Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Hidden Treasure Revisited: Part 1

Last year I wrote a post describing how my character, Abigail, came into being (read it here). Abigail and I share a fascinating hobby—geocaching.

 If you're not sure what geocaching is, here's an excerpt from the post mentioned above which describes our hobby:

Geocaching is "a quest to hide and seek treasure outdoors in weatherproof containers called geocaches. The geographical co-ordinates of the geocaches are posted on and treasure seekers download them onto a GPS (global positioning system) device to find the treasure. However the co-ordinates do not always lead to the exact spot, so once you are in the area you have to search and find the geocache. Often it is camouflaged to blend with the environment eg a nut on a pole may actually be a little magnetic container. Another friend circled the area of a geocache for quite a while before she found it—it was fashioned to look like doggie poop! The owner of a geocache will often include a clue on the website to help seekers find the container.

Geocaches may contain little trinkets or other items which can be taken if replaced with an item of similar value."

Geocaches include a logbook which the finder signs before logging on to the geocaching website to record the find.

One of the attractions of geocaching is that it takes you to way-out  spots which you would not discover otherwise. The online description of the geocache usually includes interesting details about the location. 

I found several geocaches on a recent trip to Ireland. Here are a few of the sites I visited.

Ducketts's Grove

Ducketts's Grove
 Ducketts's Grove in County Carlow was the home of the Duckett family in the 18th, 19th and early 20th century. Although this spectacular Gothic castle is now a ruin, its remaining towers and turrets give it a romantic profile much loved by photgraphers. It has two walled gardens which are being restored.

Various ghosts and banshees are reputed to haunt the castle and grounds, for example a phantom horse and carriage are said to park in front of the castle.

Walled garden

Rinn Duin-Cache

This cache  is situated on the Rinn Duin peninsula which has the best preserved ruins of a Norman town in Ireland. We saw the remains of a castle, town wall, three towers, a gatehouse, windmill, church and hospital. The bee bole (18th century beehave alcoves) was a rare and interesting sight.

Church ruins
Bee Bole

Aha! Found it!

Rinn Duin Peninsula at sunset
Rath Beag

Rath Beag or "little fort" is an Iron Age ring-barrow (a mound of earth heaped over a burial place). It has several tiers which build up to the top where there is a central cairn.

Rath Beag

Misgaun Medb and Milleen Medb

These are two large stones on the main burial mound at Rath Cruachan in County Roscommon which is believed to be the royal seat of Connacht. The stone on its side may mark the burial place of the Celtic warrior Queen Maeve.

Rath Cruachan features in theTain Bo Cualinge saga which narrates the story of a famous cattle raid by Medb (Maeve). She and her husband had equal possessions apart from one thing- her husband had a prize bull. Maeve wanted to have more than her husband and tried to acquire a superior bull from its owner in Ulster, He refused to part with it, so she put together an army and set out from Rath Cruachan to take the bull  by force, and in the process started a war with Ulster.

The view from the top of this mound is awe-inspiring.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing these gecocaching sites, look out for Part 2 when I'll be showing you some of the more ingenious caches I've found.

If you're a fellow geocacher, please take a moment to say hello to me and Abigail in the comments section.


  1. Lovely pics and interesting post.

  2. How fascinating Ruth Ann! I wonder if this has caught on in Australia...must check out the website. I dare anyone to find anything in my home as I'm always losing things!!!