Thursday, December 30, 2010

Lothlorien the Photo Squirrel

WARNING: The following blog entry contains spoilers to the caches listed within. If you feel you may be caching in Tucson anytime soon and don't want to ruin your hunt, please proceed with caution.

Our good friend, Samantha (Colonel Carter is her username on, is taking a vacation from Ohio, so we get to spend a month or so with her. Little did I know, she's also a geocacher, with almost 100 finds under her belt! We just had to go seek out some caches together. It was misting quite a bit (rare for Tucson), but we managed to get in some finds right before it started really raining. We had a great time. Have a look!

This cache had a hint: "I am cradled by and look like the Mallorn tree (California pepper tree)." Okay, none of us had any idea what such a tree would look like, but with coordinates set into our GPS devices (mine a GPSr, and Samantha's a smart phone), we set out in search of this cache. We ended up in a small wash (if you're not familiar with what a 'wash' is, see the second picture on this page). There were quite a few trees about, but we couldn't find the cache. I climbed up on the bank, and saw something stuck in the crook of the tree. It was the cache, disguised to look like a piece of bark! The only thing is, I couldn't reach it from the side I was on (some cacti were in the way), so Sarah grabbed the cache. We took a guitar pick, guitar key chain, and a pumpkin eraser. We left a daisy duck toy, a rubber stamper, and a zipper pull.

 Here's my honey with the cache container. Nice camo!

Here's the tree we were searching for.

I have no idea why this cache was given such a name, besides it being under a tree. We parked on a nearby street and got to the cache in quick order. Nikki found this one, and it was partially exposed. After exchanging items and signing the log, we hid it more carefully. The highlight for Nikki was finding a frog eraser. Nikki freaks about anything froggy, so she was quite ecstatic here:

What a cutie!

"I got my pencilllll..."

Colonel Carter and The Tucson Terrors!

Samantha wanted to walk to the next cache, and that was fine with us... or so I thought. On the way to our last geocache of the day, Nikki and Skylar got tired of walking. They headed back to the car. We were all of 200 feet away, but noooooo. Well, might as well grab the cache and catch up with them. I spotted the cache while our other party members were off checking other areas. It was right in a tall pipe sticking vertically out of the ground. The cache container was a film canister, hence the name of the cache. We took a pumpkin eraser (we've been finding those in almost every single cache!), and left another zipper pull.

No, there isn't something attached to my face. There was a drop of water on the lens.

Upon reaching the car, we saw that nobody was inside. No Nikki, no Skylar. Colonel Carter (Samantha) left a very excellent description of the situation on, so I'll let her take over at this point.

"As we went on to secure the cache site and make the find, Nikki and the baby got hopelessly lost. So much so that when we got back to the equipment, Nikki and Sky were no-where in site. Suddenly mission priorities shifted to SAR instead of standard recon. Making matters worse, Nikki didn't have her comogear with her.

I left Amy at her car with Savannah while Sarah and I took to the air in Jumper One to do a sweep of the area. We don't leave our people behind!

Sarah had a wonderful time as she found out what a seasoned pilot could do, and the places she could go with Colonel Carter at the controls. Didn't take long at all to find our two missing team members, and call back to Amy to set up a rendevous."

Never a dull moment. We did have an excellent time with our friend. One of many. Samantha is the best!


Samantha said...

Oh this is a neato surprise! Even if I do look goofy in the one picture. This will be cool, long after I'm back in Ohio longing for the Arizona sun, I'll be able to follow your caching exploits! Woot!!!

Amy K. said...

Nikki said a funny word to make you have that face on. I'm used to her, so not much fazes me anymore, ha ha!


Hi Amy, I have a total of 2 caches lol one in my town and one about 2okm away lol..i am hopeless trying to use clues, i need a gps !


oh and hello Samantha, I'm so jealous you got time to spend with this family, they have so much fun :)

Amy K. said...

Bernadette, if there aren't enough caches in your area, maybe you could start your own? You should get some experience before you do so, but hey, beggars can't be choosers. I'm sure any cachers in your area would appreciate it. But one thing first: You DO need a GPS. There are a lot of inexpensive GPS receivers out there. If you can't find one near you, try eBay or Amazon. :) Another idea: If you ever go on a trip somewhere, take a look to see what caches are in the area. They may be more plentiful in a place you might visit now and then.