Saturday, November 11, 2017

New Light Up My Life



Out on the beautiful trails with TaGeez today. Lovely hidden park in Birmingham, Michigan. We were excited to find an ammo can until TaGeez opened it and dumped all the water out. See how close to the river it is? 


We were hoping to give or new Cryket flashlights for a spin, but it wasn't dark enough yet. These should be great now that it's darker earlier - geocaching and nightly walks! 


The head twists so you can use it as a forward-facing light, magnetized bottom, and sturdy clips.

• High-power 250 lumen LED spot light
• High-power 240 lumen C•O•B flood light
• High-power 15 lumen C•O•B red light


It has a nice heft to it but small enough to carry in a Winter coat pocket or pocket.

Ready for some night caching!



Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Shout out to Cachly!




In all honestly, I have not been the biggest Cachly fan in the past. Geocaching Classic and Geosphere were instrumental in my 2000+ day cache-a-day streak.  My two biggest criticisms of Cachly is the response time (C'mon! Open! Open! Open!) and the pale interface (the poor font does not stand out from the background - yes, I just had my eyes checked and my eyesight is deemed perfect).

Periodically, I will give Cachly another chance (especially with rumor that GeoSphere will die with the next iOS update) so when I had - not one but two - AHA moments, I have to share in all fairness.


FTF Flag

The Frito Bandito said he was on a road trip and opened the app in his hotel. The nearest cache had an FTF Flag, and he was able to nab a first-to-find in a new state. When TaGeez and I went on an FTF fun last month, I opened the app for a looksie. There it was! That's not found in the other iPhone apps!



Log a Trackable

Ok, the ability to log a trackable in a cache is nothing new. But in the Cachly app, you can log a trackable into a cache without having to log a Note on the geocache first! Why is this remarkable? Before I send a trackable out into the world, I will dip it into my nearby Fantastic Ferndale cache to start the mileage. Now I can dip it into there without adding yet another "TB Drop" note to the cache page!


This ability is found under the Options menu (three dots in the upper right corner) and selecting Log a Trackable. I know ShelleyJean is going to appreciate this!

Two cheers for Cachly! Now, can we discuss your font selection and coloring?




Monday, November 6, 2017

Marooned Without a Compass Day


November 6th is Marooned Without a Compass Day. No source for its creation, it begs several philosophical questions.

However, to make this geocache-related... what are your best tricks if you are lost in the woods without a compass or GPS? How many of you know how to use a compass? Any of you still use one?

And is it appropriate to wish someone a "Happy Marooned Without a Compass Day?"

Sunday, November 5, 2017

#GIFF 2017 and Wallabee Passport

Roll 'em!


TaGeez and I attended Captain O's Geocaching International Film Festival in downtown Royal Oak. There was some good, some indifferent, some huhs. My personal highlights included DarrylW4's cameo in the prelude (he was blushingly humble 3 rows behind me as all cheered) and the film short Geocaching is Free (I can commiserate). 


Darryl handed me a new trackable to move - Wallabee: The Passport! Owned by MunzeeWallabee is a collecting, trading and forwarding game on your iPhone and Android. I'm scrapcat there, too!


TBGXFH

He brought it back from Going Caching 2017 and handed it to me for moving along! It was sent out from Munzee HQ by Mr V, the President of Munzee, himself!


TaGeez and I have added our stamps and, hopefully, we'll snap a picture of it at Ford Field (it's mission).


This passport has given me a great idea for a trackable of my own!

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Find It in Medina County Geocoin and Pathtag



We have completed several lovely geotours in Ohio, and I find the administrators have been very helpful. The only hardship, unless they are willing to mail (like Butler County), is the difficulty in acquiring the actual coin. Most only have hours Monday - Friday -- not conducive during a weekend road trip.  Luckily, Medina County has an agreement with the Super 8 on Montville Drive. The hotel is cheap but not bad, and they have lots and lots of coins on hand. 



The geocoin is in the shape of the county. 



And the back has the courthouse steeple from downtown Medina. Great souvenir to another successful adventure!



