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One of the Sickest Caches in North America, With a Big Cash Prize!


Vinny & Sue Team
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I can't believe that it is not trespass to go on the tower.

You have a very good point! I can’t wait to see all the live news media coverage on TV, when they catch a person on the tower, thinking he’s a jumper. But then again, maybe it’s not on the top of the tower?

There are many such abandoned pylons in the rivers in this area, and it is my understanding that rock climbers climb the more accessible ones (i.e., the pylons nearer shore, in shallow water) quite regularly, just as they also regularly climb the cliffs which border the same river a few miles to the south. From what MD DNR (Department of Natural Resources) has told me in past conversations, their primary concern when they notice someone climbing pylons or cliffs or other rock formations in their jurisdiction is whether the person seems to know what they are doing (i.e., do they look competent and are they using the appropriate gear?) or whether it appears that the person is "out of control and in danger", i.e., perhaps under the influence of drugs (or worse, under the influence of geocaching) -- in other words, the same criteria they apply when they notice a boater ont the river. As far as risk to life and limb, this river is famous the world over for its kayaking, river rafting and tubing opportunities, and boaters come from thousands of miles away to shoot the rough waters in thir river when water levels are high due to rainfall. Boaters (i.e., kayakes, rafters, tubers) regularly die (or end up seriously injured) on this river; that is just an accepted fact of life, and yet boating is not prohibited, and in fact, the river remains extremely popular for boaters.

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I was thinking more along the lines of someone going up, getting in the middle or on top and freezing and not being able to get down and then needing a real expensive, dangerous rescue. You know the kind , the ones that put rescuers at risk, so they are more than happy to send the bill.

 

Roger That!!! I hear you loud and clear...Let's pray that don't happen b/c it would give our geocaching community a big black eye..

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I was thinking more along the lines of someone going up, getting in the middle or on top and freezing and not being able to get down and then needing a real expensive, dangerous rescue. You know the kind , the ones that put rescuers at risk, so they are more than happy to send the bill.

Thanks for your clarification. Here are my thoughts, and I offer them as a trained rock climber with over 20 years of climbing experience:

Well, of course, to be realistic, your critique could also equally apply to any of the tens of thousands of cliffs, rock faces, abandoned structures, and other vertical surfaces climbed bythousands of rock climbers each and every weekend across the USA! Why bother then to single out this particular rock climbing spot/site? And strangely, this particular scenario which you have proposed (that of a climber freezing) actually seems to happen only very rarely at popular climbing spots. In any case, climbing to the plateau on top (where the cache is located) is only one of about twenty possible ways to access the cache! If we were gonna worry about possible hazards associated with people seking this cache via climbing, then, by extensio, we must also worry about the following risks as well:

  • if seeking by helicopter, the danger of the helicopter crashing during the admittedly very dangerous maneuvers needed to access the cache
  • if seeking by hot air balloon or dirigible (aka "blimp") the danger of the airship being blown by winds into the railroad bridge 460 feet to the south, or into the high voltage power lines just below there which cross the river.
  • if seeking the cache using an unmanned RC helicopter equipped with wireless video camera and hook, the danger of the RC helicopter going out of control and maiming or killing a bystander or boater on the river below.
  • if seeking the cache from below by climbing after swimming to the base of the pylon, the danger of drowning during the swim to the pylon (people regularly die of drowning in this river...)
  • if seeking the cache from below by climbing after using a boat to reach the base of the pylon, the danger of drowning while boating (people regularly die while boating on this river.)
  • if approaching by water, the danger of being bitten by a rattlesnake.
  • if swimming out, the danger of becoming impaled on one of the pieces or rebar and sharp metal sticking up out of the bridge debris on the river bottom.
  • if driving to the parking spots near the river, the danger of dying in an automobile accident enroute
  • and this is probably the worst potential danger of all: the danger of a cache hunter, while in the Shepherdstown area seeking this cache, stopping by the Shepherdstown bakery and purchasing twenty pounds of yummy delicious danish pastries (you know, the kind with the sliced almonds on top.... moan!) and tantalizing apple struedel, and then, upon exiting the shop, sitting down on a nearby bench and gorging herself/himself to death by overeating the incredibly delicous yummy, tasty apple struedel which is just begging to be eaten! :laughing::laughing::unsure:

:unsure::ph34r:

Edited by Vinny & Sue Team
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Does anybody know if??? MD DNR (Department of Natural Resources) require a permit for the day when rock climbing the formations ???Does one need to call into any number, before going out climbing???

And I'm not talking about calling friends :laughing: to let them know what your doing...

I work as a volunteer cache reviewer for DNR, and thus I have lots of contacts within DNR. I am also a rock clmber, and thus I spend a small portion of my time hanging out at rock climbng stores, chatting with staff (experienced climbers) and other climbers about local climbing sites. I have never heard of any permits being required for any rock climbing on any DNR-managed properties, and a web search indicates much the same. In fact, a web search shows several flyers from DNR touting (to rock climbers, of course) the great rock climbing opportunities at some of its state parks!

