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Geocaching in the famous Esholt village

It’s been a while since I’ve kept you all up to date with our geocaching adventures. There’s a couple of reasons for that, the main reason is as a group we’ve been so busy doing so much adventuring and exploring but at the same time we’ve been busy planning our first over night adventure. We’re going mountain climbing and camping in the Yorkshire Dales! We’re going to climb Pen-Y-Ghent. Certainly should be a laugh if nothing else!

So our latest geocaching adventure takes places in Esholt. The village made famous by the filming of Emmerdale, and home to the Woolpack pub. The village is beautiful and for a lot of people visiting who follow the soap drama it makes you feel a little like your on the set! Making our way around the beautiful village following our geocaching map it soon leads us down into the woodland behind the church. 


The first thing we noticed is the strong smell of garlic produced from the plants growing all over like wild fire. All in bloom they look beautiful. The woods are very quaint and pretty looking and coupled with the blistering sunshine pouring in through the trees the whole place is lit up in a summer haze. 


The first cache we’ve found is the most enormous cache I’ve ever seen! Hidden in between the branches and leaves of a bushy tree, camouflaged to perfection the cache was a very unexpected find. 


As always with geocaching opening the cache is always the most exciting part and we weren’t disappointed, swappables galore. Signing the log which had been made out of a book of blank postcards, quite fitting as they were bought from the village post office, owned on Emmerdale by good old Viv! It was nice to see how long this cache has been here so looking back through the left messages was great. 


Making our way back to the village, we stopped for a look around the church which was empty at the time. It’s such a cute and cosy little church with beautiful period features. 


Before we made our way to the next cache in the village we decided a short stop at the Woolpack pub was in order. It was heaving with people inside and out from diners to drinkers to dogs and children, even the touristy people taking quick snaps of the pub. Due to the fact the soap drama was filmed in a studio the inside looks different to the inside of the pub shown on the telly! However a nice touch is the stone original floors complete with wall to wall, pictures signed by cast members past and present. 

The next cache was placed straight opposite the Woolpack pub, which was a problem. Muggles, muggles everywhere! To make it worse it was a cryptic cache. It baffled us. Trying not to draw attention to ourselves, which was literally impossible we decided a drink was in order back across the pub! Sitting outside each of us baffled it was time to consult the app to see if anyone else had left any comments. They had loads all saying the same thing, how ingenious the cache is, how many muggles are around and how baffled they all were, great! Now we had already been over to the cache location tried moving this and that, looking in the cracks and crevices of the wall in front. We even had a resident watching us out of her kitchen window. The amount of people she must see poking around the wall she probably thinks we’re all mad! 

Let’s give it one last try! 

Making our way across the road we began the search.I thought I’d found it by unscrewing a plastic black lid which looked completely out of place upon a silver metal electrical box.I pulled up a long wire that just kept coming out, clearly I should put that back before I blow myself up! Who ever said geocaching wasn’t dangerous was lying! 


Half an hour later and we’re still searching, as were about to give up looking because the sun is blistering, everyone’s curious about what we’re doing, and grey glove has completely beat us with his ingenious hiding places once again, but as if by chance my attention was drawn back to a part on the electrical box that I had tinkered with earlier and discarded. Looking again for the second time and turning the mechanism around I noticed a small plastic black stopper on the top! Behold a quick unscrew and it’s off bringing with it a small plastic tube complete with a tiny piece of carefully folded paper! 


We’ve found it! The Day is now complete! 

Happy Reading 

Please don’t forget to follow on here and my Instagram page for some very exciting news coming soon! 

Insta – @geojoukblog 


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Bricking it!

I don’t know what’s so fascinating about things that are old and abandoned but there certainly is something!

It’s a complete adrenaline rush and a wave of different emotions, from the planning all the way to the ride home in the car. Urban Exploring has definitely become one of my favourite things to do!

This amazing find is an old abandoned brickworks called Allen Brickworks in Hipperholme.

Google maps however turned this into a complete adventure! Basically it took us the wrong long way around down some epic dirt paths resulting in us having to make friends with a random stone yard owner to be able to abandon the adventure wagon and commence foot patrol to our destination!

As long as you don’t mind hills this is a beautiful walk down into the bottom of the valley. It is possible to drive down closer but I wouldn’t advise it in anything other than a purpose built monster truck or a vehicle of that description!

