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Oxford Stone

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  1. No new countries for me since Luxembourg and Greece in 2019 but a road trip to the Scottish border in Jul / Aug 2021, Cornwall this May and S Wales this August mean that England is completed as a family (that's me, Oxford Stone Junior with his separate account and the long-suffering Mrs OS, who specialises in spotting caches in ivy-covered trees from the path, just as the "experts" have given up a fingertip search); I also drove to Edinburgh for work in March and got 2 more counties up there (and a furthest north). The project-gc map has much smaller (and up-to-date) counties in central Scotland and S Wales but I'm being lazy and using these mygeocachingprofile ones. Looks like a holiday to North Wales (home of the world's fastest zipwire...) next year? We also got French provinces Normandy and Brittany in July (and drilling down a level, 4 départements) and I added Murcia in Spain on a work trip.
  2. I own an international (Paris - London) multi GC5G49W that irked Parisians who wanted to have found every cache in Paris. I got some really aggressive messages telling me my cache was illegal because the final was so far away (I know...) and there was shall we say a team logging effort near the beginning that let those completists tidy their map. Now, post-COVID, people are back to solving it as intended.
  3. I think you're over-analysing the OP? The two caches I mentioned yesterday can be accessed by swimming or motor-boat too...
  4. https://coord.info/GC65Z0B https://coord.info/GC7RM80 A couple on islands in the Thames in Oxfordshire
  5. 2 reasons for a FP even on an ordinary cache: Landmark caches, eg the fairly ordinary but well-executed multi that completed my 5th calendar loop on Sunday. A pivotal point in a day out, eg the picnic stop - to give a FP to a trail of say 20 caches rather than automatically awarding a FP to "Powertrail #1" at the base of the gatepost in the car park, as many seem to do Don't get me started on fishing rod caches, one or two were fun but now they're everywhere.... Some common reasons where the cache earns my FP: Audacious urban hides Tree climbs Ammo boxes Field puzzles Boat needed Avenged DNF (or found after several minutes) when it was simply really well hidden, as opposed to badly placed / maintained
  6. I own / have owned 65 puzzles - pretty much all old-school pen-and-paper jobs. I have a onenote page with all sorts of sketched ideas, half of which I'll never use: Renamed countries: Dahomey4 Rhodesia8 Upper Volta1 Gold Coast7 Ceylon3 Burma2 Abyssinia1 Nyasaland4 Countries in their own language: Espana 5 Osterreich 5 Cote d'Ivoire 3 Deutschland 4 Suomi 9 Shqiperia 9 Magyarorszag 3 Capital cities hidden words > country (sO SLOw > Norway > 4 or 14 etc) Boeufgué Pierre [that's a bad translation of Oxford Stone - some sort of puzzle in garbled French?] King William theme near King William pub Kings with nicknames [Louis the Fat etc] TV series locations TV pubs Obvious algebra [unsolvable clues but it has to be N51/W001, go from there] Acronyms: asap, CITO etc Patron saints Dewey numbers PMs not using real 1st names Jan Feb Mar Mon Tue Wed etc hidden words Probably more than half of my puzzles get a tweak to the wording after a solve or two. There are probably 10 or 12 puzzle cache finders / setters in the area who road-test each other's caches, usually after they've gone live though. Hiding places - some I've had in mind for a couple of years, either on a map or on the ground. As per list above, there's a lovely pub called the King William near here that is at the end of a lane and so a great place to start a walk (past Rowan Atkinson's house...) - there used to be a trail of trads there. One day, hopefully this summer, I'll walk out with 6-10 containers and do my worst. I do like to put out a whole series to reward solvers with a decent walk, when possible. Sometimes the idea for a puzzle just lands in your lap. Like when I was reading a book about trusting people and there was a chapter on Ana Montes - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ana_Montes - ooh shall I use that code? You bet I will ! https://coord.info/GC8V35B (Help yourselves if you want to use it too; you'll need a bit more research on her exact decode technique, or just use my simpler read-across-and-down initial method). Or when I walked into a church and the hymn number numbers were just lying there so I came back having hidden a cache and set up the coords - backwards, just because: https://coord.info/GC6JG0R > Gallery > Interior The other day I walked past a family and the little girl was singing "head, shoulders, knees and toes" - I'm contemplating daft descriptions of a Northern and Western invented creature and describing their head1, shoulders2, knees3 and toes4... and of course eyes5 and ears6 and mouth7 and nose8...