 

From my point of view, the biggest possibility of having a nasty interaction with MD DNR regarding this cache is as follows:

  • if you are accessing the base of the pylon by water, and you are swimming to the pylon, it is imperative to wear a PFD; that is the law, and it is aggrssively enforced.
  • if you are accessing the base of the pylon by water, and you are boating to the pylon, it is imperative to wear a helmet and a PFD; that is the law and it is aggressively enforced -- not a weekend goes by in summer when I do not read in the paper of a boater being arrested for failing to wear such gear on one of our rougher rivers (and the Potomac is one of them...)

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So who regulates or owns the property where the pylon is?

 

I wondered about this also. Who would seekers talk to to get permission to make the attempt, or to assure themselves that attempting to find this is legal and permissable? (Maybe this information is buried in the cache writeup somewhere, but I haven't yet taken the time to trudge through it in its entirety)

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So who regulates or owns the property where the pylon is?

I wondered about this also. Who would seekers talk to to get permission to make the attempt, or to assure themselves that attempting to find this is legal and permissable? (Maybe this information is buried in the cache writeup somewhere, but I haven't yet taken the time to trudge through it in its entirety)

I believe that this issue is rather fully covered on the cache listing page; you are welcome to read it there. It is part of the text which several armchair critics have labeled as "unnecessary". In any case, numerous local residents, particularly local college kids and boaters (kayakers, rafters) regularly climb upon and party (party as in alcohol ingestion and rowdy behavior) on the three lower (30 to 37 feet tall) abandoned railroad pylons located in the river about 900 feet to the northwest, and, according to numerous reports I have received from local fisherwomen/fishermen and hikers who spend much time along that riverbank on the NPS side, no one has ever bothered any of these people, even the drunk college boys clamberig without safety gear or climbing gear on the 37 foot tall stone pylons. BTW, these same college boys have also vandalized the extreme cache named Revenge of Team Psycho #1 placed atop one of those shorter pylons just upriver -- that cache is listed and linked on my cache listing page for PUC #13.

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Wow! The 'adequate permission' card has been thrown down!

 

If you can't find anything else to complain about for a cache, question its permission!

 

I wouldn't begin to know who to approach for this one, nor would I think any was particularly required here!

 

Ed

Yes, I am a bit stunned that this issue was raised myself, and as one of my geo friends just said, the same issue could be raised for 99% of geocaches placed in the USA! <_<;)

 

And, in light of the great article which you recently found reporting that a Federal judge in Louisiana ruled that all boating and all other uses (i.e., swimming, wading, fishing, jet skiiing, water skiing, hunting, playing. etc.) on any and all navigable waterways in the USA by private persons or commercial ventures is a felony federal criminal offense, we must admit that cache hunters could be shot to death by armed Federal snipers from the Federal Bureau of Water Trespass Enforcement as the cache hunters swim or boat to the pylon or as they start their climb up the pylon. sigh! :huh:<_<:huh:

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Yes, I am a bit stunned that this issue was raised myself, and as one of my geo friends just said, the same issue could be raised for 99% of geocaches placed in the USA! <_<:huh:

 

And, in light of the great article which you recently found reporting that a Federal judge in Louisiana ruled that all boating and all other uses (i.e., swimming, wading, fishing, jet skiiing, water skiing, hunting, playing. etc.) on any and all navigable waterways in the USA by private persons or commercial ventures is a felony federal criminal offense, we must admit that cache hunters could be shot to death by armed Federal snipers from the Federal Bureau of Water Trespass Enforcement as the cache hunters swim or boat to the pylon or as they start their climb up the pylon. sigh! :huh:<_<;)

 

You need to add that to the cache page! :huh:

 

El Diablo

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So who regulates or owns the property where the pylon is?

I wondered about this also. Who would seekers talk to to get permission to make the attempt, or to assure themselves that attempting to find this is legal and permissable? (Maybe this information is buried in the cache writeup somewhere, but I haven't yet taken the time to trudge through it in its entirety)

I believe that this issue is rather fully covered on the cache listing page; you are welcome to read it there. It is part of the text which several armchair critics have labeled as "unnecessary". In any case, numerous local residents, particularly local college kids and boaters (kayakers, rafters) regularly climb upon and party (party as in alcohol ingestion and rowdy behavior) on the three lower (30 to 37 feet tall) abandoned railroad pylons located in the river about 900 feet to the northwest, and, according to numerous reports I have received from local fisherwomen/fishermen and hikers who spend much time along that riverbank on the NPS side, no one has ever bothered any of these people, even the drunk college boys clamberig without safety gear or climbing gear on the 37 foot tall stone pylons. BTW, these same college boys have also vandalized the extreme cache named Revenge of Team Psycho #1 placed atop one of those shorter pylons just upriver -- that cache is listed and linked on my cache listing page for PUC #13.