We didn’t really know what to expect to be honest, but we certainly didn’t account for what we found, the place is massive! We were there for a couple of hours at least. There’s so many out buildings and building blocks to go in.

If you like street art this is the place of all places to see it! It’s literally the paradise of street art and design, Nearly every wall every floor, roof and brick is covered. The contrast is amazing the old bricks and buildings with their run down appearance are given a vibrant new look. The floors are littered with empty spray cans of all ages.

It’s always quite nerve-wracking exploring around derelict sites you just don’t know what to expect or who! We bumped into “people” for the first time ever and believe you and me it’s a bit scary at first. You don’t know why their here you hope there equally as adventurous as you are but due to the nature of the places there’s a chance some of the people might be up to “no good” luckily everyone we met were cool! A group of street artists looked as frightened to see us as we did them at first. There was also a couple the same as us exploring around taking pictures and then finally a group of younger people out with their pet dog.

There was so much to see but some of the buildings are just empty rooms due to a lot of the fixtures and original fittings being destroyed over time.

This place was brilliant but due to the sheer size of it, it would be impossible to upload and share everything with you all at once so stay tuned for part too with loads more photos as we adventure around as well as the people we met and the history behind the place.

Well that’s enough jabbering now for this one the pictures say it all! This is literally an adult adventure playground!

Happy Reading! 

Don’t forget to head over to my Instagram page for all the photos @geojoukblog link on the homepage 🙂 


 



 

 

People watching at Salts Mill and not in a creepy way!

People are fascinating creatures. Each one completely different from another. There’s never a better opportunity to see going about their business than in a busy setting. So with that said and armed with the camera a trip to the beautiful and historic Salts Mill in Saltaire.

Salts mill used to be a textiles mill but is now used as an art gallery, with places to eat and shop. It was built way back in 1853 by Sir Titus Salt. (side note, if you have never heard of this guy look him up!) When the mill was built it was the largest industrial building in the world! This was calculated by the total floor area, and quite rightly because its massive. The mill its self is situated in the heart of Saltaire and closed its doors as a textile mill in 1986.

Saltaire is a world heritage site, its beautiful, walking around is picturesque and perfectly reserved in its Victorian glory. All the houses and buildings are bursting with character from the Victorian period, hence why the site is so heavily protected. All the houses were built by Sir Titus Salt for his mill workers and staff. The houses are still being lived in today.

The day we decided to adventure here was the weekend that Roberts Park were hosting the Dragon Boat Racing event, so it was heaving around the area, as well as the blistering sunshine that had spontaneously come out to play.

Salts Mills art gallery houses several large rooms to display the very talented Bradford born artist David Hockney.

On the ground floor is my personal favourite part of the mill, the art shop. A beautiful period room renovated beautifully displaying art work, statues and ornaments as well as art and craft supplies and books all devoted to creative minds. The atmosphere is so calm and quiet, and it smells beautiful, floral and fresh.

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This lady trying to decide which craft book to buy.
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Look at this lady, I wonder what masterpiece she’s off to create.
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This women had me mesmerised, so classy.

Around the room colours are everywhere, they stand out beautifully against the dark surroundings. The solid table benches used to display all of the shops items dominate the room. This creates a very old meets modern contrast which works perfectly. I could stay in here for hours.

I love the reflection of the windows in the glass
Gorgeous Artwork Lines the stone walls
the tall window arches create amazing light patches around the room
so many colours and details compliment the artwork behind
Look at the detail and craftmanship in these!


Out of all the pieces around the room my favourite had to be this elderly lady her face really tells a picture, their life in her eyes, history in her face. The way the artist has captured how she olds the saucer reminds me of how my own Nan used to. The longer I looked at it I couldn’t help thinking that’s someone’s grandmas.

My Favourite Piece

Looking around the mill other parts of the structure and decor caught my eye.

Ceiling and Beam

Victorian school desk, I wonder how many children used this


After a look round at the separate parts of the mill it was time to leave but before I did I managed to get a cheeky snap of the Man Himself!

Sir Titus Salt

Sir Titus Salt

Happy reading!

Follow me on Instagram @geojoukblog Link on the Homepage! 

