9. Apr, 2017

Mr Mercator Catch-up Log

I had just finished an epic write up last night describing my latest exploits finding Mr Mercator caches when the site crashed as I was loading the photograph. I was too peeved to try again at that moment so here I am having another go!

After my success with the CO's #10 last Sunday, I felt the need to try another one and settled on #1 - M11 to Purleigh-on-Sea. I had two OS maps spread all over the floor and finally I had some coordinates that I was confident about. So on the morning of the 3rd, I drove out to Purleigh, parked up by the cricket ground and set off for the cache. 

I reached the start of the footpath and started walked up the track, gaining height, passing a long forgotten and neglected pond and out onto open ground. What a view, they say that Essex is flat. Those height deniers should come out this way! At my perceived GZ, I had a quick find, thanks to a great hint and the fact that the cache couldn't be anywhere else. Another one bites the dust and all I had to do is walk back to the car.

Back at home, I decided that #7 - The Essex Hoard would be next on the list. I am sure that I had done some previous work on this one and there was a bonus cache involved. I found half my old notes but no final coords. However on my OS map, I found my original projection out to a place in Woodham Walter. I sure that it was right so planned to go for it tomorrow.

On the afternoon of the 4th, I drove out to this obscure wood and walked out to my perceived GZ. The hint suggested that there was an island within a moat. Well I couldn't find it so I wandered through the deciduous wood looking for a pond, lake even a big puddle. I didn't have any luck so changed tack. My distance must be correct so my bearings must be out! I went back to GZ and started to walk in an arc. About 30 yards from where I started, I walked up a bank and lo and behold, there was a moat with an island in the middle!

I had brought my wellies with me so after I had donned those, I gingerly made my way across some logs onto the island, disturbing a nesting Mallard on the way. There wasn't much area to search so I quickly had the cache in hand. After signing the log and noting the coordinates of the bonus cache, I replaced the cache and carefully made my way off the island.

I walked through the woods, happily kicking the leaves, towards the GZ of the cache. I looked under the hint item but could only find the camouflaged wrapping. After a good rummage through the leaves, I came up with the goods! After signing the logbook, which was from Cressing Temple, nice touch, I replaced the cache safely and walked back to the car.

So three Mr Mercator caches in two days, I'm getting the hang of these, haha.