Saturday, August 06, 2011

APC - a caching tale

Flushed with the success of our First To Find, here, in spite of going via a rubbish dump, and Partner falling down a tree hole, we set off to hunt down another one which had been up for a month with no record of a find.

We figured we should be in with a good chance unless someone had found it just before we arrived. Unlikely. We set off bright and early before it got too hot and too busy on the roads.

The cache was located near to Lake Vinuela. This is the main water supply for the Costa del Sol east of Málaga, and was created in the 1980s when the valley of the River Guaro was flooded. It takes a really bad drought for the water level to drop in Vinuela, and it holds up to 170 million cubic metres of water whatever that signifies.

I don't like Lake Vinuela. It is outstandingly beautiful and outstandingly spooky. The water always looks cold and chilling, and deep. Very deep. Readers of this blog will know that I happily swim in the deep water of the Med near our village - but I wouldn't dip my big toe in Vinuela.

Anyway we drove past Vinuela - and away from it - in search of the cache. We had to turn off the main road - but which turn to take? When we thought we had spotted the correct turn-off, we drove slightly further on, turned round and headed off up the side road. As the road got narrower, and higher, and more vertiginous, I looked at the GPS and realised we were heading away from the cache. Ooops. A quick turn around in someone's drive was called for.

We parked up in a rather nice olive grove, said 'Hola, buenas dias,' to some workies and set off down the track. Nope. Wrong again.

Sigh. This was meant to be an easy drive-in cache. I gazed at the GPS. We were a kilometre away and heading in the wrong direction. It was just after 8am, so we decided to walk down the road rather than getting in the Landy again.

It was a pleasant morning and there was no traffic. We met a dog walker looking very British with two dogs on a lead. (Spanish people in the country never lead up their dogs). 'Morning,' said Partner in his best British ex-pat voice. 'Morning' she replied in the same tone of voice, and smiled Britishly.

We got to the cache location. We looked all around and about. For ages. It had to be there. Somewhere. But where? Of course. Hidden in a glass jar, in one of those holes for a meter box, just above a drain. Great. What was in there? Nada. Apart from the log book - which had been finally signed by someone about 12 hours previously. Damn!! It sits there for more than a month with no locals finding it, and it finally gets found the evening before we visit by a holidaymaker from Germany. Oh well, can't find them all first.

One of my friends refers to some caches as APCs. Another Pointless Cache. In his words: 'APCs are typically a magnetic nano on a waste bin in a lay-by with no views or anything of significance, beauty or anything whatsoever!!'

I have to say this was an APC. Not quite according to his description but it certainly struck me as pointless. It would even have been pointless had we been FTF. The views are ok but it's hard to go anywhere in La Axarquía and not have good views. And certainly hiding it just above a mosquito-ridden drain ranks with a nano on a waste bin in a lay-by in my opinion. It would have been better hidden under the rocks by the olive tree over the road.

The walk was good though. Had we actually managed to drive right up to it, it would have been even more pointless. Still I guess it is unlikely to be vandalised, unlike the caches we have hidden in local beauty spots.

Looking towards the northern ridge

Looking towards Comares, the white village perched on the top of the hill

Looking - er - in the other direction??

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