 

So, is that the obfuscation defense? No, I'm not going to read through 10,000 words of self promotion just to see if you actually asked for permission to hide the cache. It's just not that important to me. I fall into the "permission is implied" camp when placing caches on public land, and I assume the same is true for your cache. But wouldn't it have been a lot easier to respond to that simple, honest question with either;

1) No specific permission is required

or

2) I got permission from __________________ (<~~insert name of mindless "gubment" entity here)

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Yes, I am a bit stunned that this issue was raised myself, and as one of my geo friends just said, the same issue could be raised for 99% of geocaches placed in the USA! <_<;)

 

And, in light of the great article which you recently found reporting that a Federal judge in Louisiana ruled that all boating and all other uses (i.e., swimming, wading, fishing, jet skiiing, water skiing, hunting, playing. etc.) on any and all navigable waterways in the USA by private persons or commercial ventures is a felony federal criminal offense, we must admit that cache hunters could be shot to death by armed Federal snipers from the Federal Bureau of Water Trespass Enforcement as the cache hunters swim or boat to the pylon or as they start their climb up the pylon. sigh! :huh:<_<:huh:

 

You need to add that to the cache page! ;)

 

El Diablo

Just did -- in fact, I added the whole list to the cache listing page, since people were complaining that it was not long enuf or detailed enuf! :huh::) The water access story is amazing and odd! Thanks to Ed (AlabamaRambler) for first mentioning and linking to the story on the forums! :huh: The story has the marine industry in an uproar!

Edited by Vinny & Sue Team
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Vinny,

 

Will you be copy/pasting this entire thread to the cache page? I give you permission to do so. <_<

 

;)

Yes, my goal is to create a cache listing page for this cache which treats every aspect of this cache, its placement, hazards, and its difficulty totally comprehensively, and my calculations show me that ultmately the listing page will contain over 500,000 words and 1,288 images. My current goal is to add at least 2,000 words and two images per day, much of it in large, colorful font. :huh:

 

 

<_<:huh::huh:

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Wow! The 'adequate permission' card has been thrown down!

 

If you can't find anything else to complain about for a cache, question its permission!

 

I wouldn't begin to know who to approach for this one, nor would I think any was particularly required here!

 

Ed

 

The cache page states the river is owned by the state of Maryland, but it doesn't say anything about the pylons. Why do you feel my question was a complaint? I wasn't complaining about anything at all. There's nothing wrong with this hide, in fact I wish every cache has as much time and thought put into it. However, knowing the world we live in today, there could be a hefty fine for climbing on those pylons for all I know. Just because a couple drunk college kids have done it doesn't make it legal. I think it would be a fun challenge to attempt this one, and I've spent the last couple days thinking of different approaches I could possibly take. As the cache page says, plan carefully. The first step in my planning would be to make sure that I'm allowed to do what I'd like to do. Why is verifying land ownership or permission now a BAD thing?

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... Why is verifying land ownership or permission now a BAD thing?

 

In and of itself it's not 'bad'.

 

But - do you verify permission for all the caches that you seek, or just ones that you don't care for, even if you have no intention of going to hunt it?

 

Choosing to use permission verification questions in hopes that one can get a cache archived is all too common.

 

I am not saying that's the issue with your post; you may well be preparing at this moment to go after this cache and just making sure before you go. I don't know.

 

In our game 'adequate permission' is assumed of a listed cache.

 

We all know that the vast majority of caches in fact have NO permission at all, so the issue is what I call the Dirty Little Secret of Geocaching!

 

The permission issue is, therefore, a weapon often used against a cache that draws attention. It is a pretty safe bet that any random cache you decide to question and seek verification of permission for won't have it.

 

So if folks don't like a cache, a cacher, whatever, the permission card is played to bring that cache to the attention of the Reviewers. Once brought to their attention they have to decide if permission is in fact required, and if so they have to investigate the issue with the cache owner.

 

It is my guess that this cache was Reviewed and the Reviewer saw no reason to seek explicit permission, but since permission has now been questioned may have to revisit the issue.

 

That's playing the permission card, and yes, that's a bad thing!

 

Ed

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I gotta disagree with you somewhat, Ed. He was not questioning the permission of a cache he didn't like. In fact, he made it quite plain, as did I, that he thought the cache was pretty kewl. In the case of an ammo can hidden in the woods, I'm probably not going to attract a great deal of attention going for it. In the case of a plastic box atop 180' pillar in the middle of a heavilly utilized waterway, you can bet I'd have an audience before I was done. Kinda like those guys that climb skyscrapers. As far as I know, there is no law prohibiting climbing a building's exterior here in Florida, but those who do it are always arrested, typically on some lame charge such as breach of peace.

