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Everything posted by chrisandjanet

  1. I did one once where each word in the description was a different ROT - ROT 4 for the first word, ROT 6 for the second, etc. I spent a lot of time with graph paper manually decoding that one. Then it took another couple of hours to dawn on me that the decoded description wasn't the clue to find it, the ROT numbers were the actual cords. Brute force is my go-to for puzzles, but sometimes you have to stare at it and wait for a flash of inspriation.
  2. I've probably seen only one or two pamphlets in caches since I've been doing this. I don't see the point of them, since I have to believe (perhaps naively) that most people have at least heard of The Bible (in whatever flavor you choose) and if they want to read something from it, they are pretty much available everywhere. I'm also not terribly offended by them. I know what I believe (mostly that I don't know what to believe, so I'm kinda in the Snoogans camp here) and some random slip of paper is not going to change my mind. I have known a couple of folks who carried these types of materials to pass out at any opportunity. To me they seemed less worried about legitimately helping people; it was almost a sort of keeping score thing - "I handed out 28 tracts today, how many did you hand out?" Almost as if their place in the heirarchy of the afterlife were determined by how many "souls they saved." (Almost like a pyramid scheme - maybe the Pharoes had it right!) So what about religious "trade items"? Pocket Testaments, not just pamphlets; Tibetan prayer flags, Buddahs (are they religious?). Things that you aren't like to use the wet and moldy excuse to dispose of. Trade items or trash? What if it's something pertaining specifically to your religion? We had a cacher a few years back who was leaving rosaries (Catholic prayer beads) as a trade item. I will admit, the first time I opened a cache and saw one swimming around in the muck at the bottom of the container I was a little bit offended. I traded, cleaned it up and got over it pretty quick, though. I think I'd have an easier time discussing various religions with my daughter if we found a bunch of tracts in a cache over porn, although I suspect with either of them she probably wouldn't even notice what they were - paper stuff is boring in a cache!
  3. I'm appalled at this. Geocaching is supposed to be a light, family-friendly activity, there's no place for this sort of thing. It's obvious to me that someone is using caches to try to convert the unwary to Pastafarianism. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flying_Spaghetti_Monster
  4. Those things are perfect for cleaning paintball guns. Not only that, but they soak up moisture like a sponge. Perhaps it was put there in lieu of dessicant? This one was still sealed in its plastic packaging...not doing much good in that regard. More likely it was just someone feeling obligated to put something into the cache and grabbing the first thing she could find in her purse. They actualy have several legitimate wilderness survival uses: http://www.artofmanliness.com/2012/06/05/survival-tampon/
  5. That's how you tell the difference between black bear and grizzley bear scat - black bear scat is smallish and usually contains berries. Grizzley bear scat contains bear bells and tastes like pepper spray.
  6. Cool! Congratulations! Can you share the pic?
  7. OP appears to be located in Spain - perhaps the ammo boxes he is familiar with are different? Spanish army ammo boxes? *Edit for spelling.
  8. I do kind of see the OP's point, though. Even if it's not about the swag, what's the point of even putting a container out if there isn't anything in the container? So just micros in the woods, right? But then, do you really to sign a logbook to enjoy the hike or the area? Why not just post the cords to some random location in the woods if you just want folks to enjoy the view? I don't do this just for the swag, and I realize that every time I go out I'm going to come back (monitarily) in the hole. I still enjoy pawing through swag even if I don't take something. My daughter usually finds something to take - usually something I would consider not worth the effort, but hey, she enjoys it. I console myself with the knowing that if a kid can get enjoyment out of a dirty string of Mardi-gras beads, the next kid will really like the in-the-package hot wheelz car or glass "gem" I left as a swap. I know I'm going to sound like a crusty old guy, but I have noticed a general degradation in swag since I started several years ago. Not just the "over time" thing that happens; when I started, even caches that had been out for a couple of years usually had something "shiny" in them. Now, I do seem to find that soggy business cards and single silly-bandz are over represented. Ah, well.
  9. My daughter is almost six, and she always grabs the beads or bracelets. At that age, she's not very discriminating, although if there is a choice between a "clean" looking necklace and a busted up filthy one, I steer her toward the decent one. As long as it's clean, I think the beads are OK for most younger girls. Dollar store hotwheels cars in the packages are good too.
  10. I've always been a big fan of multi-media craft projects for kids - some like to draw, some like to glue, almost none of them ever use the materials like I intended them to be used and it always turns out great anyway. For a brownie group once we gave them bags containing things like pasta noodles (not a good idea in a cache, I suppose!), plastic and glass beads from the dollar store, feathers, sharpie markers in various colors, a couple of bottles of paint, cardboard tubes from TP and paper towels, egg boxes, glue, etc. The girls had a blast.
  11. I find a good way to get started with puzzles is to look for what I already know. For example, around here most all the coords start with N44, so I look for a way to make the first couple of substitutions come up to 44, or two fours in a row. When all else fails, a note to the cache owner asking for a hint is usually well recieved. Be sure to specify how much of a hint you want, though - you might be looking for a nudge in the right direction and get explicit directions on how to solve it. While I sometimes need the former, my sense of accomplishment decreases the closer I get to the latter. Good luck! Edited for spelling - fat fingers this morning!
  12. Oh, my!! Skull and crossbones? Any idea what the other symbols mean? OK - not sure if the quote thing worked - The symbol in the middle is a Masonic apron. I recall somewhere I came across the TM DB reference, also Masonic, but I'll have to look it up.
