On Saturday we thought we’d take a trip to Thetford forest, somewhere we’d never been before.
We started off trying for some caches at the nature reserve, Lackford Lakes. There was a massive fishing lake in the middle and it looked very pretty with the sun shining on it. The first cache we grabbed was LQ: SUFFOLK. We had to dodge the nettles here as we were wearing shorts again. Teddy wasn’t too happy with having to jump over the fallen trees and nettles to get to it.
From here we hoped to grab (Near) Lackford Pillbox and headed around the lake to get to it. We were unfortunately blocked by a river with no way over, it was a shame that we couldn’t get to it and wished the CO had put a waypoint in to show us which direction we could have got to it. There were some lovely views from the side of the lake that we walked to though.
Next we headed for Church Micro 1232 This was the biggest CM we’ve ever found! It was an ammo can, but the coords led us to a spot it was impossible for it to be hidden at. Closer inspection of the description told us it was in the church yard so we looked around there for a while… Nothing… Hmm, just as we left the yard I spotted a possible hiding place. Bingo! Yes it was in the yard, but only accessible from outside of it! It didn’t help that the coords were 75ft off! We were pleased with our big stash despite the 15 minute search. Would have been much quicker with good coords.
Brandon Country park
The next stop was Brandon Country park. This is a lovely little wooded area in Thetford forest with a tearoom and big car park. It was, as expected, quite busy with muggles. There were only 2 caches that we came here to find, Red Run and Tree of Gondor.
There were some interesting attractions in the park including some random sculptures, a HUGE redwood tree, and an unexpected mausoleum within the forest.
The caches were quite off the beaten track so we weren’t once disturbed by muggles. Both caches were also a nice size and very enjoyable to find. The only downside here was that there were only 2 caches here. A big trail around this area would have been absolutely amazing. After finding the caches we headed back to the picnic area for lunch, however on the way we noticed that Teddy was limping a little bit. On closer inspection one of his back paws was quite swollen. He had this problem a few months ago with one of his front paws, and we had the vet sort him out with a course of antibiotics. We thought then that he had had a thorn or something go into his foot and cause it to swell, however as it’s happened again so soon after I wonder if it’s something else. We planned to do a trail after this one and weren’t sure if we should go home instead. Teddy however was completely unphased by the problem and was happily skipping a long and enjoying the walk. We decided to make use of the first aid kit in the car (For the first time ever) and bandaged his foot up to stop dirt going into it. He was such a good boy and let me fix him up without any fuss, and he didn’t try and pull the bandage off either. As a result he did get lots of treats and a fair bit of my cheese sandwich!!!
As we sat at the picnic bench we saw lots of squirrel activity. They ran from a big tree, along the fence to the bins of a house and then back again, obviously foraging for food. They seemed to be a bit shy when they heard me fit my zoom lens to my camera, however I managed to catch a shot of one!
We then headed to do Santon Circular. This was a trail of 11 caches with a few church micros in there as well. It stretched over 4.5 miles.
We didn’t have a very good start to this series however as we DNF’ed the church micro at the start and then the first two in the trail. 😦 It was a bit disheartening having a DNF hat trick and with the hot sun beating down on us and our feet aching a bit (I think we were feeling it after the long walks yesterday) we had to decide whether to carry on or turn back. We decided to carry on and I’m very glad we did as we found everything else, and there were some very creative containers on the walk.
A nice addition to the trail was a nano on a rusty post which had a rusty paint job on it. We hadn’t found one of these before.
We soldiered on for the rest of the trail. It was scorching hot and we had to stop for a sit down after every other cache just to rest our feet. The trail didn’t go through very dense wooded areas either, so there was little shade as we passed through very wide main paths that had been made between the woodland.
On the way to cache #5 we bumped into a walker who we spoke to about a deer we had all just seen run past. He then told us he’d seen an Ada on the path that we were walking. Eek! We didn’t see an ada, however on the way to he final cache on the trail we bumped into a little snake dead on the road, a slightly unusual encounter, I thought.
My favorite cache of the series was #5 as it showed a great deal of creativity and was a crafty container that I’d never seen before.
We carried on around the wood in the blistering sunshine, however when we got to cache #7 it suddenly started thundering and the sky turned grey. It was very unexpected. We carry on for about 20 minutes with the thunder cracking in the sky. I told the sky that I thought it should rain to cool us down. About 15 minutes later it must have heard me as little rain blobs started falling from the sky. It was lovely! It really cooled us down and helped us press on for the rest of the caches. After we made a find on cache #10 and emerged from GZ, we noticed a group of people behind us with GPSr’s. We would have usually stopped for a chat, however today our feet were aching and we were so close to finishing that we passed them by. I’m very glad we did press on though, as when we got to the final cache site all of a sudden the heavens opened and it absolutely bucketed it down with rain!!! We ran the final 0.12 miles to the car and by the time we got there we were absolutely drenced and little Teddy looked like a drowned rat. I was reminded that I did ask for rain!!! The strange thing was when we drove a few miles down the road there was lovely bright sunshine and no signs of any rain. The temperature reading in the car also jumped up by 7°C! I think the clouds must have followed us because I asked for the rain!
A lovely, but tiring day in the woods hunting out 14 caches.