No, I haven’t suddenly put on weight. I haven’t embarked on a diet of Melton Mowbray pork pies and turned into a 25 stone bunt.🥴 I finally qualified for that challenge cache that I mentioned in my last blog.
I needed a Wherigo cache so sorted out a little route based on the caches that I needed this morning. Here’s how the morning went.
1 Wherigo 1 Mystery 1 Traditional 1 Multi 1 Virtual
It seems like an age that I’ve been working on GC7JG69, a 5/4, A Well Rounded Cacher Challenge Cache. Look it up but the final part for me is to find 1000 mystery caches and today, I am on 993.🤔 I only have half a day so I worked out a route around Colchester that would allow meet the magic figure. There are a number of 1/1 caches too which will come in useful.
I reached the first cache on my list, the rien a’ grand 1 thirty minutes before dawn. I had been here before and I needed a UV torch for this one. I couldn’t read the UV coords last time and only partially read it this time. So I’ll have to save this one for another time.🙁
I set off on a little C&D run picking up five 1/1 trads before finally trying for The Joker of the Pack mystery. It was difficult to park but I eventually found a space without double yellows which gave me the opportunity to collect this one. I found another couple of 1/1 trads before setting off towards Highwoods.
I was after the Highwoods Bonus cache. I’d held on to the final coords for a couple of years now but as I was in the area and needed a mystery, why not? With the GPS pinging around due to the tree cover, I made hard work of this. However when I eventually found the well hidden cache, it had been vandalised. I put it all back together and took a photo to send to the CO.
I had to do some shopping somewhere today so it might as well be the big supermarket in Highwoods. Once I was done (and had something to eat and drink in the H&H cafe), I found the Off yer Trolley trad but failed on the trad near the petrol station.
I was now going south of Colchester down to Old Heath to look for Frantica’s CM Congregational mystery. This was a 3/3 and quite difficult to get at. When I emerged from the undergrowth, I found that I had rubbed up against something gooey which I had to spend some time cleaning off.
After covering up the driver’s seat (just in case🥴) I set off for Rowhedge on the banks of the River Colne. I found the Colne Navigation #2 : The Anchor trad which had been MIA, the last time I was here. As I strolled along the river bank, I noticed what looked like a fishing smack. As you know, I am always interested in old fishing boats and barges so I had to have a closer look.
The fishing smack CK92 “Our Boys“ was built in 1911 in Pagelsham, Essex by Shuttleworths and is on the National Historic Ships register. She was the Tollesbury and Mersea Native Oyster Company foreman's smack and as the company's largest vessel, apprentices would have served their time on her.
She has also spent time as a Watch Smack and a Police Smack. She was restored at St Osyth boatyard between 1999 and 2004 and was completely rebuilt using oak. The smack doesn’t have an engine so operates on sail alone. In the photo, you can see the Anchor pub in the distance.
Tearing myself away from “Our Boys”, I walked through the village until I found the CM ~ Mariner’s Chapel multi that had been put out by Frantica. The sums were easy enough but there was no joy for me and quite a few previous cachers here.
I left Rowhedge and set off towards Tolleshunt D’Arcy where I would hopefully pick up four mysteries to reach my 1000 mystery target. As I drove south down towards Mersea where I would swing a right, I remembered that there was a VS trad at Peldon. It would be silly not to stop so I did and quickly found the cache.
When I got to Tolleshunt D’Arcy, I was after the RST mystery which NathanJHunt had put out. I knew that it wasn’t at the site of the old station on the “Crab & Winkle” line but it wasn’t far from the track bed. The cache was actually placed on a GR (George V) “hovis” pedestal letter box. These are really rare.🤔
I had saved three of Mr Crow’s Rally Round mystery caches to end the morning. Ray, a successful author, has about 250 mysteries placed in this neck of the woods. Most of them are too difficult for me but these three around Great Totham were within my capabilities.🤔
So RR009 ~ Noughty One (this hadn’t been found for two years🤔), RR116 ~ Board Game 5 and the 4/2 RR136 ~ Hidato all bit the dust. As I was walking back to the car, elated, from the last one, I noticed that Frantica had sent me a message about an hour previously. She was in Rowhedge having a coffee and wondered if I fancied a catch-up.🥴 I had to say that I was now on my way home.☹️
Back at home, in a jubilant mood, I ran GC7JG69 through the project.gc checker to further revel in the glory and...... I didn’t qualify.🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬🤯 I was one Wherigo short. Ah well, the first cache that I find at the weekend will be, guess what. See you in the next blog.😀
7 Mystery 10 Traditional