L.A. Rivers

16 12 2010

The L.A. River is currently (pun intended) running its course in a big, long cement ditch. It’s far from scenic, but until I found a cache next to it this week with an informational plaque on its history, I was unaware of the practical necessity of its structure. The river in its natural form is intermittent, and its course changes to the extent that city planning required that it be made to run a fixed course.

More on that here: HIstory of the Los Angeles River
… and the cache – Outdoor classroom

The river of water is tame compared to the rivers of traffic that flow through the city. In the same manner as its counterpart, cars are funneled along channels of cement:

Cross the 101 FWY
Here’s a brief history: Los Angeles Freeway System

At least there’s always this around:
Park Your Stagecoach Here?

… and the scenery nearby is much better than cement ditches:


28 10 2010

Geocaching to me is recess, and I got to go outside and play a couple of times this week.

I headed for Simi Valley with the Ventura Kids for almost 40 caches in four hours. The weather was ideal.

Here are the caching pros discovering what “Clow” means:


There are no less than three caches VISIBLE in this photo. See if you can tell where they are:

Not hot and no juice

The next day I spent a few hours in Burbank with Bwidger, Spoondoggie, and OLdweeb. We cleaned up a couple dozen newer ones, most of which were stashed in an alleyway that was quiet and muggle free:
Guarding the Alley

We did see some unusual vehicles, like this taxi:

and this “cool” camper:

Scott showed us how to really have play time!

…. and we had lunch at Shakey’s, where we had smores pizza.

Yes, that’s marshmallows. chocolate and graham cracker crumbs on pizza crust. It’s actually pretty tasty! Evil, but tasty….

(NO, I did not use the hot sauce!)

Vegas, Baby!

29 07 2010

I spent 9 days in Vegas learning about real estate investing and how to be a successful enterpreneur. In between the smorgasbord of information and networking, I grabbed a few caches near the hotel. All of them were nicely hidden:

It’s not easy being Green in Vegas

"Say Goodnight, Gracie…"

The Gates that won’t close

One Tree on The Planet

Vegas is fun at night:

… but it’s also quite striking on a quiet Monday morning:

I capped off my geocaching week with a straggler close to my house!

p.s. I notice that no one has rushed over to CafePress. (ha!) Here’s my offer for my birthday month of August: anyone who sends me a photo of them with any of my EMC of Northridge products from CafePress will get a free bronze EMC geocoin! Yes? Yes!

Geocaches Just Around the Corner

8 10 2009

I’ll get to the caches around the world later, meanwhile, I headed out earlier this week for an afternoon of caches near my house. I’ve had a goal for a long time to clear out a 10 mile radius, but I’ve never gotten that completely done. I do manage to keep about an 8 mile circle clear, though. This baker’s dozen had sprung up fairly recently, including some nicely designed ones by a newer cacher, Minifish.

I took notes and photos as I went, to give you an idea what a “normal” caching experience is like. (ha!)

Take the Cannoli
behind a honeysuckle bush near an indoor target practice range
found in about 2 minutes, 1:30pm, 79º

unusual and deserted place with an abandoned ramp where a loading dock used to be
found in about 3 minutes, 1:40pm, 79º

Skirting the issue.
quiet side street
found in about a minute, including one “wrong” guess, 1:50pm, 79º

Deep Freeze
teeny ammo can stashed in a sign

I met the cache owner at the next cache, as he’d noticed my logs. ( I was posting from my iPhone as I went; I love doing that, because then I have no “homework” when I get home.) He’d gotten a lot of flak about putting cache in a No Trespassing sign… (duh)… and it’s now archived… but because the sign itself disappeared! Go figure. I love these itty bitty ammo cans, though.
found in about 5 minutes, including a call to a life line to save myself the agony of the previous finders, 2:10pm, 77º

studied the logs and the area to find this one similar to an AgouraCharger hide, done with a simple, yet deceptive mechanism
found in about 3 minutes, but then spent a few talking to the cache owner, Minifish, who pulled up just as I discovered the secret of the hide, 2:20pm, 79º
The cache is right behind him!

