25 Jul 2011

Rum Coffee and A Flash


It's been a busy old week, with not a lot of geocaches found! Having said that there is a lot to get through.



A pirates favourite drink! Wemnog and I attended our first Piratemania event over the weekend. Not having attended any previous ones we were unsure what to expect, apart from a lot of fun. http://coord.info/GC2NYZG Sadly we couldn't camp for the weekend so attended as day visitors on the Saturday. We arrived at the event to be greeted by some extremely friendly pirates, parrots and some cabin dogs. Although we didn't do much caching it was great to meet up with a load of fellow cachers, some familiar faces and to make lots of new friends. We missed out on a few as well though who were busy finding all the new caches that had been put out for the weekend.
There are loads of photos available and even some videos.

Warrington Cacher and Walkerclan flags
The campsite itself was an amazing sight, with flags flying everywhere, we saw Jolly Roger's, team flags, forum flags and personal tracking flags. Next year we will definately attend for the whole weekend. Congratulations must be given to the organisers who were very pleased to be able to announce that the event had had enough visitors to make it a MEGA event. All in all a brilliant weekend and the first MEGA that I have attended. I can't wait to see what the souvenir looks like.

On car and flag TB's alone we logged over 50 discovered's!

There was even a real pirates parrot attending!

Captain's Parrot


Although we couldn't stay overnight we did pop back over to the event again on the Sunday to drop some more TB's off for people to move on. We were also passing as we were on our way to Ashbourne to attend the final bit of Piratemania, a flash mob in the main square in Ashbourne.  Pointy Pirates FM http://coord.info/GC2ZQB6 consisted of a huge number of cachers meeting up and on the sound of the horn pointing skywards with a lot of suitable arrrrhaaarring! There were plenty of bemused muggles around wondering what the hell a load of people dressed as pirates and some dressed as landlubbers were pointing at. The flash mob video is above. 

Gathering For The Flash Mob


After the flash mob ended it was time to head over to Sheffield to another event, Coffee & Caching http://coord.info/GC2Z8MN we arrived and couldn't find anyone in the designated spot. I did have the phone number of a fairly new geocacher Tank 0115 who had also decided to attend from Nottingham. I phoned him and we met up and had our coffee and a long chat about geocaching. Still no one turned up, very strange. Then just as Tank 0115 was about to leave another couple asked if we were geocachers so we had a chat with them. As we were about to leave the organiser of the event turned up, now 2 hours later than the planned start. Unfortunately we had to leave quite soon so after signing the logbook and swapping trackables we headed home.

On arriving home and logging the event we noticed that the organiser had posted a note at the last minute saying that he had altered the time from 1.30pm to 3.30pm, not very helpful when people had travelled some distance and didn't have any way of reading late notifications.


As I said, not many actual cache finds this week. We intend going back to do the Piratemania caches in the next couple of weeks, and there are plenty to do which we are really looking forward to.

Earlier in the week we did find Henry (The Iron Man) http://coord.info/GC1PPEC which was a great little cache not far from Sheffield City Centre. The statue isn't actually at GZ but was quite a sculpture to look at.

Henry (The Iron Man)
Another find was Lamins of Shearsby. A cache in a churchyard. You don't find many of those around these days. This was placed well before the rules regarding consecrated ground came in and was put out back in 2004 http://coord.info/GCKNZ6 The only other notable find of the week was on of old caching friends Fly2live2fly. Over in Bruntingthorpe Steve's Aviation Cache #1 Bruntingthope Vulcan http://coord.info/GC1KVBB was a quick find after dropping some cars off at the nearby airfield. I would have loved to take some photos of all the planes but sadly photography wasn't allowed.

Other News

I had planned to tell you a lot of other news this week but think you will be getting bored if I go on too much, so as promised last week,

Have you ever had one of your caches muggled? You know the feeling, frustration, anger etc. etc. A bunch of German cachers were having their placements muggled frequently. So much so that they decided to band together. What they discovered was that it was the same person doing the muggling. Rather than me going in to too much detail on the blog, have a look at this. http://sonntagsrudel.amshove.net/ There is a link on there to an English version for you to read.


