The Sketch

A day spent around and about on a Bedford walkabout. There were a number of groups of caches in the area that I’d been looking at for a while. That meant it seemed like a good day to try to get loads of them at the same time.

New Adventure Labs in the Town

There’d been a couple of new sets of adventure labs added since my previous trip to Bedford (see Bedford). Well, that was 10 months previously, so unsurprising. One of the two involved tracking down five pieces of sculpture. The other involved some history about Bedford Castle. Seriously, I didn’t know there was a castle in Bedford. Anyway, there is, and I’ve now been to it.

Whilst I was in the town centre I also grabbed Bunyan’s Books. This is a puzzle that involves finding a statue to read some data (which was easy). And after that, you have to find another location which proved to be needle-in-a-haystack territory. Even after a couple of calls and some very descriptive information on what to look for, it took me an hour.

Up North!

Next up was to meet Makaraka and Candleford up on the north side of town. The plan was to finish off the WTDWYCIHIMOT series (what to do when your car is having its MOT). None of our cars were having their MOT, but nevertheless. Up here it’s a bit of mud-plugging across mainly agricultural land, but thankfully it hadn’t been too wet, so it wasn’t bad going. We found 15 up there.

Great Denham

Great Denham is supposedly a village on the western edge of Bedford that has some evidence of neolithic settlements. The bit we went to had these pretty effectively disguised though. This side of Bedford is currently being filled with new housing estates, and inside one of those is Great Denham Country Park. It’s the home to a parkrun that I haven’t done yet, and also home to a set of Ad Labs. On the way round there were also 5 traditional caches. That made for another 10 quick finds, although it was made slower by the decision to stop for coffee and cake before setting off.

Stick it to the Man

From here we headed west to have a pop at the Wootton Stick Man series – a short series with a couple of “hangers on” which boosted the day’s total by a dozen in short order.

Back to the Labs

From here I returned to caching on my own. There’s a series of Ad Labs in Kempston which can pretty much be done as drive-bys (or not-very-long-walk-bys), so I did those on my way past to get to Bedford Park.

Inside Bedford Park there’s another set of Ad Labs, as well as three traditionals and a bonus for the Ad Labs. One of those traditionals was a fairly rare D/T combination of 3.5/4. It required me climbing about 3-4 feet off the ground to stand in a tree to retrieve the box. While I was up there I had way too many things to hold, and ultimately my ham-fistedness resulted in me dropping the log to the floor. So I had to jump down, find the log, and then climb back up again. To make matters worse, when I jumped down the second time I managed to rip the lanyard that I use to attach my GPS to myself. I’ve been doing this ever since I dropped a GPS down a drain (see Letchworth Disaster) some years ago.

Anyway, that meant my GPS fell on the floor, but at least there were no drains nearby, so no real harm was done. A massive bag of replacement lanyards arrived through the post a couple of days later.

Wrapping Up

So that was enough of that for another day. The day had resulted in 63 total finds without being very much effort. I’ll take that.

This also was the last day before the clock change and the return to it getting dark before 5pm. That meant no more long days out (supposedly) and certainly a few months of caching needing to finish well in time to get home for dinner.