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cincol

Earthcaches

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For those who have a hankering to look at stones and other related things - as opposed to looking for tupperware hidden UNDER the rocks - Earthcaches offer a different perspective to our wonderful sport of geocaching. For me it allows one to see things around us - sometimes very close to where we live - in a different light. Am I a geological nut? Not at all, but I do enjoy natural history and geography in general. Some Earthcaches can get very "technical", but generally are very informative. This all depends on the descriptions and explanations given by the owner.

 

That said, I see that Carbon Hunter now has 19 Earthcaches [14 in South Africa out of a total of 20] to his credit! Well done and keep it up. Judging by the comments logged by cachers that have visited them they are being enjoyed. Certainly makes one look at Johannesburg from a slightly different angle! As a student studying geology [amongst others] at Wits in the early 70's and a career in the mining industry afterwards I have visited most of the sights that you have highlighted. I have many old 35mm slides of the "local" geological features that I used to show my students too. [i wonder how they could be converted to digital photos?]

 

I certainly look forward to re-visiting many of these sites to record some "finds" in the future. I have a few of my own Earthcaches as well, but only 1 in South Africa [GC18GG9]. What is nice about them is that they are 100% maintenance free! Whoopee! You can place them anywhere in the world and don't need a fellow cacher to maintain the tupperware or replace logbooks for you!

 

For those who have never logged an Earthcache yet - go for it - you will enjoy seeing things a little differently. Further information is available at http://www.earthcache.org

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Must agree. These probably aren't everyones cup of tea, but it is amazing to discover things about local sites which to many of us appear quite ordinary.

 

The upside is that earthcaches need to be quite thoroughly researched and the presented information is therefore quite informative.

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I understand about the technical nature putting people off. But as a naturalist (not not one of those gusy who caches with no clothes on!!!!!) at heart - I really enjoy looking at the physical earth around while caching.

 

I love Earthcaches - and the opportunity they pose for me to do some research on SA geological features, and share these with fellow cachers.

 

As an owner - my aim is not to have a bunch of Geology majors coming out - but merely that a cachers can enjoy the site for what it is, and learn something - no matter what base level you come from.

 

I'm just amazed at how interesting it has been for me researching these.

 

I know a lot of cachers now qualify for the Earthcache Masters level (i.e. a certain number of caches gets you a great little lapel pin free of charge). But with the lack of Earthcaches around (I still need to get to either Vredefort, Pilanesberg, Tufa falls in Mpumalanga or top of Table Mountain) I'm still one short of my Silver award.

 

So please post some of your own around the country.

 

SA is geologically rich and can do with a few more (IMHO).

 

If you haven't tried one yet, please do, I love seeing the logs!

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I've done a few and absolutly love them!

It takes you to places you would just past along and that you did not even know about. One "forced" me to go to the sterkfontein caves. I would never have gone it it was not for that cache.

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Unfortunately I got active into geocaching AFTER I retired from the military so I missed the opportunity to log some of these interesting areas I have been to. I have always been interested in the wonderful natural formations and have visited many parts of the world checking them out. I don't know if you guys noticed but there is now a forum area for earthcaches : Earthcache Forum

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Did my first one this weekend. Very ineresting and worthwhile but it makes me feel as if I'm back in school - especially with that exam that you need to pass in the end!

Edited by the pooks

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Like 'em!!! :)

 

Found a few in SA, and some in Wales, and thoroughly enjoyed them all.

Each one made us say "Wow, we didn't know that!!"

 

We've listed one Earthcache, and it was great fun putting it together, especially because we knew nothing about the subject matter before we started - now we do!!

A lovely learning experience.... :D

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Hey - three new Earthcaches up an running in the Joburg Area for you guys.

 

I really liked the "Original Golden Beatle" - so something for you to do this weekend?

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Yea the KZN earth cache is ours - Kloof Gorge - our first Earth cache, second on the way soon. You can leave KZN to us we will pick it up here. Still have not done any so cant comment as so far as 'finding' them is concerned but the concept appeals - just hope we are setting the standard right....?

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Yea the KZN earth cache is ours - Kloof Gorge - our first Earth cache, second on the way soon. You can leave KZN to us we will pick it up here. Still have not done any so cant comment as so far as 'finding' them is concerned but the concept appeals - just hope we are setting the standard right....?

Brilliant and congrats.

 

I had a look at the weblisting and it looks wonderful. I really like the idea of uploading a track. Great concept.

 

Keep up the good work.

 

I'm itching to get down and do it now!!!!!

