August 2 – A Load of Noise in York and York Geocaches

A Grand Visit to Whitby

Hello from 1066 – A Medieval Mosaic

The first event for the day was “A Load of Noise in York” which is a flash mob held right in the middle of York in Parliament Square. We were on time but then parked at a park and ride and hadn’t allowed for the bus trip in, so we arrived a few minutes late. We were not the only ones as there were others on the same bus as us and since I did not know where we were going we just followed them. The actual noise happened at 10 am but when we got there the crowd was still there signing the log and organising their morning’s geocaching. We did not have any real plans but joined Two of Nine, Afusi, Ledi166 and another Swiss lady to cache as a group which we called “Team York”.

On the way to the York Minster, we collected a traditional named ‘Alice has a screw loose’, now I wonder what that was, maybe a loose screw in the side of a piece of wood. We did an earthcache at the Roman Column about the sedimentary gritstone that the monument is made from. Outside York Minster is a statue of Constantine the Great who was the first Roman emperor to convert to Christianity and this was a virtual cache requiring us to take a photo in front of it. Angels and Demons was a puzzle which others in the group had worked out. then onto the War Memorial for the Boer War which was another earthcache comparing sedimentary sandstone to metamorphic slate and their different uses in the memorial. Next was another virtual at the Stone Gate Devil.

The three Swiss geocachers left us at this stage as I think we may have been going a bit fast for them but we have another event in Whitby this afternoon and were trying to fit in as much as possible. Near the stone gate devil was a guy completely dressed in purple including a purple face and hands sitting on a purple bicycle in the walking mall. His name is ‘Purpleman‘ and he apparently came out of retirement to do this. He was raising money and awareness of the fire at Grenfell Towers by sitting on his bike for 72 days alone, day and night. I talked to him and he said it had been particularly challenging as he has been doing it right through the terrific heat of this year’s never-ending English summer. The articles I found said he did it for 72 hours in June but we were there today and I am sure he said he was doing 72 days and that he was over halfway through his vigil.

There was another virtual cache at the Holes in the walls and then we went to find an actual cache on the York Walls. It was quite difficult to look for a cache as there was not much room and quite a few people walking around the walls. I think we got a few funny looks! We went to find one more cache at a car park but even with five of us looking as another geocacher arrived we could not find this cache and eventually, we all gave up and Mike and I decided to head back to the bus for our return trip to the car.

What followed next was the longest, most tedious trip to Whitby. It was OK until we got to Pickering, where we stayed last weekend, but then the traffic was so slow that what should have taken half an hour took more than an hour. There was a traction engine festival on in Whitby over the next three days and today they were all arriving with old vehicles and caravans. The road is up over the North Yorkshire Moors and is a single lane each way all the way, so there were no opportunities to overtake and no one pulled over. EEK! We did finally get there and we again parked in the park and ride, which is only open for the summer months, and as it is a hot summer’s day today we knew that there would be heaps of holidaymakers in Whitby, not counting hoards of geocachers.

After signing the log at the rotunda at the harbour we went to buy fish and chips from the Mermaid Cafe which is renowned for its excellent fish and chips, the best in Yorkshire? It was really hot inside the shop, I have no idea how those people could work there, then we went back to eat our lunch without being attacked by seagulls. They were pretty good but actually not as good as the fish and chips we had in Ripon last night. After that we watched the geocaching kids crabbing off the side of the pier for a while and then decided to go geocaching. Right then my GPS decided to have a hissy fit and show none of the local caches. Two of Nine had arrived a little after us and they tried to load the area onto my GPS but it didn’t work either and completely froze the GPS. We had been told where the Bram Stoker virtual cache and a puzzle final were so we went to find them and then joined two other cachers to find one more cache. We saw the house where Bram Stoker apparently wrote ‘Dracula’. The house is split into two houses and one half is for sale. I bet it seems like a good idea to own it until you realise that thousands of people are stopping to take photos of it every day. We were no exception.

We decided to call it a day as Mike was not feeling too well and we headed back to Ripon this time across the top of the moors to Guisborough and Ingleby Arncliffe where we got a couple of church micros.

When we arrived back at Newby Park we decided that we should get the geocache at the church of Christ the Consoler in the church grounds. We met another couple of girls there looking but they were not geocachers but friends of the stall holders at our event. That was not what we expected at all, to meet non-geocachers this close to the UK Mega. We told them all about geocaching and one of them found the cache. I hope they will take up geocaching as they both sounded quite interested. Who can resist?

The evening’s event and entertainment were entitled”A Carribean Night”. We signed the log, collected our wooden coin and had pancakes and fruit with chocolate sauce for tea. Very yummy! The music was lovely but having walked 9816 steps or 6.58 km for the day, we were too tired to stay too long. On the way through Skelton-on-Ure, the closest village we grabbed another church micro. It was a multi so we collected the numbers and we were approaching just as another lady found the cache and was signing it as we got there.

Another great but really busy day!