If you enjoy taking photographs when you are out caching and they end up just getting stored on your computer once you are home, why not think about sharing them online?

I have been using a site called Daily Booth for a while. This used to be just for my own photos. I have now shut that down and started again, using it just for geocaching photos. It would be great if we could get a bunch of cachers from around the world joining up to post their caching adventures online. If you don't have the time or inclination to write a blog it is a great way of showing others what you have been up to. You can find my booth at http://dailybooth.com/JacaruGeocaching/17584569 It may be called Daily Booth, but there isn't a stipulation that you have to put a photograph on there daily. You can follow people, just as with Facebook or Twitter. Let me know if you decide to join and I will start following you.


More entries have been arriving for the race, we now have 14 UK entries so far and 11 US entries with more promised. With just over a month to go I am really pleased with the way this has taken off. If you haven't entered but still wish to do so, don't forget to let me have your TB as soon as you can.

Next Week ~ Our Top 10 Caching Bag Essentials.

Happy caching.

19 Jul 2011

Caching and the Name Revealed



A quiet week on the caching front. The bikes are in the car that is in for repairs at the moment, that's excuse one, but the real reason is that we have been really busy with work. A shame really that we haven't had time to do more as we have been from one end of the country to another over the last week.

We did get time to find a very popular TB hotel. The Manchester Airport TB and Coin Hotel http://coord.info/GC220CJ gets very frequent visitors. Cachers are very lucky to have this airport hotel as there is a strict exclusion zone around the airport, yet this is still fairly accessible from not too far away from the terminals, even for out of town visitors. I did virtually a full trackable swap the other day, 6 in and 5 out. This find came as a relief as we had tried to find one of the hotel owners other caches ~ Manchester Airport Orbital Cycle Route (08) http://coord.info/GC23KKG, this one has countless DNF's on it, but the owner reckons it is still there and even went to check again after our visit.

We just managed two others this week, both yesterday. Steve's Aviation Cache #1 Bruntingthorpe Vulcan http://coord.info/GC1KVBB is by local cachers fly2live2fly. We had to deliver a couple of cars to the auction here and it would have been rude not to do a caching friends cache.
This was the perfect place to drop one of the TB's that I picked up in the Manchester cache.  Airbug B-777 was a plane TB and can be found by looking at TB2TJA6. The final cache of the week was an old cache in a churchyard, placed way back in 2004, Lamins Of Shearsby http://coord.info/GCKNZ6 The good thing about a cache like this is that the locals all know about it, and it has lasted because of it.

Name Revealed

So what was the cryptic message about? I had an email from Northking yesterday morning and he had guessed correctly what I was on about.

A new form of geocaching has just begun. Not linked to the main game at all, but fun all the same. I can see this taking off especially in urban areas after all the furore over Wetherby. The game is called Munzee and is played using a smart phone and QR codes.

As it is not linked directly to caching, finding a Munzee won't add to your caching numbers, but you gain points by finding them and also putting them out. By Sunday they were hoping to have 1000 members worldwide. Wemnog and I are the first members in the East Midlands and have now put five out. They can be placed in caches and be played alongside the main game, or placed in totally different areas. We have done both.

I see this as a sideline to our main caching activities, not as a replacement, a bit of fun for no outlay if you already have a smart phone.
As we are doing this one as a joint venture we decided to do it under a different name and have called ourselves FenRum. More details can be found at http://www.munzee.com/ 

Have a look, you may become hooked. The game is at the very outset and I am sure that there will be teething problems. Having said that, the guys who have set it up are very quick to take comments on board and act on them and the Munzee forums are growing well. I have started a Facebook page, Munzee GB Let me know what you think.

