23 August 2017 (Wednesday) - The Cuckoo Trail (South)

I didn’t sleep that well last night. Just before I went to kip I’d had an email from Geocaching HQ. Yesterday someone had been looking for one of the caches I’d hidden on a public footpath near Challock and had upset the dogs in a nearby house. The chap who owned the house came out to find out what was going on, and the person looking for the cache told him what they were doing. They went on to tell them all about geocaching, and the web address of Geo-HQ. Consequently the chap contacted Geo-HQ and asked for the thing to be removed as he didn’t want geocachers (or anyone) using the public right of way which runs near his house. Without doing any checking the people at Geo-HQ immediately archived my offending cache.
I’m a bit miffed by this. The thing wasn’t on private land; it was the other side of a rather wide track on public land. Will the council now re-route the footpath for these people purely because they want to be alone?
And I’m doubly miffed that Geo-HQ didn’t think to discuss the matter with me first. I’m sorry I went out of my way and spent my own time and money to hide the thing to help them in what is fundamentally their get-rich-quick scheme.

Geocaching HQ are a load of crap really. What on Earth do they do? Caches are hidden by volunteer members of the public (like me). Their suitability is judged by unpaid volunteers. The caches are found (in the large part) by the use of third-party software as their own proprietary product isn’t fit for purpose. Despite the whole thing clearly being funded by quite a bit of advertising, having paid out money to Geocaching HQ every year I then had to buy at least two apps which *are* fit for purpose. I also pay money to Project GC because the website provided by Geocaching HQ doesn’t actually allow you to do the hobby.
I shall continue to take advantage of the hobby to go out finding the caches. However I shall take this episode to be formal notification that my efforts as a hider of caches are not appreciated, and shall not bother contributing to the hobby any more.
This morning I was rather tempted to take my “Kent Geocacher of the Year 2015” award over to Seattle and shove it up the arse of Geocaching’s chief executive.

Over brekkie I watched an episode of “Uncle”, then got my stuff together and met up with Dick. We completely ignored my sat-nav’s instructions and made good time to Polegate where we met up with Aleta. Together we drove up to Hellingly.

Last week we walked the northern half of the Cuckoo Trail, collecting geocaches as we did. Despite my sulk we went out hunting caches along the southern half today. It was pretty enough (as you can see by clicking here), but the route followed an old train line which now either has trees on either side or goes through housing estates. Scenic views were somewhat lacking.
We broke up the walk with a little wander round Heathfield where we had lunch.

Geocache wise… When we walked the northern stretch I wrote about the caches ”most were rather difficult finds. Many were lacking any kind of hint, and I must admit I thought the given difficulty/terrain ratings were something of an underestimate”, so we knew today would be hard. Today we set off for forty caches; we found thirty. Of that thirty, some of them were ridiculously deep in the undergrowth, and some required herculean efforts of tree-climbing. Several were only found from hints from previous logs.
 We logged “Did Not Find” on six of them. Were they really missing? I’d offered to replace any missing caches and was told that none were missing a week or so ago. I saw a couple of the ones we found had notes from the chap who’d hidden them in the last week or so implying that he’d been along. Had he checked the lot? “Owner Maintenance” logs might have given us a bit more enthusiasm to persevere. I’ve mentioned before that some people want their caches found, and some don’t. These ones are definitely in the latter category.
There were three caches which fell into a rather odd category. We found them. But the rules say you have to sign the paper log. We couldn’t get to the paper log as they were too high in trees. There are those who like the tree climbs, but there were a few too many for my liking.
Perhaps I’ve just got the sulks with the whole hunting Tupperware thing. I had an excellent day out with good friends, but geocaching-wise today was perhaps my worst day ever.

Once home I walked my dogs round the park. It was as well that I’d not taken them to Sussex; they wouldn’t have liked the bushwhacking, and would have barked incessantly as I climbed trees. But they needed a walk.
The walk passed off relatively uneventfully (compared to yesterday’s fiasco), but there was a rather painful two minutes when the puppy got hold of a KFC chicken bone. I managed to get my fingers down her throat to retrieve it, but I got a rather chewed hand for my troubles.

For all that I had a rather good time with friends today, I’m hoping for a better tomorrow… Imight have stopped sulking by then.

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