Where: Ashridge Estate, north of Berkhamsted, Herts, UK. HP4 1LX. Approx. 30 miles/50Km Northwest of central London. As used for filming Harry Potter, Maleficent, The Descent, Hot Fuzz and more, the site is across the Bucks/Herts border & very close to Beds too.
When: Saturday October 27th 2018. Noon-10pm.
What: An International Celebration of Geocaching, inspired by a certain sporting event. While it's not a competitive game/hobby/pastime/obsession as such, we know lots of cachers like to stretch - or challenge - themselves and we're setting up caches, series and features to help you do just that around the first Winter Geolympix.
Who: Geocachers! The 5,000 acre (2,000 hectare) woodland site is GeoDog and GeoKid friendly and there are toilets, parking for those less able and various food vendors very close to the event. We pride ourselves on being very welcoming to new cachers and those new to cache events. We'll also be introducing 'muggles' (non-geocachers) to this great, family-friendly pastime.
Why: The original 2012 Geolympix was never intended to be a one-off, and summer 2016's follow-up meet at Ashridge was a big success. Now it's back, but with a twist! The summer caching calendar is well covered for events, but since the Halloween Mega (2012-2014) retired there's been a gap in the year, at the end of the caching season... Ashridge is the perfect venue for Night Caching! Any excess funds to The National Trust & Geolympix Legacy fund, to support future projects ("Geolmpix 2020: The Perfect Vision", TBC).
How: Getting to the Winter Geolympix is easy. It's close to the M1 (J8-11) or M25 (J20, A41) and is a two mile/3Km walk from Tring railway station. There's ample free parking and it's on a bus route. London Luton International airport is close-by too.
Caches: These woods are home to GC177, Europe's 9th oldest cache. It's also England's 2nd oldest (after GC171, set the same day at Coombe Hill, approx 8m/13Km away) and Britain/UK's 3rd oldest. (GCF0 - Scotland's First is the UK's oldest) There's also GC18BC, the oldest Puzzle/Mystery/Unknown in the whole of the UK!
Challenges: Our 11-in-11 icon challenge (find 11 different cache types in 11 hours) was a huge feature in 2012. This year, we're setting a different challenge; the National Series Challenge! Find an example of as many National Series Caches (such as Church Micro, Really/SideTracked, Fine Pair, Little Bridges, LQ, Village Signs - No.1 is close by - A-Road Anarchy, and more) as you can on the day, or whenever you prefer. Other Geolympix challenges include finding every cache size in a day, the return of the Icon Challenge (unofficially!) or just spell your caching name with caches. These are optional tasks for any cachers willing to "Accept the Challenge!" Also, don't miss the ten+ brilliant Winter Geolympix Lab Caches, going live at noon on the day.
More Goodies: As well inviting you to get lost in our 'treemendous' Woodland Labyrinth again, once more we're giving you a chance to find some memorable, quirky photo-opportunity caches, so bring your camera/phone. There's also a Vendor Village for all your caching needs (caches, coins, other trackables) and so on.
Additional Features: We can offer visitors to the area a lot more than just (just?!) caching. Landmarks and tourist attractions for the non-cachers in the family may enjoy near by free-to-visit joys such as Berkhamsted Castle, picturesque Aldbury (as seen in Midsomer Murders & various films), Tring's outstanding Natural History Museum and/or Pitstone Windmill - said to be the oldest Post Mill in the country. For cachers, don't miss the Geolympix
Cyclerama, Solar System, Marathon, Big G and Valley of Gold legacy series. Others have been/will be set for the 2018 Geolympix - as stand-alone caches and series, plus puzzles, etc.
THE 2018 WINTER GEOLYMPIX EVENT TIMETABLE (subject to change)
10am: The Ashridge venue opens for exhibitors & team for setting up.
12noon: The 2018 Winter Geolympix opens to the caching public! There will be a log book to sign.
Also Lab Caches go live, plus welcome speech by the 2018 Geolympix Team, inc. Will Attend log prize draw/announcement.
2pm: Daytime FTFrenzy Caches info released. New for 2018: Cash Caches!
6pm: The Cache of Dreams awarded to one registered Attendee (no entry fee)
6pm: Night-time FTF Caches info released & Night Caching begins
8pm: On-site Cafe closes.
10pm: The 2018 Winter Geolympix officially closes. (Please be quiet and leave the Ashridge Estate in orderly fashion.)
11pm: Everyone off-site please. People will be tired and will want to go home :)
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE GEOLYMPIX
Geolympix.org (updated shortly)
National Trust's Ashridge page
Brownlow Cafe page
Or at Pre-Geolympix Events:
GC7546Y - Join in! Winter Geolympix 2018 Discussion Meet /CD - July 1st 2017
GC75FQN - Option B: Winter Geolympix 2018 Discussion Meet #2 - July 2nd 2017
GC7MEBT - Winter Geolympix Countdown 6: Surrey seems to be... - April 21st 2018
GC7PD2M - Winter Geolympix Countdown 5: OxFord Fiesta - May 30th 2018
GC7PHKE - Winter Geolympix Countdown 4: Young Bucks - June 30th 2018
GC7PK5E - Roundabout MK Meets#23/Winter Geolympix Countdown3 - July 24th 2018
More to follow!
Praise for the 2016 Ashridge & 2012 Oxford Geolympix events: Please read visitors' logs!
** Optional request: When logging your Will Attend - please do if you intend to come - please include an appropriate poem, joke or other little bit of creativity. The best will get a Thank You prize! **
Bring your bike. The Ashridge Estate is huge and the Chilterns Cycleway passes through & around it.