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Melrose Plant

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Everything posted by Melrose Plant

  1. I think all of my hides try to show seekers a place that is special to me, even if the place was discovered by me whilst I was trying to find a place to hide the container. I did have one series which was "hisorical," but two out of the four caches had to be archived for different reasons. Although, I might have to resurrect them, as they were popular caches and no one has rushed to fill the vacuum left by their absence. Melrose
  2. It's only happened a very few times to me, but once was in the dark in the wee hours, and I thought is was the cops! It was only the second finders, though. Melrose
  3. I have no reason to fear the cops being called while I am caching as I am not doing anything illegal. Absolutely true. But why would you want the hassle of explaining to the cops what you are doing if you don't have to? It's a stressor I can do without. And so far, knock on wood, I HAVE done without it.
  4. I switched to paperless once. It worked well. Then something went kablooey and spinner or plucker or something like that quit working. So I went back to the old way, which I like to call "less paper" as opposed to paperless. I print out one of those geocaching.com maps with in the "identify" mode, and manually write the coordinates and any comments in pencil on this sheet. That way, depending on cache density, I can find several caches and make notes for later logging using only one sheet of paper. Downside: It is rather time consuming. After that, I just follow the arrow. Sometimes I find them, sometimes I don't. Melrose
  5. Guilty? Hmm, no. But what's the difference when the cops come? So why would I bring up the cops when I've never had an encounter with them whilst geocaching? I guess because it's always a fear. Sneaking around in the dark, digging around in tree trunks, squatting in the bushes. Have I done anything wrong? Of course not. Is somebody going to call the cops? Of course they are, it's just a matter of time. I really dislike residential caches, even if they're in a public park behind the houses. The Petunia Dursleys of the world are watching. Plus the cache might get muggled after I visit. It's happened several times to me. Mere coincidence? Maybe. I even own a cache that I don't like visiting. I hid it near a construction site where I was working. Now there is an endless wall of windows where any number of eyes might be watching. I guess I must suffer from that spotlight syndrome. Funny thing, though. I never cared what people thought about me in high school. . . Melrose
  6. Yeah, pretty much what everybody else said. I figure if people keep finding them, and don't say anything about contents scattered about, they must be OK. I visit all of mine once a year at minimum, though. Melrose
  7. Interesting question, and accurate answer, so far. Let me tell you about my experiences. I started off with a Garmin Geko 101, which is about the cheapest, most basic unit you can buy. I used this for a year and a half, at which point I stupidly left it lying near a cache site. By the time I realized it, somebody had taken it (had to be a busy spot, of course). I replaced the Geko with a MAP60CS. It has failed twice and had to be replaced by the factory. But even ignoring that, my $400 wonder does NOTHING to help me find caches any better. There are just more toys to play with. Which can be important when you have low self-esteem like me. In retrospect, I kind of wish I'd just bought another Geko. OK, I wish I'd never left the first one lying around for people to steal. If you like your unit, keep it. If you hate it, get another one. Happy caching! Melrose
  8. I just did my first night cache tonight, and it was really cool! I should say, my first night cache that was designed to be a night cache only. I only wish I'd had a chance to set one up first. Now I have to think of a different twist on it if I want one of my own. Melrose
  9. Interesting question. What it says, "available in winter," seems kind of, well, dumb to me. Unless the cache is way up in the mountains and is not accessible by normal means. This doesn't apply to the vast majority of caches. So then the next logical interpretation would be "winter friendly." But this interpretation invites confusion, as we have seen. So what I do is bypass the whole "available in winter" attribute choice and say in the description if it is designed to be somewhat easily found even after a heavy snow, which a couple of mine are. That just clears things up, doesn't it? I can see where a person would think either way. Melrose
  10. My six year old has enjoyed caching for two years now. He has been asking about getting his own GPSr for a couple of months. Now that he can read (when did THAT happen?), I'm a little more receptive to the idea.
  11. This is Elsa. She is a good caching companion. She doesn't chase animals or people, and she can somehow always find her way back to the car better than I can with the GPSr. She is half Rottweiler, half something real tall, long, and skinny. And here she is after a long day of caching being tended to by our cat Baci. Our new younger cat, Bella, has since taken over this duty. Don't ask me. They must like her.
  12. I have several 4 oz Rubbermaid containers out there, originally as micros, but now listed as "small." I thought they were great, and very cheap. They lasted through two winters with no problems and no leakage, but the second summer seems to have done them in. Every one of them seems to have a damp log book as they near their third year of service. So I'm looking for a suitable replacement container.
  13. I have begun using a headlamp quite by accident. I was working a job where we basically had to have a headlamp attached to our hardhats (like a miner). When working out of town, I wanted to grab some caches after work, and all I had with me for a flashlight was the one on the hard hat. So I wore it. I wish I'd thought of that a long time ago. I'd been caching for a long time with a mini-maglite. This one-watt LED headlamp is a big improvement. Also useful for protection against falling branches and angry squirrels. However, no one's actually caught me wearing a hard hat at night in the woods, so I can't tell you about the negatives.
