Turkey vulture with rattlesnake dinner

May 30, 2009

On the way home from dinner tonight, we grabbed a couple of caches. Then, Wendy saw a turkey vulture land right next to the car. We stopped and backed up. He was having a nice meal of a rattlesnake.

After a couple of minutes, another car came by and scared the bird away. He didn’t go far—the meal was too tasty. I got out and took a closer photo of the meal.


A Walk in the Park

May 29, 2009

walk in the park

Molly Shock has added more caches to Griffith Park.  I decided to do the western section after work today.  It was a nice walk.  The paths were busy with hikers and a few horse riders.

The caches were all straight forward hides, except for Tuesday, which I DNFed.  I made a loop out of the hike, but I don’t recommend it.  You can see the route that I took on the photo above.  It’s all good trail (mostly road) the entire walk until  passed After The Fire.  After that, it’s iffy.  I took a clockwise route around the quarry which is the site of Batman’s Cave.  It was mostly a bushwhack for the last part of the hike.  If you know of a better way down from After The Fire to the Bronson Canyon parking area, please let me know.

Here are some photos from the walk.

Here are the cache’s on today’s Found list:

Today: A walk in the park.

Tomorrow: A walk in the park.

Yesterday: A walk in the park.

Monday: A walk in the park.

Wednesday: A walk in the park.

Thursday: A walk in the park.

Friday: A walk in the park.

Saturday: A walk in the park.

Sunday: A walk in the park.

After The Fire

Central Coast Caching

May 24, 2009

We did a quick trip up the coast Friday afternoon, spending the night in Cambria, then coming home Saturday.  We had planned on staying longer, but had a hard time finding a room Saturday night because of the Memorial Day weekend crowds.

After the normal hassle of getting through Santa Barbara, we did a couple of Wine/Whine caches-Wine/Whine # 58 andWine/Whine # 19.  This photo was taken near #58.  Then it was on to the coast.

After a nice dinner at Linn’s in Cambria, we drove up the coast to see the elephant seals.  Late May and early June is the time the sub-adult males haul out and molt.  The “beach” was crowded with them.  It was fun to watch and hear them sparing with each other. SE AL the ELEPHANTS is the cache site with the larger of the two viewing areas.  There is also a viewing site a little farther up the coast that doesn’t get as busy.

Saturday morning started out a little gray and outcast, but it quickly burnt off to be a beautiful day.  There were a few caches along the boardwalk across the street from our motel.  We enjoyed getting the caches as we walked along the boardwalk.

We were joined in our walk by quite a few very well fed squirrels looking for handouts.

After Cambria, we headed down the coast to Cayucos, picked up a few caches, visited the community garage sale, then headed toward Paso Robles.  We found one cache and had a string of 3 DNFs, but enjoyed the ride.

Our plan was to spend Saturday night in San Luis Obispo, but it seemed like a lot of other people had the same idea.  The town was sold out, as was Santa Maria, so we decided to just head for home.

It was an enjoyable adventure. Here is the list of the weekend’s finds:

Wine/Whine # 58
Wine/Whine# 19
Drink up Me Hartys YO HO!
Stevie and Marley’s Friends Dog Cache
Moonstones Salmon Quesadilla
Bob Marley and Me
Pirates Limb
Davey Jones Locker
Headlands Trail Head
Karmasutra Splash
“50 Stars”
A Whale of a View

Geocaching in California State Parks

May 19, 2009

In answer to the question above, apparently not geocaching.  The State Parks issued Geocaching Guidelines which will severely limit geocaches in parks that allow geocaching.  But the bigger issue is the parks where geocaches won’t be allowed at all.  Locally, they include Point Mugu, Malibu Creek, Topanga and Santa Susana Pass State Parks.  Unless something changes, hundreds of caches will need to be removed and archived.  Very well done challenges caches will pretty much just evaporate.

I’m not sure how many caches that I’ve found in these parks.  Put I’ve found more than a few.  And very few of those caches have been hidden in ways that would have had a negative impact on the environment.  I think this policy is another case of an over reaction to isolated problems.

