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Mike & Jess

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Posts posted by Mike & Jess

  1. Is this project still ongoing? We have a hide that qualifies but knew nothing about TCDN caches until today. If someone would send me a message on this, I'd appreciate it.


    I did a quick search and only found ~161 caches that matched TCDN. I think the that it may be no longer maintained.

  2. I'd like the RAM mount to attach my Oregon to my mountain bike handlebar. It goes for $20-25 so I will likely put that on my list.


    Waterproof hiking boots would be a great gift for me.


    Also, how about one of those astronaut pens that write upside down, in the cold, etc?

    I have the garmin mount right on the stem of my mtn bike. Works great and keeps the GPS a bit lower profile and reasonably safe if I crash. Worth every penny/


    There is only one thing I want and money can't buy it: a moun10bike geocoin.

    Are you talking about these?


  3. We are having a similar issue, but not nearly as drastic as ones described in this thread. In our case, the caches are being stolen. The culprit is a premimum member as PMO caches are not safe.

    Unfortunately the Audit log for PMO caches doesn't give you enough info to pin them.


    Currently looking into placing a couple game cameras around random caches. Unfortunately I have too many caches to cover all of them, and the caches being attacked are not all new ones.


    The kicker is, unless you can nail the person with something illegal, nothing can be done through GS once you figure out who they are. The culprit needs to do something wrong on the GC or GS site to have GS step in.

  4. Flares actually burn too hot in the range of 2,900+ Deg F and hotter. It'll burn right through the wood wihtout laying down any coal base to keep a fire self-sustaining. They make the worst fire starting utensils and unless you can fire it in the air for help, the worst things wieght and hazard wise you can carry in your backpack.


    They're good for dry conditions, but not so good for wet conditions.

    That is one reason I don't recommend them (road flares). However projection flares bounce which is a hazard.


    Another thing about road flares is the method of use, anytime I've used one for lighting a fire it was held in hand and used like a big long lasting match held under the kindling (which was usually either slash or dry grass etc. ( fuel burnout or backfiring on a wildfire). That is not the same thing as a camp or survival fire situation as you know. Still a good comment of yours, something to consider.


    Anyway, today on CNN.com I noticed an article re a sunscreen recall... at first I thought of something similar I said yesterday in the thread on trying to light...


    Sunscreen Recall


    Never thought about that as a starter fluid. Think it would require a bit of wick like most, but maybe not since it was happening on bare skin.


    Doug 7rxc


    It's not the sunscreen that is flamable; it is the propellent. I suppose you could try for a blowtorch, but it also might blow up in your hand.


    Have I missed a suggestion to carry a creme brulee torch?


    Bug spray also works. Interestingly enough, the bugs are not bad when we use it to start the fire. Cooked food does taste kind of funny though...

  5. If I go out when it might rain, a cheap (dollar store) rain poncho gets tossed into the bag I'm carrying.

    If I'm out hiking, I'll opt for my nylon rain coat (also doubles as my spring/fall coat) and my heavier canvas zip away pants. The nylon pants that come with my rain suit doesn't breath enough for warmer weather. They are ok for temps below 30'F.

  6. Our two boys (soon to be joined by a sister) where born into geocaching and the outdoors.

    Park and grabs are a no go normally with the boys. Out in the bush is where they want to be.


    We've logged hundreds of hours with one of the boys in the kid carrier backpack and many, many miles.

    The tricks I've learned;

    Carry snacks, drinks and a spare change of cloths for the boys (the kid carrier has a huge pocket).

    If you are using a trek pole and water bladder in your pack, they are going to want one.

    When safe to do so, let them walk the trails for a bit.

    If you spot the cache first, give them hints or pointers to let them find and retrieve it.


    Small--> Large caches are treasures

    Micros and nanos are adult caches


    As others have mentioned, bring plenty of swag.


    Our oldest attended his first event at 2 weeks old.

    Our youngest co-hosted his first event at 3 weeks old.

  7. Let us know which ones seem to work better than others. I'm quite interested in learning how to start fires in the rain.


