#13: We're Not 25th

The first geocaching rally was off to a rollicking start on an overcast, snow bound, January afternoon in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The energy and enthusiasm of the teams was undeniable. People wanted to win. Even our little team of myself, Laurence and Marla, and Paul wanted to at least not finish last. Lar, Marla, and I have been geocaching for several years but we are hardly power cachers,having logged fewer than 50 finds in that time. Compare that against some folks who likely find that many caches in a routine day of geocaching and you get a sense of how we go about things. Our goal: not to finish 25th out of 25th. Paul, a long time friend through hiking and camping, joined our merry band as we were in his neck of the woods.

I never did get an official arrival time but I believe it was just short of an hour. Probably closer to 55 minutes. We finished fifteenth. If I have any regrets it is only that we spent a lot of time in the car and very little searching out of the car. But then driving is not something I relish. Events like this are meant to be social and perhaps the actual searching should be secondary. From that perspective the Geo Rally was a huge success and we certainly had fun.

Photos

Additional photos can be found here.

Sites Of Interest

Direct download: 13_Michigan_Geocaching_Rally.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:46am EDT

#12: Happy New Year

For the past few years I have been fortunate to spend a few days in late December with friends at the rustic Burns Bunkhouse cabins in Waterloo Recreation Area. The rustic cabins, we have stayed in both of them over the years, provide bunk beds, a wood stove for heat, plenty of table and counter space for cooking and eating, and benches. You provide everything else. If you want light after sundwon bring a couple of Coleman lanterns. If you want hot food a couple Coleman camping stoves will work great. And don't forget to bring water or be prepared to get it from the nearby pump and deal with the iron taste. The cabins force a relaxed atmosphere and provide a fine place for base car camping as trails abound. The past few years we have managed to snag a cabin for New Years and this year we had cabin #2 for 3 nights.

Having that much time to spend can be a real treat if you are with the right people. It might seem like a lot of time but time has a ay of slowing down without feeling slow on these trips. We can spend time walking on and off-trail routes through the Waterloo and Pinckney Recreation areas. The possibilities for exploration are numerous. With winteryou often get a chance to go places that would be impassible during the warmer months. After all places that are swampy mud during the summer are frozen at this time of year. This year our explorations were a bit more relaxed than they have sometimes been. We only spent a few minutes off trail pushing through pricker filled bush and strolling across Mill Lake. But while we did not do a night hike in a blizzards like we did th ring in 2008 we managed to enjoy our sojourns nonetheless.

Sites Of Interest

A version of this video suitable for playing on devices like the iPhone or video capable iPods can be downloaded from this link.

Direct download: 12_GLH_New_Years_Gathering_2008_09.mp4
Category:Vidcast -- posted at: 2:40pm EDT


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