The Bed, Bucks and Herts Cake TB race started on the 1st of January 2014 and a year later we were all keen to know whose TravelBug had won. We sent out our own TB, Washknight’s BBH UK Cake Racer, to join the fun and it has clocked up just under 10,000 miles in the last 12 months (See See last year’s blog entry Entering the Race with Cake. Unfortunately it left the UK in order to achieve this and this was not allowed in the rules. We didn’t mind and are just happy that the TB is still in circulation. It was fun to track it on its travels; it went to Texas and back. It is now back in the UK and hopefully it will continue to travel and rack up even more cakey miles.
To announce the winner and generally have an excuse for meeting up and eating some cake there was an event, BBH Cake Race Closing Ceremony (GC5J5A9) at a nearby National Trust Forest cafe in Ashridge and so on Sunday we headed over there to pick up a couple of interesting caches and do the ‘social’ thing.
The event was at 2pm and so we got there a bit early so we could search for Treasure Map Mystery (GCGDEX) and Tim & John’s 1st (restashed) (GC177). The first of these is an old cache dating back to May 2003 that involves following the instructions on a Treasure Map included on the cache page. Of course we went wrong almost immediately and wandered off in completely the wrong direction to start with. Eventually we retraced our steps to the start and tried again. Stage by stage we did what it said in the instructions and we left the path and headed through the trees. Ashridge is a very popular place and there were muggles all over the woods. There were also some other people who looked suspiciously like they were searching for the cache too. About half way through the instructions we went a bit wrong again but when we back tracked and took an alternative route we soon felt like we were on the right track again. We spotted our last landmark, a huge old dead stump and 20 metres to the right of that we spotted the massive fallen tree that was the hide. We had been beaten to the treasure though by fellow geocachers ‘Burton’s Are Go’ and Thewinfieldwonders and we laughed and chatted for a bit at GZ. They were here for the event too and had exactly the same idea as us. It was nice to meet them and after a bit of chat we went our separate ways.
Tim and John’s 1st restashed is the second oldest cache in England. It was great to be able to log it. Our route to GZ was… unconventional; electing to squelch through the mud rather than stay on the path, but we got there in the end. As we replaced the cache and headed for the event, we could hear voices of another caching team behind us seeking out the cache. It was turning out to be a bit like a Mega event in the woods which generally tend to be queues of people waiting to sign logs; very little searching skills needed. OK, so I exaggerate a bit but it was certainly funny to see so many geocachers in the woods.
The event was next on our agenda and it was a chance to chat to some existing friends and make a few new ones too. The winning TB travelled 1400 miles whilst staying in the UK but we were happy to just have ours still out there. Some TBs in the race went missing almost as soon as the race started. Grabbing an ice cream on the way out we were heckled as we made our way back to the car.
“Are you Washknight?”
One handy thing about being the only blind geocacher in the BBH group is that my white stick always identifies me and allows people to come up and introduce themselves. This is how we met the caching team of Yogi and Mags, whose work as cache owners we were very familiar with; one of their hides requiring three visits for us to find. It was lovely to put another voice to a name and it was a shame we, and them, had to leave as it would have been nice to stay and chat longer.
An event and 2 highly regarded historical caches ticked off in just a few short hours, that’s pretty good going. Happy days.
This caching adventure took place on Sunday 11th January 2015 and took our cache find count up to 909.