Kieron N Karas Dowles Bridge


Yay! I've been eyeing this one for what feels like 18 months but what must be since it was published as it's not as old as I thought! My first problem was living in Devon. The second was doing reconnaissance on the wrong side of the river. The third was being a big girl's blouse and not daring to park in the fishermen's car park (I know... what's wrong with me?!). The fourth was doing reconnaissance from the easterly embankment and failing to notice the riverbank access (thanks to car park patheticness)... The fifth was not being in the area with a boat.

All these on separate trips (I visit Belbroughton monthly for meetings with limited time before each meeting)...

This time I reckoned I had it sussed. I'd done quite a lot of 'doing it in your head' - which is surprisingly difficult, particularly for what is quite a puzzling cache even when you are there... doing it in your head is hugely complicated (to the point that, in my boat, looking at the pillar, I realised I'd not thought of one key thing.....)

I won't say too much about my strategy for getting it done, as the lion's share of the satisfaction on this, I think, is working it out yourself. But suffice to say I was inspired by DizzyPair's solo effort (knowing I'd have to do the same thing) and managed it in 1h25m from car-to-car.

Thank you for providing a pen since, having so much else in my head to think about, the inevitable pen was forgotten.

I came equipped with the trusty machete, since the nettles were quite in evidence on the last recce trip, and spent a few minutes cutting a nice path down the bank and then, typically, slipped down the bloody thing shoving both legs and both arms into the remaining stumpy nettles...

I want to say so much, but can't...! Suffice to say it was brilliant, a great cache to do in your head, and a highly memorable cache to actually tackle, even if I had to rush it in time to get to my meeting (at which I had to wash the mud off my legs and apply antiseptic cream to the cuts and grazes I hadn't noticed inflicting in the excitement...!)

Sadly no pictures due to having chucked my last phone in a river doing a 5/5 river climb and not wishing to make the same mistake! Have instead a picture of my drying ropes, all of which suffered total immersion despite my clever plan to only dunk two feet of one rope...

Loved it.

(Wet gear drying out!)