Blog Template Musings about Geocaching: 2006-04-30

Musings about Geocaching

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

It took me all day to log my finds and DNFs from the 11-day trip

If I remembered all of the caches I found, the total for my 11-day adventure was 47. I had ten DNFs as well, and I logged a "Note" for another cache since I spent an hour, and drove 15 miles around and around, trying to figure out how to get to it.

Blogger used to allow you to change the date and time of your posts, and I wish that was still the case, because I would really like to be able to write up the entire adventure, in order, day by day.
Thursday Evening Update: Ah Ha! Thanks to a comment from Susan, I found out I could set up posts at a different time and day, I just couldn't do it with Opera, my preferred browser. Blogger and Opera don't get along completely, so I had to open FireFox and set up consecutive posts with it. Now I can "flesh them out" and edit them in Opera. This little project should keep me busy for a while, which is good. After the trip, and the towing bill for the misadventure Tuesday, I can't afford to go anywhere, especially with gas being $3.41 per gallon here in San Diego . . . Why is that when it was "only" $2.79 in Denver? . . .

Until I get organized to write up the experience of what was likely the last road trip I'll ever take in my life, I'll share these photographs I took on the next to last day as I drove through Monument Valley.

This dog was very familiar with the Burger King parking lot and was begging for scraps.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Whew! What a costly, time-wasting adventure

Down at the far end is my little car, sitting there, waiting for the two stuck tow trucks to get themselves out of the sand so it can get rolling again.

It only took six hours to get back on the highway . . .

Picture Rock campground was a great place to camp

I started my day outside Bluff, Utah. That is a long way from San Diego. Maybe if I had made better time during the day, by not stopping to take pictures every half mile in beautiful, gorgeous, stupendous, astounding, unbelievable Monument Valley, and by not stopping to look for some caches, I could have made the drive home to San Diego County in one day. But I had stopped to take pictures every half mile in Monument Valley, and I had stopped to find some caches, and now I was many, many miles from home and the sun was getting very low in the sky.

I had no idea what I was going to do . . .

As I drove west on I-8, I saw the sign for Painted Rock Road. During my drive east ten days earlier, I remembered there was a cache called "Painted Rock." The Interstate sign indicated camping, so I exited the Interstate and drove the several miles to the well-equipped, nearly-deserted BLM campground. I set up my tent on the lee side of my car since the wind was blowing.

The next morning I walked over to the cache from the campground. After finding the cache, I walked around the "painted rocks," which are not technically painted. The designs are "etched" into the rocks.

It was going to be another hot day, probably with very few clouds, but in the early morning there were some wisps of clouds to add an accent to the rock formation.

After walking all around the trail, and taking several pictures, I finally headed back to the Interstate, stopping to take a few pictures of the scenery along the way.

A lone saguaro stood like a sentinel surveying the surrounding desert.

After I got back on the Interstate, I didn't stop again until I arrived at Yuma and headed over to find "Surprise in the Desert." What a wonderful surprise to find a real, honest-to-goodness money tree out there in the desert.

There was also another fun tree with birthday ribbons, horns, and bows tied onto it.

I wrote in the log that I almost got my car stuck on the short drive over to the cache . . . too bad I didn't stop there instead of trying to drive further towards another cache, because I did get my car stuck.

The track through the field didn't look like it went over bottomless sand, but that is what it is if you slow down and lose momentum . . .

Monday, May 01, 2006

If landscape alone could sustain me, I'd move to Bluff, Utah

What an extraordinary place. Not the town, but the surrounding landscape. I couldn't think of enough superlatives that morning to describe what I was seeing through the windshield of my car. Stupendous, astounding, incomparable, astonishing, unbelievable . . .

You get the idea.

The day couldn't have been more beautiful. The temperature was 70°. The air was clear, not hazy the way it was when I drove through the Navajo Reservation to the east a week earlier, and there were puffy clouds in the sky to add interest to the photographs.

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Back within the scenery Edward Abbey called "God's Navel"

In the late afternoon, I crossed the border from Colorado into Utah, and very soon the scenery looks exactly like it should when you are in Southern Utah.

Between taking pictures of the spectacular scenery, I managed to find several caches, and not find another one that really had me stumped. I think the coordinates are really off . . . or a couple of numbers are transposed, because where my GPSr took me was not a very good place for a cache. It was too near the highway to be a logical hiding place for a cache.

After that disappointment, I found my first Utah cache up on a hill over-looking a little reservoir. In Blanding, I found three physical caches and one Virtual cache at the Visitor Center.

In the Forums, discussions periodically arise about different "styles" of caches. Apparently "Florida Style" is a container hidden beneath Palmetto branches. Well, I discovered that "Blanding Style" is a white, five-gallon bucket . . .

I grew up in Colorado, but somehow missed this incredible scenery

I grew up on the eastern slope, west of Denver. Although I think we drove Highway 285 going on and coming back from summer vacations, I somehow did not remember the spectacular scenery I saw on the second day of my drive back towards San Diego County.

The first three pictures are from Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Monument, a place I had never been to before. There were two Virtual caches on the south rim I was able to get while I enjoyed the incredible vistas.

These mountains, which I believe are the Uncompahgre Range, which is where the Uncompahgre Wilderness Area is, were too spectacular for words . . .

In a little cemetary where I found a cache, I saw these interesting monuments devoted to people who were members of the Woodmen of the World and Women of Woodcraft.

Later in the afternoon, I drove through the Paradox Valley which is where the Dolores River bisects a valley you would expect it to run down, not across.

Where I took the last picture was a cache that had been muggled. However, my former caching partner, Princess Toadstool, had been there, providing a ziplock bag and a card, which I was able to sign to get the find.

When I saw her signature on the card, I couldn't believe the odds that such a remote, rarely-visited cache would also be one I would find, and right now, the only two people who have logged it are P.T. and me.

Amazing . . . !


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