Nottingham Race

The Nottingham to Nottingham TB race is hotting up. With 11 entries here in the UK and entries now being posted to Balrgn who is opening up the Nottingham TB Hotel in New Hampshire. The hotel caretaker over here in the UK, Antheia, unlocked the doors for me a couple of days ago so that I could escort the first UK entries to it. They will remain there now, under lock and key until race day.  If the race is fresh news to you, then details can be found at http://www.usuktbrace.blogspot.com/ and if you want to enter a trackable, get it to me as soon as you can. My own trackable for the race can be found by searching for TB4DGQG

A quick question for you. Do you read the forums? If so, which ones? Is it the main GC forum, GAGB, local ones or none at all. Let me know what you think of them in the comments box, are they good, bad or do you have any other comments about them. Don't worry, you can send your comments to me annonymously if you don't want to be indentified.

Next week I will tell you about a gang of German cachers who got their own back on a chap who was going out deliberately to destroy their caches, and share the link to their story. It makes interesting reading.

Have a good week..........................

17 Jul 2011

New Name, New Game?

All will be revealed...................................SOON

11 Jul 2011

Bangs, Book, Blanks and Caches


As you can see from the above number, not nearly enough caching in the last week.


Well the Wetherby incident has certainly been the talk of the caching world, at least here in the UK for the last few days. Thanks to those who added comments on the last blog about the situation. There have certainly been some mixed views regarding the police response and to what has happened since.

For those of you who don't know, a new guideline has now been put in place that will hopefully stop such a happening again. I'm still not fully convinced that it is the way forward. My argument for urban caches has always been that there are people out there in the caching community who can't go out to find any other kind, whether that be because of time constraints, disability or for some other reason. The fact that it is now being said that containers should be clear and labelled doesn't really do the idea of disguising a cache and/or using camo any favours.

The latest guidelines from the GAGB are copied below.

“Urban caches should be placed to minimise the chance of security alerts. It is essential that micros and larger are marked externally as a geocache with the relevant listing site reference (eg: GCxxxxxx, OXxxxxxx or OCxxxxxx). Containers larger than 35mm containers should have clear sides to enable inspection without opening. Cache pages must contain the following wording: This cache meets the GAGB Urban Placement Guidelines”

I already know of people, some who are close caching friends who are already archiving their urban caches. I do fear that this could bring a lot of urban caching to an end.

Having said that, if the police forces throughout the country do have a database of caches, and a liason officer in each force then this can only be for the good of the caching world in general.
It also has to be remembered that one mans urban is another mans country.


As some regular readers know we have recently started caching more using our bikes. There are some good bookmark lists that people have compiled in the past. However, some of these are quite out of date now and a lot of the listed caches have long since been archived.

Wanting to know more about different traffic free cycle routes in the country, which we obviously need so that the dogs can go with us, I found a book on Ebay that suits us down to the ground.

Traffic-Free Cycle Trails by Nick Cotton (so that's what he did when he left Walford)! lists over 400 rides all over the country and if you like both your caching and the idea of doing it by bike is a worthwhile addition to your bookshelf. The ISBN number for the book is 978-1900623216 it includes rides alongside canals and also old railways. Well worth a the few quid that it cost. If you aren't sure if it's for you order it from your local library to have a look at.


Pet hate time, and here I am going against Groundspeak. I have decided that I will no longer accept blank logs. I can just about put up with a Found or TFTC log, though if I had my way I would delete those as well, but blank logs just don't do it for me.

I know that I am not the only one who feels like this. A lot of cachers put a lot of thought, time, effort and money in to the caches that they put out and to receive an email with a blank log is extremely frustrating. Groundspeak have decided that blank logs are acceptable and should stand as a record of someone finding your cache, but I disagree. I don't expect an essay, but a few words to describe how a person felt about the cache, the location etc. etc. not only shows that what I have put out has been appreciated but may just help another person who is struggling a little with that particular cache to find it.
Someone posts a few lines at the beginning of their cache descriptions. I asked if I could use it and they kindly agreed. This is what I now put on my cache pages.

