March 13th 2017

When I established the forums in 2005 it was to offer a more richer web experience and greater functionality than the platform where we started this social adventure in 2003, Yahoo Groups. The forums were once a busy hive of activity and provided locals and visitors with a wealth of information just like the Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group on Facebook today.

It was a time where we didn't have the many social media platforms we have today, and it was a different time in terms of mobility and technology. There was no instant access to information, no Google Maps and a very limited base map on your GPSr. Mobile connectivity for me was a 9600bps Infrared connection from a Nokia to a laptop and in later times to a PDA using WAP.

As we moved into the social media era so did our forums users. Geocaching Ireland moved there too, and we have a thriving community on the Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group on Facebook. As a result, forum activity isn't what it used to be and I have taken the decision to disable new registrations to the forums and to make the forums read only so any information there can still be accessed.

The discussion hasn't ended, it has just moved. Join us on the Facebook Geocaching Ireland Discussion Group .

Donnacha

Northern Spain (Cantabria)

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daraconn
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Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by daraconn » Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:40 pm

I'm in the north of Spain at the moment. Haven't been doing a whole lot of caching so far, and the overall cache density is low, though there are a few caches around that I wouldn't mind doing.

Yesterday evening I went out looking for a cache that's supposed to be beside a big stone statue of Jesus on the top of a hill in the middle of a eucalyptus forest. It's only 2 km away (straight line) so I set off on foot with the two dogs. Luckily I carried a lot of water because we ended up walking much more than 2x2 km. More like 10! On the way into the hills I met a man marching along the forest track, sweating like a fountain. I asked him if the "Cristo Rey" was this way. He looked at me and said yes, but... He said you could get there from here if you knew the way, but if you didn't know the way... He said I would never find it; I would get lost, and what is more I would never find my way back. He told me there was nothing to see there, just a big statue of Jesus and nothing else.

I wasn't so easily deterred, and he reluctantly agreed to take me to where I might be able to see the statue, but not reach it. On we marched, up the track in the heat of the sun, until we reached the spot where he thought we might be able to see it. Sadly, it couldn't not be seen through the trees. I pointed out that it was now only 500 metres away, according to my GPS. He snorted in derision. I said that it seemed to me I could just walk down into the valley and up the other side, directly to the cache. He smiled, slapped me on the shoulder and said "Suerte!" (Good luck!)

So off we went, me and the two dogs, and managed to approach within 200 metres of the Jesus. Forced to retreat, we went back down into the valley and tried another approach, once again arriving within 200 metres before being confronted with impenetrable brambles. After half an hour of this fruitless and exhausting endeavour, I gave up and turned for home. But on the way, I saw another path leading down to the left. Following this, I found myself circling Jesus at a distance of only 150 metres. All I needed was a path up to the left. But no joy. Eventually I gave up once again and turned back. Then I spotted the path I had missed the first time; a grassy opening in the thicket. We walked the short remaining distance to the top of the hill and finally reached the Jesus.

Unfortunately the cache was missing and I had to log a DNF. :(
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daraconn
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by daraconn » Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:44 pm

Today I was looking for a cache that would have been an FTF. We drove out of town and down a laneway that turned into a grassy path through the fields, with the GPS showing 450 metres. So I parked the car and continued on foot with the two dogs, managing to arrive within 80 metres before reaching an electric fence and a field full of bulls. There was no way the cache was in there - it was supposed to be in a cemetery, near a statue. Something was wrong.

A little research later on Google Maps and I discovered that the published co-ordinates are wrong by a whole minute (approx 1 km). No wonder nobody has found it yet! On the good side, that means I'm the only person who knows what the real co-ordinates are, so I'm still well-placed for an FTF when I get around to going back there.
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by Spark_ie » Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:26 pm

I'd go mad, in both instances!!
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by spy caleb » Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:59 am

daraconn wrote:I'm in the north of Spain at the moment. Haven't been doing a whole lot of caching so far, and the overall cache density is low, though there are a few caches around that I wouldn't mind doing.

Yesterday evening I went out looking for a cache that's supposed to be beside a big stone statue of Jesus on the top of a hill in the middle of a eucalyptus forest. It's only 2 km away (straight line) so I set off on foot with the two dogs. Luckily I carried a lot of water because we ended up walking much more than 2x2 km. More like 10! On the way into the hills I met a man marching along the forest track, sweating like a fountain. I asked him if the "Cristo Rey" was this way. He looked at me and said yes, but... He said you could get there from here if you knew the way, but if you didn't know the way... He said I would never find it; I would get lost, and what is more I would never find my way back. He told me there was nothing to see there, just a big statue of Jesus and nothing else.

