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Everything posted by Hakali

  1. There's a town in California named Lathrop. It's on the Roadside Attractions list because...well.....look. This is what happened to a gas station in Lathrop.
  2. Alright, reread the rules, so I will start with THE most prized photo I've taken recently. For years I've been trying to capture the elusive "vapor trail" shot of a high performance jet in action. And this past July, at the Oshkosh Annual Fly-In, I GOT IT. Keep in mind this is a hand-held camera at FULL ZOOM on a 300MM lens and you'll have a greater appreciation of the focus involved. I quite literally made a scene as this fat 44 year old lady literally leaped up and down after taking the photo.
  3. Ooooo, I'm totally game. Can the same person enter multiple photos in multiple posts? I've got a TON of photographs I've gotta go through for this, but this sounds like FUN!
  4. Ooooo, I'm totally game. Can the same person enter multiple photos in multiple posts? I've got a TON of photographs I've gotta go through for this, but this sounds like FUN!
  5. WOW Found this in my mail today, even more gorgeous than the photos!!! It blew away my caching buddy, so much so that he wanted to know how one does the art for such a gorgeous coin. Thanks for making these available!
  6. 1. Participating: Hakali 2. Received Name: 3. Mission Complete: 4. Package Received!: Whoever winds up with me....I dig cats (esp. Bengal cats), dragons, and I knit. I love the color purple.
  7. Have to confess, you have me snorting wine out my nose with this. I'll give you one thing: you've certainly got cajones. In a mere four months of geocaching experience, you've singlehandedly decided how to interpret geocaching traditions and are so very thoughtfully instructing cachers who've been doing this for over nine years now. It's really quite funny. But if you want to be taken seriously, welllllll.....you might want to pull that stick out, toss it away, and listen to the folks who have thousands of cache finds. Oh, and a word to the wise? Learn how to use eBay's Advanced Search feature to eliminate that which you believe 'wastes your time'.
  8. You did a FABULOUS job and I thank you. There's actually even more to the story: My first event was in June; I got to talking to a couple who were here on the wedding anniversary (!) who decided to attend the I Scream event *for their wedding anniversary*. At some point I and LustyPirateQueen got to looking through the Giant Box O Coins that had been won by someone else, and I spotted the Earthquake coin. Instant lust. LustyPirateQueen felt the same way. The owner of the Giant Box O Coins, in typical generous geocacher fashion, offered me the coin. CKayaks was telling me about the history of the coin as a disappointed LustyPirateQueen wandered off, leaving her husband there. Remembering this was their wedding anniversary, I handed the Earthquake coin to PirateHusband as an anniversary present, and offered to swap barbeque rub to CKayaks for another Earthquake coin. The coin has a bit of special meaning to me; I'm a fifth generation native Californian, and got to ride the '89 Loma Prieta quake along with numerous others!
  9. I'd LOVE to buy/trade for one of these little guys in this color!!!!
  10. You know what my favorite geocoin is? The GBA "Earthquake" coin. It was done for the Geocachers of the Bay Area a couple years ago. It has a GORGEOUS depiction of the earthquake faults along the state of california. CKayaks gave it to me. It's a coin by geocachers, for geocachers. And it's not trackable.
  11. Mine arrived today too.....GORGEOUS GORRRRRGEOUS!!!!! Gotta love dem kitties.
  12. Caches that result in me ending up someplace I otherwise probably would never have gone to. Recent favorite: Temple of Doom, in Santa Cruz, CA. I've lived in this area for decades, and my Santa Cruz buddies had never mentioned this. I went WILD when I saw the cache listing, and spent at least as much time photographing what I could as I spent looking for the cache. Caching has me exploring wonderful parks, like Natural Bridges (again, in Santa Cruz). If you're headed the right way on the trail you find the cache, walk around the corner and BOOM there's the rock formation right in front of you. It's spectacular! Same for Earthcaches, which show me fascinating things that I didn't know about or recognize. For the actual cache itself I adore uncommon and cleverly rigged caches. I'm a noob, so I haven't even touched on the variety of ways caches can be hidden, but I'm constantly amazed at how things can hide in the open...and how things can be hidden. There's some seriously creative people out there! My caching regret? That caches in airports have become things of the past. I don't get to travel often anymore, but this summer I found myself in six different states (gotta love those layovers) without the time or the money to depart the airport and hit the closest cache. Only managed to cache at my destination.
