Monday, September 5, 2016

Special Post - Our Geocaching adventure

We've been geocaching since our last time in New Jersey.  It's been a lot of fun. I've always said part of the fun of traveling like we do is that you get off the road for random reasons and see things you would have never thought to look for.  With geocaching, it often makes you get off the road in unforeseen places for the next cache and see some sight that was worth the detour.  The other great thing, is when you are somewhere for one reason and she asks, "I wonder if there's a geocache around here." and you find one and it just adds one more facet to the experience.

Here are a few stories of our geocaching adventures. I'll try not to put in too many spoilers.

While in New Jersey, we often traveled north to Mass and NH for sightseeing.  In NH, we were in this small town and there was a supposed cache at this fireman's memorial. Laurie started looking while I re-parked the truck.  she's looking around trying to not look too obvious because there was a school crossing guard nearby.  While she's looking around, the girl says, "Keep looking, you'll find it. It's right there."  Yes, we met a fellow geocacher that day.

In Massachusetts, We had to go down this path behind an old factory, and found a great stream, dam, and historic sights we'd never known were there.

Took a walk down The Patriot's Path in Morristown, NJ and a repurposed trail that had been an old railroad line in New York To pick up a number of finds.  One, was somewhere in a row of small boulders and turned out to be a plastic garden rock that you would hide a house key in.  Another was a caching out in the open, but on a rock 20 feet up that I had to climb down a hillside for twenty feet to get to. Fun.

What about the cache I looked for a hour or so for, but when I brought Laurie there, she finally found it as a magnetic sign, saying "high voltage".

In Pennslyvania, A cache we never found, mostly due to the snow and cold, but we got a great view of a bend of the half-frozen Susquehanna river.

We introduced a friend we met in California to geocaching.  We often talk to people about the hobby. This lady actually lives in Colorado and we went out near her house when we visited earlier this year and had fun getting about a half dozen or so finds.

The idea of doing it as a family activity is great.  our children are too old to participate with us, but we're waiting for our grandkids to get big enough to do it.  My sister-in-law goes out and finds a few, then takes her grandsons out for the day. 

It's been fun collecting State souveniers on our profiles.  We have a string reaching from New York to California plus NH and Mass. We try and plan our routes now to pass through areas we haven't traveled since we started geocaching. 

Finding out about Travel Bugs has been a lot of fun, too.  We started picking them up and moving them.  Since we often travel goodly distances, your TB can easily end up many states away from where you last saw it.  We have also started logging when TBs in our possession "visit" other caches.
Currently, we have a few TBs we've picked up as well as a few of our own we will be spreading across the country. I have one I picked up in North Dakota that is trying to make it's way back to Vegas.  We will be passing close to if not through Sin City, so we'll get it close to home.  Another facet of TB are trackable coins you keep and have others "discover". Along those same lines are the trackable decals you put on your car.  I saw one and followed the driver to a parking lot in San Diego where we had a nice conversation.  A couple of weeks later, My wife and I came across the same car some 15 miles from the neighborhood I had first seen it in.  We talked to the owner, and she had a couple of coins we were able to discover as well.  We both have ham on our cars. What I really like is watching the logs of a bug you've placed and seeing it move across the country.  I have bugs now in North Carolina, Ohio, and Kansas that all came from North Dakota.

Laurie and I have started placing our own caches.  We each have one of our own to maintain.  It's fun to watch that activity as well.  We'll be travelling a lot, but we always come back to our home in ND, so we'll be able to maintain them annually.

There are local groups in many areas.  I have joined the Facebook pages for the San Diego Geocachers as well as the North Dakota Geocachers Association.  The North Dakota Association works in conjunction with the North Dakota State park system and often have joint events.  On the SD page, a fellow posted something and I recognized the name from when I was a young man working in San Diego.  His is not a very common name, and I hadn't seen him for over 40 years.  I contacted him as verified he was the same guy I had worked with.  I think that's very cool.

I think it would be fun to put a cache in some location where you could set up a motion activated camera that would record people searching the area for a find.

So, that is about how it's been going for us with Geocaching.  In my posts in this blog, I will continue mentioning as we find caches.  If you don't do this, and you want to have some outdoor fun, you can find out more about it and sign up for it at the website.

See you out there?

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