(Logo Creds: Jenna Davenport)
As much as I enjoy adventures whose general plan is ‘let’s wing it and see what happens’, I also like adventures that take a bit of planning. I like the pouring over maps to seeing where I’m going and figuring out how to get there. I like reading about what I might see when I get there and I like the deciding of what gear that I need to take and the packing and sometimes repacking. It’s all part of the fun
The past several days have been a lot more about planning than actually caching. Sure, I’ve logged a few caches but I’ve also spent a lot more time staring at a computer monitor, looking at maps of caches, cruising the Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites website, checking distances and drive times on Google Maps and trying to decide where I can camp or otherwise stay overnight somewhere when necessary. I also try to think about how weather and other conditions that might come into play. South Georgia caches will definitely be done during cooler months. Caches near springs, marshes and swamps will also be tackled during cooler months when the skeeter population is a bit lower. Higher elevation caches will typically be done during the warmer months. I’ve printed copies of cache pages to keep in a notebook in my daypack and have downloaded pocket queries, imported the info into GSAK (Geocaching Swiss Army Knife) on my laptop and then uploaded the waypoints to my handheld GPS receiver.
OK, yeah, I’m *that* nerd.
So far I’ve been able to come up with several groups or clusters of caches that should be able to be done in a day or weekend trip. Since most of them are close to home or farther south, they’re going to have to wait a few weeks until I have time to hit the road.
In the mean time I’ve managed to find a few random caches on my lists, along with a few other traditional caches that aren’t part of the Quest but happened to be convenient. Check these out…
Ghetto Stonehenge (GCC12B) took me to a ‘minimalist structure’ art installation by Sol LeWitt in Atlanta’s historic Old Fourth Ward.
The installation consists of a series of concrete block columns ranging in height from 10 to 20 feet, and is said to represent a city skyline when viewed from a distance.
The next stop was Red Tom Mountain Iron Mine Earthcache (GC6010W) in Red Top Mountain State Park near Acworth.
The stop at Red Top Mountain State Park was a dual purchase stop that gave me a chance to purchase a Georgia State Park Pass that will hopefully become the key to several of the State Park caches over the next year.
The EarthCache the site of an 1800’s iron mine in the Bartow County portion of Georgia’s “Iron Belt” which occurs mainly in Polk, Floyd and Bartow counties. The EarthCache location is accessed by a short half-mile walk down the Iron Hill Trail from the parking lot at the trailhead.
I found a couple of muscadine vines loaded with ripe muscadines along the trail so I picked up a handful to enjoy as I walked.
There were several other areas where iron ore had been mined along the trail but the EarthCache location was the most prominent.
Unfortunately I didn’t have time to hunt the State Park cache that was hidden in another portion of the park before I had to leave. Guess that means I’ll just have to go back another day…or darn…
The last stop for this update: Chattahoochee Bend State Park to find, you guessed it, Chattahoochee Bend State Park (GC2YV2R).
The cache is located about 2 miles up the River Trail from the day use area parking lot. I actually found this cache back in July 2011 but didn’t collect the stamp on the ‘passport’ at the time. Soooo, guess who got to make the hike back to the cache to get the stamp? Yeah, that’s right, me. No problem. I like a nice walk in the woods.
Sirius, my pup, also likes a good walk in the woods so I decided to take him with me for his first geocaching trip.
It was one heck of an adventure thanks to Hurricane Florence. We endured howling winds, torrential rain and unprecedented flooding. OK, maybe not. There was a nice breeze blowing. There were a few sprinkles but mostly it was just gawdawfully humid and the flooding? Well, there was one small puddle on the trail…if you can even call that a puddle.
Sirius was on his best behavior this morning and didn’t even bother to bark at the young deer we encountered, much less try to chase it. Most likely he was being good so Pops would take him hiking and caching again.
We relocated the cache, stamped my passport and made our way back to my truck.
We took our time heading back to the truck so that we could just enjoy being in the woods. We enjoyed the views of the river…
Avoided a hornet nest…
And noticed what might have been a trail tree many years ago…
Once back at the truck we both had a drink of water then headed home. After 4 ½ miles on the trail on a super humid morning, I think Sirius was pooped.
By now I’m sure that some of you are wondering if I’m going to write something about every Quest cache that I find of log? Maybe. Maybe not. I’m just going to wing it and see what happens…