Ike tours the Yorkshire Dales – Part 1

Ike was very happy to return and see his friends Heather, Mark, Puss and the Mr Men. This time they were all off to the Yorkshire Dales for a holiday (although Puss stayed at home). It was so wet on the day they travelled up that Ike sensibly stayed in the car, to keep his paws dry. He was happy it was filling the reservoirs, but that didn’t mean he had to be out in it!

After a good night’s sleep, the sun came out a bit, and it was time to go and explore.

As Ike was with the Mr Men the first thing they did was go out for a walk, and to find some local Geocaches. Geocaching is a real-world, outdoor adventure that is happening all the time, all around the world. To play, participants use the Geocaching app and/or a GPS device to navigate to cleverly hidden containers called geocaches. There are millions of geocaches in 190 countries waiting to be discovered.

Geocaching offers something for everyone, from families with children to retirees. Some geocachers play the game to see how many total “finds” they can get, while others play to see how many new states or countries they can visit. Geocaching is a great way to find remarkable destinations that you would not have otherwise discovered. It is also an excellent education tool and an excuse to get off the couch). The Mr Men are Trackable game pieces, who travel with Heather to record how many miles and how many caches they have found. They were excited to tell Ike they just celebrated their 1,000th find! This is why Ike goes Caching with the Mr Men when he goes on holiday with them, as he always discovers something new.

So they set off up the lane, to see the nearby Appersett Viaduct (picteured below). Appersett Viaduct is 108 yards (99 metres) long, 80 feet (24.4 metres) high and has 5 arches. Construction work commenced on the 28th of November 1873. The viaduct and adjacent embankments were completed in June 1878. The viaduct is Grade II listed and the entire structure is constructed from stone, including the arches. The railway is no longer in use, and the viaduct cannot be walked on, but it can be admired from the lane below, which is what Ike and the Mr Men did, before finding a large geocache nearby (pictured above).

They then walked towards Hawes, and found a small geocache by the Welcome to Hawes sign, and a flower display.

Hawes is a market town and civil parish in the Richmondshire district of North Yorkshire, at the head of Wensleydale. The place’s name is derived from the Old Norse word hals (or hauls), meaning “neck” or “pass between mountains”. Ike & the Mr Men completed some of the Adventure Lab, which told them interesting facts about Hawes. Adventure Labs are a new type of Geocaching, with online questions for interesting places to visit, they became very popular during the pandemic, as there is no physical container for these ones, just a question you need to answer when you get to the right location.

They also visited the church yard to collect the information needed for a multi-cache. This is another type of geocache. A multi-cache means you have to go to more than one place, so you go to the location, often a church or similar, which is interesting historically, but it wouldn’t be appropriate to place a physical cache there. So you visit the location, find some Information, do some complicated sums, then later you can find the location of the actual cache. They did the sums that day, but the cache was more than a mile away to walk, so they saved the location for another day.

Ike then went to have a look at the waterfall in the centre of Hawes & the train outside the Dales Countryside Museum.

The museum is located beside the disused Hawes Railway Station the small town of Hawes. The museum’s outdoor display includes a real steam train and carriages on the track bed of the former Wensleydale Railway.

The railway station remains in its original site, now part of Museum building. The steam engine a Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn Works No 7845 No.12 (Current number 67345 0-6-0T) was built in 1955 by Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn to work at Hams Hall Power Station at Sutton Coalfield. This is what Ike was admiring, as for many years it has been on display outside the Museum. Then the Mr Men and Ike all walked back to the cottage, to rest their paws (and feet), and await another day with more Adventures!

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