    I found a news article about some people who died of hypothermia in my state. It was raining and they had matches with them, but apparently didn't even try using them.

    It could be the sulfur may have been damp enough attempting to start a fire is useless. Also, rain is deceptive. If it is warm, you can still succumb to hypothermia without even being aware of it.


    I don't use DIY kits. I use Esbit fuel pellets and the REI burn anywhere matches. For comparison, typical wax kits will burn about 700-800 Deg. F. The Esbit pellets burn for about 12 minutes apiece at about 1200-1500 Deg. F. Appropriate tender that works in the rain is grey Spanish Moss, evergreen branches full of needles (try to shake as much of the water off these as you can to help - they go up like Xmas trees), low level dead branches and twigs off trees, cedar bark and pitch. Gather enough to fill two 5 gallon buckets for wet weather and double it for freezing weather. Try to find good wood that hasn't been sitting on the ground for your main fuel. Lay down a bed of bark with the inside facing upward. This will make an excellent coal base for warmth and cooking when you get a good fire going. Then set up your tender and main fuel and place a fuel pellet in the middle. Strike a match, put it on top of the pellet and babysit the fire till it is self sustaining with the main fuel source. Have a second pellet on standby if 12 minutes isn't enough to dry out the initial tender. I practice this once a year, with or without camping buddies.


    I also carry a pocket chainsaw to help cut the dead wood to reasonable sizes.

    I have never tried those pellets. I know there are probably hundreds of different kits or starters commercially made.

    The rest of your post is definitely good information.


    Let us know which ones seem to work better than others. I'm quite interested in learning how to start fires in the rain.


    I found a news article about some people who died of hypothermia in my state. It was raining and they had matches with them, but apparently didn't even try using them.


    I recommend reading some good articles on hypothermia. One of the hidden dangers is that the person suffering from it is in a form of denial, they feel warm and make poor judgements (some thing like a person with a fever often has chills). A classic sign is the casting of clothing and equipment. We had a SAR practice recently where the 'subject' was displaying a pre arranged set of symptoms. These were all 'classic' representations... note that almost all of the trainees failed to recognize what was happening... I was way at the back but saw it almost immediately once I started paying attention as did a few of the old timers... but it was trainee night after all. I think most of us in the back were ready to 'snuggle up' with her if needed... that's right isn't it?


    Nah... not that night.


    Doug 7rxc

    Had to laugh at the last part of your post as I've been there, done that and now wonder why some never want to go backpacking again (one or two are always game for some reason).

    Slightly back on topic, denial is 1, persistance (Just a little further) is number 2 reason for hypothermia. I'm guilty of the second reason.

  8. Although this would definitely be cheating and a little off topic because it's not something home made, I wonder how reliable those flares would be at starting fires?


    At Walmart the other day, on a package of flares it stated they could be used as fire starters, which made me kind of interested. I was curious because I'm interested in how to start fires in the rain, if I suspect hypothermia may be coming in and need something powerful which will dry whatever I'm trying to light. However, I refrained from buying the flare set because it felt heavier than one of their waterproof match stick containers.

    I've never tried a flare for fire starting (never used one period to be honest). I could see that they could potentially work, and would be a dual purpose item (safety and fire starter).

    Based on a quick read regarding flares, most are now created using nitrate oxidizers which has a lower energy (heat) then the previously used perchlorate oxidizers (disclaimer; I'm not a chemist). I would think that the more violent reaction of the flare chemicals could make keeping tinder together a bit more tough. Still sounds like a possible fire starter.

    On a side note to this, my grandfather did show me how to use the cotton and gun powder out of a 12gauge shell to light a fire when I was a kid. Not the safest, but does work can if out hunting in the fall... is an option (one of the last resorts in my opinion though).


    I would say try a flare in a controlled environment. See how it works and how to use it efficiently. If you know how to use a fire starter kit in a controlled, relaxed environment, it'll be easier to use when conditions are ideal.


