Geocaching through 2008

December 31, 2008


I had a good year of geocaching in 2008.  I had 943 finds, my best year since starting geocaching in 2001.  And that included only one find in August.

We enjoyed a great vacation in July touring through the Midwest and New England.  We found caches in each of the 14 states that we visited.  Combined with finds in California and Utah, I had finds in 16 states this year.

I met a great group of hiking geocachers on the Yahoo Group Geo_Connection.  I went on 2 adventures with them–April 19 we hiked through La Jolla Canyon and Mugu Peak and November 15 we hiked to Sandstone Peak and on to Sycamore Canyon.  I’m looking forward to many more days on the trail with this fine group of cachers.

I set a few personal records in 2008.  My best month ever was April, with 139 finds in 18 caching days.  My best day caching was September 13–68 finds in Santa Barbara County.  And I decided to finish off the year with a streak of 31 days of finds in December.  I normally don’t cache on Sundays, so my previous streaks are usually 6 days, with a few 13 day streaks once in a while.  So while 31 straight days might not seem like a very long string for some, it’s more than twice as long as anything that I’ve done.

I placed 25 caches in 2008.  I did a couple of series in the downtown Los Angeles area–Los Angeles River Bridges and Filling in the Gaps.  They are both works in progress.  I originally did the Bridge series in February, only to have none of the caches approved.  Guidelines state no caches on bridges.  So I’ve been relocated them near, but not on the bridges.  3 more caches to be moved and the series will be done.  Filling in the Gaps in an attempt to place caches in the downtown Los Angeles area between the existing caches.  I placed 10 caches in December and have another 5 caches in the works.

Happy New Year to everyone following this blog.

Filling in the Gaps

December 17, 2008


I work in downtown Los Angeles, in the building adjacent to I Hate This Sign–Filling in the Gaps.  There are a number of nice urban caches in the downtown area.  I noticed that their spacing would allow for the placement of more caches.  So the series Filling in the Gaps was born.

The first of the series was published last week and 9 more caches were submitted this morning.  The idea is to give the cachers a little taste of the downtown area.

I Hate This Sign–Filling in the Gaps was placed outside my office to give me a starting point for the series.  Civil Defense–Filling in the Gaps is hidden at a nearby CD siren.  Do you remember the last Friday wail of the sirens at 10:00 AM?  Going to the Movies–Filling in the Gaps is hidden at a movie theater that I assume caters to those living downtown.  I’ve never seen a soul nearby.   MOCA–Filling in the Gaps is located outside the Museum of Contemporary Art–usually not my favorite style of art.   Central HS #9–Filling in the Gaps is dedicated to an incredibly expensive new Los Angeles high school that looks like it belongs at Disneyland.  I had placed a cache at the Fort Moore Memorial, but it didn’t last too long. Ft. Moore Returns–Filling in the Gaps is the encore performance for Ft. Moore, the place where the American flag first flew over Los Angeles. Cathedral–Filling in the Gaps is located outside the Los Angeles Cathedral.  Court of Flags-Civic Mall–Filling in the Gaps is situated between City Hall and the Music Center.  The Civic Mall is a nice place to escape the bustle of the city.  The Bradbury Building is the oldest commercial building in the central city.  It is a hidden gem–plain on the outside, beautifully intricate on the inside. Bradbury Building–Filling in the Gaps is hidden outside.  The last cache of the first phase of the Filling in the Gaps series is hidden at a sculpture on the outside of the AT&T building–AT&T Sculpture–Filling in the Gaps.

There are more Filling in the Gaps caches, but they aren’t quite ready to go.  I want to release this first group to give those of us who cache downtown some fresh meat.

Parking is always a problem downtown.  If you start anywhere on the list and do them in the order that I listed, you will enjoy about a 3-mile walk through Downtown.  Consider it an urban hike.

Hopefully, they will all be approved today.

Hope’s End Lockup–GC1ERKA

December 8, 2008

I did an interesting cache today at lunch, Hope’s End Lockup .  It is rated a 4/2, but it’s not really that hard.  As mentioned in the cache description, the cache is in plain view, but it is behind a padlock.  That’s part of the challenge.  The surprising thing is putting this sculpture where it is–under the freeway.

It’s All in Downtown Los Angeles

December 5, 2008

I’ve been intimidated by It’s All in Downtown Los Angeles ever since it was published in May.  I’m an OK geocacher, but not a very good geocache puzzle solver.  Here is the puzzle:

Where is the cache? Everything that you need to solve the puzzle is on this page somewhere, just remember: It’s All in Downtown Los Angeles.

S2G1 I1L3 S3G1 I1G1 O2E2 I2T1 G1L3 L2W2
T1W1 O2I2 I1I2 N4G1 L1I2 N2S2 T1N1 L1T1
N4I2 N4L1 O3O3 S1T1 G1I1 I2T1 I1O3 L2G1
W1I2 N2T1 I1O3 O1T1 I1O3 T1I1 O3O3 G1A2
N4I2 S2G1 S2I2 O3O3 I1S2 T1N1 L1S2 T1L1
I2N2 O3G1 A2N4 I2I1 T1O1 A2L1 O2W2 G1I2

I tried several angles on the puzzle and then asked the owner for some help.  Got some basic hints and got back to work.  Nothing.  Asked a few of the finders for some help.  Elin was the first one to respond and she provided me with just enough help to get me going successfully.

With the puzzle solved, I realized that the cache was just a few minutes away from my office.  I took a quick break, walked over to the cache, signed it, walked back to work, and logged it in less than 5 minutes.

It was an easy cache to find, but a tough puzzle to solve.