 

If I was going to attempt a high profile cache like that one, I would want to know absolutely, that I would not be arrested by some overzealous marine patrol or DNR cop upon my descent. Asking the hider about said permissions is the only way I know to obtain this data.

 

So, is that still a bad thing? Should I shut up and go away now? <_<

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... Why is verifying land ownership or permission now a BAD thing?

 

In and of itself it's not 'bad'.

 

But - do you verify permission for all the caches that you seek, or just ones that you don't care for, even if you have no intention of going to hunt it?

 

Choosing to use permission verification questions in hopes that one can get a cache archived is all too common.

 

 

Whether I'm ever able to hunt/find this cache or not, I have no desire to see it archived. I am close enough that I could make an attempt, but before I do, I'd want to make sure it's permissable. Are most caches placed with explicit permission? No, most likely not. Most caches don't have you dangling from a rope in the middle of a river either. Certainly I've found caches that haven't been placed with permission, however I wasn't exactly on public display at the time. In this case, the object in question is a bridge pylon, which could be owned by the state of Maryland and classified public property like the rest of the river, or it could still be owned by whoever built it - railroad? Maryland D.O.T? I don't know. If it's abandoned property then there's probably no issue. If it's railroad property, there could be a huge issue. That's something that, as a potential seeker, I'd like to know. If there are any local rock climbing organizations who use these pylons on a regular basis, then that would be a great indicator of sufficient permission. "Drunk college kids" isn't exactly a standard I'd be willing to accept as legitimate. And I don't see why any discussion here would be reason for the reviewer to revisit the cache. I have NO IDEA about what's acceptable with this pylon or what isn't. However, since we have a thread dedicated to it, I saw nothing wrong with asking. I have no ulterior motive. I know people who will attempt this, and if schedules work out I'd love to join them. I'd also appreciate some reassurance that doing so wouldn't put me in legal jeopardy. Drunk college kids hanging out on a different set of pylons doesn't provide a comfortable level of assurance. Guess I'm just overly cautious. <_<

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I think permission is a good question in this case. With just a little bit of searching, I found this page that shows those pylons to be remnants from the old Norfolk&Western railroad bridge. As such, they're most likely still owned by Norfolk&Western (now Norfolk Southern Railway) that operates on the more modern bridge an eighth mile down river.

 

That would make this geocache on private property.

 

For what it's worth, the pylons between the current location and the Rumsey Bridge upriver are the remnants of an old covered bridge connecting Shepherdstown to Maryland. That would make them part of a roadway (i.e. more likely public land) and less suspect than the railroad pylons...I don't know anything about accessability in comparison of the two sets of pylons or privacy with Rumsey Bridge nearby, but I wanted to offer an option that may work better rather than simply noting the only flaw I see in a perfectly fun-sounding cache.

Edited by ju66l3r
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there is no law prohibiting climbing a building's exterior here in Florida, but those who do it are always arrested, typically on some lame charge such as breach of peace.

 

If I was going to attempt a high profile cache like that one, I would want to know absolutely, that I would not be arrested by some overzealous marine patrol or DNR cop upon my descent. Asking the hider about said permissions is the only way I know to obtain this data.

 

So, is that still a bad thing? Should I shut up and go away now? <_<

Well, it occurs to me that the scenario you relate is a no-win scenario.

If there is indeed an "overzealous" marine patrol or DNR, you could well be arrested for some ""lame charge", just as you cite for the building climbers in Florida.

Being arrested sucks, and even if acquitted, you are still out a day in your life and a buncha money (at the minimum), but as long as there are LEOs that choose to enforce laws that don't exist, that is a chance you take- just breathing.

 

It is my experience that such LEOs are VERY rare.

 

Seekers should probably concern themselves more with their equipment and physical abilities. The risk of arrest is probably no more than the risk of arrest at a child's playground,,, (but that's another thread). <_<

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I gotta disagree with you somewhat, Ed. He was not questioning the permission of a cache he didn't like. In fact, he made it quite plain, as did I, that he thought the cache was pretty kewl. I...

So, is that still a bad thing? Should I shut up and go away now? <_<

 

No, I would never ask someone to shut up and go away, well, not anyone I'm not married to anyway <_<

 

I was careful to say

I am not saying that's the issue with your post; you may well be preparing at this moment to go after this cache and just making sure before you go. I don't know.
so I wasn't saying this issue arose to cause trouble, but rather acknowledging that questioning permission is a commont tactic used against caches.

 

Sure, we are free to talk about caches for whatever reason, or none, but in my opinion asking about permission is usually agenda-driven.

 

I am glad that's not the case here. Carry on!

 

Ed

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I think permission is a good question in this case. With just a little bit of searching, I found this page that shows those pylons to be remnants from the old Norfolk&Western railroad bridge. As such, they're most likely still owned by Norfolk&Western (now Norfolk Southern Railway) that operates on the more modern bridge an eighth mile down river.

