Top Caches Avon-Wiltshire
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Earnanaes

The Quest for Aladdin's Lamp very nearly got the maximum possible TOP CACHE score, but I knocked off a point, else I wouldn't be able to award a higher score if an even better cache came along. On this one I can't see which section I could possibly justify deducting a point from!

At the time this was almost certainly the most difficult cache I had ever reached. It is not as difficult as il Nono Cerchio, but my best efforts were not enough for that one. It is technically a more difficult cave than Lasciate Ogne Speranza, and I would almost certainly not have been able to get out again without the expert and patient assistance of digdug123 - this is a man I quite literally trust with my life.

But abanazar's cave caches are not just about a high terrain adventure. They are story lines that start with the puzzle, follow through each stage as you act out the part, and end very much later at the cache. Every aspect is carefully designed and thought out.

They are quite brilliant caches.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
25 points
No. 94
Near the dragon :-)
There and Back Again

Abanazar does it again - the second TOP CACHE to get top marks.

A superb underground cache, themed on the Hobbit - the recovery of Thror's treasure from the dragon Smaug by Bilbo, Gandalf and the dwarves.

The best cache I have ever done (until another abanazar cache some time later :-) ) !!!

Truly worthy of its 5/5 rating.

View the cache page on opencache.uk
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abanazar
Wiltshire
25 points
No. 150
In the mountain :-)
Stargate SN13

It took 3 days underground to complete this one, with our route taking us to new, challenging and rarely visited locations in the quarries. The navigation challenge was a greater test than any of the other caches in the quarries, both Groundspeak and opencaching listed.

Originally I marked this up as 24 points simply because the subject matter suits me a little less than "There and Back Again", but this marking is supposed not to be subjective and I really couldn't justify taking a point off anywhere - so it's a third maximum pointer for abanazar :-) .

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abanazar
Wiltshire
25 points
No. 291
With owner
Enter the Matrix

An awesome puzzle, one of the most difficult ever both mentally and physically.

We took the red pill …

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abanazar
Wiltshire
25 points
No. 463
With owner
If You Go Down To The Woods Tonight...............

This night cache was in a class of its own! Imaginative in conception and exquisitely presented, it oozed quality all the way.

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cannonfodder32
Wiltshire
24 points
No. 454
With owner
Open Sesame: The Quest for Aladdin's Lamp

A taxing puzzle and some fairly tricky underground terrain led to an outstanding cache :-). I can't say much more, or I'll spoil it for future finders.

View the cache page on opencache.uk
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abanazar
Wiltshire
24 points
No. 73
With owner
Orpheus and Eurydice

A clever and very original interpretaton of a moving cache :-) .

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abanazar
Wiltshire
24 points
No. 462
With owner
Los Juicios de la Inquisición

Another cache with a very original theme running through it. Terrain not for the faint-hearted :-).

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abanazar
Wiltshire
23 points
No. 137
With owner
Below Above - The Janitor's Blither

Another great journey through the Bath stone quarries, to a great cache container.

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JestersMagpie
Wiltshire
23 points
No. 156
With owner
Below Above - Mega Breakfast

I've been down these quarries more than a dozen times, on some epic journeys, but this was the grand-daddy of them all :-) .

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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Wiltshire
22 points
No. 157
With owner
Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate

At the time, the most physically demanding cache I had found. Much as I enjoyed the nearby quarry caches, the terrain for this one was an order of magnitude more difficult. It didn't have the interesting artefacts, but almost every step of the way was a challenge.

I wasn't scared stiff in the way I was when doing some of the climbing caches, but I failed on my first attempt and believed reaching this cache was simply beyond my abilities. A second visit proved it wasn't :-) .

So - an elegant puzzle, a well constructed cache page, a most challenging route to the cache and a neat hiding place - a TOP CACHE.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
22 points
No. 56
Near cache :-)
Raven's Well

An amazing location, in remarkable order for its age!

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madrab
Avon
22 points
No. 456
With owner
Der Adler ist gelandet: Saboteur

A puzzle that went way over my head, but I was able to make a contribution to solving the field stages. As always, it is truly remrkable how the c/o finds relevant locations and field puzzles to weave into the story line.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
22 points
No. 493
With owner
Below Above - Gruidae

One of the more challenging Below Above caches - the number is out of sequence because while I said TOP CACHE on my log, I forgot to add it to the database!

