News & New Caches 23

There have been 3 new caches recently published, nice to see another fine pair!
GC9PPZH A Fine Pair #1662 ~ Salem by RichieBlod Multi D2/T2
Brooks’ Barmouth Bash series sees the addition of another 2 caches:
GC9QRVF Brooks’ Barmouth Bash meets Mawddach Meander by CazzaB80 Traditional D1.5/T1.5
GC9QRV0 Brooks’ Barmouth Bash #1a – Alternative Route by CazzaB80 Traditional D1.5/T1.5

Event Reminder

GC9QBKA CITO 2022 Season 1 by 9 Usual Suspects CITO Event

When: Sunday 10th April 2022
Where: Morfa Parc, Caernarfon
Time: 11am – 1pm

By attending this event you will earn the above souvenir and also be helping to take care of our local environment. Please note there is only limited roadside parking but we do have permission to park in Tescos carpark. We look forward to seeing you.

New CITO Equipment

new equipment

As our regular litter picking attendees are very aware a lot of our equipment had seen better days and we have been struggling to replace. We are pleased to announce that we have finally made contact and have had a very successful meeting with Clean & Tidy, Gwynedd Councils new department that deal with issuing of equipment and sundries. We have a new supply of gloves, adults and childrens, different design litter pickers and bag hoops. The council would like feed back on the quality of the pickers and hoops, also any suggestions for future purchases of equipment. We have already requested the access to extra long handled pickers.

News & New Caches

Be part of the Million Mile Beach Clean at the Inland Sea on Anglesey and make a difference by helping to care for our environment.
GC9N9C1 Plas vs Plastic by Sqiaddie101 CITO Event 12.3.2022

Guess the Cache 4

Well done everyone who recognised this cache, a stunningly beautiful section of the Anglesey Coastal path, the answer is:
GC1QNT1T Porth Llanlleiana by Ramblin JAM

Guess the Cache 5
This one should not prove too difficult ……..

Virtual Rewards 3.0

As part of 2022 Year of the Hide celebrations Geocaching HQ are releasing up to 4,000 new Virtual Caches.

To be eligible to apply, you must meet the following criteria:
1) You did not receive a previous Virtual Reward.
2) You must own at least two active non-Event geocaches.
3)You must own at least one geocache or Event published within the past four years (February 8, 2018 to February 8, 2022).
4) You must have posted a log on a geocache within the past six months.
5) Your owned geocaches must have at least 20 total Favourite points.

Applications close February 26, 2022. Apply HERE
Geocaching HQs random selection takes place on  March 1, 2022 when winners will be notified.
Winners will have one year to create their Virtual Cache.

CITO 14th August 2021

This CITO (Cache in Trash Out) was our first post-covid lockdown official geocaching event since 14 March 2020 and a chance to restore some normality. The weather forecast was iffy so kudos to all who defied the Met Office forecasts and turned out, as on the day, we had only the occasional light shower to contend with. This location was selected because: we have picked here before and know the location, it is fairly child friendly, and above all there was some litter to be picked. It was great to catch up with friends some of whom came from as far as Macklesfield and Oldham. It was also great to see some new faces and junior cachers who made a great contribution. In all 23 assisted with the litter pick including Diapason16 who happened to be in the area looking for a cache, he rolled up his sleeves and mucked in, unlike his daughter, who like a stereotypical teenager rolled her eyes and sat on the wall with her mobile phone :-). We cleared from Penygroes to Groeslon and collected about 12 bags of rubbish from the cycle path. The litter was sorted and taken to Rhwngddwyryd, Garndolbenmaen Recycling Center for disposal.

Many thanks to Inigo Jones Slate Works for letting us use their car park as a base for the CITO

Reminder for ‘CITO’ 22nd May

A reminder that we will be ‘litter picking’ Saturday 22nd May commencing at 2pm, meet at usual spot on the bridge above Afon Seiont (N53 07.825 W004 16.125). This is an unofficial event as Geocaching UK won’t allow any meets currently. We look forward to seeing you all on the day, it has been a long time since we all got together. We will be complying with current Covid regulations as they stand on the day. Also might even sneak a crafty beverage in a pub afterwards :-).

Himalayan Balsam – Impatiens glandulifera

As the name suggests Himalayan Balsam comes originally from the Kashmir and Uttarakhand areas of the Himalayas. It was first introduced into Kew Gardens in 1839 as an annual greenhouse plant. Being easy to grow and having attractive pink/white trumpet shaped flowers it became a very popular plant with gardeners. Within 10 years it had escaped from the confines of gardens and begun to spread along the river systems of England.

Himalayan Balsam grows very quickly and once established in an area, forms dense thickets of up to 2 meters high. Each plant can produce up to 800 seeds, the seed pods once ripe, explode shooting the seeds up to 7m away from the parent plant. If the seeds land in a waterway they float down stream before settling in soft mud banks and germinating. The seeds can remain viable for up to 2 years.

Himalayan Balsam image Wikipedia

Why do we need to control Himalayan Balsam?

It smothers native vegetation by crowding and shading out light, in the winter it dies back leaving bare earth which is then subject to erosion. This can cause major problems along river banks. The dead plant debris can block waterways causing flooding and more damage to local habitats. Being very rich in nectar its flowers attract a wide array of pollinating insects. Studies are taking place on how this effects the pollination of our native plants. Initial finding suggest that it does have a detrimental effect as reduced numbers of insects are visiting other flowering plants. 

Controlling Himalayan Balsam

Being a non-native plant it has no natural enemies to keep it under control. There are two traditional ways of removing Himalayan Balsam from a site hand pulling or spraying of chemicals. The best time of year for tackling the plant is May-July, before the seeds have set. Not all sites are suitable for either of these methods and trials of introducing a rust fungus from India are currently taking place in England and Wales.

Volunteers Wanted

Why am I writing about Himalayan Balsam? We have an escalating local problem, nearly all our local waterways have some Himalayan Balsam contamination. We are looking for volunteers to form a ‘Balsam Bashing” party to tackle an area at Aberglaslyn. This site can only be controlled by hand pulling due to the closeness of the Afon Glaslyn. We will be working along side Snowdonia National Park and other volunteers at the end May/June. 

Are you interested in helping? Please let us know in the comments.

Time for an Event?

Now postponed to 22nd May

Although official Geocaching Events are not available just yet, Socially distanced gatherings of up to 30 persons will be permitted from the 26th of April under the latest guidance from the Senedd. As we haven’t met up as a group for quite a while, a CITO is the perfect socially distanced event. A suggestion is that we could combine an unofficial CITO and the “Let’s improve the outdoors – Locationless Cache GC8NEAT” which adds both an Icon and Souvineer to your profile. So with all that in mind how about meeting on 2nd May Saturday Afternoon Near Tescos Caernarfon and hitting some of the hot spots in the vicinity. Please let us know if you are interested, the number will of course be limited to 30.

Behind Tescos