Explorer 297

Explorer Map 297 – Lower Wharfedale & Washburn Valley

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Is It A Monster ? – Caches No’s 443 – 460

Submitted by on Thursday, 13 May 2010No Comment
Is It A Monster ? – Caches No’s 443 – 460

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Invermoriston GC1PAKR – cache #443
Last day of our week in Scotland, and everyone was having a chilling day as it was going to be a long drive home, so Angel78 and I decided to take a drive right around the lake to see if we could find the monster… or at least some caches !
I missed the parking for this as there was a lorry turning into the entranceway, so had to drive down to the village, turn round, drive back past the cache, turn round again a couple of miles down the road and then stop in the right place… Then a family came walking up the path and stopped for a chat to each other So I had to hang around for a few minutes pacing up and down and looking over the wall.
The cache itself was a 35mm film cannister hidden in a crack in the back of the wall, you can’t really see the cache, have to get it by feel.

May 7th 2010 – Eilean Muireach (Murdoch’s Island) GC1E9BX – cache #444
A short walk along a path from the layby, the hint says it’s hidden at the base of a sycamore tree… there’s only one sycamore tree around, and the cache isn’t under that !
It’s under a Silver Birch tree next to it – maybe the monster has moved it !

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Fort Augustus GC1PAKT – cache #445
A 35mm film cannister hidden in the wall of the council building in Fort Augustus, Easy to find but there were a lot of people about, having two of you makes this sort of cache a lot easier to do as one person poking around just looks suspicious, whereas one searching and one standing watching doesn’t look too bad for some reason.

May 7th 2010 – Witchbane GCVX1J – cache #446
Hidden under a rock in a picnic spot next to the car park, several people were using the picnic tables seemingly to just sit and read the newspaper in the sunshine, but they took no notice of what we were doing.

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – OS Loch Tarff GC1PAKV – cache #447
Driving uphill out of Fort Augustus following a car which of course pulled into the cache parking space and the occupants got out and took photographs of the view, then photographs of each other stood in front of the view… we pulled over on the other side of the road and loitered in the car till they had taken every possible combination of people and view and left… then we parked up and found the cache

May 7th 2010 – Loch Tarff & Local Hero GC1AYFM – cache #448
This is what it’s like being a cacher… it was a quiet day, not many cars about, but when we got near the site we could see a camper van parked in the parking spot, so we pulled in in front of it, and it seemed to be deserted… but before we had chance to get out of the car a pick-up truck and trailer came the other way and pulled in as well, then the guy got out of the truck, unshipped his quad bike from the trailer, grabbed his rifle, stuck the rifle on the gun holder in front of the quadbikes handlebars, opened the gate and drove off into the field and over the hill… while all that was happening we ate our sandwiches… then when there was no-one about I got out of the car, and a jogger came over the hill… god knows where he was running from and too… eventually he passed out of site and I went up and found the cache and as I stood up from replacing the cache the guy on the quadbike with the rifle reappeared over the hill and was looking at me – well you do have to pass through a gate to get to the cache and it’s not on a public footpath so he was probably wondering what I was doing in his field… I hurried quickly back to the car and drove off !

May 7th 2010 – Viewpoint GC14692 – cache #449
You have to climb up from the road to this cache on top of the hill, the views are expansive and the path was fortunately not too wet and muddy. I thought the cache might be a bit hard to find being hidden under a rock in the heather… as there’s lots of heather and several rocks, but the GPS brought me to the right spot

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Whitebridge GC1PAKX – cache #450
The bridge is one of the few original bridges from the military road of the 1730’s, unfortunately it needs a bit of repair at the minute so you can’t even walk over it, but there is a fund going to pay for the repairs and open the bridge to foot traffic again.
The cache is just to the side of the path leading to the bridge, under a pile of stones

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Junction GC1PAKY – cache #451
One thing I like about Scotland is that many of the roads have older roads running alongside them, a this site you turned at a T junction just after a bridge over the river, pulled up in a layby and then walked back down the old road and over the old bridge to find the cache

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Dalcrag GC1Q447 – cache #452
I had to sneak around to this cache as there were a couple in a tent only a few yards away from the cache, what they were doing in a tent in the middle of the afternoon I can only guess at, but it sounded like they were enjoying themselves !

May 7th 2010 – Namelessness GC136NB – cache #453
No hint and dodgy GPS reception… hmmm… If I were a cache where would I be hiding ?… I think I’d be just there, under the overhang of a big rock… and that’s where the cache was

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Lower Foyers GC1PAM5 – cache #454
A cache hidden in the roots of a tree… by a rock…

May 7th 2010 – In The Footsteps Of The Beast ? GCWETD – cache #455
A graveyard, with a ruined hut in the corner, the hut used to be used by a nightwatchman who guarded the graves against grave robbers (in the early 1800’s). The cache is a 35mm film cannister hidden in the walls of this ruined hut

May 7th 2010 – Burrows Bench GCC6B2 – cache #456
Bit of a climb to get to this cache from the car park, but made worth it because by the cache I saw a red squirrel in the trees by the cache… not something I’ve ever seen before in the wild, unfortunately before I could get my camera out and take a picture a German hiker came along the path the other way and the squirrel disappeared

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – View GC1PAM6 – cache #457
The only place on the entire drive around the Loch where the road is actually at water level, just a low wall and an armco barrier to stop you driving straight into the water… the cache is hidden in the armco.

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Change House GC1PAM8 – cache #458
A Change House was the equivalent of a Service Station on the military road built around 1730 to connect Fort Augustus at the Southern End of the loch with Fort George at Inverness. At the Change House you could swap your horses and get supplies. These day’s there is just a notice board and a building foundation to show where the Change House was… and a cache, in the roots of a tree, hidden by a stone…

May 7th 2010 – Monster Drive – Dores Beach GC1PAMA – cache #459
The last cache on our drive around the loch, another 35mm film cannister hidden in the fork of a tree in a place that will be much busier at weekends and in the summer holidays than it was on a Friday in early May.

28 caches in total we did in 5 days around the loch, and did we find the monster ?…

May 8th 2010 – Motorway Mayhem M74 – Happendon Services GC239QA – cache #460
Driving back home the next day we pulled into the services for a break, switched the GPS on to see if there was a cache about, and found we were parked about 30 feet away… in fact when I had got out, signed the cache and put the cache back I could see it from the car when I knew exactly where to look ! (the cache is in the headline picture)

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