  13. Personally, I'm not a fan of proliferating micros, so I might trade it out. Cords to a large sized container hidden nearby as swag, now that sounds like a good idea! I picked up a bunch of those magnets on collapsible wands, and some mirrors on the wands, at a dollar store and have been leaving them behind. A couple of folks seemed really excited by them.
  14. So we have the topic for folks who don't enjoy the trading aspect of the game; how about those of us who do? If you cache without kids but still like SWAG, it's OK to pretend you take your nieces and nephews when responding to this thread! I, for one, am a fully grown adult (physically, if not mentally!). To my mind, I still get excited for the moment of uncovering a well-hidden ammo can and cracking the seal, wondering what's inside. I enjoy pawing through the stuff, and I usually find something inside to give me a chuckle, wondering what the backstory is to the tiny stone turtle or wooden buddah. I don't usually take anything, unless I'm by myself and see something my daughter might like - plastic beads or jewelry, mostly. I will admit, though, I must be part magpie because I will grab hatpins, pathtags or those little ceramic animals that come with the tea bags. One thing I always do, is leave something behind. My daughter is still at the stage where plastic beads are cool, but I like the feeling that the next kids to come by will have some "quality" SWAG to enjoy.
  15. I had a premium membership once, a couple of years ago. I was a newbie, and expected that once I paid for my membership, hundreds of previously "hidden" caches that I couldn't see would pop up when I searched for a cache. Obviously, folks in my area weren't much for hiding PMO caches, since I detected no change in the cache list. I let the membership lapse, because I'm not really a "techno-geek" (said with love) and have no use for the PQ feature or all the other features available to PMO membership. That being said, I also do not begrudge PMOs those benefits - after all, they paid for them, not me. I will admit, though, I do get kind of bummed out when someone in the forums references a cache page they think is particularly cool and I can't see it 'cause it's PMO, but you know what? I get over it!
  16. I am a Mason, and let me say, if I (or any of the Masons I know) had heard about this first hand there would have been two less Masons in the fraternity. On topic, I don't see any difference between the OP asking about a gay geocaching group or the recent thread about nude geocaching. Start whatever sub groups you like, just don't expect any special treatment or concessions that folks not in your sub group don't have. Edit: Sorry, not sure how to use the quote function properly
  17. Is it mean of me that my first thought was, "What better way to be the first person in the logbook - destroy the evidence?"
  18. I really love cemetery caches, the older the cemetery the better. I always seem to feel a sort of connection with the past looking at how the different generations chose to memorialize their loved ones. I have a cache in a cemetery that was abandoned by it's owner (the cemetery, not the cache!) and taken over by the city. For the longest time it was in disrepair, until several volunteer organizations took it upon themselves to clean up the site. There are markers from the Civil War, including a Civil War Naval section - Bay City, Michigan was known for it's shipyards. I can't seem to get pics to post, but the cache is Gone and (almost) Forgotten GC1AD1E.
  19. Hmm...I think I can work with that - puts the focus on "communication". Great ideas!
  20. Well, now the head cheese of my department has heard about this and is interested. Hoo boy, teach me to open my big mouth. There is a pretty big (several acres) city park, wooded, with a pavillion. I figure I can place 15-20 caches just for the event no problem. We're a pretty tech-heavy company, so I figure I can put out a call for folks with GPSr's or i-phones. Teams of 2-3 people, pretty much everybody is in decent physical shape (under 50, anyway). I think I can set up the event with a little effort, but I need some help with the "team building" aspect. How do I involve everyone on the team, how can I tie in the activity to something useful to the department? I suppose I can give points based on FTF, sencon TF, etc. What are some good "team lessons" I can get out of Geocaching (almost by it's nature a loner activity)?
  21. The company I work for has periodic "health blitzes" where we try to encourage employees to participate in some physical activities. I let slip to a supervisor about Geocaching and he seemed interested. So now I need to come up with some sort of team building activity. I'm looking for ideas for about 30 people and about a two hour timeframe. I'd like to work some sort of "team building" exercise into it. I know there's a company out there that does this, but they want a couple thousand bucks. I have a budget of about $1.98. All ideas are appreciated - thanks!
  22. My tongue in cheek attempt didn't come across very well, I'm afraid. I would certainly not stick to the hard and fast every 528 feet just for numbers concept - not the least reason being, I probably couldn't gaurantee a suitable hiding place that exactly. I probably wouldn't place them in order of size - good points there. You wouldn't have to find them in order anyway. I'm thinking the cache page would read something like "The container you are looking for is XXX. Ddecoding the hint will tell you exactly where it is." CR, I also shudder at film cans. I have seen a (very) few that work in specific circumstances. I suppose I'd strive to make each of the hides a quality example for the type. Hard to do with film cans or magnetic sheets, but possible.
  23. There's been a lot of talk lately about Power Trails, with very heated opinions on both sides of the coin. Seems to me the crux of the con argument is the uninspiredness (I'm aware that's not a real word) of a film can or hide-a-key every 528'. That kind of got me thinking. We have some pretty good rail trails around my town. I'm thinking a power trail of sorts geared toward newbies, kind of a way for them to "get their numbers up" and address one of my little annoyances, caches with the wrong size rating. Start out with the micros: Cache 1 is a blinky, cache 2 a bison tube, then film cannister, etc. Move on up the food chain, culminating in a five gallon bucket. If done right, I could wind up with a 20-30 cache "Power Trail". Now if I can just get the time off work and get the wife to let me out of painting the house this spring, I'll be all over it.
  24. My daughter (5 years) loves ammo boxes in the woods, with relatively easy walks right up to about 20 feet of ground zero. She likes lots of goodies, but not necessarily expensive stuff. Stickers,small yo-yos, plastic jewelry.
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