Thursday, 21 July 2011

Geocaching at Ashdown Park

This summer the National Trust is promoting the joys of geocaching. Here is a link to their site and a list of some of the Trust land where there are geocaches to be found. Geocaching is a high tech treasure hunt; here is the NT's description of what it entails:

"Geocaching is an exciting outdoor adventure for the whole family. It’s a treasure hunt for the digital generation, where you can enjoy the freedom of being outside and discovering new places. All you need is a handheld GPS device and a sense of fun. A geocache or ‘cache’ is a small waterproof treasure box hidden outdoors. Geocachers seek out these hidden goodies guided by GPS, which uses coordinates or ‘waypoints’ that can be sent directly to a GPS device from Simply choose a geocache to find and click ‘send to GPS’.

On the side of a windswept mountain or on an expanse of beach, there are geocaches hidden right across the UK. Most have been set up by keen members of the public with our permission. But some, organised by our staff, also mark out a trail where your mission is to seek out more than one cache as part of a walking route.

Once you’ve found the treasure box – what will you discover inside? Most caches tend to have a log book for you to leave a message in and the satisfaction of finding the box is a reward in itself. But often you will also find a strange array of trinkets that people have left to swap. These can range from a key ring or a small toy to a pine cone or a pretty pebble. It’s important to remember that if you take a treasure out of the box, you should leave another trinket in its place. So come prepared! Always leave the cache in the same place and in the same condition as it was found for the next visitor. Sometimes there may even be a clue leading you on to more hidden treasure nearby."

Ashdown Park is one of the many places where geocaches have been hidden with the Trust's permission. These range from a special trail through the woods to a spectacular hide high on the top of Weathercock Hill to an earthcache exploring the sarsen stones. Here is a link to one of the caches to give you a taster!

Thursday, 7 July 2011

The Lime Avenue

The Lime Avenue at Ashdown, which runs north from the car park, parallel to the North Avenue, is in full blossom at the moment and the scent is beautiful. The trees also hum because of the number of insects harvesting the nectar! As a tribute to the beautiful lime trees and their scent I am posting up a couple of lime blossom recipes that you might like to try.

The Wild Man Wild Food site offers Carragheen Wild Cherry Mousse, which can be made with lime blossom rather than cherries. It sounds delicious. Check out his recipes here!

Lime blossom tea is also a soothing remedy with a sweet aroma. To make lime blossom tea, pour one cup of boiling water over one teaspoon of the dried flowers. Cover the pot and let the tea brew for about ten minutes. Lime blossom tea can be taken as a herbal tea to sooth anxiety and fatigue and also as a remedy for fevers.