Crowborough Caves, East Sussex – Excellent Caving Just Outside London

How did I come across Crowborough Caves, the ‘subterranean jewel of East Sussex’? Ms B & I like caving. So recently I googled for caves close to London and these caves popped up. CROWBOROUGH CAVES’ WEBSITE, LOGO, SOCIAL MEDIA They come with a full-blown website, professional logo, and continuously active social media presence. Until very recently they also had a great ranking on Tripadvisor with plenty of reviews. NO DOUBT ABOUT THE IMAGINARY NATURE OF CROWBOROUGH CAVES Already the third or fourth Google match links to a Reddit group that extensively discusses the imaginary character of the caves. The matches that follow are equally split between fake sources waxing lyrical about the caves and articles discussing the non-existence of the caves. Wikipedia marked the Crowborough article for deletion. The reasons for deletion make an interesting read in their own right.   CONSPIRELUNKERS VS CROWBOROUGH CAVES Many reviewers and commentators are […]

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Stand Up Paddleboarding the Cuckmere River Source to Sea (4h)

Stand up paddleboarding the Cuckmere River in East Sussex had been on my and my buddy Markmeister’s mind for several months. According to Wikipedia, the reliable source of half-truths, conspiracies, and myths, its length is 5km. In actual fact it is more like 30km, of which we paddled about 15km. BEST ENTRY POINT WHEN STAND UP PADDLEBOARDING THE CUCKMERE RIVER We took the train to the tiny hamlet of Berwick (1.5h from London with one interchange). From there we walked 1.8km along country roads to the river, nearly getting run over by fast cars on two occasions. GETTING OUR GEAR READY As soon as we reached the river, we got our gear ready and changed into our wetsuits. I wasted nearly half an hour trying to find a hole in my inflatable board. Then I realised that the problem was not a deflating board but a malfunctioning pressure indicator on […]

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Thames Source to London Stand Up Paddleboarding Trip – 20 Questions and Answers

THIS THAMES SOURCE TO LONDON STAND UP PADDLEBOARDING BLOG POST IS BASED ON MY VERY LIMITED PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. I AM NO EXPERT. PLEASE DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH BEFORE YOUR TRIP. Paddleboarding, like all things in life, can be dangerous. Several people died paddleboarding on rivers in the UK this year. That said, a very large multiple died in bed or crossing the street. So don’t be put off. Doing a Thames source to London stand up paddleboarding trip is a lot of fun and it can be done safely. My buddy Markmeister and I have recently completed our Thames Source to London Stand Up Paddleboarding Trip. We split it into three legs. The first leg was four days in blistering heat in July. The second leg was three rainy days in September. The last leg was one and a half days in October with both air and water temperature just […]

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Canoeing on the Basingstoke Canal near London with ‘Go London’

A few weeks ago Ellie & I went canoeing on the Basingstoke Canal near London with Colin from Go London. The experience takes about 4 hours, including 3 hours on the water. It costs a very reasonable £40. We were joined by two friends of ours and about 10 other outdoor enthusiasts. The train from Waterloo to Ash Vale takes 50 minutes. From there it’s another 30 minutes’ walk to the Canal Café in Mytchett. Canal Etiquette Colin and his partner had already off-loaded the canoes, prepared the swim vests, dry bags, and paddles. Only a couple of people in our group had done some proper canoeing before. Most had never done any paddling. Luckily our instructor made everyone feel at ease right away, cracking a few jokes here and there. We learned a bit about safety, canal etiquette, the equipment, and paddling technique.    Getting the canoes to the […]

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Couples Boxing – Better Than Couples Therapy

About 6 years ago I took a few boxing lessons. I realised that up until then (and to this day) it has been the best exercise regime I’ve ever gone through. Boxercise This got Ellie interested in doing some boxercise sessions together with me. Over the years we’ve done half a dozen of these lessons and we’ve always had a great time. You do plenty of different exercises like planking, push-ups, and squats. Then one of you holds the pads and the other one punches the pads according to the instructor’s orders. Different moves, jabs, hooks, and uppercuts I’m so bad at boxing and boxercise that I don’t even remember the various moves. But the instructor assigns a number to each type of move. It was something like 1 is a right hand jab to the left-hand pad. 2 might be a left hand jab to the right-hand pad. 3 […]

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