VfAk48LJJrNcB1QnPEmU1bJ7a18 Geocache on: 2014


Sunday, 20 April 2014

Easter Sunday return to caching

It has been a long, extremely cold, very snowy winter! And we are really done with it! I know we will probably get a few more snow flurries before I can consider getting started on garden work but today it was warm enough to get out as a family and enjoy some suburban hiking.

We started with a cache that has been nagging at my mind for a while. The Hunger Games cache (GC35K4Z) is a puzzle cache that requires you to have read the first Hunger Games book in order to solve the puzzle. I had some issues with the idea behind the book and was resistant to reading it, but I thought I should at least read the first one so that I knew more about it. Well, that was the plan.

Turns out I really liked the books. Yes, books. Had to go to the library and find the other two because I wanted to read more!
You only need to read the first book to solve this puzzle cache though, and the solution is pretty easy.
The littlest goat was not keen on going caching today but I gave her a bit of a guilt trip and she came around. As it was, she was the leader walking through the woods and was the one to pull the cache out of hiding!

Then it was on to the next cache called Dig It! (GC4KEAC) that was placed for the Fall Cache and Release event of 2013. It has a Thanksgiving theme but Easter is also a time of being thankful so today was a good day to look for it! The littlest goat was at GZ before the old goat and I had even cleared the woods and she had the cache in hand before I even saw where she pulled it from. We loved the inner container. Some thought and creativity has gone into this one and it is worth a visit.

We took a short drive to our next target area. There is a new area called Nolan Hill in the Northwest of Calgary that is just starting to be built up. There are still lots of fields and undeveloped but cleared land with a couple of ponds and a creek running through it. Perfect when someone has seen fit to hide a few caches in the area!

Our first target was Nolan Hill Scramble (GC52D8G) and scramble we did! We went down into the creek area and then had to go back up to the trees when we realized where the compass was pointing. Saw out first crocus of the season and felt a rush of relief that spring may actually be here!
Took a bit of searching as the container is well-camouflaged, but we were successful in the end. Littlest goat went for a walk around the pond while we searched and she came back excited about seeing a Bufflehead and a Goldeneye diving for their lunch.

We headed over to the walking path to look for Nolan Hill Stroll (GC52D8X) next. Couldn't get Little Goat out of the creek so the Old goat and I had to search on our own. The container was a bit trickier than the last one as it is smaller but the coordinates were better, and after some pricks and pokes in the hands, we found the cache.

At this point we called it a day. I still had a turkey to roast and the others were planning on heading to the pool for a swim. A very pleasant day out in the fresh air with the family now that spring is peeking through!

Friday, 10 January 2014

Better late than never

At the end of my last post, I mentioned that we went geocaching on the Bearspaw Lasso Trail but I never did write the follow up post to that day. So here it is...better late than never.

From July 26, 2013
We were greeted at the trail head by a beautiful doe, casually grazing on the lush greenery abundant in the area. She was not too worried about our approach, just moved slightly off the path and watched us get out of the car and start our first search. Our first target was Gnome Alone CCARS09 (GC1YAA4) which was an easy find to get us started. Sadly the gnome who was supposed to guard the cache was gone but the cache was in good shape. And the hike up to it got us warmed up for what turned out to be quite an afternoon of hiking.

The next cache on the trail was Living in a Yellow Submarine (GC4B02Y) which was another quick find and a cute cache container. It is always nice when a cache is hidden in an unusual container or hidden in some way that takes imagination and creativity.

Our entire hike was made more enjoyable by the scenery, the wildflowers, grasses and ponds we passed.
 After all the rain and flooding Calgary went through in June, July was green and lush and feeling very much NOT like winter.

As we hiked to GCPF5C (Blueridge Micro), the trail dropped quite a bit in elevation and we came to a small creek to be crossed. However, the GPS was quite sure that the cache we were looking for was not across the creek. We searched in all the obvious spots and just could not see what needed to be seen. Then, I saw something that just didn't look right...and there was the cache. Again, just a unique way to hide a cache in plain sight, but something that made this better than a bison tube in a tree!

Across a little bridge (watching out for trolls) we went, and up into a treed area. It was a welcome way to cool off a bit as the day was warm, but soon we were out onto the grassy hillside again and looking for a multicache called When You Feel Miserable (GC1AZJK). The first part of the cache was supposed to be near a fenceline but this area was covered in anthills and millions of large ANTS! We did our best searching but gave up as the prickles, ants and sun were taking their toll. We moved on.

Following the path led us down to a quiet road we had to cross to an area we had been before. There is a large pond here with lots of ducks and reeds and mosquitoes!

Orange You Glad It's Not a Micro (GC1YA97) has a nice view of this pond which was quiet and peaceful this hot summer day. We signed the log as quickly as we could as the bugs were thick and relentless beside the water, then we made our way back to the trail. We almost turned back here because the next cache was one we had found back in 2007 when we first started caching and there was quite a distance to the cache past that one. But turning back would be almost the same distance and not as interesting since we had already covered it, so on we went. Friday the Thirteenth (GC1YZZJ) was the cache we had previously found, and is well worth a visit, especially if you are a night cacher with enough courage to search a dark wooded area. For us though, the destination was another Beatles cache appropriately named The Beatles - A Tribute (GC4AEBM). The littlest goat pulled this one from the hiding spot with a giggle. A fine tribute to the Beatles indeed!

The next cache itself was unremarkable but easily found in a grove of trees. (GC4AEAD) We had to reapply the bugspray and head to the next one before we were sucked dry by the mosquitoes. GC32JGR (Goodbye Calgary) was a unique hide placed in a clever way. We looked around for a bit before finding it and after closing it up and walking away, realized we had to go back because the littlest goat was still holding the log book.

Our last cache of the day, after a long hot hike, turned out to be our 500th cache!  We were excited to reach this milestone and a bit relieved to find the cache as we were hot and thirsty and tired of the bugs. The cache was hidden near a beautiful little pasture that was noted in the title of The Ponies Crystal Pasture (GC4AE98).

 Our return to the car turned out to be an adventure in itself as we made a wrong turn on one of the trails and had to do a lot of scrambling through trees, down a steep hillside and across a little gully. We made it through to the right area and soon found our ride waiting where we left it. A great day of caching that ended well.