014 when we attended the mega event in Switzerland so were really excited about going back to Austria for a holiday.  Once we started planning we decided to spend a few days in Slovenia too and visit Lake Bled......

(to be continued)