27. Jul, 2017

All Hail To Halstead

I've recently adopted a puzzle CM in Feering. It's about 25 miles from me but I pass nearby on the A12 every week. For some reason, the coords are out but can't be changed? Since I've adopted it, replaced the cache and changed the hint, there have been two DNFs.🤔 So this morning, I re-checked the puzzle, changed the hint again, making it easier and enabled it again. Thankfully Frantica has found it so I can leave it be.😀

About two miles from the CM was a series of 5 trads along a footpath but there was a 5/5 tree climb and a 3/3 hang over a pond to contend with. Luckily all accomplished without incident.🤗

Looking at my itinerary, I saw that I was going up to the old Earls Colne airfield. The USAAF flew B-17 Flying Fortresses and B-26 Marauders from here in WW2. Now a industrial area and golf course, I couldn't help thinking that I was trespassing at times. There was the remainder of a Little Woods series here, all trads, and one called Golf Course and all were found easily enough.

I picked up the final clue for the Three Colnes multi in Earls Colne and set off towards Halstead. Some of the caches on my list were long time MIA so I didn't stop. However Weak At The Knees intrigued me so I had a look. It could only have been in one place but it wasn't! Feeling generous I replaced the cache, letting the CO know that I'd retrieve it if they wished.😎

I parked up in an out of town light industry area hoping for a tea bar cos I was thirsty but no luck unfortunately. Looking at the map for local geocaches, I could see a possible route along the old Colne Valley Railway line. Add a couple of others and I could see an anti-clockwise circular. 😀

First off was Tool Box, which had a DNF last time out. No problems here and it was indeed a toolbox with a cunning log book. I'll leave you to find out what it was. The rest of the "series" was uneventful apart from a few minutes at No Slope Just Hope. There were three, say 12 years old boys walking up the road. I passed them but one seemed to want a walking race and was trying to keep ahead of me. I passed him as he gave up, waiting for his mates but by then the cache was about 80 yards away. 

I got to the cache site, snaffled the cache and they came running up asking if I was geocaching!😃 So I came clean and they too were geocachers, usually caching in their family groups. Living locally, they said that they knew all the local caches but only one had done The Toolbox! So it was good to meet Gimbell, Mattchop and the lad who couldn't remember his geocaching name.😀 My next cache was a puzzle, Check Mate, with a clever host at GZ. It was here that I said my goodbyes to the three Musketeers. Have a good life, lads. 😎

With the rain clouds gathering, I made my way picking off some easy and quite difficult caches until I got back to the industrial area. Hooray, there was a food van so I ordered a takeaway coffee for 70p and just made it back to the car before the heavens opened. ☔️ It was time for lunch and a count up. I'd found 13 caches on the loop, result!👏

Suitably refreshed, I had a quick look for the nearby Bolted but this was a DNF or maybe a Did Not Try Much. 😀 Up the road, I quickly found #7 of the Austere August series, sneakily hidden. This was near a splendid GVR lamp box, a variation on ones that I'd found before. I then found the Halstead Old St Andrews trad nearer town near a fine G6R post box with a partially buried base.

Having got somewhere to park, I walked into town and quickly found the CM Halstead Baptist multi that had eluded me before. I found that I'd got a number wrong and the cache was over the other side of the road, doh!😕 Just time for one more and that was the really cleverly hidden Beer Bottle.

So I'd found 28 on the day including one multi and one puzzle. Can't be too bad, I'm now on 5606.