  7. Looking more closely, probably the Mainz-Gutenburg Giga event of May 2015. https://coord.info/GC50FTF Here's #81... https://coord.info/GC52FJ2
  8. Nice to see my thread bumped! https://project-gc.com/Statistics/TopNumDTInOneDay 5 UK cachers have done all 81 in a day. I know one of the cachers and they said it was an event with power trail, in the Netherlands. My son filled his grid before his 10th birthday - a few high D puzzles where he was a passenger but the high Ts (tunnels, kayaking) he most definitely put in the hard work. I'm on 2 and 74/81, maybe some team days out when we can, to get the missing 7 for a 3rd loop but not a huge priority... though by definition these will be challenging and hopefully interesting caches.
  9. I've done 3 entire trails locally where a CO has archived a trail then re-published caches on the same route. The latest of the 3, the CO has made an effort to put most of the 35 caches in new places (and we did the walk in the opposite direction); one of the other 2, it was the same containers in the same hiding places! They had new log papers in, which was nice. But I did them, if only for the numbers (needed 28 in a day for a challenge) and the exercise. I've only archived my caches after repeated DNFs indicate I chose a bad place. Looking at the days/find column on Project-gc, hardly any of mine are under 10 days, most in the 20s and 30s up to 70. But they're mostly non-trads.
  10. Yesterday I was looking back on my DNFs (yes I do log them) from 2020. Pretty equal 3-way split between: It was missing and has been replaced; It was missing and has been archived; It has since been found by others. Of that 3rd category, 4 were on a walk with my muggle niece, big brother and big sister, the 3rd of whom finds caching boring. So (I'm sure many of you know how scary big sisters are, even when they're 5'0") we didn't stay long at any one cache of the 20 or so on the walk. Another "since found" was a noob finding a cache with I think 5 DNFs over the last year. They just prodded further in the undergrowth than us and others.
  11. https://coord.info/GC7F9KQ in York (UK) - see gallery
  12. Interesting perspective. I soon gave up on TB ownership when mine went missing twice. Are the "visited" logs that annoying? I'll put a TB I'm carrying on "visited" but that will just be the rest of the caches visited that day, i'll drop it off in the first decent small / regular / large I find on my next trip. I usually try to go a diametrically opposite direction from home so it at least gets 40 or 50 miles on its tally. Rare exception is if I have an upcoming overseas business trip (remember them?), then I might carry a TB (and log visits) for up to a month so say 60-80 caches.
  13. When someone mentioned finding an archived cache container near one of my puzzle caches, I investigated. The CO still has a couple of active caches, one of which I found earlier this year, but they archived a lot overnight (I'm told they were in the Air Force and got stationed elsewhere). So on Saturday on a maintenance trip of 5 of my caches (taking in a first visit to a pub since March...) Junior and I had a quick look for 4 of these archived caches. 3 very quickly discounted as gone or buried in undergrowth, but... https://coord.info/GC165DP nearly 10 years since its last find! A film pot in a hollow at the base of a big old gate post. The dry hidey-hole and the plastified paper meant it was in pretty much perfect condition.
  14. No... as I said, for the sake of completism. Nothing else. mygeocachingprofile shows your found caches and COs beginning A-Z, 0-9... again just for the fun of it.
  15. Don't you ever consider letting someone adopt your better / more popular caches when you move? This thread prompted me to look at my favourites - I need to give a FP to caches beginning with 0,7,9 and X for the sake of 0-9 A-Z completism. Many of my 660 favourites have been archived. I took one FP back as although a clever hide it was archived through neglect by a CO notorious for poor maintenance...