 

 

It's also possible that that railroad leased the land from the state for the bridge, or had some other agreement that terminated and turned the pylons into public property. Old railroad beds are often converted into legal hiking trails. A little digging into public archives would probably reveal the status of these particular pylons. Even a call to the railroad may provide insight into current ownership. Just because they came from the railroad initially doesn't mean they're still railroad property, but that is a possibility.

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It's also possible that that railroad leased the land from the state for the bridge, or had some other agreement that terminated and turned the pylons into public property. Old railroad beds are often converted into legal hiking trails. A little digging into public archives would probably reveal the status of these particular pylons. Even a call to the railroad may provide insight into current ownership. Just because they came from the railroad initially doesn't mean they're still railroad property, but that is a possibility.

 

This is also definitely a possibility; abandoned right-of-ways do revert to public ownership in some cases. I'm sure a call to either NS or the Historic Society whose site I linked to in my previous post would have the answer. I would hate for a much-lauded cache to turn into a publicized black mark if someone were to make an issue with a searcher accessing the very top to look for the cache.

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Why all of a sudden are people trying to find fault with this cache placement? Is there any who have posted questioning the legal placement plan on hunting it?

 

It's basically placed on top of a big rock in the middle of a public river. There is no bridge, no tracks, Just a tall rock.

 

Give it a rest and stop trying to find fault. It looks a lot like jealousy to me.

 

El Diablo

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In all seriousness, if it were in my area i would love to try it.

Actually, there is This One in my area that I have scouted out preliminarily. It appears to be a bridge pylon in the middle of the White River and has been virgin for over a year now.

 

I never considered the possibility that it might be at the TOP of the pylon. I assumed that it is stuck in a crack more or less at eye level by boat (depending of course on the river stage). Actually, before I went to look, I assumed it was on an island.

 

Maybe potential seekers of our local "extreme cache" might benefit from a little LONGER cache page. :)

 

I don't know if anyone has attempted it or not. There are no posts on the cache page.

 

I was considering swimming to it, but after looking at the river and the strainer developing at the upstream side of the structure, I have decided a swim would not be the best thing to attempt (even though I swim well, am certified diver, and have much experience in the Ohio River, and would not attempt it without a lifeline- all of which ALSO tells me a cache aint worth it)

 

I also have a moderate amount of (years and pounds ago) rock climbing experience.

 

Something one might consider if planning on CLIMBING a bridge pylon, is that the climber is likely to be WET. Wet and friction (very essential to vertical ascents) do not go well together.

 

Best of luck to those who attempt it.

 

(OBTW: I was mostly stirring the pot with the "hoax" thing. Vinny, you are correct that when I say "hoax" I mean "tall tale". I will stipulate that the cache is real. "Hoax" might also mean that it is a real cache, but easy and the owner expects loggers to "hype" the cache. Many of these exist. Not all are listed as "puzzles".) :o

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In all seriousness, if it were in my area i would love to try it.

Actually, there is This One in my area that I have scouted out preliminarily. It appears to be a bridge pylon in the middle of the White River and has been virgin for over a year now.

 

I never considered the possibility that it might be at the TOP of the pylon. I assumed that it is stuck in a crack more or less at eye level by boat (depending of course on the river stage). Actually, before I went to look, I assumed it was on an island.

 

Maybe potential seekers of our local "extreme cache" might benefit from a little LONGER cache page. :)

 

I don't know if anyone has attempted it or not. There are no posts on the cache page.

 

I was considering swimming to it, but after looking at the river and the strainer developing at the upstream side of the structure, I have decided a swim would not be the best thing to attempt (even though I swim well, am certified diver, and have much experience in the Ohio River, and would not attempt it without a lifeline- all of which ALSO tells me a cache aint worth it)

 

I also have a moderate amount of (years and pounds ago) rock climbing experience.

 

Something one might consider if planning on CLIMBING a bridge pylon, is that the climber is likely to be WET. Wet and friction (very essential to vertical ascents) do not go well together.

 

Best of luck to those who attempt it.

 

(OBTW: I was mostly stirring the pot with the "hoax" thing. Vinny, you are correct that when I say "hoax" I mean "tall tale". I will stipulate that the cache is real. "Hoax" might also mean that it is a real cache, but easy and the owner expects loggers to "hype" the cache. Many of these exist. Not all are listed as "puzzles".) :o

Thanks for your interesting post and for the heads-up about the neat river pylon cache in your area. The only time I was ever in Indiana recently was in December, when I had to speak for 8 days solid at an organic farming conference in Indianapolis, and the weather was so cold and snowy that I never got to do any caching at all! However, I will file your local pylon cache in my memory -- it sounds interesting!

 

And, yes, for any kind of serious climb, it could be deadly to arrive at the pylon soaking wet and with wet gear. I think that any sane and sincere seeker planning to climb the pylon from below would insist upon using a boat to reach the base.

