Some More Spring Break Caching

Florida, Locations, United States 1 Comment »

This morning, we were visiting a science museum, and dutifully checked to see if there was a cache nearby.  Sure enough there was, and before going into the museum we thought we’d log a quick find.  No such luck.  The general area that the cache was in seemed obvious, but we did a bit of searching and this difficulty 2/5 completely eluded us.  Ah well, on we went into the museum.

[UPDATE 4/19: A recent log entry by the cache owner did indeed indicate that this cache had been lost, and there was a least one other DNF after us.  So I don’t feel so bad about not finding it.]




This evening, I planned out 5 different caches to hit with the kids.  The first one is a puzzle cache where you have to count two sets of palm trees in a traffic circle to be used in a formula to come up with the actual coordinates of the cache.  (It was in the circle, but the actual coordinates narrow it down considerably.)

Normally, I’ve seen the hint so I can offer it to the kids if they decide they need it, so since I know it I don’t actively do any searching until I’ve given out the hint to them.  There was no real hint for this one, so I participated in it, and made the find myself.


We took the black bison tube back to the van, signed the log, and, after waiting for the circle to be devoid of cars, replaced it.


The next stop was in a subdivision.  There were trees at a bend in the road, and the cache’s name, “Tree’s Bend”, made it clear we’d found the zone.  After searching up an down in here, and ensuring that we weren’t being observed from the (very close) houses nearby, my daughter found the tube.  Back to the van to sign the log.



Our next stop was one of the many “Catch Cat” caches in Bradenton.  The rapid transit system is called MCAT and it’s symbol is a cat.  These caches are, thus, stashed around bus stops all over the city.  We went to Catch Cat 4 and searched high and low, but could not find anything.  At one point, a bus pulled up and we had to wave it off.  (I figured something like that could happen.)  After a bit more searching, we decided to give up on this.  It’s considered a difficulty 1 (out of 5) so if we couldn’t find it in that time, we were either too novice to find it, or it wasn’t there.  (Once I got home, I looked up the cache’s page and the two logs since last December were DNFs; Did Not Find.  So, I don’t feel so bad about that.)



The irony of the nearby sign was not lost on me. 🙂

The next stop I had was another in the Catch Cat series, but after our failure at the previous one, we weren’t hopeful.  Again, initial searching was fruitless, and on this 5-lane road, we weren’t being exactly stealthy.  When about to give up, I checked a spot that my knowledge of the hint suggested might be the location.  My daughter, seeing that, started checking similar locations and found this extremely small log (in an extremely small baggie.



We signed the log, and tried to be not quite as obvious as we put it back.


Our final stop was to a cache called “House on a Hill”.  That’s a rather odd name for a cache in coastal Florida; virtually nothing here is “on a hill”.  And indeed this was just as flat as anything else.  Ah well, gotta name it something.



While we were looking at what was clearly the place the cache should be, a woman came out of a house across the street and asked, “Are you on a mission?”  I answered, “In a way, yes.”  We started talking and she said that she’s seen people searching there over the years and indeed knew what we were looking for.  However, where she thought the cache should be was empty.  The description for the cache noted that it had been stolen from a nearby place a few times so it had been moved, but it looks like it’s been muggled again.

The woman said that the first time she’d seen people taking this white pill bottle from its hiding place, she thought that a drug deal was going down.  However, she had retrieved the bottle, figured this was some game that people were playing, and put it back.  I explained the whole geocaching thing to her and she seemed very good-natured about the whole thing.  So one more person finds out about the hobby, and helps us realize that our lack of success wasn’t our fault.  My 9-year-old suggested that, instead of a DNF, it should be logged as a WAS; we aren’t stupid.  🙂

So we returned to our Spring Break home base having spent a fun few hours chasing down caches.

Some Florida Finds

Florida, Locations, Trackables, United States 1 Comment »

For some Spring Break vacations, we stay at my folks’ “snowbird” place in Florida, and we’re doing that this year.  Before leaving, I had to see what caches were near the place and near the beaches we frequent.  Today we went to one of the beaches and I made sure to park near where a couple of the caches were.

We went to Coquina Beach, our favorite spot, and at one point I took some of the kids across the road to search for the first cache.  Its location is visible from the road but if you approach it properly, you can’t be seen that well from passing cars.


After a short search, my son found it; a small black bison tube with a log in it.  We signed the log, and continued on.


The next one was very near by, and we figured, we’ll never be closer to it than we are now, so off we went.20100403-164646

This part of the island has walking trails, and the cache location was, fortunately, rather close the the path.  While hidden nicely, my daughter had no trouble finding it.  This cache was one that we could have made a trade in, but alas we’d left our signature “boondoggles” back in the van.  So “took nothing, left nothing, signed log” (or TNLNSL for cachers).



One the items in here was a “trackable“; an item that is also tracked at  For these, people log where they’ve found them, picked them up, and in what cache they’ve dropped them off.  Most have a “mission”; some just to travel far and wide, some to go to a certain place, some to be photographed at certain locations, etc.  The trackable we found in this cache was one who’s mission was to either catch up with another travel bug or return to Florida.  This trackable was a pair of “glass slippers” trying to catch up with one called “the Charmings” (get it?).  However, since it had just returned to Florida a couple days ago (from Alaska!), we decided to leave it where it was.

Upon leaving the beach, the traffic getting off the island was at a slow crawl, so we decided to pull over on the side of the road near where I knew there was another cache with trackables that we would be able to do something with.  Armed with one of our boondoggles, we launched off into the bushes, no doubt with some drivers passing by wondering what was going on.  Fortunately the tall bushes gave us cover enough that the muggles couldn’t see what we were doing.


This one was more difficult to find.  Again, avoiding spoilers, but I will say that it was a very ingenious hide, and it put to good use Daddy’s #1 Rule Regarding Finding Easter Eggs (apropos, since tomorrow is Easter); don’t always look down. My older son finally found it, and we picked up one trackable who’s mission is to be photographed at as many lakes and reservoirs as possible.  We plan to bring it back to Georgia and find a body of water for it, perhaps around Stone Mountain.

We finally got to leave our signature boondoggle as well.

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We replace the cache properly, got back in the van, and left having had much more fun that we would have just sitting in traffic (and not having lost all that much time, frankly).