10 November 2013 (Sunday) - Essex

For many years I would go down to the Rye Bonfire Parade at about 2pm for a pre-parade drinkie; and be utterly wazzled by 4pm. Consequently the day after Rye Bonfire Parade was usually spent with a headache. Despite only having had four beers yesterday I continued the tradition of starting the day with a headache.

We had an early start today. Since the evenings are drawing in we thought that it might be a sensible idea to start our weekend expeditions earlier to make the most of the daylight; especially if we are going any major distance. And today we went quite some way. Three of us (and two small dogs) drove for over an hour and a half to the Wat Tyler Country Park where we were joined by an Essex Boy. Six of us then did a Wherigo.
Wherigos are a rather obscure kind of geocache which involves a lot of playing with a specialist app on your phone. There aren't many about locally; and most (all) of those which are to be found within twenty miles have been created by me. I really wanted to do a Wherigo, so we went to Essex to do one.

"The Devil's Porridge" was a very interesting insight into the explosives factories that used to exist along the south Essex coast. The style of the narrative in the Wherigo cartridge certainly brought the ghosts of the past to life. I especially liked the building with differing brickwork at either end because one half of it had been blown up. I was rather expecting to have seen more of the explosive works; it was amazing how much of it had gone and had returned to nature over the intervening years. In several places we had to force our way through brambles. My nose still bears the scars.
And as a Wherigo builder myself (!) it was an experience to actually do a Wherigo adventure. It would have been nice to have seen more of the Wherigo functionality used; but it was an excellent Wherigo; one I can thoroughly recommend.

We then completely failed to find a supposedly easy roadside geocache, and there was an embarrassing five minutes spent with my arm stuck in a hole in a tree. We then moved on to a Church micro where, as well as finding a geocache, I got a First to Find. Or "First to Munzee". I don't know if being first has as much kudos with Munzees as it does with geocaches, but I still felt rather smug.
Stopping only briefly to find a disabled geocache and to look at some chalk, we made our way round to Hadleigh castle where we had a rather good picnic. And, suitably refreshed, we wandered down and along a circular route of a couple of miles where we found several more geocaches. And also found we'd walked straight past one or two others.

Our early start paid dividends; we got back to the cars just as it was getting dark. We didn't find as many caches as we sonetimes do. In fact we only found fourteen today. (And three munzees) But those fourteen were rather special for anyone who hunts tupperware. A Wherigo; three Earthcaches, a difficulty level five cache. And a "First to Find" Munzee as well. As "My Boy TM" would say... "not too shabby".
As is often the case I took a few photos of the day.

I slept much of the way home; as did my dog. Once home I took that little dog into the shower where I hosed the mud from him. He then went straight to his basket where he snored soundly for the rest of the evening.
We watched the last episode in the current series of "Downton Abbey". Today they were gearing up for the village fete. I do like that show. It's a shame it's now finished for another year.

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