 

I see Tomtwogates has an idea down in the Western Cape too - so things are loooking up - a really interesting site well worth a visit too!

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Congratulations on two new Earthcaches:

 

iNokia doing the Cango Caves - great spot and

cslyoda doing the Bushveld Complex in Rustenberu and links to Platinum GM mining.

 

Well done guys. The numbers are swelling.

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So here's an idea for a new Earth cache. NAME. Gau Train LOCATION Oxford Street JoBurg :anitongue:

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And you can add another - World Heritage Site - St Lucia Wetlands

 

the second in KZN, another coming soon.

And to claim the next one all i really need is to wonder when "we" are going to get up there again....

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And Another in the Western Cape - Niuewoudhville - a Glacial pavement.

 

Well Done tomtwogates.

 

Also to Rhino & Hedgehog for St Lucia - an excellent idea.

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I have just done my 6th Earthcache - so I qualify for the Earthcache Masters Silver.

 

I got a lovely pin & sticker for the Bronze - so those doing Earthcaches - do remember to apply for the Earthcache Masters too - a great little added incentive/bonus.

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And to claim the next one all i really need is to wonder when "we" are going to get up there again....

 

You better believe it bud! - The only question is.... which on takes your fancy.... Twins?

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Rhino & Hedgehog - congrats on your 3rd Earthcache - great idea for a series.

 

Keep going!

 

Thanks!

 

However I think that is the end of the series - unless some one else knows of another World Heritage Site in SA?

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We actually have 8 of them!

St Lucia & Drakensberg which you have

 

PLUS

» Fossil Hominid Sites of Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai, and Environs (1999)

» Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape (2003)

» Robben Island (1999)

» Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape (2007)

» Cape Floral Region Protected Areas (2004)

» Vredefort Dome (2005)

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A note for people considering planting their own Earthcaches.

 

Although it's really great to get a BIG earthcache site - like a world heritage site / Table Mountain or something similar

 

The guidelines for Earthcaches are very broad - as long as there is a strict link to the Earth (or geology).

 

So some of mine to date are not very "major" sites. Like:

Milnerton spit on Woodbridge Island

Granite boulders at Froggy Pond

The site where Joburgs first geological map started

A particualr (or interesting rock type)

A dyke

A sand dune

 

I'm also looking at getting ones for a "nek" and a "poort"

 

So any interesting landform shape / unusual occurance / fossils / mining activity etc. could make a good site.

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Another VERY IMPORTANT factor.

 

If the Earthcache is on private or not totally acessible land (e.g. you have to pay an entrance fee to a land manager) - then you need permission for the Earthcache.

 

Please don't try bend this - there have been a number of cachers BANNED for not following due process.

 

I try get mine in public parks with no access fee - or on roadsides etc.

 

So think a little laterally. One does not need to get to the TOP of Table Mountain for instance for an Earthcache on the TableMountain sandstones - use the top of Sir Lowry's Pass (an example of my own).

 

Places like the Joburg Earthcache series are either all in public parks with unlimited access to citizens - or on a public road (no permission needed to be there) - or in a car park where access is available (e.g. outside Gold Reef City rather than inside).

 

TAKE NOTE

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34 South African Earthcaches now - with a few more on their way - ancient ripple marks in the Eastern Cape; Sinkholes; waterfalls and even a roadside on the N3.

 

Hopefully we'll be hitting the 50 mark soon.

 

I think I only have about 3 more left for SA before heading off to populate the UAE (which doesn't have any yet).

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Hey - welldone Redglobe on your first Earthcache - that just after a FTF on the Kommandonek one too.

 

An interesting feature with the Babsfontein sinkholes. Well done

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Thanks Carbon Hunter

 

Setting up this one took a lot out of me and my normal caching activities. On the end after all the research, site inspections and interviews, I can proudly say “we loved it”.

Does this mean we are now a “guru” on holes?? No, there is just so much more to learn.

 

It will be some time before you will see the next one, its back to normal caching for now.

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Thanks Carbon Hunter

 

Setting up this one took a lot out of me and my normal caching activities. On the end after all the research, site inspections and interviews, I can proudly say “we loved it”.

Does this mean we are now a “guru” on holes?? No, there is just so much more to learn.

 

It will be some time before you will see the next one, its back to normal caching for now.

 

Well that's great. I don't think anyone (or very few) can profess to be guru's on their earthcaches. I certainly am not. I just love learning about the Earth - and thats the main aim of Earthcaches. Everyone learns. :anibad:

 

Keep on rocking1 :blink:

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I just wanted to thank you all in SA who are supporting EarthCaches (and a special thanks to Carbon Hunter).