Monday, October 30, 2017

We Found it in Medina County and then Canton.




Sunday rolled around and found us without a set plan. We weren't sure how long the "Fi... iMC" geotrail would take so we didn't want to over schedule the next day.  All-in-all, we probably could've completed it in about 6 hours if we hadn't dilly-dallied (and enjoyed each stop) the prior day.  

After dinner at Sully's, we had attempted a favorited geocache on the common but the final was too far to drive after such a long day. No GC given here - don't want to give a spoiler, but I will tell you that Sunday morning found us at a stunning final located within the Cleveland Metropark: Hinckley Reservation.  Cache or no cache - this is a breathtaking reprieve from civilization. It dictated our agenda for the rest of the day.






We had been alongside Hinckley Lake last night - it was the last geocache in the series. As it was dark, we didn't see much at the site of the famous vernal return of the turkey buzzardsWe will have to return on March 15th next year to attend the annual breakfast and festival. With time to enjoy it, we decided to explore the rest of Hinckley Lake. 

What's '"UP" GC6M3CC

We drove around the metropark, grabbed a few geocaches and took many pictures. There is trail hiking, kayaking, and camping here.




Lucky for us there is great signage here, and ShelleyJean spotted the Wordens Ledges Loop Trail on the map.
Wordens Ledges Loop Trail - 1.0 miles. This wooded trail winds through moss and fern covered ledges to reveal carvings made by Noble Stuart in the 1940's.

Follow the white traill

The trail was advertised as a mile long, but we never finished the loop. We were distracted by these wonderful ledges. First TaGeez disappeared over the side and then ShelleyJean. 




I meandered down a different path to the lower ledges. I kept thinking to myself as I clambered over leaf-covered rocks and roots that TaGeez "will be so surprised"! Even afraid of heights, I had no choice but to go down - he had texted up a picture of one of the carvings, and I was doubly determined to see them for myself!


The picture does not do justice to the steep ascent

The Sphinx was the first one I came upon - WOW! 

The Sphinx



"Worden's Ledges, comprised of Sharon Conglomerate Sandstone, is tucked back in the forest beyond the fields behind the homestead. Noble Stuart, a retired bricklayer, began carving into the ledges shortly after he married Nettie [Worden] in 1944." 

SuzyJazz Hits 10K GC44DY0

Bear eating a man's head

Noble was Nettie's third husband, and all three husbands lived on the Worden estate in their own time.



schooner



We ran into several sets of hikers here to explore the carvings. TaGeez is explaining geocaching to this young couple while ShelleyJean was making new friends topside. 



TaGeez with Ty Cobb

Topside we explore the remains of the Worden property before heading South towards Canton.





For the record, we did find the geocache here. It was, IMHO, the best stop in the trip. I agree with SJ, though - SuzyJazz Hits 10K GC44DY0 was not a fitting name for this amazing location. There's nothing in the cache name or description that tells of the amazing "graffiti" located at the bottom of the trail.

Heading towards Canton, we detoured for a quick Virtual. Nice surprise rounding the corner and seeing this big fellah!

Indian Chiefs Virtual GCCAE1
And then, finally, Canton, Ohio and the William McKinley's Presidential Library, Museum and Monument.

History Lesson GC6W10G
100 steps up later....




Thanks to geocaching, TaGeez and I have had the opportunity to visit several presidents final resting places including James Garfield, John Kennedy, Zachary Taylor, James Monroe, John Tyler and now William McKinley.




After the McKinley monument, we headed next door to the Football Hall of Fame for pictures. Ever heard of it?

But first, a short detour to a little structure lining a small stream in Stadium Park. The Timken Estate Gatehouse is all that remains of the palatial estate of the Canton Industrialist, H.H. Timken, H.H. Timken was co-founder of the Timken Roller Bearing and Axle Company in 1899, and his home plus grounds were donated by the Timken Foundation in 1950 as the new site of Mercy Hospital.



Despite the frowns on their faces, TaGeez and ShelleyJean did find the geocache on the riverside!

