Blog Template Musings about Geocaching: 2005-03-27

Musings about Geocaching

Saturday, April 02, 2005

I got a new icon today -- for a Locationless cache

This "Where's in a Name" cache took me the longest to grab. I found out about it in the Forums several weeks ago and set out trying to find a fellow Geocacher at the latitude my user name worked out to.

My first attempt was successful. The couple I contacted got out the very next day and posted the pictures before I was even up and on the computer. Wow! Great! Wasn't that nice of them?

And then, . . . when I was posting my log, I realized I had made a mistake. I mixed up the number in the first part of the coordinate, it should have been 43 North, not 46 North.

So, embarrassed and feeling foolish, I contacted them and deleted my "Found It" log.

When I finally figured out where my real latitude was, it turned out to be just a bit north of Ketchum, Idaho, where I lived for eight years. I contacted a couple of different Geocachers and finally got a reply from one person, who ultimately forwarded my email to another Geocacher.

He was able to get up to the area a little while ago and sent me the picture necessary to log the find. The picture reminded me about one I took more than twenty years ago.

The cache picture was taken not too far from my nephew's Memorial Bench that was placed on the trail after his death in 1999. And, when my fellow Geocacher was out taking the pictures for the "Where's in a Name" Geocache, he took part in a recovery effort for a snowmobiler who got caught in an avalanche.

Since my sister still lives in the area, I am hoping the person who was killed was not someone she knows. For a small community, there has been a disproportionate amount of grief for people killed or injured in accidents.

This was such a fun project to work on. I want to extend a great big thank you to my fellow Geocacher for participating in this unique cache.

Friday, April 01, 2005

The magic occurred again tonight

Earlier in the day I met some friends and we climbed up Cowles Mountain. I found the Solstice Site cache and Elec-Terrific View and then we headed back down to grab some lunch. It was an absolutely gorgeous, almost crystal clear day with a bit of a Santa Ana clearing and drying out the air. I regret the fact that the distraction of socializing kept me from getting out the camera. I didn't take a single picture today.

After making the drive to REI to buy a new GPSr (A Garmin eTrex Vista) for my friends, I finally got a chance to look for one more Geocache before the day was done. The one I chose was Tribal Hideaway. I looked for it a few weeks back, but that day I didn't have the description with me, only the waypoint on the GPSr. Tonight I had the description, and even the clue, but the sun was nearly down and it was dark on the east side of that palm tree. I looked and looked for it and couldn't find the "cammoed Tupperware" container. I sure didn't want to log another DNF for this cache.

So, I walked around a bit more and then came back and moved the very same palm fronds again and there it was -- a brilliantly camouflaged container. It is amazing how that happens!

Here is a screenshot of the extent on my wanderings on my two visits to this cache:

These past two days have been fairly productive. I got a late start yesterday, so I only found two, and lots of distractions kept me from finding more than the three I found today. Tomorrow is Saturday. If my knees can take it, I'll head out again to look for some along the Otay Mesa Road. There are a few down there that have been on my list for two months and its time to put them in the "Found" column.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

My Travel Bug began its journey tonight

I had to go into El Cajon to fill my water bottles, so of course I had to find some nearby caches. "Rude's Zany Cache" is up the hill behind the Vons grocery store, and near the UPS store where I got "Leapin' Lizzards" info sheet laminated. With that task done, he was truly ready to be launched into the great world of Geocaches.

It was a beautiful day for a send off of a little guy who had been hanging around my house too long and the late afternoon light was perfect for a couple of last portraits.

After finding this cache and "A Blockbuster View," I went in the nearby coffee shop where I talked Geocaching. It is hard to contain my enthusiasm after a couple of successful hunts.

One young woman said there was a big article in the University newspaper. She was excited about it. The other woman said her husband had a GPSr and she sounded like they might look into it.

Woo Hoo, new Geocachers coming on board!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The downfall of truly paperless caching

Okay, I cache "paperless." I love caching that way . . . until I get to a cache like this one. See, I got to the first waypoint and read that part of the description and figured out the second waypoint. Write down what A, B, C, and D stand for, "Why would I want to do that?"

So, I get to waypoint number two, and finally waypoint number three, and then waypoint number four, and since I haven't written anything down, I'm lost. My memory simply isn't that good.

I did get pictures of these beautiful flowers down in the canyon near the 163 freeway.

So, I walked all the way back to my car, got a notebook and a pen, two items that are now going in my fanny pack along with my Palm, and started at the beginning again, writing down what ABCD, EFGH, etc. were, so I could figure out the final waypoint.

After I found this one, thanks to the clue (since under all those trees my GPSr was jumping around quite a bit), I found another cache over by an abandoned freeway overpass. Poor sad cache. It is soaking wet and nasty. I think it is the nastiest one I've found so far. If I had known ahead of time, I would have been able to bring along one of my own small containers and a dry log. Oh well. Maybe the cache owner will finally take care of it.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Easter Sunday caching

I finally found my first cache about 4:30. It was an easy Micro attached by a strong magnet to a street sign. It had that great cammo tape, but it might not have been the best cammo for the location.

"Gee, I wonder where the cache is?"

I drove around a little more than necessary before starting out for the second one, "Sound of Progress." That was a walk of about 1.2 miles, which was just the perfect distance for after-Easter-Brunch exercise. It was a quick and easy find--a peanut butter jar--under the bikepath bridge near the overpass.

I read the logs carefully for the next closest cache, so I found the correct starting point, although I could have parked closer. However, I needed the exercise, so the .33 miles I walked to that one was good. Once I found the trailhead, it was a short walk along a horsepath to the point where the GPSr needle made a hard right turn. From there, I just had to watch out for the very healthy Poison Oak growing near the path.

I got close to the spot and looked around for just few seconds. A very artificial pile of rocks gave its location away. Beneath the rocks was a large coffee container. It had some cool things inside, as well as one of those advertising give-away bandaid keepers.

I took out a little thing that might be someone's signature item and left a plush tiger. As I was putting the cache back, I slipped and banged my shin hard against a pointed rock. I gritted my teeth against the pain, then retrieved the cache again to get a bandaid out of the bandaid keeper.

I rehid it in a very natural way. I don't think it will be quite as obvious a find for the next Geocacher who comes along.

After that one, the nearest caches were multis, and since it was truly dusk by now, I headed south and then west to grab that one in the REI parking lot. I read about it weeks ago when it was first placed. Good to finally put that one in the "Found" column.

So, two miles of walking and four finds in less than two hours on an Easter Sunday evening. Not bad.


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