With the Easter school holidays upon us, it was a perfect time for a short trip up to Norfolk to visit my mum. Whilst we had made no plans to do any geocaching as such whilst we were there, it would have been rude not to have slipped in a cheeky one… like you do. My mum was of the same mind and after the obligatory egg hunt on Easter Sunday morning mum suggested we could head to Wells for a nice walk on the beach… oh and there was that Earth cache there too. Perfect.
We had thought about attempting the earth cache back in February when Sam and I had visited but the weather had beaten us back off the sand. This time, the skies were mostly clear and the sun was shining, much to the annoyance of the weather man who had forecasted clouds and cool winds all weekend… pah, what do weathermen know.
The theme for the earth cache is to learn all about tides and in order to claim the find you have to walk out along the beach to the water line at low tide and take a few measurements. I thought this would be a 10 minute walk or so from the steps near the car park but it actually turned out to be over 2km! The tide sure does go out a long way at Wells. Surprisingly the terrain on our walk was quite varied. I expected it to be a constant flat plane of sand all the way but we experienced everything from soft fine sand to squelchy muddy stuff, to undulating dunes including one that surely remains as an island even when the tide comes back in, to rutted gravelly sand and gullies of water still stubbornly refusing to retract with the rest of the sea. It wasn’t until the last 300 metres or so that we finally came upon the nice flat hard packed sand that was easy to walk on.
It was important to get our timings right so that we arrived at the water when the tide was at its lowest point and so some studying of the tides tables or more accurately a handy website, was needed. We arrived at the water with about 15 minutes to spare and so spent a little time playing noughts and crosses in the sand with my white cane. I also inscribed my caching name just in case any other geocachers came to log the earth cache that day. 😉
At the appropriate time we logged our position as a waypoint so we could calculate the exact distance that the water had retracted from the shore and then set about heading back to land. It wasn’t a very difficult earth cache but the walk there and back was very enjoyable indeed, if a little longer than we had expected.
I wonder if there are any other earth caches based on tides. Have you done one perhaps?
This caching adventure took place on Sunday 5th April 2015 and took our geocache count to 1008