Sunday, March 25, 2012

Power Trails

Another power trail was recently created very close to my home caching area. Between Hackensack, MN and Pequot Lakes, MN on the Paul Bunyan trail. The Paul Bunyan Trail is the longest bike trail in Minnesota and now yields a continuously paved trail from Brainerd, MN to Lake Bemidji State Park in Bemidji, MN -- a total of 112 paved miles! The terrain of the Paul Bunyan Trail ranges from flat and open to hilly and scenic.  Along the 112 miles of trail there are many areas to stop and rest and enjoy the beauty of nature in Northern Minnesota.
One of the vehicles used to move our bikes and crew

A small group from the North Star Geoseekers who have completed other power trails, got together on a very "unseasonably early" spring day in northern MN. Technically it was still winter since the first day of spring was still 3 days away...

Because of the early spring we had been itching to get out as a group, so the plans for this trail came together real fast, and by the next day all the pieces of the afternoon of power caching were set. It is good to note, that these plans cannot be static as weather can always add an interesting twist to any plans. That was the case for us. We had planned to drop one vehicle on the north starting point and the other on the south, but after battling the wind in our faces for the first 2 hours heading south, we decided that it would be a very difficult day of biking if we kept this up. So we packed up and went to south starting point and headed north. This decision allowed us to average 3-4 minutes per find.
Typical hide along the trail.

Now most of these hides are bison tubes but they blend in really well and most are also winter friendly (meaning that they are at least 2-4 ft above the ground) which is great for anyone wanting to grab a few of these caches in the winter since this trail doubles as a smowmobile trail.

Long story short, I finished the day with 165 finds and 2 DNF's...the rest of the Cach-N' Crazy Crew finsihed with 172 finds and 2 DNF's (since I had already made a few finds when they were first published). We are now planning on our next adventure along the Heartland Trail from Park Rapids, MN to Walker, MN as this is becoming populated with new hides in the past few weeks.

It has been a great spring so far and I'm really excited for all the new hides that are planned in the area including the GeoNuts 2012 Challenge.

- See you on the trail!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Night caching

For those who have never tried it, geocaching at night is one of the most enjoyable times you can have. A few of my geocaching buddies like to get together at least once a month and head out for the day hoping to find 40-50 hides. Most of the time, this takes more time to complete then there is daylight available. And, not only does it increase the difficulty for most hides, some real fun adventures are in store, especially when you cache as as a group.

Last weekend was one of those times we got together to tackle a cache specifically created for night. Once you arrive at ground zero, you then proceed to each waypoint by shining your flashlight into the woods to illuminate the reflective markers. Sometimes these caches use reflective tape or Fire Tacks, which are trail markers that are amazingly reflective for night and low light conditions.















Although the cache was a little less of an adventure then what we were expecting, the northern Minnesota night made up for it. It is hard to explain the beauty and serenity you find while in the dark northwoods. A few us would have been content with setting up camp right there and spending the evening staring upward to the stars.

I'm sure you can appreciate the attraction we have to night caching in picture below...

















- See you on the trail!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

chirp

A few months ago I was introduced to the Garmin caching site OpenCaching.com. At the time of it's launch, I signed up and I was only interested in reserving my trail name for that site. One of my geocaching buddies, decide to start loading his 150+ hides onto that site in hopes of offering his hides to a larger user base. The site still has a way to go to get the same number of users as Geocaching.com.

So a few weeks ago, I started to slowly uploading my hides and checked the box at the end of the form to enter into the OpenCaching.com "Chirp-a-Day" Sweepstakes. It was pretty neat to find out that I won. And now I have the privilege of creating a new cache (exclusive to opencaching.com) that will have that chirp.

For those of you that don't know what it is, I've include the description from the Garmin chirp website:

chirp is a one-of-a-kind wireless beacon designed specifically for the outdoor adventures of geocaching. Affordable, durable and waterproof, chirp can communicate with, and be programmed by, any compatible wireless-enabled Garmin handheld. chirp stores hints, multicache coordinates, counts visitors and confirms the cache is nearby. chirp is password protected and has a battery life of up to 1 year. 

I'll update this post at some point in the future when I have finally created and hidden the device. Look for it!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter & geocaching

Happy Easter everyone.

Today, my son and I launched his new travelbug (Night Fury) and he was pretty excited to find other cachers looking for his first hide http://coord.info/GC2TMQT. If you're ever in Northern Minnesota, stop in.

http://www.geocaching.com/track/details.aspx?tracker=TB3EWTJ

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The first post...

If I understand the rules correctly, this post should be more of an introduction about who I am and what you should expect of this blog. Although that might be what  "people" in general would like to see in this post, but I'm not going to do that. You see, I like to geocache with friends and especially with my children. In fact, both of my boys helped me create the logcache you see in the photos below. This type of cache does require maintenance, because the bark tends to fall off with handling, but it definitely adds so much to the illusion, and besides, I only live 2 miles from its hiding spot.

As I place more unique caches I will post photos & story of them here.