    Slightly off topic:

    The following video was a drunken experiment while camp ground camping with some city friends. We had a few extra sparklers and marshmellows left over after the kids went to bed, and thought we would see when you mixed sparklers (similar chemical compond as flares I think) with sugar. Not my voice you hear. I was quietly recording it.

  9. Let us know which ones seem to work better than others. I'm quite interested in learning how to start fires in the rain.


    I found a news article about some people who died of hypothermia in my state. It was raining and they had matches with them, but apparently didn't even try using them.


    I have high hopes for the modified boyscout cardboard/wax bunsin burner. The only concern I will have is that using a cardboard tube (TP paper roll, etc), is that it might burn through and fall appart prematurely. The original tuna can design had a 15-20 minute burn time and was more then enough to boil water. The cardboard tube will pack smaller, and leave no garbage to carry out while backpacking.

    Being that it is wax coated, I am hoping that will help it burn, even if it does get wet.


    As for the article, they may not have remembered they had matches, or tried to keep moving, and by the time they gave in and stopped, it was too late. Knowing when to stop and stay put is probably what gets most people. I'm guilty of pushing until I HAVE TO stop, by which time, I'm probably cold and wet with num hands.

  10. I don't know......out of 9 DNF's 7 were did not look ?

    I basically agree with everyone here but I would have logged a DNF and moved on.......as an owner of a lot of caches I've seen too much abuse of NA and NM as well to not be a big fan of either.


    I think you misread that, 9 DNF's in the last 7 months, all with notes about long searches and no smilies

    This is the same number of DNF's as the first four years the cache was in operation, and of those 9, seven were "couldn't look"


    Cache timeline:

    {first four years} - 475 finds, 2 DNF with search, 7 DNF due to muggles

    {last seven months} - 9 DNF with search


    I can see how NA and MN logs could be abused, but they have their legitimate use as well. PseudoHybrid said it well, I think, when he said that (paraphrasing here) using NA and NM logs well is the means of pruning the game to keep it lean and fun for everyone.


    I've got a VERY tough puzzle cache, and while I have not had any NA or NM logs on it yet, I expect to get some eventually from an inexperienced cacher or an overzealous one afraid of posting a DNF. Either way, I intend to follow up on any that arise as though they are necessary. I see it as a responsibility I accepted the day I published my first cache.


    I wouldn't normally use the NA based on DNFs alone, but the rest of the info you provided makes it's use valid in my eyes.

  11. For those avid (or weekend warrior) outdoors people, when was the last time you tested your fire starting skills in less then ideal conditions?


    Last night would have been a perfect time for me to test some of the DIY fire starter kits discussed in the other thread. It had been raining for the past 5 days (2-4in of rain over the weekend), and was just above 30'F.

    I was going to restrict myself to test each kit with only the tinder and kindling I could find on the ground in the bit of bush at the back of my property (not touching live trees) and count the number of matches required to declare it a fire.

    Unfortunately we got home late, and the wife was not going to let me stay up and play with fire (we leave for work at 5:30AM weekdays).


    It's suppose to start raining/snowing tonight and continue through the weekend. Hopefully I'll be able to put myself and some of these DIY suggestions to the test.

  12. Holy...

    We have better get some good puzzles here before I start looking into doing a course of how to solve them.

    From what I have seen, we do not have anything immediately local that requires that much effort.


    Guess I have some new cache hides to start working on. This will be a bit of a learning curve for myself event.

  13. Puzzle Solving 101 would probably be well attended.


    That would mean that myself or who ever would be giving the course should get more exposure to those tough puzzles.

    Our area (Northern Ontario) is pretty isolated from the cool (and not) Geocaching stuff (interesting puzzles, etc). We're trying hard to bring that stuff to our area.


    If you have any good information resources on the subject, that would be great.

  14. I'm iffy on the idea.

    Some of us already do community maintenance on the historical and/or worth while caches in our area. Because of the cost of maintaining my own caches and what not, I carry the supplies, but am selective on which ones I will repair.


