Thursday, 20 July 2017

Crunching The Ground

14th January 2017

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Just outside of the city, there are patches of snow that the sun hasn’t yet melted. Begging too be trodden on, it was all the temptation we needed to head out for adventure.
We found a walking route on View Ranger, mapped by someone local, and the distance was perfect for the conditions under foot. We knew it unlikely that Little Lamb would want to complete a long walk in the cold, and tend to keep our routes slightly shorter in the Winter, or plan for lots of things for the smalls to see and do on the way. We are also suffering massively from sleep deprivation, as aside from three nights, our smallest has suffered with night terrors solidly for the last month. Understandably, it has altered the energy levels in our house quite significantly (although the biggest is seldom woken and can be heard snoring very loudly whilst the rest of us are up at night!). If anyone has any advice, I’m open to suggestion on how to deal with them .
Parking wasn’t indicated on the route we’d chosen, and using the map alone we couldn’t see anywhere that would be ideal. It wasn’t until we arrived in Little Baddow that we were able to park up and adapt the route for our starting position.
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The smalls thoroughly enjoyed playing with the rather large snowman that had been built by the village sign, whilst Daddy bagged the first cache of the day.
We don’t term ourselves ‘geocachers’ as very rarely go out specifically for caching. We walk, and if there happen to be caches under our noses, or too close by to ignore, then we’re happy to add them to the collection! We do leave our own swag, although you’ll have to find a cache we’ve been to, to find out what we leave!
The biggest was given charge of the map for the day, putting her compass skills to the test…she’ll make quite the guide!
The Little Baddow loop, saw us walk through Woodham Walter Common, woodland that we covered on our Woodham Walter walk on July 3rd last year20170114_122920. In fact, a very small section of today’s track covered the same footpath we had walked previously and it was really nice to revisit in a different season! On both occasions, we have walked through the common without seeing or hearing any another person, and the remoteness today gave us the opportunity to spot a wild muntjac and some cheeky squirrels jumping from tree to tree.
You can see that layering clothing really came in handy for the biggest today, as walking uphill she really worked up a sweat removed her coat for a while. She popped it back on when we stopped still for lunch and began to feel the chill again.
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We lunched in the company of a happy, chirpy robin and were watched by four horses in the neighbouring field. Our waterproof trousers kept us dry on the ground and the sun kept our cheeks warm whilst we ate.
We walked with the hood on the carrier today to help keep the chill off Little Lamb’s face. Walking through open fields can be a little too exposed for her when there’s any wind, and although today’s walk was mainly through woodland, and sheltered, it helped to keep her a little warmer.
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Daddy and the smalls stopped to take in the view as the path opened out at the top of the hill, and I took a quick snap before catching them up and admiring it for myself. I’ll leave the view for you to find for yourself!
Today’s Stats
Mileage – 8.49 km (6 km set route plus some cache walking)
Geocache – 4
Horses – 9
Squirrels – 2
Muntjac Deer – 1
Equipment Taken
  • Route Map
  • OS Area Map
  • GPS Device
  • Compass
  • Lunch!
  • Flask of coffee
  • First Aid Kit
  • Torch
  • Geocaching Tool Kit
  • Phone (with full charge) for emergency
  • Water
  • Paracord
  • Toddler Supplies – Nappies, change of clothes etc
  • Suitable Clothing (Waterproof jackets, fleeces, base layers, wellies, winter hats, gloves, scarves/buffs, waterproof trousers, thick socks, sunglasses)
  • Hiking Baby-carrier (with wind screen)

Happy walking…
S xox

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