Yesss, found it!! Today we were in Cologne to visit the Weihnachtsmarkt and to do the Cologne Downtown cache.
We are from the Netherlands and although we don't live too far away from Cologne, it was our first visit to this very beautiful town.
We left Dordrecht in the Netherlands at 9:30 in the morning and took a three hour drive to a village called Horrem close to Cologne. From there we continued by train, a final 20 minute ride.
From the central train station we immediately started with the Cologne Downtown cache, but on our way to the first waypoint we encountered so many nice things, sights, weihnachtsmärkte, reibekuchen, souvenir shops etc. that it took quite a while before we finally arrived.
On our way we also visited Portal to the Past (GC5B4A), a virtual cache by Moun10bike. This spot brings you back all the way to the beginnings of the town and shouldn't be missed either.
From the first waypoint (which already required some thinking to solve, but which isn't really that difficult once you got it) we continued the Cologne Downtown tour, not knowing that it wouldn't before sunset that we would finally find the cache.
The Cologne Downtown cache was a real beauty and it showed us many interesting an beautiful places! But we also found it a very difficult one! One problem was the bad reception due to being surrounded by tall buildings nearly everywhere during the tour.
The kneeing persons aren't there anymore (temporarily?) because of construction work going on right now at the site, but luckily the plate with the crowns helped us out.
We got a real big problem when we arrived at twilight at the waypoint with the shaft. Because of heavy condensation on the inside of the glass construction we had difficulties reading the required information.
I thought I had managed to correctly read the number so we headed to the next waypoint. There we couldn't find the old street and the stones, so obviously at the previous waypoint we hadn't read correctly. Back we went, but now it was almost completely dark and the sign could not be read anymore. H. of team Johny Cache decided to ask a town guide which was showing the site to a group of people. She confirmed that the number we had was correct!
So after checking the calculation back we went to find the old street with the stones. This time we found it. The problem earlier was the bad satellite reception. The GPS had pointed us in all directions except the right one.
From now on everything went smooth all the way, until we arrived at the cache location; finding a micro by night really isn't easy :-) But finally we found it and with pride we signed the log.
We quickly went to visit a couple of the Weihnachstmärkte, it was half past 6 and we only had 2 and half hours left before closing time.
Cologne Downtown really is a beautiful cache which we enjoyed very much. It showed us the beauty of Cologne. Also the Weihnachtsmarkt was wonderful!! And with these freezing temperatures we really got this special winter feeling, which made the hot chocolate and roasted chestnuts taste even better! We can recommend everybody to go to Cologne and visit the Weihnachtsmarkt (of which there are actually a couple at different locations throughout the town) in combination with the Cologne Downtown cache.
At 10 at night we were back in Horrem. There we warmed up and rested in the car for half an hour before putting it back on the autobahn and heading back home. We arrived home at half past 1 in the morning. It had been a beautiful day.
Thanks for this beautiful cache, he3000!
Best regards and happy caching,
Photos can be found on JC's Geocaching Page http://home.tiscali.nl/madejong/geocaching.htm
[This entry was edited by Johny Cache on Thursday, November 24, 2005 at 10:37:50 AM.]