  16. Cachers who put as a found log "Full log later" and then they never do.
  17. If one of my caches (usually an obscure puzzle) was coming up to a year unfound I used to flag it up on the local Facebook group as people in the UK like to "resuscitate" caches (find them more than a year since previous find) - I've left all the FB groups since they became dominated by talk of "if you go caching, everyone will die" type talk in April, though. (Culprits now often back FTFing like there's no tomorrow...) On a general maintenance theme, I've replaced about 7 of my caches this year - in most cases winter flooding and winds to blame for missing containers. Not put out a new cache for a long long time. Just looking through my hides - one series put out in April 2018, never revisited (about 35 finds on each so paper not full); another series Jan 2019, only visited the trailhead one for TB dropping. Similar number of finds. I think one bison might have lost its rubber ring but the weather has been so dry since March I'm not worried. Trad placed Sep 2017 never been back. Another Aug 2016. Puzzle placed April 2013, looked at but never touched since placement. It's a black-painted snail on the back of a black-painted urban bus stop and has never been muggled. Aren't I naughty? I think 25 of my 85 active caches have had the container replaced though.
  18. Oxford Stone Junior finished his DT grid before his 10th birthday, and learned along the way when and where you might get muddy or scratched, trip over a tree root, bang into a low branch**, fall into water, need to look out for traffic* - all a great education. I can think of a few caches I've done that OSJ would not have been able to do, but only a handful. *you could be gathering numbers for a 1/1 multi in an unfamiliar town and wander across a street not realising motor vehicles use it, and be in much more danger than abseiling down a cliff. Got to agree with BFJ, it's up to all the cachers including the children, to learn to be safe. **by far my worst GRIs (geocaching-related injuries) have been from standing up from a squatting position logging a cache at base of tree and headbutting low branches. Oh Ok and there were the cracked ribs from falling onto a gate (long story...) (no, the cache page didn't warn me that this might happen)
  19. I'm a bit bemused by several COs in my area with caches disabled (and in at least one case with the "and I will delete any log during lockdown" rider) who have found caches themselves. I'm in the "go caching a little, locally, in the countryside" school of thought (8 finds and an adventure lab series since 22 March; 1 cache published) - got next week off so will hunt down some more but not going crazy and not wanting to do urban / suburban ones, though there are about 15 new ones in the next town. Happy caching, everyone....
  20. The one I found - I can't remember if the eCO was aware that the old container was still in the same tree, the 2 containers ended up one inside the other, the reviewer became aware and locked the old one. Of my 2 - one I've recycled geolitter, effectively. CO long gone and I've just reused the same container in what is a great hiding place. The other is also the same container but on the suggestion of the old CO who wants to own less caches. It's now a different cache type, for what it's worth.
  21. I own 2 caches which are on the same GZ as old, archived caches (and have found another) - in all cases the archived caches are locked.
  22. I'm on 2 and 71/81 on the DT grid. Went far and wide* for loop one; loop 2, someone kindly put out kayak caches in my local town (and realised that T5 doesn't automatically mean D5!); that 3rd loop I thought I was on 61, but not really paying attention. Getting OS Junior his grid before he was 10 was a source of pride (and mud...) Earlier this year 4 or 5 caches up trees were put out in my area by a CO of a certain age who owns a very long ladder. So for him these caches 25' up were T3.5... he was good enough to note feedback though and I think they're all T4 and above now. And it's interesting to note that while for me and others a tree with its lowest branch about 6' up is a definite ladder job, along comes another cacher and says "straightforward free climb" so what do you do. On the D side - I'm notorious for thinking my puzzles are easy while other think they're really difficult (feel free to try some if you're bored - look at my profile for references to the themes to unlock many of them) - I think I've upped the D on a couple, early on. *The nearest 4.5/4.5 at the time was ground level in a suburban park in NW London. Still there I believe. Can be tricky to find but should be T1.5D3.5...
  23. My nearest unfound cache is 5.6 miles away by bike and (4th calendar loop) I want to get a cache next Saturday... either I go for that cache, log a liar cache (got 1 or 2 in stock) or just leave it for a year... Junior and I have been on ~1-hr bike rides, 2 to 6 miles, every day for the last 12 days... not used a bike that much in my life! He's picked up 4 or 5 caches I'd done on my own, but I've not found a cache since we got 22 on 22nd March, day before UK lockdown.
  24. I once did that but left a TB! A nice wooden puzzle box containing the log but in a bigger Tupperware. It was one of those "hold opposite corners and slide" jobs, but I'd totally forgotten the knack and was in a hurry... but had a TB in my bag and it was a cool spot so I left the TB.
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