Logging Etiquette: Geocache hiders sometimes go through a great deal of planning to place their caches. As a result, they'd like to hear your feedback on whether you liked or disliked any aspect of the hide, or if you feel that some cache maintenance is required. Single word, acronym, or emoticon logs may be easier when you have a lot of caches to log, but it doesn't tell the hider or other finders anything about your adventure (or lack thereof) in finding the cache. Please keep this in mind when entering your log. Completely blank logs will be deleted.

If you feel strongly about blank logs you should lobby Groundspeak to get their decision overturned.


The Android phone came in to its own this week. We were delivering a car to a garage when it broke down and we had to wait for a recovery truck. It just so happened that we didn't have the GPS with us but being parked near Loughborough University we were sure that there would be some caches around. Checking the phone and sure enough there were some nearby, in fact the nearest was only 400 feet away!

So off we trundled and found some well disguised caches by the now sadly deceased cacher Somloci. These caches have now been taken over by PlasmaWave. All named Lufbra Uni and then numbered these were urban caches at their best. We did have one DNF though amongst them. A couple of photos below taken in the grounds of the uni.

We got back to the car just in time for the recovery vehicle to arrive. At least we hadn't sat around twiddling our thumbs.

The final cache of the week was my event yesterday at Colwick Country Park http://coord.info/GC2XPF7 It was really well attended and we were really lucky in that the rain stayed away until the very end of the event. Some people took the opportunity to hand me their bugs in readiness for the Nottingham to Nottingham race which starts in September. I have so far received 9 entries and they are now waiting in the container ready to be found once the race has started.
The cache has been approved by our local reviewer Antheia and permission has been granted by Nottinghamshire County Council to place it on some land that belongs to them. The name of the new cache from where the racers will leave is very simply Nottingham TB Hotel. Not very original but the cache over in America will also be called the same.
If you want to see some photos of the race entrants have a look at the race blog which can be found either by following the link at the top of this page or http://www.usuktbrace.blogspot.com/
Finally I will leave you with a couple of photos of yesterdays event.


It was great to see some familiar faces and again lots of people for whom it was the first event.

Until next time, I hope you have a great week and get some good caches found.

Happy Hunting.

2 Jul 2011

Low Numbers, New Faces, New Coins and A Race

Low Numbers


After reaching last weeks milestone of 800 and doing a lot of caching, this week has been really low. Three in total. Things started to look promising and we planned to do a lot more, but as usual, work got in the way.

Bricks http://coord.info/GC29BAW was the first of the three this week. One of the most local caches not ticked off our list, Bricks is a nice simple puzzle cache that can be worked out at home by doing some checking on Google. By local cacher svk616g. We have found a few of his caches over the last few months but still have a fair few to do.

A few days ago, we packed the bikes in the Jeep again and headed off to do a series of caches on the Bilsthorpe Southwell Trail . After parking up we left the dogs and the bikes in the car while we searching for Number 1 http://coord.info/GC2Q9J1 This took us a few minutes longer than it should. We blame tree cover and the GPS (it really couldn't have been cacher error) We had looked in the right place a couple of times, then suddenly, realisation came and the cache was ours.

So on to number two. http://coord.info/GC2Q9JD A nifty hide, a slightly different take on an old idea. We were by now looking forward to doing the rest of the series, but then................Number 3 http://coord.info/GC2Q9JJ Having read previous logs we realised that we weren't in for an easy time with this one. We were right. Luckily the dogs are quite happy to entertain themselves. We spent a good 50+ minutes on this one with no luck. We had to admit defeat and give up. Sadly we didn't have time to continue with the rest of the series as we had baking to get back to for the market. Knowing some of the cachers who had found it, I decided to do a PAF to one of them. It turns out we had been looking at the cache all along. Our cachers eyes certainly weren't with us. We will be back soon to complete this entertaining series by Paneke sooner rather than later.