 

When we started EarthCaches a few years ago we hoped that we would see them spread around the globe. The very first was set up in Australia (my home country) and a few in the USA (my place of residence) and they have spread from there. Last look tells me that they exisit on every continent, and in 76 different countries.

 

I will finally get to SA in 2010 as the next international geology education conference (GeoSciEd) is being held in J'burg. I intend to get some EarthCaches in..as well as a few traditionals..as I do when ever I travel.

 

So just a 'thanks'...and I hope you guys are not kicking Australia's butt in the cricket (one thing the USA has never seemed to adopt or even televise).

 

Cheers

 

Gary

Geoaware

EarthCache Grand Master (so I am told)

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Thank you :laughing: :blush:

 

South Africa is an amazing country - there is just so much potential for Earthcaches here.

 

It's so great to see the new ones coming out - really interesting places and concepts.

 

Keep it going guys.

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We enjoy doing earthcaches, and have learnt a great deal from them. We find it a challenge to look up the information and provide a good answer. We always feel though that we haven't done enough research or we are on the wrong track. Sometimes we feel like we are being tested [;)], but in the end we are allowed to log our find, so we guess we are not doing too badly. We just need time to do earthcaches (well that is because of the research involved!). But thanks CH for putting together some great earthcaches, we'll be sure to do them one by one as time goes on!

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A few weeks ago on recommendation from Carbonhunter, I went to http://www.earthcache.org/ and gave all my info for their "EarthCache

Masters" program.,I submitted the first three earth caches we have done, and yesterday my bronze geo-pin arrived.

 

One down, and three geopins to go!

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I have received this mail on a response of my Earth Cache:

 

STUMBBLED ACROSS GEOCHASING THIS MORNING. INTERRESTED IN YOUR KNOWLEGE ON SINKHOLES.

I KNOW YOU FIND THEM - Ever dived them?

 

Interrested in talking about this - I would like to dive them - i'm a cave diver and looking for new holes to dive.

 

 

This person is now a geocache member and I am glad we are attracting more cachers even if they search the web for info. I just hope he do not hide a cache in one of those caves….. :huh: even Ginger can not retrieve it down there, B) they are using re-breathers.

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Brilliant.

 

My silver pin arrived just before I left SA.

 

Unfortunately I seemed destined to have more Earthcache hides than finds!!!!

 

I hope that changes by the time I get back to SA!! None here in the UAE eitehr,

 

But that will change soon [:huh:]

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None here in the UAE eitehr,

 

But that will change soon [B)]

\\

 

But there are 4 in Qatar!! :huh:

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I have received this mail on a response of my Earth Cache:

 

STUMBBLED ACROSS GEOCHASING THIS MORNING. INTERRESTED IN YOUR KNOWLEGE ON SINKHOLES.

I KNOW YOU FIND THEM - Ever dived them?

 

Interrested in talking about this - I would like to dive them - i'm a cave diver and looking for new holes to dive.

 

 

This person is now a geocache member and I am glad we are attracting more cachers even if they search the web for info. I just hope he do not hide a cache in one of those caves….. :laughing: even Ginger can not retrieve it down there, :laughing: they are using re-breathers.

 

Brilliant!!!! Great news.

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I have received this mail on a response of my Earth Cache:

 

STUMBBLED ACROSS GEOCHASING THIS MORNING. INTERRESTED IN YOUR KNOWLEGE ON SINKHOLES.

I KNOW YOU FIND THEM - Ever dived them?

 

Interrested in talking about this - I would like to dive them - i'm a cave diver and looking for new holes to dive.

 

 

This person is now a geocache member and I am glad we are attracting more cachers even if they search the web for info. I just hope he do not hide a cache in one of those caves….. :laughing: even Ginger can not retrieve it down there, :laughing: they are using re-breathers.

 

Brilliant!!!! Great news.

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I done a couple of earth cache and I am still the rookie with the white belt in class.

 

However, with the earth caches that I have done it made me aware of my surroundings and forced me to look around for something different. I found two spots that could be described as an earth cache. I am busy researching these two finds and I do not want to give details of the location. One is still questionable and one is a go for sure.

 

To me the location is very important but yet no earth caches exist in this area. But my knowledge is questionable and it is outside my comfort zone. I am prepared to do the research and all the interviews. I have access to a geologist and I get most of my answers to my questions. However, I would like to run this listing pass someone else before this is passed for approval. Is there anyone out there that would like to pre-approve the listings?