 

And yes, I kinda knew you were trying to stir the pot with the allegations that the cache might be a tall tale cache, aka a "creative writing" cache. :):) As I wrote earlier, I personally often love such caches if they are very well done, and a couple of my favorite caches in the world are Terrain 5 tall tale caches! And, as you noted, some of the tall tale caches are not listed as puzzle/extra requirement caches, unfortunately. However, as you already knew in your gut, PUC #13 is very real and kinda tough! :D At least there are many possible ways of accessing it! In fact, we had a geo-visitor tonite who had been a crackerjack precision parachutist when he was in the military not too long ago, and he is thinking of parachuting onto the pylon from a plane from an altitude of about 3,000 feet above ground level.

 

Interestingly, with this cache, there have been very few serious proposals to date for climbing the face of the pylon, and instead, almost all of the more serious proposals and nascent efforts (and the one valiant but failed attempt so far) have been ones which involve(d) approaches from the air.

 

BTW, you had mentioned the power of faith and allowing God to handle everything in one of your earlier humorous posts about moving the pylon. I keep thinking of Padre Pio, the famous Italian Christian priest and mystic from the early and mid 20th century who was rather famous for levitating, sometimes to great distances. Maybe a cache hunting team needs to recruit Padre Pio! It would be simple for him to levitate a mere 143 feet! :)

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BTW, you had mentioned the power of faith and allowing God to handle everything in one of your earlier humorous posts about moving the pylon. I keep thinking of Padre Pio, the famous Italian Christian priest and mystic from the early and mid 20th century who was rather famous for levitating, sometimes to great distances. Maybe a cache hunting team needs to recruit Padre Pio! It would be simple for him to levitate a mere 143 feet! :)

I have never understood the "faith is everything" people that think if you have enough faith you can jump off a cliff and fly. If you TRULY had faith, why climb the cliff? Fly from the ground.

 

So why levitate to the top of the pylon, just levitate the cache down.

 

Better yet, when you go back to check the cache, tell me how you like my Confucius' Cat stamp that i just put on the log sheet! :o

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OK, I got it!

 

Since I don't have a barge with a crane available, a balloon!

 

Yes! A balloon with a long rope and a camera and an electro-magnet and a battery and a remote-control switch!

 

Float that sucker up there like a kite, turn on the magnet, nab it, reel 'er down and sign it, float it right back up and turn off the magnet to drop it back in place!

 

Dang, got it all worked out fine, actually doing it would be redundant, can I log it now? :o

 

Ed

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OK, I got it!

 

Since I don't have a barge with a crane available, a balloon!

 

Yes! A balloon with a long rope and a camera and an electro-magnet and a battery and a remote-control switch!

 

Float that sucker up there like a kite, turn on the magnet, nab it, reel 'er down and sign it, float it right back up and turn off the magnet to drop it back in place!

 

Dang, got it all worked out fine, actually doing it would be redundant, can I log it now? :o

 

Ed

Uh... most climbing gear is aluminum alloy... non-magnetic...

 

Would be a cool way to go though. Use a hook instead of the magnet. A skilled kite flyer might really be able to make this method work (with a kite).

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OK, I got it!

 

Since I don't have a barge with a crane available, a balloon!

 

Yes! A balloon with a long rope and a camera and an electro-magnet and a battery and a remote-control switch!

 

Float that sucker up there like a kite, turn on the magnet, nab it, reel 'er down and sign it, float it right back up and turn off the magnet to drop it back in place!

 

Dang, got it all worked out fine, actually doing it would be redundant, can I log it now? :o

 

Ed

 

At 143 foot you are going to have a hard time controlling a ballon. So you need to put mini rockets on it for steeering.

 

El Diablo

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At 143 foot you are going to have a hard time controlling a ballon. So you need to put mini rockets on it for steeering.

 

El Diablo

 

With only one line attached to the balloon(s), you'd be right. But...

 

you are right...guide lines!! It would take several people though.

 

El Diablo

Ok, I guess I'll spill the beans of my idea. I'm still formulating it so I'm sure it has some flaws. Here goes...

2 boats, probably 4-6 people required. 350 feet of lightweight but high-strength fishing line, 350 feet of paracord, and finally a 350 foot climbing rope along with a harness and 2 ascenders. Another 50 foot (or so) climbing rope. Probably 2 or 3 dozen helium filled foil-type balloons. (Probably would need to be filled when on site due to the room they take up in a vehicle, and foil is stronger than rubber and has more volume)

 

