September 9 : Farewell to Somerset

Hello, Mrs Hg137 here.

Holnicote House, Somerset

Holnicote House, Somerset

Our walking week on Exmoor was already over – so soon – and it was time to head home. But we planned to hang around for a few minutes and get a few caches, putting off the time when we would probably spend more than a few minutes on the A303.

We had loaded the cache nearest to our holiday destination before we set off: it’s a handy reference point if we can’t find our destination! It would have been rude not to find it … and Mr Hg137 had done a recce on one of his walks and he knew how to get to there. (Editor’s note: we tend to do different walks on holiday – I like to wander along, look at the view, take pictures – Mr Hg137 likes to pile in the miles and the ascent… )

So, having packed, we took a footpath from Holnicote House, where we had stayed – – crossed a couple of fields, and along a very minor road. A little way along, just off the road, was a bird hide, overlooking water meadows – our destination. The cache, a good-sized yellow Tupperware container, was lightly concealed ‘in plain view’ in a pleasant and tranquil spot.

Returning to the car, our return journey started. Having taken the West Somerset Railway (WSR) earlier in the week, we knew that there were caches along the route that we hadn’t found. We turned off the A39, to arrive at Blue Anchor From the seafront, it was but a short walk to the WSR level crossing, and a short search to find another good-size cache, another one from the ‘Will Something Run’ series. And, we’d timed our arrival just right to watch the arrival of the first train of the day from Minehead – and our chance to wave at people on trains.

West Somerset Railway - Blue Anchor

West Somerset Railway – Blue Anchor

Blue Anchor station - signalbox

Blue Anchor station – signalbox

Editor’s note: ‘Will Something Run’ is an unusual name for a cache series, but it comes from the initials of the railway and a nickname it acquired during the time when volunteers were trying to save the line

Once back on the A39, we stopped after a short distance to search for another cache, hidden at the start of a footpath leading away from the road. This cache led us a merry dance; we searched everywhere (or so we thought) and were on the point of giving up when a careful re-read of the description, hint, and logs made us look again, and we found a tiny, tiny magnetic cache attached to some metalwork.

A little way on again, we stopped at Washford station to find another from the WSR series, this one hidden right at the end of the very long platform. It also gave us a chance to have a coffee, watch another train steam through, and to wave at more people on trains.

West Somerset Railway - Washford Station

West Somerset Railway – Washford Station

But the day was passing, and we weren’t getting much nearer to home, so we pressed on to Taunton and onto the busy A358, leading to the even busier A303. There are caches along the route, and we stopped at one of these, ‘Geo Pitstop’, in the car park of a Toby Carvery , and most cunningly hidden in a structure on the ground. And we stopped for another cache in the same series, ‘Manor on High’ a couple of miles further on, but we didn’t understand the clue, and we didn’t find the cache. Editor’s note: after recording our lack of success, the cache owner visited and has reported that the cache is no longer there; it was a meerkat, which explained the cache name.

And that was all the caching for that day, and for the holiday, for we joined the A303 soon after and made our way home.


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