Urban Exploring – Not everyone who wanders is lost!

Ive always been intrigued when it comes to deserted places, abandoned buildings and derelict dwellings. So urban exploring is right up my alley! Armed with a new DSLR camera and an urge to get snapping it was time to find some locations, google is literally our best friend!

Destination Found – Old Lane Mill – Halifax (also known as Rawsons Mill)

Old Lane Mill


A little bit of history for you, this was the first mill in Britain to be steel framed. It was a steam powered mill built by a guy names James Ackroyd in 1825. I mean come on 1825 and its still stood here now in 2016, I can’t even get my apple charger to last more than 3 months! The floors of the mill were made from solid stone and the mill was documented as being “fire proof”. The first Jacquard Looms were also built and housed in the mill, and according to the history books every evening when the night watchman was starting his shift he would fire a blunderbuss to signal that he was on duty!

The mill its self is now a Grade 2 listed property, given its listing in 1994, this is due to the mill being the oldest and largest surviving example of a steam powered, iron framed, multi storey textile mill.

On approach to the mill the sheer size of the place is over whelming, the nerves begin to kick in a little bit at the thought of having to enter the ground floor. All of the ground floor windows have been bricked up except one. This makes its extremely dark with no visibility once inside other than the small cracks of light coming through from the holes in the ceiling above. Torches are a must!

Lit by flash light you couldnt see your hand in front of your face!

Once over the initial nerves and moving across the ground floor to the far back left a stair case is accessible to all floors of the mill. Luckily we were alone whilst exploring, but it became aparent that the mill is used by others, heavily tagged with graffitti and littered with drinks cans and bottles it defintly adds to the “get in and straight out feeling”

The atmosphere is slightly eerie, I suppose part of this comes with the territory of exploring anything old and abandoned, but walking around advancing up the floors you cant help but hear the silence, theres an air of uncertainty, as well as a sadening feeling that what once was a busy busseling building, housing hundreds of workers and so much life is now left empty and forgotten.

Hole from the second floor roof upwards !


Going up from the ground floor to the first via the staircase in the far left at the back of the mill opens up into a massive open light space a welcomed sight from the pitch black darkness downstairs.

The flooring is a little dicey on this level but seems safe enough to walk on and explore, looking around the heavily tagged walls give a great contrast against the green structural posts and the aged surroundings. The emptiness of the mill hits you as you arrive up here, it’s surreal and quite saddening to think of all the hustle and bustle that would have once been here, the hundreds of people, who have worked here, the noise and atmosphere which would have been here when the mill was alive.
From this walking across to the other side of the mill the main hall way is accessible half of the stair case has been destroyed so access from here is not possible but it does allow great views of what once was a beautifully decorated ceilings.


Theres some beautiful exposed examples of the steel and iron work, and the archetecture is amazing. On some of the levels 3 and 4 if i remember rightly the ground is worse than the others so extra care is needed when walking across, several holes and decaying brickwork means you have to be aware constantly of where your standing.


Climbing all the way to the top floor and looking out over the view was an awesome feeling of achievement, but also made you feel a little uneasy about how exposed you really are to passersby once your in the mill itself. With only one way in and out and a very dark ground floor to have to go through to exit, once your in there and climbing up the floors you really arent aware if anyone else has entered behind you. I certainly wouldnt recommend being there after dark!

Arriving up to the second floor the first thing that stands out is the red structural posts lined all the way down the floor. Following the line of sight to the far back of the room more graffiti tags take centre place. The flooring on this level is a little sketchy there are holes in the floor and loose gravel underfoot, extra care is needed.


There’s numerous side rooms, lift shafts and hallways to explore through which aren’t in the best conditions, but I couldn’t resist a little bit of a risk or a quick cheeky lean over the sides to take some photos.



After climbing and clambering through the floors making our way all the way to the top, was all worth it because the top floor, wow, brilliant what a sight!

A massive open space with giant framework all exposed, the colour is a gorgeous reddish orange colour, created from the years of weather and abandonment. Curved arches made from steel beams create a perfect shell which was once covered by the roof. The amount of grass growing on the top floor was an unexpected sight. There was also a surprise resident you will see him later on!