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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Wiltshire
22 points
No. 591
With owner
Mind The Trains

Noticeably different to the previous Below Above caches we found - this quarry is larger and the underground passageways and caverns more spacious. It's hard to say which was the more interesting.

As with The Fallen Monarch, prior to the visit it seemed utterly improbable that these caches would fail to achieve TOP CACHE status, so I had taken the unique step of manufacturing the coins BEFORE visiting. The location did not disappoint.

Now archived, but the same ground is covered by others in the series.

Click the image to expand it.

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BareClawz
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 32
With owner
The Fallen Monarch

An awesome experience. As someone with a mild claustrophobia it took a little determination to tackle this in the first place. But it was so interesting that at no point did I give a second thought to the small spaces and tight squeezes.

And what a reward! Some fascinating ancient artefacts, and a challenging exit.

It was a privilege to be able to present this coin to the cache owner at the cache location.

Click the images to expand them.

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BareClawz
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 33
With owner
Forbrydelsen: Mangler

Humour in abundance, variety, superb detail, probably abanazar's best "above ground" cache.

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abanazar
Avon
21 points
No. 140
With owner
The Ascent of Man

Multiple free tree climbs, the last one in particular being very challenging for me, but set in the most breathtaking landscape of green hills and valleys, this one would get 11 out of 10 for the location if it could.

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abanazar
Avon
21 points
No. 141
With owner
The Quest for St Aldhelm's Glove

This one had to be on the itinerary as I had been urged to do it by so many different people. A most unusual starting task, after which it was a little bit of a slow burner, but some great final stages in a place I know well, and a superb cache :-) .

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abanazar
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 142
With owner
PuRe GeNiUS

A most elegant puzzle, and from me there is no higher accolade than elegance ;-) A nice walk to the cache, though very muddy, and as always with this c/o, a big, well stocked box in immaculate condition :-) .

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digdug123 & bam
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 584
With owner
Der Adler ist gelandet: der Fahrer

Yet another refreshingly original theme, and a cache hunt that involved many disciplines over a long, exhausting and highly satisfying day.

View the cache page on opencache.uk

abanazar
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 177
With owner
Below Above - Multi 2

We came back for Multi 2 some 6 weeks after finding the previous four Below Above caches. This one was on a different scale - neither more nor less interesting, but different. Another great experience.

Click the image to expand it.

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BareClawz
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 65
With owner
Below Above - Multi 1

The fourth and last (though that would soon change) of a group of subterranean caches - the longest, and with some of the trickiest terrain. But with so much of interest to see. A fantastic place to visit. Too good to visit only once - this coin was presented to the cache owner on a return visit :-) .

Now archived, but others in the series cover the same ground.

Click the image to expand it.

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BareClawz
Wiltshire
21 points
No. 46
With owner
Below Above - Hanging Death

A little more exercise than usual at the end :-) .

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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Wiltshire
20 points
No. 575
With owner
Knock Knock

This was a rather different type of puzzle to those I normally tackle. I had to enrol the entire Amberel clan to help solve it. And even that wasn't enough - we needed a nudge to shift us out of a rut we got stuck in. But once I had the location I wasted no further time.

From previous logs I was expecting it to be good, but I didn't know in what way. It turned out to be such an obvious idea, but only with hindsight, and I think that is a feature of the very best ideas :-).

So a great and original idea, and a great deal of effort to produce, but it was worth it. A fantastic cache :-) .

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digdug123 & Boo
Wiltshire
20 points
No. 93
With owner
Below Above - Mind The Trains

Covers both Mind the Trains in Brown's and the Branch Line in Swan's :-) .

View the cache page for Mind the Trains on geocaching.com
View the cache page for Branch Line on geocaching.com
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JestersMagpie & Lichee
Wiltshire
20 points
No. 576
With owner
Below Above - The Peach Stealers Mission

A familiar place, but a tricky route to follow for an old body ;-) .

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JestersMagpie&Lichee and Wan Hu
Wiltshire
20 points
No. 574
With owner
The White Bird

Our first taste of what these underground caches would be like. The entrance was challenging, the whole experience amazing.

Now archived but the same ground is covered by others in the series.

Click Heffalumps's legs or the log book to expand the images.

