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Geocaching is an outdoor sport or activity in which cachers use a GPS receiver to find a "treasure" hidden by other participants. Caches are watertight containers containing items for exchange (mostly inexpensive trinkets) and a logbook in which the finder records their discovery of the cache. The coordinates of the cache's location are stored in online databases such as opencache.uk, along with the description and instructions necessary to find it.

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Cache il Nono Cerchio hidden by abanazar
A diabolically difficult cache!
United Kingdom (UK) > Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Bristol/Bath area

Back in January Amberel had invited me along on a trip to do the nearby BelowAbove caches. Unfortunately, although we were actually nearby doing a start of term taxi run to Bath university, it was quite short notice and we had other plans so I had to decline the offer. Foolishly though I did express an interest in any similar caching trips that might come along.
So it was that a few weeks ago Amberel asked if I would like to join him on his return visit to "Lasciate ogne speranza", and then to proceed to this new cache which he was keen to try. This time I had no valid excuses, so set to work solving the puzzles.This was the last puzzle to be solved, and since I knew exactly what was required I knocked up a quick bit of software to ease the decoding Wink.
Having had a brief introduction to underground caching at "Open Sesame" we arrived at the starting point to Lasciate with me dressed in my nice new boiler suit as I had been warned that I would get dirty . But of course that was not the starting point for this cache, and never have I had to work so hard just to get to the start point of a cache. That journey is well described in Amberel's log for this trip, so I will say no more here. Amberel and I were accompanied by digdug123 and it was encouraging to have someone who knew what they were doing with us.
The descent from Lasciate's chamber using the caving ladder went okay and then slow but steady progress was made until we readhed the squeeze. I had found the earlier squeeze hard enough and I was following Amberel so I could see how difficult he was finding it. When it came to my turn I also had the same feelings of being permanently wedged in that Andy had had Cry. But with digdug's encouragement and lots or wriggling and slight repositioning I could sense some slow progress, and each bit of progress made the next bit easier.
Eventually I was through and we continued, but this was not the end of the obstacles and there were more times when I felt I was stuckCry. But the same wriggling and repositioning techniques again resulted in progress, and we finally arrived at the finish.
Fortunately I had brought my own UV torch although I'm sure I would have found the cache without it. However, it was much more rewarding to find the cache light up in the torchlightLaughing.
I wish I could say the same as DizzyPair about the return journy, but I definitely didn't find it any easier. I continued to get stuck in various places and now had less resources available to free myself, but determination, frequant breaks to regain breath,  and  a lot of patience on digdug's part did result in me releasing myself each time.
Finally we were back with Amberel and the route became a bit easier, but I was very glad I was with somebody who knew the route well. The passages look so different coming back.
Half way back to the entrance there was the totally unexpected sound of a human voice greeting us - the cache owner had come to see how we were doing.
So, three hours after entering the cave we were back outside, and I could now see why I had been told that I might get dirty, although that was a gross underestimation.
This certainly has to be my most memorable caching experience, but one that I am in no hurry to repeat. I was intrigued to read that DizzyPair rates it as the hardest of the 91 T5 caches he has done.
So many thanks to abanazar for setting such a challenging cache, and for taking the time to come and meet us underground. But more importantly thanks to digdug123 for agreeing to accompany us and for giving up a large part of his Sunday to do so. It was much appreciated. Thanks also to Amberel for inviting me along, and I'm really sorry that he was unable to get to the end.
 


Autor: Woking Wonders


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