Well placed geocaches promote the use of state parks.  This new policy will have the opposite effect.

Hopefully, someone with some pull will rethink this overreaching policy and alter the ban on caches in our local state parks.

That’s the Way it Goes Sometimes

May 11, 2009

At lunch today, I figured that I would stop by O Pole Mio, a newly minted cache near my office.  I parked across the street from the GZ and noticed rammd on the phone. Then my cell rang.  “Craig, it’s Richard.  Have you done O Pole Mi yet?”  Just about then, he turned my direction and saw me walking toward him.  “Never mind.”

We put our collective geosense together, but still came up empty.  Between us, we have more than 10,400 caches, but we still got the DNF instead of the co-FTF.

That the way it goes sometimes.

P.S.—I just got an e-mail from the cache’s owner.  Richard and I did find the cache, afterall.  We just couldn’t couldn’t extract it.

P.P.S.— 5/12/09  I dropped by the cache today and tried to extract it.  I even used a ladder loaned to me by the nearby painters.  The cache is wedged in its hidey-hole so tightly, I doubt it will ever come out.  And that’s also the way it goes sometimes.

PPPS–Richard placed another container in front of the jammed one and turned our DNFs into FTFs.

Hiking Along the Chatsworth Cliffs

May 2, 2009

Ever since the caches where placed along this trail, I’ve been looking forward to hiking it. Today, was the day.

I didn’t have a great start.  I DNFed the first cache-SSSHP – South Entrance–but figured that I would give it a try on the way out.  The day started out with a little overcast, but quickly burned off.  It was a perfect day for hiking–sunny, but not too warm, with a slight breeze.

Spring was my first find of the day.  It made up for the DNF.

There were a few other hikers and some horse people, too on the main trail, but as soon as I turned off on the “trail” the caches where on, it was just me, the lizards, and the wildflowers.

I was somewhat surprised with the number and the variety of wildflowers.  With the hot weather that we had a few weeks ago, the hills have turned from green to brown.  I figured that I would have been too late for the flowers, but I did get a good showing of them.

A Trail Less Traveled helped show me the correct path.  The trail was varied between a wide service road and a game trail.  I was impressed with whoever figured out this where to go on this trail.

The trail quickly gained elevation, climbing several hundred feet right away. Cross Eyed View andI’d like to make a Withdrawal were along this part of the trail.  The photo above is looking back toward Oakwood Memorial Park, near where today’s adventure began.

I was giving some thought about trying Don’s Stairway To Heaven a try on the way back by going cross country, but decide that it was not a safe way to go.  One false move and I might be on my stairway to heaven, so I’ve try it another day from below.

After reaching the top of the climb up through the cliffs, the trail flattens out.  I found the next group of caches without any problems: Stand and Salute,Tubular, Reservoir Dogs, Micronaught, and The Great Cliffs of Chatsworth.  While looking forThe Great Cliffs of Chatsworth, I came upon this cache guardian, watching me look in the wrong place.

Bring It On Home (The Cube) takes you to an interesting area–an unfinished homestead that we probably burnt out before it reallly got started. NOT a Kodak Moment was an interesting cache along the way.

The Battle of Evermore was the toughest find of the day.  I had my hand almost on the cache within seconds of arriving at the location, but it took me another 20 minutes and 2 phone calls to locate it.  I was glad to find Pepper’s Scenic Picnic Plateau immediate on arrival, after taking so long at Evermore.  After going down the hill to get Y Here?, I decided on a new plan of action.  I had tweaked my back earlier in the week and wasn’t looking forward to the hike back down the steep parts of the trail.  The Box Canyon only a few minutes away, I called a friend who was gracious enough to drive up from Simi Valley and pick me up along the road and return me to my truck.

It was a great morning of caching.  I’m looking forward to returning to the area and picking up the few caches that I missed because of my decision to make this a one-way trip.

If you are sensitive to poison oak, take care along the way.  There are the normal large stands of poison oak along the trail, but, because this trail is seldom used, this is also plenty of my old friend right in the trail, mixed in with other plants.

Here is a track of the hike today.