Is it possible to cache whilst on a business trip, wearing a suit and not in possession of a GPS device ?

It is if you check your route on GoogleMaps and pick somewhere easy and obvious.

In this case, the obvious place was Tibshelf Services on the M1. Why ? Because there appeared to be a cache, and that cache appeared to be easily accessible from the car park, and in a location that would not involve muck.

So I found the cache whilst wandering around with a coffee at breakfast time, having left home at 6:30am on a trip to Leeds. The cache in question is, of course, Motorway Mayhem M1 Tibshelf Services. It was exactly where the hint says, and it is possible to find it without a GPS if you read the hint. There are CCTV cameras nearby though.

Cool ! I’m on Telly.

By the time I got home, some stretching of legs was in order. I’d spent about 5-6 hours in the car driving to Leeds and back. So off out on the bike for a few more caches – the main target was the cunning Mission Impossible MK8 (see the Mission Impossible Series – Mega Blog Special). There was a side order of anything else achievable on the way home from there.

Obviously, being a puzzle cache, I can’t say where MK8 actually is, but it is somewhere between where I live and where it is shown on the Geocaching website. My chosen route up there was to bike around the Woodhill Prison and onto the North Bucks Way, which Kas told me is “worst at the bottom”. So I was expecting an acceptable quality for biking all the way. I’ll never believe her again. It would be OK when running, but the top end where it joins Oakhill Lane is pretty much of a farm track with deep ruts and lots of overhanging tress. Not too good for the biking. In fact, it’s probably a bit crap for horse riding as well unless you’re a dwarf on a Shetland Pony. I might have been better off going round the roads, especially given the target location. Never mind. the cache itself was right where I calculated, and having checked on Google Maps first I found it without using the GPS.

So to make it into a round trip I headed back down the side of Watling Street with the plan of checking the woods north of Grange Farm, which is one of my potential locations for Kitey’s Cows, Roundabouts and Caches. Having not found it here twice now though, I am beginning to believe that it isn’t there. Maybe this weekend I’ll try the other possible location.

Can’t finish on a failure so it seemed reasonable to scoot over to Crownhill to find TOP OF THE POPS 70’s. This one involves decoding 10 anagrams that are song titles, then finding their highest UK chart position, and then making some coordinates out of the results. All of which can be done using ‘t interweb, but obviously you can’t actually log the cache without going there. The coordinates I calculated looked reasonable and tallied with Geochecker so it should be pretty easy. The only problem was that I was trying to bike and read the GPS at the same time, which is tricky when we don’t have a bike mount for the GPS. Cycling one handed through unknown streets. Anyway, it was right where the hint says.

Overall, I cycled 17 km in a little less than an hour. Less distance than the trip to Kiln Farm earlier in the week but reasonable for a fat lad who’s been cooped up in the car most of the day.