Dan Q found GC7JRT4 Preston Docks – Oh Buoy!

This checkin to GC7JRT4 Preston Docks - Oh Buoy! reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

What an excellent cache container! I immediately spotted it but then disregarded it when I couldn’t see an obvious ingress. My sister Sarah, though, whom I’m visiting in Preston, tried touching it a different way and soon discovered how to get at the cache. Log almost full – space only for one or two more entries.

Excellent cache. FP awarded. TFTC.

Map of 53.759583,-2.74225

Geohashing expedition 2021-08-29 54 -2

This checkin to geohash 2020-08-29 54 -2 reflects a geohashing expedition. See more of Dan's hash logs.

Location

Towpath alongside the Lancaster Canal

Participants

  • Dan Q & Robin (dragalong)

Plans

I (Dan Q) am driving my partner’s brother Robin from near Oxford to near Penrith on this day, so I expect to pass close by this geohashpoint on the M6 twice; at around 13:00 going North then about 15:00 going South. It looks like there’s on-street parking on nearby Ashford Avenue (N 54° 1.71′, W 2° 48.370′), so I’m thinking we can pull over there, walk to Deep Cutting Bridge, follow a path about 700m Northwest down into the canal cutting, then follow the canal back Southeast to the hashpoint. Robin’s never been geohashing before, so we’ll see what he makes of it.

The biggest risks to this plan are likely to be (a) if we run late setting off, hit traffic, or are otherwise delayed then we may have to cancel our plans in order to stay on-schedule, and (b) based on local photos it looks like the towpath floods and/or gets incredibly boggy in wet weather!

Expedition

This all went pretty-much to plan. We parked on Ashford Avenue and walked to the bridge, then onto the long path down. We soon got bored of this trail and took a short-cut down the cutting slope, then proceeded back under the bridge while Robin told me about how he rowed along this stretch of canal during his recent Lands End to John O’Groats journey.

On the other side of the bridge we discovered that the hashpoint was about 25 metres up a steep bank covered with thorny plants. Not wanting to be defeated at this point, Robin boosted me up onto the bank and I scrambled painfully through the brambles to reach the hashpoint, which coincided with a tree overlooking the cutting.

Returning to the car we stopped by geocache GC6WMEW, from whose GZ one can just about see the tree that marks the hashpoint. We added a “The Internet Was Here” sign to the gate at the path down to the towpath and continued our long journey North-and-back-again.

Tracklog

My GPSr keeps a tracklog:

Tracklog map showing a journey from Oxfordshire to Cumbria via a hashpoint in Lancaster, then on to Preston.

Photos & Video

Map of 54.0266020,-2.8055571

Dan Q found GC2X86M Travel Bug Hotel – Charnock Richard Services North

This checkin to GC2X86M Travel Bug Hotel - Charnock Richard Services North reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

I’m spending the day helping my partner’s brother Robin move from Oxfordshire to Cumbria, then heading back South to Lancaster to try to find the 2021-08-29 54 – 2 geohashpoint before finally heading to Preston to visit my family. In short, its a day with lots of roads! We stopped at the services to let Robin empty his bladder and I took the opportunity to make an easy find of this cache. TFTC!

Map of 53.630267,-2.691583

Dan Q found GC1TPWV Constellations 6

This checkin to GC1TPWV Constellations 6 reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Finding this cache finally “completes” for the Constellation series, which I began back in 2014! Okay, that’s not quite true because GC1TPTP (Constelations 9) could yet return to service and then I’ll need another trip to get that one… but it still feels good to come back and wrap up what I started so long ago.

The blackberries are plentiful down this path and I found my stomach rumbling: time to go home for a proper breakfast. The cache container itself is in plain sight – looks like its camo wore off long ago! – but is otherwise looking great. TFTC, and the series as a whole.

A crop of blackberries.

Map of 51.737333,-1.440767

Dan Q found GC8TN3Z Constellations 7

This checkin to GC8TN3Z Constellations 7 reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

I was glad to be cyclecaching today when I reached this one, because the edge of the village was a perfectly innocuous place to be seen to pull over with my bike and sit down for a rest. The passing motorists seemed completely uninterested (although possibly glad that they didn’t have to overtake me) as I found and retrieved the cache.

The retrieval was an adventure in itself! I was very glad to have brought my tough geotweezers with me, because a narrow but sturdy tool was absolutely essential for gradually working the cache out of its hiding place. Returned it as-found, so I certainly hope that the next cacher is equally well-equipped!

Map of 51.7319,-1.444233

Dan Q found GC1TPV3 Constellations 8

This checkin to GC1TPV3 Constellations 8 reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

My fourth cache of the day was easy to find… but hard to retrieve the logbook from! The inner bag contained not only the logbook and pencil but also some geotreasure, and this had settled into a configuration that made it almost impossible to fit through the neck of the cache container! After some massaging and poking (including through the hole in the bottom of the container) I was able to persuade the logbook to come out, sign it, and move on.

Map of 51.726933,-1.438683

Dan Q found GC7XEYY Church Micro 12106…Standlake

This checkin to GC7XEYY Church Micro 12106...Standlake reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Seven and a bit years ago my old geocaching buddy presquevu and I attempted half of the Constellations series (which was in a bit of a different configuration back then) and this morning I finally decided to cycle to Standlake to complete it. In the meantime, though, this cache has sprung up, so I decided to pick it up as well.

I spent about 10 minutes hunting for this cache before I saw it: turns out I’d been mostly looking up the wrong part (and, perhaps, looking “up” too much and “away” not enough). Luckily it was quiet today – I didn’t see another soul at this early hour – so I was free to hunt in peace without need for stealth skills. This allowed me to detach the front light from my bike and scan it around the search area to try to catch a glint of the container’s reflection under the dim cover of the surrounding foliage.

Next step: Constellations 8!

SL, TFTC.

Churchyard gate at the end of a tree-lined path.

Map of 51.729367,-1.426517

Dan Q found GC7NQA3 Constellations 1

This checkin to GC7NQA3 Constellations 1 reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

Continuing my morning quest to complete the Constellations series after a seven year pause, this was my second cache of the day. I’d cycled right past it on my way to Constellations 2, where I’d begun my trail, so now I turned around to come back and find it. I briefly stopped at a bench on the way back along.

Found the cache quickly with the help of the hint; however this cache is in very poor condition: the container is waterlogged and the logbook beginning to disintegrate.

Dan wearing a cycle helmet sitting on a wooden bench.

Map of 51.73065,-1.422433

Dan Q found GC1TPPC Constellations 2

This checkin to GC1TPPC Constellations 2 reflects a geocaching.com log entry. See more of Dan's cache logs.

A little over seven years ago, presquevu and I enjoyed a walk around here and found what are now Constellations 3, 4 and 5, among other caches which are no longer around. This morning, I decided, would finally be the time that I’d complete the circuit! Nowadays I live just on the other side of Stanton Harcourt, so I took the excuse of a Saturday morning’s exercise to cycle down to Standlake and proceed up the path to this first cache.

Apparently presquevu and I walked right past this one without making an attempt to find it back in April 2014: we were possibly distracted at the time and not paying full attention to the GPSr as we walked the path from Medley Brook to the footbridge over the Windrush. This time, though, I honed right in on the hiding place and managed to retrieve the cache with a minimum of nettle stings and thornpricks.

As others have noted the cache container is looking a little worse for wear and has a significant hole in it. However, the waterproof logsheet is holding up remarkably well and was still definitely signable. TFTC.

Map of 51.732317,-1.418983