May 31 – Caching without a GPS – and a monthly record cache total

Hello, Mrs Hg137 here.

After our last geocaching trip, we realised we were within a very few caches of our all-time monthly record of 78, set in August 2013. Curses to those Did Not Finds at the weekend! After a bit of (rather nerdish) discussion we decided to try to beat this total and duly sorted out some local caches.

We arrived in Crowthorne and parked the geocar near the first of our targets. Then … disaster … we had forgotten to bring the GPS! What to do now: go home and collect the GPS: give up: or try for the caches without the GPS? Luckily, we’d printed out a map, so we decided on the latter. Mr Hg137 kicked the first cache without recognizing what it was – as I picked it up, I spotted him examining a rather puzzled snail (geocaches are sometimes hidden in snail shells). The second cache was found easily, too, as it was near to the corner of a road, so it was easy to pinpoint the likely location even without a GPS.

I wonder if there's a cache here?  Dunno, we've forgotten the GPS ...

I wonder if there’s a cache here? Dunno, we’ve forgotten the GPS …

Now on to the next cache; rather harder as it was some way down a path. How to work out where to start looking? Without a GPS, and its ability to tell you how far you to go, this could have been tricky. However, our map indicated that the distance between this cache and the start of the path, and the distance down the path to the next cache were broadly the same distance. So we counted paces. We both stopped within 10 feet of each other (hey, this means we can both count to 479 and 550 respectively twice), but 15ft short of the target (not a bad estimate). We found the cache at our 3rd target so we were dead chuffed as we’d found it by mathematical means, not by satellite means.

And our new record monthly total is now 80 caches. Result!

PS Not long after writing this post, the latest edition of UK Cache Mag arrived. Coincidentally, it included an article from another cacher who had done as we did, finding caches on Ilkley Moor based only on a description and very approximate location. He, too, was successful.


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