Friday, April 18, 2014

Canadian Caching Adventure!

Can you believe we’re on another adventure?  Just returned from the Chicago weekend, and TaGeez & I packed our… well… lunch bag and headed to Windsor!
Geographically, the river walk of Windsor is less than a mile from the river walk of Detroit.  Throw in Belle Isle, and it’s just spitting-distance away.  (Trivia: Did you know there is a group in Texas called the International Society of Bridge Spitters or ISOBs?  Look it up!)  With passports or enhanced licenses in hand, we paid our $4.50 to tunnel over to the Canadian side.
Funny money!
Where to start?  How about the Mayor’s office?  There’s a really cool letterbox called Welcome to Windsor GCT6TY.  We didn’t get to meet the Mayor but his secretary gave us pins & brochures.
Letterbox complete!
It was at this point that we were in a little bit of a pickle.  You see… we were using smart phone apps that had offline maps.  For my iPhone, turning off my data plan (so I wasn’t charged by Canada’s ROGERS), I could see the maps but couldn’t track my location (using either GeoSphere or the official Groundspeak app).  TaGeez could track his location, but the GZ maps were very fuzzy on his Android.  I’m sure if we tweaked and fiddled, we could’ve figured out how to get around this, but it started to rain.  We put our phones away & pulled out the good old GPSrs. 
Luckily, we didn’t need the GPSrs at the R910.28579 COU GC1KJX1 stop.  I LOVE library caches!  The exterior of this library was a little drab, but we enjoyed ourselves inside.  One good thing to note: we discovered that many of the downtown parking meters accepted both Canadian and American change!

After a few urban caches downtown (boy, are we out of practice urban-caching with a GPSr!), we decided to toddle on over to a nearby Windsor Grove Cemetery.  Fun!  Two really nice caches in there and many older stones – such peace in the middle of the city.
Nearby - SQ Hail Mary GC4ZZ2X

Nearby at a road intersection
SQ - Rock of Ages... Can you see her? GC2WG3F

Enjoying this experience, we filtered our stored caches and found this lovely series of caches in two related Windsor cemeteries.  Team Wiji placed 10 bird-theme caches around 2 cemeteries, each containing a code for the “Nest” final: SQ – SPBH – The Nest GC4FCJE.  

What a lovely way to spend a now-sunny afternoon.  Although these weren’t the historic monument-and-pillars-type cemeteries, they had some interesting features around their flushed headstones.  We even stopped halfway to enjoy our lunch near a pond.
SQ - SPBH - Monkey GC4FCKM
After that, time to head back into downtown.  I’ve been itching to take TaGeez to Jackson Park/Victoria Gardens on Ouellette Blvd. to see the Ontario SQ and those interesting park gates.  We spent quite a bit of time snapping pictures and wandering the gardens.  

TaGeez grabbed Ontario Spirit Quest #1 – Lest We Forget GCNF63 and Gates to…. GC211RB.

After that, we headed a little closer to the Ambassador Bridge to pick up some fast caches and easy puzzle finals like SQ – Assumption GC3QK2M, Wiji Chemistry GC2FKC5, and International Mystery GC31MDY.
SQ - Assumption GC3QK2M
I love this park system along the river.   

There are sculpture gardens and topiary gardens and even a park with a train. Unfortunately, it’s getting dark and the wind is whipping. 

Time to end the day with two more, the Earth Cache Detroit River Watershed GC33MW1 

and a fun Traditional Whimsical Cache #16 – In the Shadow of the Tower GC4YQTB.

 We can't wait to come back when we have a little more time and a lot more sunlight.  In the end, I found 24 and TaGeez logged 26 caches, qualifying us for Team B's Another COUNTRY Cache Challenge GC4MHC9.

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