The entrance to the top floor off from the stair case for me was the space with the most character, a large open circle window looks out over the loop system and buildings of Halifax. The way the scene is framed through the circle perfectly captures some of the highest buildings, it’s almost like looking through a spyglass.

Around the entire building the walls are all heavily tagged with artwork sprayed by previous explorers marking their territory. It certainly gives the derelict site that “urban” look. Here’s some photos from around the site. Some of the artwork was displayed in rooms that are completely in the dark.

This was our first experience at urban exploring and I loved it! The adrenaline, the excitement as well as the unnerving feeling and eeriness all add to the excitement but the overall sense of achievement overcoming all of that defiantly makes it an unforgettable experience, even when the places themselves are sadly now forgotten, luckily for this building it isn’t completely abandoned there’s one resident still enjoying the building this little guy really wasn’t frightened he just sat unmoved by our appearance just still and staring!

View from the top !
View from the top!


Happy Reading! 

Don’t forget to head on over to Instagram @geojoukblog for more exploring pictures!

 

Epic Geocaching Adventure

I’m sat here ill plagued by some kind of annoying flu virus and fed up. Im no good at just sitting and doing nothing it drives me mental. So what better way to cheer my self up than to relive a recent adventure and share it with all of you.

The latest adventure is at the stunning location known as Ogden Water and Nature Reserve. How have I never been here before the woodland is so alluring and charismatic, walking around it gives off a magical feeling. It almost make’s you feel as though your on an epic adventure with Bilbo Baggins.

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If You Go Down To The Woods Today …

The sloping entrance to the woods and nature reserve opens out inviting you in with a picturesque scene of across the water complete with the historical promenade walk way. Walking along it certainly gives you a feeling of elegance, and brings with it the feel of its mid-Victorian origins.

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The Promenade 

 

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Opening the geocaching app to decide where to go first we were spoilt for choice, seems as we were going to be here most of the day we could take our pick!

The closest one to use took us up to the top of the woodland out into the open grass, right on the border where the trees stop. The hints on the cache used the words “creative” and “well hidden”. We spent about 10 minutes looking checking the area for where it might be.

It wasn’t long before we discovered the very clever hiding place!

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Completely camouflaged with another piece of bark in front
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Lets Get Logging

The ground is quite rocky and geocaching here is a lot of fun as long as you don’t mind continuous walking up and down hills! Making our way to the next cache it was located within a valley in the woods. Complete with wooden “troll” bridge (you know the ones you imagined the troll to live under as a kid when being read the story!).

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Troll Bridge

The cache was impossible to find and so after being slightly beaten checked the comments left by fellow cacher’s. We found out it was at the base of a certain type of tree, not very helpful when there’s 6 in close proximity, it also didn’t help we were stood facing the wrong way across the bridge! …Digging time!!

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Found it! By this point the sun is shining and although its only spring it’s getting rather warm, checking in on the app is always exciting a sense of achievement to share with others. Locating the next nearest cache we packed away out things took of a layer or too and got ready to explore. The hill we had to climb to get up to the other side of the valley was huge! A long steep walk up the middle of the woods.

It’s nice to see the care and attention that’s being taken to maintain these woods, orienteering posts, maintained walk ways and regular seating areas for resting are situated all over. Natural bird tables made from logs with carvings and decking providing viewing points for visitors keep it interesting.

Making it to the top of the climb with a serious need for a brew and a lie down we locate the next cache! What a nice cache to find after the torture of the hill. A cache filled with trinkets to swap always fun to find!

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A quick sit down on the tops and it was time to head back down towards our next cache, the location for this was near Boggart’s Grave. A Boggart is an English folklore creature, that are said to be very mischievous.

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Poem about Boggarts Grave 

The woods were starting to get busy and before long we were frequently coming crossed paths with families, children, dogs and dog walkers all out enjoying the sunshine and surroundings. Its don’t get spotted by the muggles time!

A short walk up the steps from Boggarts Grave we located our last cache of the day. Hidden in the remains of a hollow tree stump was a small container! Time to open it ….

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The cache had become wet so some of the contents weren’t in too good a condition but fortunately the log and a picture left behind of a family finding the cache previously was a nice find to end the day. A sit down for a quick drink and it would be time to start making our way back down and towards the car. After the epic geocaching adventure we had been on today it was time to log out of the app and just enjoy the superb scenery and delightful views.