  13. Ah, but caches are not for-profit stores, so the checkout angle doesn't apply well here. Well, I took a look at the cache in question, and the log shows that the cacher, who is a mom with over 1K finds, was out with her son (who, if he's the kid in the photo, might be maybe 8 years old?) and her son made the trade. Now, I'm thinking back to when I was 8, which would have been what, 1971? If I had four quarters to rub together I was RICH. To that kid, that probably WAS a fair trade. For all we know, he routinely cruises the dollar stores and knows he can get four Matchbox cars for four quarters, and *from his perspective* it was a perfectly fair trade. Unless you want to start sticking price tags on swag, we have no way of knowing if the person leaving the item overpaid for it or not. Face it.....the average Joe isn't going to pay $25 or more for a Geocoin, no matter how rare it is. He sees a hunk of metal that has very little value in his world because he can't really trade it for stuff. But that Geocoin, which is a very rare first run Moun10Bike coin, is MUCH more valuable to Geocachers who dig Geocoins. And it has collector value. The thing is, this is a game. It's supposed to be fun. Kind of like Secret Santas, or a secret gift exchange. If folks are going to get their moustache this badly in a twist, please comment on the cache page that everything has been labelled with a value, and only trade for exactly or more value. Then I know to skip that cache. Lest you think I'm one of those who 'short' caches, I had a spazz earlier in the month when I feared I had LOST two Geocoins. I was preparing to contact the coin owners and hang my head in shame and offer to pay replacement cost for the coins.....when I discovered that I had merely been a total moron and managed to *put them back in the cache* while I was signing the log. Duh.
  14. No joke! I like to leave carabiners, those little mirrors on a stick-things, and eyeglass repair kits. Do you have ANY IDEA how valuable an eyeglass repair kit is when your lens just fell out four feet from the cache? PRICELESS. By the same token, one of those dental mirrors is priceless when it saves you from sticking your hand into a big mess o' black widows. Also priceless when it lets your aching back still hunt without the need to bend over..... As an amusing side note, I found a pair of Ducky Lee's glasses while looking for a cache where she posted that a bush had stolen her glasses. I found her at the 9.9.9 event and gave her her glasses, and she was thrilled.....because she'd just lost her current pair not two hours earlier. Value is extremely subjective, even more so when you learn to 'let go' of material things and the way they can bother you.
  15. I have only 1 hide. Why? Because I want to put my cache in a place you maybe never noticed before, or never went to before, or maybe to preserve a piece of history that is being eroded away. My cache tells a story. I want to continue this with future caches, and I want the story to be a GOOD one. By the same token, I'm in an area that is loaded with micros. Micros are OK, but it's hard to put travelling items in them. And I adore Geocoins, and love to see them...travelbugs too. So, I put in a fair size cache that can handle not only coins, but larger objects too. I dare say you could put a baseball cap in it; I'll have to dig up a spare and try that. So I've got a large cache in a local historic place. I tried to load it with interesting stuff. It had Geocoins, Fimo clay, Mardi Gras necklaces, stickers, trading cards, plastic cats and some other stuff that I've forgotten. It seems to get pretty regular TB and Geocoin activity, which is exactly what I was hoping for. I visit it on a regular basis and make sure that it isn't emptying out, and that I, the cache owner, remove trash. And yes, I've removed items like bottle caps off drinks....and at the same time, I restock the Fimo, the cats, and if I've got other interesting items I've picked up I'll pop those in there too. Yes, the overall 'quality' of the cache will vary over time as contents travel...that's to be expected. I make sure the log isn't falling apart (replaced the original one within days of FTF), and that there's a pen in the cache and that it works. With any hobby there will be people who don't give as much (or don't give at all) back to the community. There will ALSO be people who give and give and give and give to the community....I'm looking at you, CKayak and Marky! You have to treasure the folks who give, and don't let the ones who don't give get under your skin. When you feel compelled to create a 'crap cache' then you let the non-givers win, and you degrade the hobby for everyone else. That's when it's time to stop hiding caches, or reconsider the hobby altogether. I haven't been able to cache most of this month like I wanted to, and finally dragged my sick, sorry butt out for a caching walk this weekend. You know what my three favorite caches were? Micros. No swag to speak of. But each of them were so cleverly done (and one of them frustrated me for half an hour) that I was chuckling out loud as I found them. THAT was what made it for me, not the swag.
  16. Indeed. And at Flying High, as I was slowly strolling along the path, I saw gravestones from the 40's, 50's and 60's...many of them veterans such as yourself, with the old medallions to mark them as such. I found myself frequently stopping, reading the names, reading the medallions and which flight wing in WWII some of them flew in. I had a lot of respect for those folks...they fought to keep our country what it is today. It was touching and awing and quite solemn and respectful. Given its location, I really don't know just how many people still visit those graves...I saw some signs, but there were at least as many broken gravestones (one of which I righted). I also got to meet and identify two cedar trees (caching spots), and discover that while they smell terrific they're also incredibly prickly. It gave me a chance to ponder what kind of memorial I'd like to put in there for my buddy. He's buried elsewhere, but the recently unveiled Oshkosh Pilot's Memorial would be an excellent memorial. Where I live, anyways, the cachers tend to be late 30s and up, and none of us are the type to screech up in a car and sprint over graves, so your apprehensions are misfounded.