Caribbean Jerk
curious installation on a quiet side street
found in about 30 seconds, as it was the first thing I touched. Sometimes I’m good at this. 2:35pm, 79º

another quick fix
this was an awkward hunt in a mini-mall parking lot, and I needed a lifeline to get me to look in the right place with the coords all over the place… not such a quick fix for me…
found in about 7 minutes, 2:55pm, 79º

pi eta – iota epsilon – theta
needed another lifeline, although I should have spotted this dang nano. Sometimes I’m not so good at this! The parking lot itself is bleak, but the sunlight dappling the mountains to the north was spectacular
found in about 7 minutes, 3:20pm, 79º (but breezy and feels cooler now)

Very Opinionated
Ahh….. quick and easy magnetic altoids in front of Vons grocery store
found it in about 5 seconds, 3:25pm, 79º

Bad Boys!! Watch gonna do??
Love the flat caches, and it was a bit of a search before I went to that idea.
found it in about 10 minutes, while I fielded a lifeline from Spoondoggie on a cache I haven’t found yet, 3:40pm, 79º
I forgot to take a photo here.

UCKY Commute – Another Dead End
Another quiet side street, and someone has llamas in their yard nearby
found it instantly, 3:45pm, 81º (still feels cooler, as it’s shady and breezy)
Looking back from this cache toward the previous cache just down the street:

UCKY Commute – By The Eucalyptus Tree
Wandered around for a long time under the trees. Eucalyptus are particularly bad for scattering the GPS signals. After finding someone’s stash of bad videos, I called for another lifeline, then found it rather handily.
this took about 20 minutes, including the short hike, 4:15pm, 77º
Urban horse trail:

A Moving Experience
A short walk up one of the canyons in Porter Ranch led me to a container with a funny pun on it, but I won’t give it away.
found instantly after a 5 minute walk, 4:30pm, 77º

time – 3 hours
mileage – 27 miles from my house and back to my house
lifelines – 4, all to Garagedude
DNFs – none, thanks to Garagedude

Have a great caching week!

How to Be a Geosponge

16 07 2009

There is an art to being a geosponge, and it’s not as easy as one might think. There are other permutations of it, but I usually use this term to mean that I’m tagging along with other cachers and have not done any of the research or prep work. Oh, I may have solved a puzzle or two and will have the bookmarked caches loaded in my GPSr as a backup. Mostly I just show up, ride along, sticker/sign log books, and enjoy the day with geofriends.

The art is in how to relinquish control, be a team player, and get in and out of the BACK seat of a car. It can be exhausting!

Prepare what you want to take the night before as you will be rising at the crack of dark:

Get picked up in your town car by another cacher who happens to have one:

Have a healthy breakfast:

Watch the other cachers hunt and take photos:

Find one of the caches early on, so you feel like you’ve actually contributed to the day:

Wonder why people spend so much time at farmer’s markets:

Wonder why people go kayaking or boating:

They could be looking for geocaches in bushes:

… and finding creative containers like this one:

Take a photo of unusual architecture:

Then turn around and take a photo of everyone else looking for the cache:

Watch everyone else look for a cache that you’ve found already. This is especially entertaining when the cache has gone missing and they end up not finding it (oops!):

Have a healthy lunch:

Keep going since the goal is to find well over 100 caches for the day:
#50 = Naughty Root
#100 = Riley’s Treasure Chest
Last one, #112 for me = Puzzle LPC

Celebrate a milestone or two:
My #19000!
f0t0m0m’s #17000!

Interact with your surroundings. Sandy carries special horse cookies with her, in case she sees one along the way that needs a snack:

Don’t interact with some of the surroundings. We saw this bee cluster along one of the country roads, and I took this through the CLOSED car window:

Update Facebook and Twitter and keep up on your e-mail as you ride along between caches.

Enjoy the scenery:

Admire a local artfully-designed establishment:

Be the human retrieval tool, and take a walk up a bike trail to grab one while the others wait in the car, parked illegally, and enjoy more scenery:

Sleep well that night, and be prepared to return the favor and do the planning to lead the next expedition! Or not…. heh…..