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When reaching the bottom path to the woods you reach level again with the reservoir, the pathways are all even and allow you to walk the rest of the way back to the entrance directly alongside the water. The view is amazing.

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Reflections – Photo Taken By Myself – Jo Webster

After quite a long walk back the visitor centre and the route to the car park area it was a pleasant surprise to see a family area complete with benches to sit and eat, overlooking the water as well as being able to watch the ducks and geese sitting on the banking or swimming around. I didn’t expect this guy to get so close! He wasn’t scared.

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I can honestly say I had an amazing time exploring Ogden Water and I would certainly go again, it’s a great spot for any Geocachers as there’s so many to find, but the character of the woods itself inspires exploration for everyone. Heading back to the car the three musketeers had certainly had an eventful day!

 

For more photos of this adventure don’t forget to follow me @geojoukblog on Insta! Link on the homepage!

 

Happy Reading 

 

 

Goit Stock, WOW

This adventure takes place in Goit Stock woods and Harden Beck, and wow is it beautiful!

Hidden away in the valley, a short walk through a side street in between beautiful houses and garages, a woodland area appears. The pathway opens up into a picturesque woodland. An easy walk on quite even terrain the footpath takes you along side the river through into the heart of the woods.

The hidden valley over the last 200 years has been home to a cotton mill, the site is beautiful, no wonder it was a much visited tourist attraction going as far back as the 1920’s.The area was primarily owned by the Ferrand family, as part of the St Ives Estate. This was up until 1919 when it was sold. Known as the “happy valley” Goit Stock used to be a thriving pleasure resort. The cotton mill which was converted into a ballroom and cafe recorded an astonishing 20,000 visitors on one Bank Holiday Monday in 1927. Unfortunately tragedy stuck and a fire which started destroyed the Cotton Mill along with the dance floor and all of the instruments belonging to the Wilsden Brass Band. The area never got back to thriving quite like it did and sadly was closed in the year of 1932.

Walking through the woods along the river side, the gentle noise of running water can be heard, the sun shines through the gaps in the trees creating a haze across the ground. It really is beautiful . As we make our way through heading towards the screen of trees creates a secluded feel to our adventure, we could be anywhere. A real new world feel is created, the gentle hum of wildlife, and the array of wild flowers creates a very scenic picture.

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Goit Stock Woods

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Goit Stock Woods
After a short walk over uneven rocky terrain the woodland opens up, large bolder’s take precedence at either side of the walk way, covered in moss and other plant life. It is very charismatic to look at the way nature over the years has adapted to survive. Turning a corner following the river bank a little further beautiful rock formations in the water, splashes from the collision of water are created as the river runs freely along, tiny birds are sat on the rocks hopping and jumping in and out of the water, undeterred by people or the current.

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Goit Stock Woods
I love to be outdoors, it gives me a sense of freedom and tranquility, a place to unwind and relax where nothing else matters, exploring in new places taking advantages of the beautiful surroundings and the calming atmosphere’s.

Out of all the places I have been lucky enough to see and visit since I began Geocaching nothing could have prepared me for what I was about to see just around the next corner.

Hidden in a secret corner, surrounded by gigantic rocks and trees lies this breathtaking natural scene.

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The Stunning Goit Stock Waterfall

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The Breathtaking Goit Stock Waterfall
 

Ive never seen something so naturally beautiful so unexpected. If that wasn’t enough just to the left was a short flight of metal steps joining on to a quite nerve-racking narrow rocky path allows access to above the waterfall and onwards into the woods.

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View From The Top Of The Waterfall
Deciding to have a rest and a cup of well deserved tea we ventured onwards to find a suitable resting place. The terrain around the area is quite uneven and rocky so we decided to walk a little further around the next corner we weren’t disappointed. Out of sight of the waterfall the path opened up revealing this.

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Second Waterfall – Goit Stock Woods

A smaller but in no way less breathtaking waterfall. The sound of the water splashing down into the river was so loud. But at the same time not intrusive. As you can see I couldn’t resist sitting on the edge, after all what better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than sat watching waterfalls surrounded by such beautiful scenery.

Time really does fly whilst out adventuring and reluctantly it was time to start heading back,  packing away our tea cups and camera we made our way back through the woodland. Ducks bobbing up and down washing in the river, a couple of spaniels eagerly adventuring in and out of the water whilst their owners watched on.