  14. Yes, I think that going for first to find races are pretty much the only times I meet other cachers out there on the hunt. And it can be very exciting at times. Maybe it is a relatively safe excitement substitute for someone who normally doesn't do anything illegal or dangerous. One time I was trying for a first to find before work at probably 5:30 in the morning. The cache area is notorious for bad GPS reception. I managed to walk straight into somebody's private fence, making a loud clanging sound when my GPSr was going nutso. There were lights on at the house. Nothing happened. I found the cache. First. Then the flashlights appeared. Bright flashlights. Aaagh, it's the cops! I swear I didn't do anything! Just accidently ran into a fence! Nope, it was the second finders. We chatted for a while in the dark. I went to work as usual. You can't get this anywhere else. Melrose
  15. Testingggaaaa! Testinggaaa!
  16. It seems like with my caches, the main problem is that people want to leave stuff and take nothing. The caches get so crammed full of stuff that you can't close the lid properly or wind up squashing the contents doing so. I actually encourage people to TSLN (Take something, leave nothing) if this is the case. Of course, I do have my share of junk. Just recently, I went to check on one of my small caches (1/2 cup rubbermaid container), and found a car cigarette lighter crammed in there. I removed it, and dang it, it doesn't even work in my Saturn which did not come with a cigarette lighter (or an ashtray, for that matter). Landfill material. I nearly always leave a Sacagawea dollar. On the rare occasion that I trade for any other item, I leave something else as trade. The Sac dollar does not take up much room, and it seems to be very popular with other cachers, particularly the kids. There is a certain group of people that follow me around, I swear, because their kids want those Sac dollars. I'm glad somebody pays attention to me anyway.
  17. Alas, most of my other pursuits are not caching compatible. I used to do a fair bit of hiking and camping, but I married and non-camper and seldom-hiker. My son seems a lot more interested in the outdoor pursuits, we'll have to wait and see.
  18. OK, after debating back and forth about which one to submit, I chose this one because it was the only one taken fairly recently (it's hard to believe than less than five months ago, it looked like that outside) which spoke to me. Of course, he's my son--he speaks to me a lot. Some would say too much. And yes, he does wear those snowshoes. They work remarkably well. This was taken during a major cache maintenance run where I replaced and re-hid two formerly Tupperware caches with ammo cans. These are two I sometimes wish I had never hidden because they are a major pain in the butt to get to to maintain. Here is Max holding the "old" Target Greenbelt cache while we're resting before going on to Inter-Urban Railway to replace it also.
  19. There are a lot of things that are not very easy to intuitively figure out on many units. For example, one time I was out on a caching trip and I ran across a cache where you had to project several waypoints to find the final. "No problem," I thought. I had done it just fooling around when I had first got my unit. Well, memory isn't always all it's cracked up to be. I sat there in the parking lot for fifteen minutes trying to figure out how to do it. I finally had to give up and abandon even starting the search. Later, after reading the manual, I re-remembered how to do it. It was easy, but not intuitive.
  20. Boy, am I glad I never started off that way, or I'd have given up long ago. On my first cache hunt, it took me forever to get on the right side of the lake. And this was following the arrow. I'd never have made it if I was trying to get the numbers to go the right way!
  21. The only thing I can think of in our area that could be considered a series is the so-called "Grandma" caches, one of which is here. They are not really related in any way, except they were all hidden contemporaneously by the same guy, and they are all designed to be pretty much drive-ups--so that grandma can go with you. They are all actually pretty good hides which show interesting places. My only complaint is that the guy uses a lot of Gladware.
  22. Don't you get tired of people pointing and snickering at events? You know, I have not yet had that problem. I guess I'm just more comfortable with my feminine side that most men. Plus, everybody knows who I am. It's a fairly small community here in Central Iowa.
  23. I am a big fan of this particular type of multi cache, just because there is less maintenance involved. But it doesn't mean there is no maintenance. I had one multi, now archived due to other reasons, that used a sign as a clue. My cache page said something like "find the only number on the sign, and substitute that number for the "X" in 93° 34.4x5. This is a made up example, by the way. I don't remember what the real coords were. After about six months I kept getting these logs saying things like, "a hint: Use the number in the substance of the sign and ignore the other numbers. . ." After about three of these logs, I decided I'd better look into this. What had happened was that they'd changed the sign. The old brown sign simply said "Park hours from 6 a.m. to sunset." The new blue and white sign said the same thing, only at the very bottom in smaller letters it gave you the number to some city ordinance. Aha.
  24. Good grief, Charlie Brown. If I feel the need to begin a life of crime, I think I'll confine myself to stealing car stereos. It sounds safer than stealing on of RK's caches.
  25. Yes. Also, there's a cutoff in mileage when you're in "Find nearest" mode. So at times, you might think you've only got six waypoints loaded in if you're out in the cache-sparse boonies.
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