On Thursday I became a millionaire

Unfortunately this was not £s. It was MUs in the Ingress game I am playing. I have now built a field with a coverage of 1,150,545 mind units. This, in a single field, brought my total up to 2,801,423.

A few days ago I was invited by John Duffey to join a team that was planning to build a large Ingress field, large by my standards anyway, in fact very large by my standards. Thursday night was chosen as the time to try and create the links and fields. Before the links could be thrown there was some tidying up that needed doing. On the night the main problems left in “my area” were links from Scotch Corner and Barnard Castle heading south to around Harrogate. However Jonathan was on the team. He is based in Harrogate and was happy to take the links out on his way to Hawes.

Hopefully others will be writing a bit about their adventures at their end; this is my story from the Hawes end.

Knowing that Jonathan was going up the A1 I decided to stay to the West. After dinner I set off towards Skipton keeping half an eye on the hangout messages in case I needed to make a detour to clear away new links. Nothing was reported. Heading north from Skipton I kept losing signal but still nothing was reported.

Road and bridge works in Buckden forced a diversion down a narrow road east of the village but did not add too much to the journey time. At one point I did wonder what kind of road was ahead of me when the sat nav was saying 22 miles left with a journey time of 50 minutes.

The river Wharfe is a bit smaller here than it is around Otley.

Wharfe Valley

Macros sent a message saying he was in the curry house next to The Crown pub in Hawes. I drove past the B&B where his bike was parked and pulled up quite close to The Crown. We had a bit of a natter while he ate his curry. We had only just got outside when Jonathan walked up and asked me if I knew where The Crown was. He looked a bit surprised when I told him the people he wanted to meet had left the curry house. I guess it is a bit difficult to recognise me from my image in Google+.

We then went to Jonathan’s car that was near the Post Office and tried to drop and pick up the required keys. This was not easy because of the poor signal.

Then the worst was reported on the hangout. A link had appeared joining Darlington and Oxenholme. A look at the map showed that Oxenholme was closer to Hawes than Darlington so Macros went back to his hotel to put his riding gear on. In the meantime a frantic effort was going on to find someone closer and Mark Bayles saved the day. Fortunately we were also able to get to Macros’s hotel before he had set off.

We went back to near Jonathan’s and with the Post Office and Spring Gathering portals populated we waited for the intel guys to tell us to throw the links. Gradually the links were thrown. We had a little wait while one of the remote portals was fully populated and a bit of a worry when we switched to create links from the Post Office, neither Macros nor Jonathan could throw links to Farne or Flamborough. I then spotted that in the excitement of getting ready to get off to Oxenholme Macros had not deployed on the portal. It was fully populated by Jonathan and myself but needed an 8 and a 7 from Macros to give us the range.

Macros was quite excited, as well he might be, he had put in a fantastic amount of work and covered many miles as well as doing a lot of the organising.

We did a bit of manly back-slapping until Macros mentioned that the bright speckles on his jacket that were showing up in the photo were fly carcases. You can see them on the sleeve of his jacket.

Jonathan

And this is what it was all about -

Fields

Five fields covering Hawes to Flamborough to Farne, but it is also great to meet up with other agents and share in the excitement.

So this is an snip of my fielding statistics. I can now join the million club.

Stats

I am sure I will miss someone out but others involved that I have not already mentioned were Ian, Aaron, Simon, Michael, Mark, Neil and Peter.

And here’s a couple of photos that Macros took.

Stupid grins around midnight Getting ready to create a fieldm

Bradford City Buildings

I spent a bit of time in Bradford yesterday playing Ingress but of course had my camera with me. I went down to City Park when it was getting a bit quieter and took this slightly different view of the pool.

City Park

It is nice to see that the Westfield site is now being worked on. It is supposed to be finished by December 2015 I believe.

Westfield development

It will be an interesting contrast when it is finished. Bradford has some lovely buildings that survived the “regeneration” of the 50′s and 60′s. I am not sure I like this one but it has “character”.

Old and New

Very close to the centre of the city there are some ruins though. This is behind the Odeon which itself is close to becoming a ruin.

City Centre Ruins

The neglect in some of the buildings shows in the size of some of the trees growing out of them.

City Forest

Though there are decent runs of long buildings, with styles varying there are still single buildings left that have had their neighbours demolished.

Travelodge

The Westfield development has the potential, if people use it, to help nearby businesses boom. I don’t know what the plans are for The Ring O Bells but it could be a gold mine.

The Ring O Bells

Tonight’s Sky

A few minutes ago I chanced to look out of the window and saw this interesting night sky. Four vapour trails, stars and a bright moon. As usual a photo does not do it justice but I still think it is worth posting. Also, as usual, you can click on the image to see it larger on fluckr.

Tonight's sky. 2 May 2014

All the vapour trails are either going to or coming from the North West.

April 19th Bird Walk with Bradford Ornithological Group

The Friends of Baildon Moor have arranged for a joint guided walk with Bradford Ornithological Group.

We will meet at Pennithorn Hill car park at 8.00 am on 19th April. The walk will finish by noon.

The route takes us around the fringes of Baildon Moor at the time of the year when birds are extremely active ie singing, displaying & nest building whilst other species should be passing through on migration.

Birds likely to be seen – Willow Warbler, Reed Bunting, Wheatear, Kestrel, Snipe, Meadow Pipit & Golden Plover, to name just a few.

At this time of the year anything could turn up.

Please bring walking boots or wellingtons and suitably warm clothing.

A few members of the Bradford Ornithological Group will be there along with a few spare binoculars for those who need them.

Some recent sightings during Ingress work

I have been playing Ingress since Dec 12 2013 and this has got me out and about quite a bit. On several occasions I have tried to combine it with photography and on this occasion I was pleased I had my camera with me. As usual you can click on the image to see a larger version.

I stopped off at the bench/viewing area near the junction of Hillings Lane and Odda Lane near Hawksworth to submit a new portal; though I would not be surprised if it was submitted by others weeks ago and Niantic have yet to approve it.

Flying overhead was this Redkite. It was gliding around and several times effortlessly disappeared into the distance.

Redkite

On the same Ingress trip I also went up to the Stone Cross on Ilkley Moor where Grouse were keeping watch.

Red Grouse

Near the Stone Cross the estate people were burning the Heather for the new season.

Burning the Heather for a new season, Ilkley Moor

From the Stone Cross the radar domes of Menwith Hill seemed to be bathed in sunlight.

Ilkley Moor Stone Cross with Menwith Hill in the distance

This is the leading edge of a flock of Golden Plover, one of our seasonal visitors to the moors. I have not counted them yet but I would say that there were in the region of 350 in the flock.

Golden Plover, Ilkley Moor

On the way back from the Stone Cross, still on the same road there were a few Curlew and Lapwing in some of the fields. This is nothing compared to the numbers I saw on an Ingress trip to Beamsley Beacon but I have yet to upload those photos.

Curlew and Lapwing, Ilkely Moor