Further back towards the entrance of the woods we found one more beautiful spot and a chance to get in to the water, for one last stop.

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So as the days adventure came to an end complete with muddy shoes and tired feet it’s time to say goodbye for now.

Follow for more adventures of Geocaching and Exploring, and don’t forget to check out my Instagram page for lots for photos! Link on the Homepage.

Happy Reading.

The “Top Secret” cache

During my short time geocaching, I’ve been extremely lucky to find quite a range of different caches, starting with the tiniest micro caches to large containers filled with trinkets to swap.

But it wasnt untill this recent little adventure to the stunning Burley in Wharfedale that the three musketeers discovered our first “secretive” cache!

Burley in Wharfedale is situated in the Wharfedale valley in Yorkshire, where the River Wharfe is located. The area is beautiful to walk around from the village centre displaying historic buildings with stunning architecture such as St Mary’s parish church. Other quaint little buildings such as The Round House add to the characters of the village. For all you Countdown viewers Burley Woodhead was home to the late Richard Whiteley.

For fellow geocachers and outdoor enthusiasts, Burley in Wharfedale boasts some beautiful walking routes as well as being a great start for exploring around the lower part of the Yorkshire Dales.

The biggest attraction for a day in the great outdoors is Burley Bridge or the “Stepping Stones” as its more commonly known. This is due to there being no bridge to cross over the river, instead giant stepping-stones make crossing a lot more fun!

Here’s a panoramic photo I took so you can see just how beautiful this place really is.

 

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River Wharfe – Burley Bridge – Photo taken by myself – Jo Webster

The day we went the River was really high as a result of the recent floods that have effected the area, so the “Stepping Stones” weren’t as visible as they usually are. This made crossing very tricky!

A few people were attempting to cross as but either got stuck halfway and ended up turning back or made a series of Elvis like dance moves as they slipped and slid their way across. My explorer friend GeoJames decided he too wished to audition for Strictly Come Dancing, and decided to attempt to make his way over the river as we the “sensible” ones watched, and believe me it’s quite the distance!

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“Stepping Stones” – Photo taken by myself – Jo Webster

Needless to say the comedy value of this was outstanding! He had reached the other side finally, with extremely wet feet and trousers and a couple of interesting dance moves along the way. The only problem being that he wasnt aware that the stepping-stones are the only way to get across, and the only way back! Priceless …

After skimming stones across the river and enjoying the gorgeous scenery and waterfalls it was time to begin geocaching!

There isn’t that many caches located directly near the river, but one in particular caught our eye whilst scanning through the app. “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels” 

We made our way down the country path with open fields either side with animals grazing in the sunshine. It’s always a busy location for other walkers, dog walkers and families so being careful not to attract the attention of “muggles” is quite tricky!

We kept following the compass untill we reached the area where the cache was hidden,  we spent ages racking our brains, searching all around for the cache. Whilst at the same time trying not to attract the attention of passers-by looking like a set of three crazy people searching through bushes and brambles.

There were no hints available with the cache, but the comments from previous cacher’s helped! The hiding place for this cache was ingenious and so creative, after what seemed like an eternity of searching trying to think outside of the box we noticed a fence post with a large silver but slightly aged padlock attached.

The penny ladies and gentleman finally dropped! “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels” … the clue was quite clearly in the name! PadLOCK!

What a hiding place, a hollowed out old padlock, walked past everyday by people constantly, only known to a small few what it actually is, brilliant!

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Top secret cache – Photo taken by myself – Jo Webster

Inside a perfectly folded log sheet complete with lots of other geocacher’s usernames.

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A little weathered but still in tact log – Photo taken by myself – Jo Webster

As you can see from the log sheet and what amazed us was three years this log has been going, stashed neatly away secretly in the padlock. All in all it was a successful and comical geocaching adventure from Geojames nearly drowning and been swept down the river to hunting for ingenious caches, and on that note I’ll leave you with this question …

Whats the most “secretive” cache you’ve found?

Leave a comment below, and for more pictures and to keep up to date with my geocaching adventures feel free to head on over to my Instagram or Facebook page! Links on the homepage.

Happy Reading