Saturday, 26 January 2013

More Marrowbone Caches

St Margaret's Church, Whitnash


We picked a short, circular walk, not far from home, of about 8 miles to do this afternoon, starting from Whitnash, Leamington Spa in Warwickshire and going out to the village of Harbury then back again.

The ground was frozen and very slippery underfoot when we set off but as the sun was shining the snow soon started to melt and then the ground just became very wet.  In places the route was flooded but not impassable with good boots and gaiters.

Half of the route we have walked previously but since then Marrow Bone has put down a few more fill-in caches.  We didn't mind walking the route again as it's a nice walk and there are no cows to contend with.  When we reached half way we realised we were following cachers Ailec Noir, as we were quite late setting off we didn't expect to see them but we hoped we might.

Really enjoyed the walk which we completed in a little over 4 hours which included stopping for our lunch half way.

Whitnash to Harbury (and back)

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Sunday in Northamptonshire

 Jurassic Jaunt

No. of caches - 31
Length - 7 miles on a circular walk

We hadn't planned on caching today but as we woke to a lovely crisp morning we decided to make the most of it and drove over to do this series near Cold Ashby, a village just below the start of the A14 in Northamptonshire.

As we pulled up at #1 we spotted a familiar car, it was TAG and Lime Candy, not sure what time they set off but hopefully we might bump into them later on.  Just as we were setting off Mr Wizz and Walk on the Wildside appeared too!

Snowdrops in January

It's great to be out caching when the ground is frozen, makes it much easier when the ground has been so muddy just lately.

The walk follows part of the Jurassic Way.  We first became familiar with this path when we started caching as we remember doing some walks along the same path in Oxfordshire.  The Jurassic Way is an 88 mile long-distance footpath which connects the Oxfordshire town of Banbury to the Lincolnshire town of Stamford.

The Jurassic Jaunt series starts off on top of Honey Hill and the views on the way down are lovely, the route then goes out towards Winwick village via a 2 mile stretch of canal before heading back up Honey Hill.

Frozen Canal

We really enjoyed the walk which we'd highly recommend, all the caches were fairly easy to find although tweezers come in very handy for extracting some of the nano logs and we completed the series in 3 hours 15 mins.

After returning to the car we drove up the road to do the nearby YOSM at Cold Ashby trigpoint.  We were a little unsure about it as it wasn't on a footpath but no previous logs had mentioned that it was a problem and as the gate was open and there was a clear path to the trigpoint we decided to go for it.  As soon as we crouched down to take a photo and read the plaque an angry voice bellowed from across the field 'OI!!! GET OUT OF THERE!' we were really taken aback at the ferocity in his voice so I started heading straight back to the road, Mark was shouting to me 'hey what about the photo, take the photo!! (gotta get your priorities right) and we could see the farmer legging it towards us, in a race against time I stopped, turned around to take the photo then legged it to the car and we drove away No idea what his problem was, Mark was insisting we stand our ground as we weren't doing anything wrong but I didn't want to hang around to find out .... anyway once we'd got home I started reading up on it and rather interestingly (for anyone interested in trigpointing that is) this was actually the first trig pillar ever used back in 1936.

Here are a couple of links for anyone that's interested : Mapping the history of Ordnance Survey's trig points and Happy Birthday to the trig pillar

Mark at the first trig point ever used
Then it was back home to sausage hotpot in the slow cooker yum yum.........

 Why are the weekends over so quickly?

Jurassic Jaunt

Saturday, 12 January 2013

To the Flat Hills of Adventure

For Christmas I bought Mark some fridge magnet caching words from ukcachemag (yup last of the big spenders ) and every few days some new sentences appear on the fridge by different members of the family, our daughter was responsible for this one which we thought sounded just like our Peterborough trips as there are no scary hills in the area but lots of lovely long walks and adventures to be had.

S²E² Series by MarcusMaximi

No. of caches: 91 + extras
Length of walk: 15 miles

Beautiful sky at 07:00

This series was published last weekend and we'd made a start on it with a few FTFs as were in the area but ran out of time so a plan was hatched immediately to return today to complete the series. Decided to make the most of the daylight and set our alarms for stupid O'clock, stopping off at Maccys in Rothwell for coffee on the way. We arrived in Spaldwick at 06:30 and set off on the walk 10 mins later. The first hour of the walk was in darkness which was great fun as it's normally the end of the walks that finish with head-torches, lots of wildlife to see at this hour of the morning too.

Flooded field
After watching the forecast for the last couple of days we were expecting a hard frost today but unfortunately the temperatures stayed just above freezing so the ground wasn't hard underfoot - we were expecting some serious mud but in actual fact it wasn't too bad, lots of sections were very wet but the mud wasn't at all sticky.  All the caches were easy to find with precise hints where needed.  When we'd got just beyond half way we met another cacher wolfy450, enjoyed a brief geochat before going our separate ways.

Really enjoyed the walk which we completed in 7 hours and 10 minutes.

Then we finished off the day with a few drive-bys - including a couple of Poshrule caches that we'd previously had DNFs on - so we've now completed both Buckworth Blitz and Winwick Wander.

Cottages in Easton
We'd started the day in the dark and ended in the dark so rounded off the day very nicely with a trip to Maccys at Rothwell (again) on the way home - all in all another fab day out caching.

S²E² Series

Sunday, 6 January 2013


London and Northamptonshire

Yesterday we visited the Warner Bros. Studio to see where the Harry Potter movies were made over the last 10 years, we hadn't intended to spend any time caching but we did earmark a virtual to do on the way and another couple of cache and dashes that were close to the studios before heading home.

Lyveden and Back

No. of caches -  36 caches (plus 6 others en-route)
Length of walk - 7.5 miles

This morning we decided to make an early start and head over to Northamptonshire to do the Lyveden and Back series.  We haven't been on many walks recently with work commitments/Christmas and I was worried we might be getting a little unfit.  This one looked like a great walk.

Lyveden New Bield

The walk started off near Lyveden New Bield, an unfinished Elizabethan lodge constructed by Sir Thomas Tresham.  Lyveden New Bield was never completed or used. It remains exactly as it was when the builders left following Sir Thomas Tresham's death in 1605.  You will notice that the lodge is built symmetrically, the design apparently following that of a Greek cross.

I love it when caching takes us somewhere like this, really enjoyed reading up when we got home about the place and learning about the connections with the gunpowder plot which in turn is connected to the Throckmorton family at Coughton Court, which is just down the road from us!

Some of the route is a little muddy underfoot

The walk is mainly on good paths/bridleways although quite muddy underfoot at the moment.  All the caches are well hidden but easy to find with useful hints.

We completed with the walk in a about 4 hours, this included stopping for our lunch half way around and hanging around for 10 mins waiting for muggles to disappear.

A really great walk which we'd highly recommend - and thinking about it this is probably our favourite Izaak Wilson walk so far!

Not long after we'd set off on our walk this morning my phone started beeping uncontrollably with notifications coming through for new caches about 20 miles away near Spaldwick - The S²E² series - Once back at the car we were trying to decide whether we had time for another walk or not - instead we decided to try and bag our FTF for the month and head over to Spaldwick - we half expected a keen local cacher to have been straight out but we were lucky and managed to pick up 4 FTFs - we could've gone on for more but as the walk is a good 14 miles we decided to leave the rest of the series for another day rather than leave a gap - that's now 55 consecutive months with an FTF!

Lyveden & Back