New Faces

Earlier this week we had a Notts Geocachers getogether. These used to happen regularly but for one reason and another, including falling numbers, they hadn't run in a while.  Months down the line and a few of us had been talking about trying to resurrect them. I decided to go through my cache logs and see what new cachers were about and contact them to guage interest.

The good news was that on the evening we had a lot of new faces. I won't call them newbies, it sounds so condescending. So we took over a large length of the pub and had a good natter.

We met, Coopernets, AmadeusVersailles, DingDongMerilly, Noords and many more. It looks like Notts Geocachers are going to go from strength to strength. We have vowed to keep the getogethers going on a more regular basis now.

New Coins

Due to the lack of caches this week, I have dotted some photos around the blog of coins that I have now added to my collection. There are now 20 in total, most of them have been pictured on here before so I have only added the new ones.

A Race

It has been in the back of my mind for some time to try and organise a TB race. This has been somewhat inspired by Slightly Tall Pauls Travel Bug Knock Out Race http://travelbugknockout.blogspot.com/ which proved (and still continues to do so) to be very popular.
Not wanting to tread on his toes I decided to do something a little different from that.

I got in contact with a geocacher from Nottingham, New Hampshire in the US  (Balrgn) to run some ideas by him. After some discussion we came up with the idea of a Nottingham UK to Nottingham US TB race. The premise being that he will set up a cache over there and I will do the same here. We will have a launch of the caches on the same day and bugs that have been entered in to the race will set off from both caches on that day. Details of the competition can be found here http://www.usuktbrace.blogspot.com/  Going on from this we came up with the idea that we should do event caches as well to launch the race. So from little acorns the idea has really moved on.

Just because people don't live in either of the Nottinghams doesn't preclude them from entering the race. As long as bugs are with either of us before launch date of September 10th they will be able to enter. The details of the two launch events can be found here. http://coord.info/GC2Z53W & http://coord.info/GC2Z51J

If you are interested in joining in, get in touch with me and I can give you our addresses so that you can post, or drop off bugs to us.

I am going to finish this blog with a moan and a couple of name and shames.

How many of you spend a lot of time, effort and money in setting up caches for others to enjoy? Quite a lot of you I would guess. How many of you get more than a little peed off when all you get in return when someone has found it is a log like this. Found, or TFTC, or                          or Got it. Yes, the space between TFTC and Got it was meant to be there. I have had a few blank logs come through lately.
I know that Groundspeak have an opinion that logs shouldn' be deleted, however I have now got to the stage where I will email such loggers and ask them for just a little bit more, or in the case of a blank log, I just delete it.
I don't expect essays on a log, but something that just shows that it actually has been found helps. I often read previous logs when I am out in the field as this is often a prelude to having to resort to a hint. I would love you to add a comment in the comments box below about what you think.

Now for the name and shames, one affects me directly, one doesn't.

There is a cacher called ChibiDragon she hails from Braintree in Essex. She is an occasional cacher but still logs on to GC regularly. She has had one of my geocoins in her possession for exactly one year now. I have emailed her during the last few months to ask her to get in contact with me to either move the coin on or get it back to me. She hasn't bothered to get in touch at all. It is this type of cacher who brings the game in to disrepute sadly.

The second name and shame is Pirates of Penzance they take pleasure in taking geocoins from a TB hotel in Portsmouth, contacting the coin owners and telling them that they are keeping them.
They now have over 20 coins that they have kept. I have no personal experience of these people, but it does wrankle that it is happening and even though they have been reported to GC nothing, as yet, has happened. I do know that a few of the coin owners are thinking about contacting the police regarding this. Especially as they have stated in coin logs that they are keeping them. It does go to prove however, that coin owners do need to state on a coins page that their item is NOT COLLECTABLE. I wrote in a previous blog about this. If you aren't sure have a look through old blogs to read it.


This was brought to my attention last night. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-13993411 The actual cache can be found here http://coord.info/GC2H9A2 

Comments on this have been flying back and forth on different forums. What do you think?

That's it until next week. We have an event next weekend, a barbeque in a local country park. Fingers crossed for decent weather.