  17. Sign me up for one of the glow/epoxy!
  18. Well, on the very first cache I ever placed (GC1VF0E) I put in a green MGA pistol coin that was unactivated for FTF. TeamOttlet landed that one; doesn't look like he activated it. I'd won it three weeks earlier at my first event but it wasn't quite the style of coin I collect so it seemed like the perfect thing to put in a new cache! I'm a big fan of 1) coins!; 2) caches big enough to hold coins at least; 3) caches that take me to places that are really neat, that I wouldn't have known about otherwise. I'll continue to place caches that meet that criteria, wherever possible!
  19. Well, in my case, my first cemetery cache was on a visit to the Oshkosh Airshow this past July ("Flying High" in Wisconsin). It was a very solemn caching experience, and I kept in mind the whole time a friend of mine who died in a plane crash while returning from the airshow three years ago....so much so that I left an RIP for him on the log. I found it to be a very different, very respectful caching experience.
  20. Another Sprint Berry Curve user here. I used CacheBerry for the first month, switched over to Geocache Navigator, and picked up a Geomate Jr. earlier this month. I have to go cheap because my truck just cost me a minor fortune in repairs. The CacheBerry was.....ok. It seemed however that I had to pre-load it with data before I went out, and I really want to find stuff on the fly. Geocache Navigator EXCELS at on-the-fly; anywhere I am I can fire it up and within a minute have caches in my area. Was delighted to get to cache in San Francisco in this fashion. I gave it a whirl for the trial period and liked it SO much that I got an annual subscription. At a recent event folks were showing off the Geomate Jr. As I mentioned, I don't have a pile of cash for a really sweet GPS unit...but between the Berry (which I'm already paying for GPS for, since I drive around with it a lot), Geocache Nav (which gets me to GZ using the mapping), and Geomate Jr (which gets me a precise fix once at GZ) I'm one very happy camper. So, I got a pretty nice package for $100. Looking forward to the Geomate Upgrade Kit which will make it even more versatile!
  21. Gotta agree here. There's a new cache that got placed locally, replacing an older deactivated cache, and while it has a delightful theme I have read in the logs and heard directly from multiple cachers that GZ appears to be an unofficial bathroom area for a local transient. EW. You couldn't pay me to visit that cache.
  22. I live in Sunnyvale, CA, which is cache-central. Seriously, this place is loaded. I thought really hard about my first cache: what is it that I want for the cacher? I wanted to call out someplace that was historic, someplace that even longtime locals sometimes don't know about, someplace with a fascinating story and tidbits that even some of the oldtimers might have forgotten, and someplace that is still pleasant to visit. I'm looking for the "wow" factor. And I knew exactly the spot in mind. So I headed over there, did a "find nearest me" with my caching app, and discovered that I was clear of another historic cache by a few dozen feet. Then my next step was, what kind of cache would I hide? Well, I adore geocoins and I really enjoy travel bugs, so I wanted a cache big enough to stock several of each. Besides, this place is crawling with nanos. So I went for the largest clear Geocache from Groundspeak (I adore the design). Lastly, the question was how to hide the thing. I wanted something on the clever side that didn't require tramping through bushes or digging holes...and ultimately I went for existing urban camoflauge. I was thrilled when I accidentally ran into Digitalfish searching out my cache and he said it was a "very nice cache". That's high praise coming from one of our Caching Elders, especially for a first hide by a rank noob. I really love the "wow" factor, as opposed to "I stuck a cache here cuz I could" approach, so I have another large cache planned for another historic site and then I'm off to work on a themed set of caches that may turn into a multi-cache....again, no smaller than smalls. I'm tired of nanos. So: 1. What do you want the cacher to experience? 2. What other caches are nearby? (your app or GPS can tell you that from where you're standing....I even used a Geomate on mine) 3. What size is lacking in that area?
  23. So apparently I was unclear in the original post. The concept was *not* that *all* coins/bugs would go to Michigan. It would be an *option*, that if the owner wanted them to go to Michigan they mention this when they log the cache, or attach a note to their item that they wanted it to travel east. Otherwise the coins/bugs would stay put for the locals. I was even pondering a container-within-a-cache, labeled "TO MICHIGAN", and if you wanted to travel, you popped your trackable into that container.
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