 

Gerhard

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Gerhard

 

I bought this book "Geological Journeys" by Nick Norman & Gavin Whitfield from a coffe shop in Springbok on the way back from the Fish river canyon that seemed to have quite a lot of potential. Other than that carbon hunter seems to be quite a whiz.

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Gerhard

 

I bought this book "Geological Journeys" by Nick Norman & Gavin Whitfield from a coffe shop in Springbok on the way back from the Fish river canyon that seemed to have quite a lot of potential. Other than that carbon hunter seems to be quite a whiz.

 

Geological Journeys is a great book. Gives a lot of info (you will see I use it as a reference in many of my caches outside Joburg).

 

Gerhard - please feel free to send an email to me and I will assist.

 

Rest assured that I won't be rushing off for a FTF either - now that I'm sitting in the desert in Abu Dhabi. It would be a pleasure to assist you.

 

There are some great potential sites in the Mpumalanga area (Chrissiesmeer; Drakensberg escarpement; Sudwala; Kaapsehoop; Barberton; Badplaas; Asbestos mines; etc. etc.).

 

Also remember - earthcaches are NOT just about rocks (geology). You can also do one at a landform (like a interesting hill shape) - or a hydrological point (waterfall; river) - or even a coastal feature (spit; sandbanks; reef) - or a historical site (spot of original geological map; where a particular point of geography history happened) - fossil sites - or even erosion sites (kloof; landslide; sink hole). so get innovative.

Grant

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Well done to Littleclan - a great new Earthcache at Cape Aghulas is now operational - 2 Oceans!

 

who will get the big 50 for Earthcaches in SA? Just over 10 to go now!

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Also remember - earthcaches are NOT just about rocks (geology). You can also do one at a landform (like a interesting hill shape) - or a hydrological point (waterfall; river) - or even a coastal feature (spit; sandbanks; reef) - or a historical site (spot of original geological map; where a particular point of geography history happened) - fossil sites - or even erosion sites (kloof; landslide; sink hole). so get innovative.

Grant

 

Just a question from a complete rookie... I now here in China and not far from me is what they call he Longmen Caves that was hand carved in the 5th century out of solid rock formations with 1352 caves, over 100000 statues and 3600 carved tablets of Buddhist incriptions dated back to the year 316.

 

Does this qualify to be a earth cache???

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Just a question from a complete rookie... I now here in China and not far from me is what they call he Longmen Caves that was hand carved in the 5th century out of solid rock formations with 1352 caves, over 100000 statues and 3600 carved tablets of Buddhist incriptions dated back to the year 316.

 

Does this qualify to be a earth cache???

 

Of course it would!! :laughing: The proof would be in how you present it to the Geological Society for publication. There has to be an "educational" element to the cache and that you do by asking the finder to answer a few questions about the ccahe. Check out the requirements at Earthcache.org for more details. You could also contact Carbon Hunter - I am sure he would love to assist you with the publication.

 

Good luck.

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Just a question from a complete rookie... I now here in China and not far from me is what they call he Longmen Caves that was hand carved in the 5th century out of solid rock formations with 1352 caves, over 100000 statues and 3600 carved tablets of Buddhist incriptions dated back to the year 316.

 

Does this qualify to be a earth cache???

 

Of course it would!! :anicute: The proof would be in how you present it to the Geological Society for publication. There has to be an "educational" element to the cache and that you do by asking the finder to answer a few questions about the ccahe. Check out the requirements at Earthcache.org for more details. You could also contact Carbon Hunter - I am sure he would love to assist you with the publication.

 

Good luck.

 

I tend to agree. I would use the approach as to WHY could these caves be hand carved. What are the characteristics of the rocks that allows carving. Also - the terracotta statues - what is terracotta - and how would it have been formed - why is it good for statue making?

how does this cave system differ from a natural one? What rocks are natural caves normally found in (karst - or limestones) - etc. etc.

 

So yes - go for it!!!

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I received my bronze pin and I am proud of it. Thanks to all for the chance to find this type of cache. Gerhard

Edited by gerhardoosMPsa

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I received my bronze pin and I am proud of it. Thanks to all for the chance to find this type of cache. Gerhard

 

CONGRATULATIONS Gerhard - hope to read about your Platinum pin soon!! :):):unsure:

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Brilliant - Well done Gerhard - Bronze - I remember how chuffed I was to get my bronze too. And that was after a trip to Qatar and Switzerland to get enough caches!!! Times have changed that we can do it at home now!

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