    Here is one I watch very closely http://coord.info/GL5XXJPX

    The thanks I get are the many smilies after the fact, and the couple actual thanks posted in the logs.

    I have had no issues getting the NM attributes removed from the caches I watch over. A clear cut log posting stating what was done, with a note to the reviewer with photos will generally take care of the NM log.

    Unfortunately I have not been able to adopt any of the caches I watch over.

  15. A couple of us have been kicking the idea around for some time, and now may have the resources to do a couple of geocaching seminar type events.

    Now that we have a location and what not nailed down, it's time to figure out what topics to cover.


    So far, I'm thinking the following (which I can instruct/offer);

    - Intro GSAK (Don't think we have anyone fluent enough with the software to teach an experts course)

    - Magnetic compass and topo basics (when the GPS fails...)

    - Backpacker's basics

    - Hides 101 (Tips and tricks from the hide, to creating the cache page and reserving the location)


    What other topics should we consider offering?

  16. I have a few ideas for new cache containers going out next summer, but thought I would see if there where any better ones out there or ones that could be easier to transport.

    I'm looking for totally out there cache containers you would never expect to see in the middle of the bush.


    To give you an idea of what I am looking for, I've got a mail box (on a post) in the middle of the bush as one of my letterbox hybrids. It got a few laughs.

  17. What is the point of this?

    Posting a cluster of pointless caches out in some blank area of the wilds so geocachers can see some silly logo portrayed? :blink:


    Why would I want to visit such lame locations?

    Ridiculous, and actually pathetic in reality.


    I'd invite you out to complete our simple logo.

    Only 41 caches.


    Not sure if the bushwhacking and terrain would be friendly to the rail trail folks though.

    We also hid them in 5 different groups (seporately), so the hiding styles are different, containers are different, and most are actual caches with swag.

  18. Wow! I've never seen that one, and it is by far the most elaborate that I can remember seeing, but do a forum search for "geoart" for more examples.

    WOW indeed. I can't believe they pulled that off with traditional and multi caches. Most large art I have seen are unknown, so that the physical container does not have to be at the art spot.

    Physical caches are pretty tough depending on the terrain. It looks like they where lucky with a nice area with no lakes or swamps. We had to do a couple unknown caches because the required cords put the cache in water or swamp.

  19. Go and find/research some caches yourself.Then pick one that you have found which is in a nice area with a large container and plenty of childrens swag in it (you may like to add a bit yourself first). Convince your 3 year old that this one is going to be great and steer them straight to it obviously convincing them that they were the intrepid finder. Hopefully they will think they are all like that and be a little bit more determined next time??


    If that doesn't work then you're on your own. (I promise you thats not a bad thing)


    Regarding your wife...sorry I cant help, mine thinks I'm mad.


    For the most part, I agree with the above quote.


    As for the others picking on you about your 3yrs old.... I have one (and a 1 1/2 year old). My 3yrs old might be a bit special, but electronics are his thing. He actually demands my Oregon and leaves me with his geomate jr.

    It might be hard with such a large group of new people who don't share your excitement right off the get go.

    Go out yourself and do a few. Maybe even take just your daughter. Keep it fun and she'll buy into it.

    I've taken a few kids out with me and as long as they treat it as treasure hunting, it's fun. Micros and nano caches are adult caches :laughing:



    Both my boys have been treated to the outdoors since they where born. My oldest's first event and find was when he was 2 weeks old.

  20. Hi, how do i get nitifications in my phone bya e text??? :o

    The Stig asking a question.... (See avitar)


    Not sure about currently, but before smart phones, I use to be able to use <my phone number>@<phone company>.com. You'll have to search your provider's site or call and ask.

    My old phone when I first started was something like 5551231234@PCS.Rogers.com

  21. Wow! I've never seen that one, and it is by far the most elaborate that I can remember seeing, but do a forum search for "geoart" for more examples.


    Yeah, and drop it into satellite view and checkout the terrain.

    The terrain looks pretty forgiving.

    The space we used is all bush. No one has done all 41 caches in one day yet.

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