We were heading up to Peterborough today for their Firework Fiesta. It’s a massive Fireworks display held at Ferry Meadows (Right next to Nene Park) every year which never disappoints and I would highly recommend. There were also a few caches in Nene Park which we thought we’d try and grab. We had a very casual day of caching and found about 15, however there were two very important puzzle caches that I had worked hard on solving for a few weeks. Getting these caches would mean completing two of the difficulty/terrain combos that we hadn’t found before so our trip was planned around them.
The road to René Descartes
The René Descartes puzzle cache had been the focus of my attention for a whole week. You know what it’s like when you start a puzzle, you have that driving force to complete it! This one was special however as it had a 4 difficulty/3 terrain rating which we needed so I tried extra hard to solve it. It did also turn out that I was going down the right route to solving it, I just had to keep trying until I found the thing I needed. This cache is in Great Paxton, near St Neots, which we could slightly inconveniently take a detour to on our way to Peterborough.
I plotted a route and on our way there we stopped to grab some caches in Yelling. We had a 50/50 success rate with these, however didn’t get down about it as the real reason we were passing through there was to bag the puzzle.
The first couple were easy finds in your typical cache location (base/hollow of tree covered in sticks).
We then trekked up the field for another on a memorial for a plane that had crashed there. It was a hard site to rummage around for a cache as you didn’t really want to move and disturb anything too much as it would be quite disrespectful. We didn’t find the cache, however it was indeed a very interesting, unexpected thing to find right out in the fields.
After our short stint in Yelling and bagging a couple of caches it was on to find René Descartes. Being a puzzle cache it wasn’t all that clear on where we should park. Perhaps the coords for the icon would have lead us to a sensible spot, but as we drove past it didn’t look all that likely (Note to self: Print a close-up OS map of the area so we know what paths to follow!) We parked up at the parking place for another cache that seemed would give a logical route to the cache. We were really cautious walking through as there were no footpath signs. We did however get to a train crossing so thought it must be a route that is used and continued through to the cache. It took us to an obvious location and the cache was soon in hand. I was delighted!!! That was one notch of our difficulty/terrain combo completed.
I’d used CACH’EYE to create a to do list and we headed onto the next in the list, Poppies on Parade – Buckden. Suddenly everything started to look familiar and we realised that we were heading to a cache that we had DNF’ed many months ago. It was listed as a micro and the previous times I was looking for something like a film canister, this time I started thinking differently and it was in my hands within seconds. A lot, lot smaller than I had thought. I guess that just shows that all of those months of experience since we first looked had paid off.
Shiver me timbers…
Next we headed to another puzzle cache that I had solved, Redbeards Cash Cache. I’m not quite sure why I solved this pirate-themed cache as it’s quite far from us and not a difficulty/terrain rating that we needed, however I had the numbers so we went for it. As always I doubted my coords a little, however it took us to a likely cache hide location and the massive container was soon ours. Inside was a well stocked pot of foreign currency (Pieces of eight). What a fun cache!
Cass the codebreaker
Next it was on to Cipher Madness 2, a 4.5 difficulty/3 terrain cache that we needed. I had solved this one pretty easily however. Before we grabbed it we stopped off at As the Crow flys! which was a lovely find as it was a nice ammo can hidden well.
We parked up at a likely location for Cipher Madness 2. Again, difficult to know where to start as it was a puzzle cache and the parking coords certainly weren’t where the puzzle icon indicated as it was far away from roads. We did however find a perfect spot and followed a proper footpath to GZ. There was no hint and my heart sunk when we couldn’t find it at first at the likely location. I read through logs and saw a mention of it being well hidden. Of course, the ivy that covered the tree. We plunged in there and out popped a cache. I was ecstatic!
Before heading into Peterborough for a spot of shopping and lunch we stopped off to do our first ever Little Quest cache, LQ:Cambs – The Green Man. The deal with little quest is that there is one in every mainland county and to find the final you need to find all 47 and note the numbers in each. This challenge might take us a while!!! The location took us to a lovely offset church however with a moat built around it to (we guessed) stop the cows in the field getting to it, but there was probably a more historic reasoning to it!
Bring on the snow!
This may seem a little random, but I’m now going to talk about the most awesome caching-related purchase I made whilst in Peterborough, at Mountain Warehouse. We usually take a wander around outdoor shops and as we’d never seen a mountain warehouse before thought we’d give it a go. I then spotted a massive section of snow boots. These were proper snow boots, not like those fashionable ones that get soaking even in fine drisel. These were fully waterproof, artic-ready ones. I just had to have some! 🙂 Their full range is available online here. They were something that I’d never even thought about before and make total sense because I am so grumpy if I get wet feet!!! I wore them all weekend and had nice toasty, dry toes throughout.
We then headed off to our final destination for the evening – Nene Park. There were about 10 caches in there which we thought would make a nice walk around before the fireworks started.
The first one, Thomas and Friends – Diesel was at one of the little Nene Railway stations so we stopped off to get it. The front of the logbook was very nicely decorated with Thomas the tank engine. I thought that was a nice touch.
We carried on to the park, walking along the river and around the the lakes. It was a lovely stroll in a pretty park full of wildlife. There were also some interesting wood sculptures and markers scattered along the way. We had visited the park twice before for the fireworks, but hadn’t quite absorbed the size of it. The caches were well spaced in a circular run around the park which made for the enjoyable, long walk that we finished just before it got too dark.
And then it was time for the fireworks. As usual it didn’t disappoint and the event was absolutely packed! What a fun day of casual caching. I’m still over the moon that we managed to complete two of the difficulty/terrain combos that we needed.