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BareClawz
Wiltshire
20 points
No. 48
With owner
il Nono Cerchio

Without any doubt the most physically demanding cache I've ever looked for, and probably the most physically demanding thing I've ever done in my entire life.

I tried my best, but I got stuck about 75% of the way there, so this is one of those rare beasts, a TOP CACHE award for a DNF.

The reason it falls below some other caches in this list is because the points allocated to its strong suit have "maxed out", and it loses out by being only a micro, even though getting anything bigger than a micro down there would be a very difficult task :-) . So despite "only" 19 points, this is a TOP TOP CACHE.

In this short space I can't begin do it justice - if you are interested you should read the logs.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
19 points
No. 77
In the ninth circle :-)
Forbrydelsen: Bron|Broen

The usual ingenuity and painstaking attention to detail.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
18 points
No. 520
With owner
Scooby-Doo! Sally's Mystery

The puzzle was a bit too taxing for me, but great field stages I could participate in :-) .

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abanazar
Wiltshire
18 points
No. 494
With owner
Playing Around in Kingsdown + Piddypug's Hole (In One)

A clever and amusing Groundspeak multi, leading directly to a short, but tight and tricky, opencaching.org.uk cave cache.

View Playing Around in Kingsdown on geocaching.com
View Piddypug's Hole (In One) on opencache.uk
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abanazar
Wiltshire
18 points
No. 133
With owner
h4ck3r

One for the technophile :-) But after the geeky stuff, a lovely walk :-) .

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abanazar
Wiltshire
18 points
No. 136
With owner
Der Adler ist gelandet: der Anfang

More great locations for us to visit :-).

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abanazar
Wiltshire
17 points
No. 495
With owner
Below Above - ??

A simple quarry, but a variation on a theme.

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JestersMagpie & Lichee
Wiltshire
17 points
No. 597
With owner
Der Adler ist gelandet: Einzelgänger

An extraordinary location!

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abanazar
Avon
17 points
No. 521
With owner
Below Above - The Lost Geocacher

A return visit to Brown's quarry after quite a gap - lots of fun :-) .

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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Wiltshire
17 points
No. 455
With owner
Below Above - Fred's Dog

Another enjoyable day underground :-) .

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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Wiltshire
17 points
No. 506
With owner
Cache by Kayak - Avon

A series of 12 caches set on the River Avon and accessible by canoe. We did it while the river was in flood, which made for a very interesting and enjoyable ride :-) .

View the cache page for #1 on geocaching.com
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antpeng
Wiltshire
16 points
No. 214
With owner
Below Above - Nuts & Bolts

A series of 9 caches in a very interesting underground location.

View the cache page for #9 on geocaching.com
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JestersMagpie&Lichee
Avon
16 points
No. 647
With owner
The (Water) Crystal Maze

A fun cache with a great final container :-) .

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Winter Foxes
Wiltshire
16 points
No. 372
With owner
Flotsam & Jetsam EXTREME

Unique!

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Declined
FollowMeChaps
Avon
16 points
No. 523
Declined
Centenary Challenge

A representative cache from a series of challenges. What made them stand out from other challenge cache series I've done was the good size, well stocked containers, and the setting in a lovely woods.

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Lydford Locators
Wiltshire
15 points
No. 201
With owner
A Practice Tree

Nice climb in a pleasant location.

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swindon_leys
Wiltshire
15 points
No. 646
With owner
Safety Dance

A nicely put together cache with an unusual theme, a good walk, mostly through lovely countryside, and a nice container at the end of it :-) .

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redsox_mark
Wiltshire
15 points
No. 292
With owner
Mix-tapes

A series of songs to identify, of increasng difficulty. And a series of trees to climb, quite a variety, some good some not quite so good ;-) .

View the cache page on geocaching.com, for the hardest of the puzzles but the best of the climbs
View the geocoin page on geocaching.com

antpeng
Wiltshire
14 points
No. 464
With owner
It’s not so Grimm in Box

Done as an opportunistic cache, as we were passing close by and I spotted it had been awarded a lot of "favourite" points.

A typical abanazar cache, combining metaphor and allegory into the cache page and search. An excellent cache, and an unexpected TOP CACHE.

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abanazar
Wiltshire
13 points
No. 75
With owner