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Getting Rdy For Weekend


Mafghine
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5 of us are going camping this weekend at Ocean Pond. I have my new gps (extrex legend) all loaded up with a bunch of cords.Theres about 10-15 caches we will trying to find during this excursion.Most on foot from camp.

I am experinced hiker from back in my younger days.( I sure do miss those)

I have all waypoint maps printed out.

I am also new to this sport ( 3 days) and was wondering if yall had any tips to make this fun and safe.

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Great! Welcome, and good luck. Some of my "new" finder tips follow.

 

1. Use the compass screen versus the map screen. Tells you where to go and how far left to go.

2. Rather than trying to get to the 0 point on your GPSr (basically standing on top of the cache) stop about 50 feet from the expected location. Then stop looking at your GPS and start looking at your location. Look for the obvious clues to the cache location. Piles of sticks, rocks, dead hollow tree, or stump in plain view. Don't forget to look at the size of the cache you are looking for. Nothing like thinking you are hunting a regular sized cache, when it is actually a micro-cache.

3. Start out with the easiest dificulty caches (D/T). So go for the 1/1 to 2/2 caches first.

4. Have fun and enjoy, remember, it is supposed to be FUN...

 

Yay I a geocacher am I

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Point 2 of Jhwk's post is a key. The primary novice mistake is trying to get the GPS down to zero feet, then expecting to see the cache right there. Remember the cache can be 20, 50 or more feet from where your GPS is telling you it is.

 

Also, since you have an older eTrex, it is more sensitive to position than many other units. Since its new take it out to a open field, turn it on and let sit about 15 minutes so it gets a full almanac of sats. After that, turn it on well before entering the woods and above all, keep it held flat, face up to the sky when you are under trees.

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I don't know the area you are going to, but if it's huge and you are at all concerned about your sense of direction in unfamilar territory....

Mark the location of the camp in your gps and the start of each trailhead you go down --That way you can't get lost or even temporarily not know where you are in relation to camp or your starting point.

Better yet, keep the track log on, and you can always retrace your steps if need be.

(This will come in very handy if you have to do any significant bushwacking)

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TOP TEN THINGS A GEOCACHING NEWBIE SHOULD PACK

 

10. Water. Preferably in a container of some sort. Preferably one that is waterproof.

 

9. Bug spray. Off, Deep Woods Off, Cutter, Garlic Breath ... whichever repellant works best for you.

 

8. Writing equipment. Sharpie, pen and pencil = Good. Computer printer = Bad.

 

7. Extra batteries. Best to bring the types that match your equipment. Avoid rechargeables as the extension cords will only be a hindrance.

 

6. Emergency protection. Raingear, silly.

 

5. Flashlight. Avoid the solar-powered ones.

 

4. Backpack or shoulder bag. That Father's Day briefcase will just look silly. The plastic bags from the grocery store make you look like one of the homeless folks.

 

3. Hat/cap. Avoid the sombrero you got from the Mexican restaurant on your birthday. Also avoid anything printed with statements about having people expose themselves... this looks especially bad when searching for caches near a playground.

 

2. Spare plastic baggies. Make sure you empty out any leftover white powder or green, leafy substances before leaving home.

 

1. Bail money. Just in case.

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Welcome to this most-addictive sport/hobby! (It's a hobby when I take the children out, and a sport when I hit the trails alone - I love to hike and go rock-climbing.)

 

Since you are an experienced hiker, there's no need for me to stress that you pack yer rucksack with plenty of precautions and first aid supplies. (Do give yourself a quick refresher in first aid applications.)

 

One thing I do: I went to Home Depot and bought a sturdy little dowel rod I now call my walking/poking stick. I NEVER reach into any kind of hole or cave without first poking around in there with my stick (here in Texas anyway.) This is probably the single most important step I have taken since I started this new sport.

 

Other than that - print your information from the website or have a source that you can call for hints. You don't have to read them right away if you print them, but you will have them accessible in case you DO need the hint. (I do read them beforehand, in case there is something important that I should know before going, and then I make notes on the one first page that I printed...printing them All can make for quite the stack of wasted paper.)

 

Most of all, Have Fun!

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Don't forget some type of poison-ivy/oak prevention!

 

Even those immune to such plants in the past often painfully discover that they aren't immune anymore. Many cachers use Ivy Block, or Buji Block or a similar cream/ointment. They're cheaper and more comfortable than having to use Technu, Zanfel, etc., later.

 

Long pants (and sometimes long-sleeved shirts) are a necessity even in hot weather if you're going to be doing any bushwhacking. Causes the chiggers, ticks, and mosquitos to take the time to go through one more layer.

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It's interesting though: I cache with teenagers who Refuse to wear jeans while hiking. I cannot get them to wear some rugged hiking boots or even tennis shoes for that matter - they wear flip flops. We're in South Texas and it's pretty hot, so I rely on the thrill of the hunt and the excitement of clamboring my to waypoints, but they are adamant and I can't blame them. While I don't mind a single bit, being the one who does the actual climbing and the serious bushwacking, they are often standing in the middle of the woods with me. I - ME - I am the one that comes back with the chiggers! lol. :laughing:

 

-insert note - My jeans and sleeves and gloves and boots HAVE saved me from treachery and I will Not allow them to climb, etc. without the proper gear.

 

So, IMO, chiggers and a few various bug like to crawl up into the warm, sweaty crevices of your knees, your groin, under pantylines and brastraps. No matter what you are wearing though, Bring repellant for Everything. It may be bad for you - what's not? - but I would rather wear deet and protect my feet with permethrin, than to suffer an attack from critters whose home and babies I have just inadvertently invaded.

I put it on the teens and it has kept them without incident so far, even in shorts and flip-flops.

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TOP TEN THINGS YOU'LL WISH YOU HADN'T PACKED IN YOUR CACHE BAG

 

10. Ice cream.

 

9. Gerbils

 

8. Leaky bottles of deer urine

 

7. Bowling ball and shoes

 

6. Unlicensed automatic weapon with grenade launcher

 

5. "Registered Sex Offender" t-shirt

 

4. Deer carcass

 

3. Air compressor and hose

 

2. Anti-matter.

 

1. That whiny kid who thinks it's too far to walk to the mailbox.

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TOP TEN THINGS A GEOCACHING NEWBIE SHOULD PACK

4. Backpack or shoulder bag. That Father's Day briefcase will just look silly. The plastic bags from the grocery store make you look like one of the homeless folks.

 

2. Spare plastic baggies. Make sure you empty out any leftover white powder or green, leafy substances before leaving home.

 

4. Okay. I have stopped geocaching with plastic grocery bags. One good patch of greenbriar and they were history, anyway.

 

2. For benchmarking, I do carry a ziplock of corn starch. In my shoulder bag. I haven't had any problems with it yet, though I was very nervous carrying it in downtown Paterson, NJ.

Benchmark disk with thin coating of cornstarch

Edited by Harry Dolphin
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Don't forget some type of poison-ivy/oak prevention!

 

Even those immune to such plants in the past often painfully discover that they aren't immune anymore. Many cachers use Ivy Block, or Buji Block or a similar cream/ointment. They're cheaper and more comfortable than having to use Technu, Zanfel, etc., later.

 

Long pants (and sometimes long-sleeved shirts) are a necessity even in hot weather if you're going to be doing any bushwhacking. Causes the chiggers, ticks, and mosquitos to take the time to go through one more layer.

 

Cheaper? Ivy Block and Buji are $14.99 and you have to cover your entire body with goop. I could buy a gallon of Tecnu for that.

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