2 boats with 2 people in one and 3-4 people in another approach the pylon from upstream. As they near the pylon the 50' rope is tied between the boats, one boat goes on each side of the pylon and the rope holds them in place. The group of helium filled balloons is tied to the center of the 350' of fishing line, one end of which is in each boat. The fishing line is slowly spooled out and lifted by the baloons until it clears the top of the pylon. Once the line makes it over the pylon it's pulled taught so it goes no higher and the paracord is fastened to one end of it. The fishing line is used to pull the lightweight paracord over the pylon, from one boat to the other. Then, in the same manner, the stronger paracord is used to pull the heavier climbing rope up over the pylon. Once the climbing rope is succesfully pulled over, it's securely fastened to the boat with 4 people in it, or, if possible, to something at the base of the pylon. One physically fit person in the boat with 2 people in it gets into the harness and attaches the ascenders to the climbing rope. Since the rope is securely anchored on the opposite side of the pylon, it's just a matter of using the escenders to make the climb to get to the top. The fishing line can be taken along to lower the cache down for the others to sign. Once the log is replaced, the climber rappels back down to the boat, the climbing rope is untied and the boats head for shore to collect the bounty from an amazed but beaming Vinny.

 

That's my idea. I'm sure it wouldn't go as smoothly in practice as it does in theory, but it could work. At least it doesn't involve space aliens or moving the pylon through supernatural means. :o

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I'm no cartoonist, but I just can't get the images out of my head from an idea that was posted earlier, about a parachutist trying to land on the pylon!

 

I have been giggling all night with different visions of how this might go!

 

Please, if anyone attempt this, let me be there with a video camera! Please?

 

It's all the cartoons I have ever seen wrapped up with a redneck's last words - "Hey y'all, watch this!"

 

So many possible variations and endings... none of them good!

 

Man, I hope somebody tries that!

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I'm no cartoonist, but I just can't get the images out of my head from an idea that was posted earlier, about a parachutist trying to land on the pylon!

 

 

Pulling off the perfect landing without having the chute pull you off the pylon would be one heck of a challenge. I'm not a parachutist, but I have to think no one would be nuts enough to attempt that for a cache.

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Although clearly a 5 on terrain. I believe it to be a 1 or 1.5 on difficulty.

Yes, you raise an intresting and valid issue here, and one which has been raised before about many caches rated 5/5. There seem to be two different schools of thought about employing the Difficulty rating, where one is that the Difficulty rating should only reflect difficulty of seeing the cache container once you get to its hiding spot, and where the other viewpoint holds that Difficulty rating should reflect overall difficulty of retrieval, and thus can and should be heavily influenced by Terrain rating as well.

 

Obviously, you seem to lean toward the first-listed school of thought, and I currently lean toward the latter school of thought. Interestingly, I have gone thru an evolution on this matter, and at one time, I shared the same point of view about Difficulty rating that you did. When I first started placing Psycho caches with extreme Terrain ratings, I tended to assign them relatively low Difficulty ratings. However, I quickly heard from the local caching community that since the Terrain rating was so high (4.0 or above) on these caches, the Difficulty rating should reflect -- at least to some extent -- the Terrain challenges. Eventually, I started to raise the Difficulty rating on the Psycho caches which had Terrain ratings of 4.0 and above.

 

"Since the Terrain rating was so high (4.0 or above) on these caches, the Difficulty rating should reflect -- at least to some extent -- the Terrain challenges"

Uhm, why is that? Sounds to me like that sort of ruins the whole idea of having two distinct ratings. This cache could have a higher difficulty level, even if it's 'in plain sight'. For instance you could make it a (hard!) puzzle, the result of which gives you the required numbers for a number lock that's placed on the cache.

But I guess I should say this since "This is inarguably (sic!!) one of the toughest, most difficult and most dangerous caches in North America and even anywhere in the world."

 

I went paragliding to the cache yesterday. There was an Amazing Discoveries type sales demonstration going on and they would only let me sign the log if I agreed to buy their Super Kitchen Miracle Machine Robot, at the special price of $160, valid only until midnight 9/24/06. So I guess I should log a DNF...

 

Katja

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Give it a rest and stop trying to find fault. It looks a lot like jealousy to me.

El D, I can only speak for myself when I say, (again), that I am very jealous of this cache. If I had a structure like that near me I'd have a cache up there faster than Rosie O'Donnell can chew through the side of a Ben & jerry's carton. The whole concept just screams "KEWL!" to this ol' fat guy. I tip my hat to Vinny for setting it up. Kudos all around. Just thinking about it gets me grinning like an idiot. (not a far stretch for me) :o

 

Now, with that being said, there are cachers out there who are asking about, (not to be confused with questioning), the legal ramifications of this hide. In this, Vinny has been ominously silent. It seems like a fairly simple question to me. By refusing to answer this most basic question, Vinny is casting a shadow on his own cache. If you were to ask me about any one of my hides, I would gladly tell you if permission was granted or just implied. I'm one of those guys who is OK with the whole "implied consent" concept, and if that's the case here, no problem. But since the question hasn't been answered, the community has no way of knowing. As a cacher, I would be reluctant to hunt for a cache if the owner refuses to answer honest questions about it.