I wasn't so easily deterred, and he reluctantly agreed to take me to where I might be able to see the statue, but not reach it. On we marched, up the track in the heat of the sun, until we reached the spot where he thought we might be able to see it. Sadly, it couldn't not be seen through the trees. I pointed out that it was now only 500 metres away, according to my GPS. He snorted in derision. I said that it seemed to me I could just walk down into the valley and up the other side, directly to the cache. He smiled, slapped me on the shoulder and said "Suerte!" (Good luck!)

So off we went, me and the two dogs, and managed to approach within 200 metres of the Jesus. Forced to retreat, we went back down into the valley and tried another approach, once again arriving within 200 metres before being confronted with impenetrable brambles. After half an hour of this fruitless and exhausting endeavour, I gave up and turned for home. But on the way, I saw another path leading down to the left. Following this, I found myself circling Jesus at a distance of only 150 metres. All I needed was a path up to the left. But no joy. Eventually I gave up once again and turned back. Then I spotted the path I had missed the first time; a grassy opening in the thicket. We walked the short remaining distance to the top of the hill and finally reached the Jesus.

Unfortunately the cache was missing and I had to log a DNF. :(
Never knew Jesus was so hard to reach [-o< [-o< [-o<
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spy caleb
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by spy caleb » Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:12 am

Dara found a nice cache in the area a few years ago which would be worth doing if your in the area near the picos
GCHGCG
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by Blue Jay » Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:34 am

Spark_ie wrote:I'd go mad, in both instances!!
I'm with Spark_ie :x
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daraconn
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by daraconn » Wed Sep 14, 2011 9:52 pm

spy caleb wrote:Dara found a nice cache in the area a few years ago which would be worth doing if your in the area near the picos
GCHGCG
Thanks for the recommendation. I took a look at the cache page and it definitely looks worth doing. I don't think it's that far away from here (just over the border in Asturias).


Today was an enjoyable day caching around the Península de la Magdalena in Santander. A kind of mini-Howth with seven caches around a beautiful scenic peninsula, with an amazing variety of scenery from sunny beaches to wild storm-lashed cliffs. One of the caches was an unnecessarily complicated 7-stage multi, some stages of which were "open to interpretation" and which culminated in a micro without giving a hint... I was not thinking nice thoughts about the hider as I spent 20 minutes searching around the rocks and trees in the wrong place before revisiting the calculations and finding an alternative (but less likely) final location where I indeed found the cache.

Edited: I forgot to mention I picked up an extra D/T combo on the Peninsula. The precious 2.5/4.5. Between ourselves, the 4.5 terrain rating was a complete joke; it involved stepping down some rocks - about as difficult as stepping off the pavement on the corner of Stephen's Green. But I can't complain, I have it now and only 24 to go!
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daraconn
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by daraconn » Fri Sep 16, 2011 8:31 pm

spy caleb wrote:Never knew Jesus was so hard to reach [-o< [-o< [-o<
Well at least now if someone on the bus asks me if I've found Jesus I can honestly reply that I have.

That cache I mentioned with the wrong co-ordinates: I found it today. It wasn't even as simple as being exactly 1 minute out; it was just some random co-ordinates. But from the description and the hint I was able to identify the place and find it, even though the co-ordinates were off by 1,100 metres!

Imagine how gutted I was to discover that I was not first to find, but second. It was found yesterday, but not yet logged online.


Also today, I posted the following in a cache log:
"WARNING to future finders: this cache is in an extremely dangerous location. Please do not bring children or pets anywhere near it, and take extreme care while searching for the cache. Because of the way the grass slopes away seemingly innocuously, it is not obvious that you are perilously close to the edge of a very high and vertical cliff. I advise that if you decide to cross the fence to find this cache, you take only small and careful steps and make small movements. If you fall, you will die."

Seriously, top of a completely vertical cliff (but the cliff-edge is invisible when you are at the top) and the cache is several metres on the WRONG side of the fence. It is without doubt the most dangerous cache I've ever encountered.

But yes, I went ahead and found it.
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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by dino » Sat Sep 17, 2011 12:33 pm

daraconn wrote:It is without doubt the most dangerous cache I've ever encountered.

But yes, I went ahead and found it.
=D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D> =D>
Some gal would giggle and I'd get red
And some guy'd laugh and I'd bust his head,
I tell ya, life ain't easy for a boy named "Sue."

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Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by Blue Jay » Sun Sep 18, 2011 12:43 pm

daraconn wrote:Well at least now if someone on the bus asks me if I've found Jesus I can honestly reply that I have.
:lol: :lol: :lol:
daraconn wrote:But yes, I went ahead and found it.
=D> =D> =D>
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medic143

Re: Northern Spain (Cantabria)

Post by medic143 » Sun Sep 18, 2011 3:58 pm

daraconn wrote:It is without doubt the most dangerous cache I've ever encountered.
I've been present when you ran up and down 2 in Ireland that I consider insane. Can't even begin to think how bad something you consider dangerous is :shock: :shock:

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