Went geocaching with Darren today. Spent about a good 3 1/2 hours or so going at it. Tough work at some of the spots, I’ll tell you that!
Darren and I hit six today, bringing my total to 11. Watching the weather for Saturday as we were hoping to make a full day of hiking and finding caches. This hobby has quickly become addictive and exciting. Almost obsessive.
For those who haven’t a clue what we’re doing frolicking around looking for boxes of treasure, here’s one we found today:
I know what you have to be thinking: What in the world would you be out running around for to gather junk like that.
Well, I don’t really take anything.
My goal is to find the cache and sign the logbook. It’s all about the hunt. However, some of these caches have travel bugs and geocoins — items you log on to and track where they’ve been and where they’ve gone. These are wild as you can be part of sending something on its way, which is really cool. Currently, I’m in possession of three of these items (I’m hoping if we get good weather this weekend that we’ll hit some good places and I can spring these suckers out there. I don’t want them to get stuck somewhere!)
The one I picked up today is the “Bexbach, Germany” Unite for Diabetes Travel Bug. Being that I have a borderline case of diabetes (and likely will fight it for the rest of my life), this one (and the geocoin I currently have) are near to me.
The other bug I currently have is the Big Apple Panda – which is trying to get to China and Ireland before going home to Seattle. We’ll see how it goes. I’m trying to find the best place I can drop it to help it along its path. I also want to take a photo of this one to put on that page.
The geocoin I have is a WDD 2007 Commemorative Geocoin — handed out on World Diabetes Day in November. This one I want to put somewhere I know it will move, considering it stayed in the previous place for several months before I grabbed it.
Oh, for you baseball fans — Darren has this one and is trying to get it to Cooperstown (not a lot of big caches there). Check it out as it’s one of the coolest travel bugs I’ve seen.
Click on any of those links and it will take you to the page of the bug or coin and will tell you where it’s going and where it’s been.
As for today…
Quickly stopped for something to drink, then headed over to Riddell State Park to try that one. However, we couldn’t get the right coordinates in Darren’s GPS, so we basically wasted about 15 minutes (maybe more). Not to be deterred, we moved on.
We then ended up at the Audubon sanctuary outside of Oneonta and got a good, uphill hike in. However, as we uncovered this one, we saw “muggles.” Now, before geocaching, I had NO clue what a muggle was. Apparently, it’s something out of Harry Potter. It also refers to someone not in the game. Anyway, they kind of peeked at us and I’m hoping like hell nothing happens to the cache.
After that, we decided to conquer this one. From where we parked, it was 700 yards (give or take) from us. So we started to trek. But, we have to go around the pond. One way isn’t going to work too well, so we go the other (trekking through the snow again) and keep going and going and going.
Still with me?
Anyway, we come to a creek. Darren goes across. I have a bad feeling. He talks me into it – “we’re only like 120 yards away.” So, I cross, getting my feet a little wet as well. Thankfully, I wore my duck boots (I do need a new pair of these, however). Now, I want to take the trail. Darren wants to take a “shortcut.”
Mistake No. 1.
And, he has control of the GPS.
Mistake No. 2.
See, the reason Darren and I work well together when we geocache is this — I go slower and watch the GPS, he goes off ahead and kind of goes by the direction, searching to figure out the clues and where it might be. Then I catch up, telling him left or right, how far etc.
Another 20 minutes goes and I’m getting frustrated. We’re not near it. Keep getting further away and it’s getting dark. If we don’t find it soon, we ain’t going to find it.
I get in an opening with the GPS and finally get a good signal. We finally find it (wish I had taken a photo), sign the log and grab the diabetes TB. Now, we need to get back to the car. We pass this gal walking her dog (somehow she beats us back to the parking area. I think we should have gone THAT way). Tough walk back, but when done a pretty solid victory, I think. It was a gym-worthy cardio workout and well worth the trek. I’m glad we found it.
We hit two after dark — one at a rest area and one in downtown Oneonta, a nano. That thing was TINY! I like nanos, I think, though. I look forward to attempting to find more.
Now, we’ll hope for good weather this weekend to hit a bunch more. I’m sure there will be more tales here. Today was good for me though. Helped me free my mind a bit.