Right, now all the dust is settled, everyone is happy, everything is sorted, let the blogging commence…
Last night we went on our first maintenance run along our Walden Wander cache trail. Teddy needed a nice long walk and one of the finders mentioned one of the caches had blown off into the open from it’s hiding place. It’s been pretty windy in the area recently, so I’m not surprised. The cache itself was a film cannister hanging on a very short nail head on the back of a fence. It was hanging on a piece of string. So we quickly knocked up a replacement micro with a piece of strong wire attached and took that with us along with a hook ready for replacement.
The first cache was in the exact place we had left it. The swag was still good and the contents bone dry. A great start! The second had managed to move to an easier hiding place! So we popped it back where it belonged. Whilst approaching the third, I noticed quite a few branches were down and there was some real carnage near GZ. “Oh no! What has someone done?” was my initial thought! The last thing I wanted was for the cache to have a negative impact on the surrounding area. When we got to GZ it was clear that it wasn’t a cacher that had caused the destruction, instead the branches had been cut back on purpose as part of maintenance. There were also fresh tyre marks up the track. The cache was all well and good and exactly in the place I had left it. There is one particular type of cache hide that I do dislike and that it those in hedges, or places where obvious trails and destruction can be left. I was so relieved when I realised the carnage wasn’t caused by the cache (phew!) If it was, we would have removed it. The hides were all in places purposefully chosen so that no destruction could be made, so I’m very happy that all is hunky-dory!
We continued on to the cache that had blown away. It was hanging higher on the fence than I had set it but this was ok and at least it was in the right spot after it had blown from it’s place. The wood of the fence was very old and soft so we managed to wiggle a little hook into it to hang the cache wire on. The hook and cache caused no harm to the fence as it was screwed into an existing hole, but made me wonder is it right to screw the hook onto a fence that doesn’t belong to me? Sure I have a right to travel down the path/road, but do I really have the right to place a hook on someone’s (probably a farmers?) fence? Or to hang a cache from a tree? Or place one in a public hedge placed by the council? I think that may be a little bit of a tricky subject to discuss as everything is owned by someone. I guess as long as you and your cache visitors don’t cause any damage to the area then all is ok. 🙂
We continued along our trail. All contents were bone dry. There was still some good swag, and no damage had been done to the surrounding areas. It was pretty dark by the time we hit the final few caches and I actually couldn’t find the 7th cache on first look (How embarassing!) We turned on a torch and it was tucked around the other side of the tree. The hole that it fitted neatly into was now a lot wider and the cache just slipped through! I managed to just about hold it in place with some twigs, but will have to find a suitably shaped rock/piece of bark to block the hole. It’s a bit of an annoying one as I called it “A hole in one” and without the hole the name is a bit silly! hehe! I’ll work it out…
So, the first maintenance run went well. The footpaths are even slightly better since we laid it as they have cut a fair bit of the undergrowth back.
On Saturday we plan to go out and look for some more caches, and then on Sunday we’re going to scout out the next trail. It’s quite funny really as we went to find this area last Sunday and I managed to navigate us to *totally* the wrong place!!! We went in the opposite direction to where we were planning on going and ended up walking around the wrong place. As we thought we were in the right spot to begin with we spotted hiding places. After we realised we’d taken a wrong turn we decided to continue spotting some hiding places and eventually managed to construct a trail of about 2 miles with 10 potential hiding spots. Not bad for a complete mistake! I plan to publish the two trails together, the main one and this little mistake one which I will appropriately name “The wrong turn” I’m really enjoying the hides now and am bursting with enthusiasm as so many people have visited our first trail. I can’t wait to hide the next!