Gateway's to History TB Hotel GC4ZT1H
We ended our adventure further up the hill for a quick photo op at the Football Hall of Fame. Look at all the American Flags! 

Football Hall of Fame - Canton, OH

Another amazing adventure full of color and friendship and history. Can't wait to see where the next roadtrip takes us!

Sunday, October 29, 2017

We Found It in Medina County



The joke around here is... you know you are from Michigan when you were enjoying the last week of Summer last week and the first week of Winter this week. Our Fall felt that way. We blinked - we missed it. Luckily, we blinked down to Ohio for the brief Fall colors, good company and the Medina County geotrail.

Find it... in Medina County is a fabulous geotrail located west of Akron, Ohio and the Cuyahoga Valley. Find 18 geocaches to earn the Medina County geocoin - find 22 geocaches for the coordinating path tag. All just a few hours from home. Saturday morning found myself navigating in the front seat of the geomobile with ShelleyJean at the wheel and TaGeez staking out the back seat. 

I first stop boded well for an awesome trip. We arrived at a cider mill for stage one of a puzzle. Look at this view! The cider mill had cider & donuts, a restaurant, a general store (with amazing apple chips), and a viewing deck off the back. The weather was perfect!

"FI... IMC" Johnny Appleseed Will Be Proud GC6JRD1

And the final for this puzzle took us to the Princess Ledges, fern-covered sandstone formations. I have never experienced these before, and we started our trip and ended it with Ledges. Amazing to explore.

On the Cutting Edge of Princess Ledges EC GC1A35D

The Medina County geotrail took us to a variety of beautiful locations. This was a converted landfill....

"Fi...IMC" Plum Creek - From Trash to Treasure GC6HHAW


Onto the riverside park along the reservoir on Lake Medina.

"Fi... iMC" Waterside Walk at Lake Medina GC6HNHV

Downtown Medina was under an alien invasion...

Alien Vacation Mini Golf in Medina


But at least we don't have to worry about killer bees. 

This was a great spot - the retail store for the A.I. Root Candle Factory. I didn't buy any candles, but scored some fabulous Halloween decorations at 70% off! The geocache was hidden at his residence next door (with real bees!). The A.I. Root Company was the first bee supply manufacture in America. Definitely worth the trip back to the area.

"Fi... iMC" Rooted in Medina History GC6GZXA

The tour was a great mix of quaint downtowns and Nature walks. Normally not a fan of letterboxes, this one at the Schleman Nature Preserve was very well put together. So many photo opportunities, too.

"Fi... iMC" Strolling through Schleman GC6HRXF

TaGeez, scrapcat, and ShelleyJean

Oh no he didn't!

Ten caches into the geotrail, and I hit my 8,000th find! With a slight detour, it seemed fitting that I celebrated my milestone in a cemetery. And not just any cemetery... at the grave site listed in Roadside America! 

The statue behind me marks the final resting place of the Giants of Seville. Anna (7' 11-1/2" tall) and Martin (7' 9" tall) Bates met while he was performing in a circus. They married and toured Europe before settling down in nearby Seville, where they built a 14-room farmhouse with 14' ceilings, 8-1/2' doorways and filled it with oversized furniture.  Anna died first, and the statue was built in her likeness (but not to height. Weird, eh?) 

"Fi... iMC" The Giants of Seville GC6BQEY

Further down the road was another Roadside America win! We found Mater near Burbank! It's amazing what you find when you keep your eyes open!



Mound Hill Cemetery in Seville was not our only cemetery stop.  We crossed paths with several striking examples including Crofoot Cemetery below.

Crofoot Cemetery GC74ADB



After completing a few more by headlight and flashlight, we returned to Medina for our second meal at Sully's Irish Pub. Lunch was so good we came back! Live music, good company, and delicious shepherd's pie!

Sully's Irish Pub in Medina

What did we find in Medina County?

Well-maintained geocaches at a variety of interesting locales surrounded by beautiful hills and orchards and woodlands.  Everything a geotrail should be.




Much to our surprise, we still hadn't seen the best Medina had to offer. Our adventure continues tomorrow.