 

While I appreciate your jumping to Vinny's defense, just because someone asks a legitimate question doesn't mean they're criticizing the hide. In fact, I've only seen a handful of people making negative comments about it. The vast majority, myself included, think this cache is the neatest thing since sliced bread. My only critique of the whole thing was the blatantly excess text on the cache page.

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At 143 foot you are going to have a hard time controlling a ballon. So you need to put mini rockets on it for steeering.

 

El Diablo

 

With only one line attached to the balloon(s), you'd be right. But...

 

you are right...guide lines!! It would take several people though.

 

El Diablo

Ok, I guess I'll spill the beans of my idea. I'm still formulating it so I'm sure it has some flaws. Here goes...

2 boats, probably 4-6 people required. 350 feet of lightweight but high-strength fishing line, 350 feet of paracord, and finally a 350 foot climbing rope along with a harness and 2 ascenders. Another 50 foot (or so) climbing rope. Probably 2 or 3 dozen helium filled foil-type balloons. (Probably would need to be filled when on site due to the room they take up in a vehicle, and foil is stronger than rubber and has more volume)

 

2 boats with 2 people in one and 3-4 people in another approach the pylon from upstream. As they near the pylon the 50' rope is tied between the boats, one boat goes on each side of the pylon and the rope holds them in place. The group of helium filled balloons is tied to the center of the 350' of fishing line, one end of which is in each boat. The fishing line is slowly spooled out and lifted by the baloons until it clears the top of the pylon. Once the line makes it over the pylon it's pulled taught so it goes no higher and the paracord is fastened to one end of it. The fishing line is used to pull the lightweight paracord over the pylon, from one boat to the other. Then, in the same manner, the stronger paracord is used to pull the heavier climbing rope up over the pylon. Once the climbing rope is succesfully pulled over, it's securely fastened to the boat with 4 people in it, or, if possible, to something at the base of the pylon. One physically fit person in the boat with 2 people in it gets into the harness and attaches the ascenders to the climbing rope. Since the rope is securely anchored on the opposite side of the pylon, it's just a matter of using the escenders to make the climb to get to the top. The fishing line can be taken along to lower the cache down for the others to sign. Once the log is replaced, the climber rappels back down to the boat, the climbing rope is untied and the boats head for shore to collect the bounty from an amazed but beaming Vinny.

 

That's my idea. I'm sure it wouldn't go as smoothly in practice as it does in theory, but it could work. At least it doesn't involve space aliens or moving the pylon through supernatural means. :o

Seriously, this -- like many other ideas -- could work. Of course, if good rope launchers that could easily launch a fishing line over the top of a 143 foot high pylon were readily available, the balloons and al those extra people would not be necessary, and rather the task would take 2 boats and 3 people in total. But, the problem is that almost all rope launchers tend to max out in the 120 foot to 140 foot range, and they are meant to be used on land, not to launch from water. I believe that there are gunpowder-fired rope launchers available that are claimed to be able to handle heights of over 250 feet, but I betcha a permit would be needed to fire a gunpowder-fired rope launcher in the river -- might alarm some of the rangers in the nearby National Historical Park onthe northeastern shore of the river!

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I'm no cartoonist, but I just can't get the images out of my head from an idea that was posted earlier, about a parachutist trying to land on the pylon!

 

I have been giggling all night with different visions of how this might go!

 

Please, if anyone attempt this, let me be there with a video camera! Please?

 

It's all the cartoons I have ever seen wrapped up with a redneck's last words - "Hey y'all, watch this!"

 

So many possible variations and endings... none of them good!

 

Man, I hope somebody tries that!

Our geo-friend was not joking about the parachute idea; a good parachutist can land on a bulls-eye in favorable wind conditions. But yes, if and when anyone tries any of these ideas, I woud sooo want to be on the shore, watching! :):o

Edited by Vinny & Sue Team
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An 11 foot surf rod, a 1.5 oz weight with a set of trable hooks, over the top, and 300 feet of rope. No climbing required.

Is that true? Could such a rig really launch a fising line that high? If so, that is amazing! Most of the commercially-available rope launchers (they launch a length of fishing line, and you then pull sucessively heavier lines over the top of the pylon, followed by a length of 11 mm climbing rope) tend to max out at about 120 to 140 feet, and they are intended to be used while based firmly on land, not on water.

 

BTW, Packanack, I grew up just a few miles up Route 202 from where you are located!

Edited by Vinny & Sue Team
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BTW, Packanack, I grew up just a few miles up Route 202 from where you are located!

 

Well that explains quite a bit. :):o

 

Substitute compound bow for surf rod.

 

Hey we are thinking out loud here for those who haven't got the first idea about asenders, pitons, grabbers, belay , rappel , harnesses or the like.

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All that is needed to get this cache is a three person climbing team with 2 150' ropes, about a dozen climbibg nuts, and climbing harnesses for each climber. I do not have enough the gear to make this climb. If there are any cachers who have the gear who want to make the climb I will be happy to join their team.

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