Random thoughts, rants, raves and photo opportunities

2015 - Anatomy of a Ravaged Geocache

Back in October 2013 in preparation for the MNGCA Fall Event, I hid an Arduino driven gadget geocache named Thanks Alfred (GC3F7F6), The gadget was an audible puzzle and required you to listen to a message in Morse Code. The decoded message led the seeker to the final stage of the geocache.

Apparently someone felt threatened by the cache or had a problem with it as within 5 days, the well hidden gadget had went missing. I suspected foul play by one of our own in the game but with most incidents like this, it was pure speculation and couldn't be proven. I more or less wrote off the $55 gadget as being gone forever. That was until April 11th, 2015, almost a year and a half later, when geocacher Bubbles&Bonkers emailed me to let me know she found the gadget floating in the nearby lake. It's still not proof. But the fact that the gadget ended up in the lake rather than being taken from the woods leads me to believe it truly was another disgruntled geocacher. If true, how sad.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - Fire and Ice Named Geocaching.com Geocache of the Week

My geocache Fire and Ice (GC4TXB2) has been named by Geocaching.com's BLOG as the first Geocache of the Week for 2015. It only has 51 finds since publication on July 27th, 2014 but it has 36 favorites with a favorite rating of 92%. It's always nice to get a bit of recognition for a fun geocache, particularly since I wasn't expecting anything. But for me, the best part of the game is watching others enjoy the geocache and reading the logs of their experience.

Click here to read more about the construction of this geocache.


2015 - God Loves Everyone, Topeka, KS

On a recent pass through Topeka, KS, we felt an obligation to stop in and briefly protest the evil and hate-spewing Westboro Baptist Church. Anna made the beautiful signs to point out that God loves everyone and the kids used the event as an excuse to "flip the bird" to those peaking out the windows of the cult-like compound. Dan, Jane and I were discussing on the way out that we could actually feel the evil emanating from the place.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2015 - Sitting on a Spider (GC4113)

I was perusing the geocaching maps prior to a family trip down to Kansas to visit Jane and family. One cache in particular that caught my eye was Sitting on a Spider (GC4113), by barondriver. This cache stood out because it has all of the elements in a cache that I look for; it's an oldie, it is rated a 5/5, and it looked like it requires a bit of persistence and ingenuity. The only drawback to the cache is that it is located just south of Wichita, KS, which is just over 200 miles from where we were staying in Lansing, KS. Like Nene always says, since when does distance ever stop me from finding a cache? So Jane, Dan, and I headed south to try and score the find.

I had a couple of months in advance to think about how to get at this cache. I own climbing gear but anchoring and my inexperience could be a problem. The next best idea was a couple of ropes, a grappling hook, and a magnetic device, hoping for the best. The idea of bringing a ladder seemed like cheating so I put it to the back of my mind as a possible secondary idea.

Dan was the star at tossing the grappling hook but unfortunately, after a few attempts the ropes got tangled within the protruding bolts up top. My idea of using the grappling hook was a total failure. Luckily there was a hardware store within 10 minutes drive that just happened to be open on New Years Day. I am now the proud owner of a new 28' extension ladder. But we managed to score the find.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2014 - Molly Senior Pictures, St. Paul, MN

We can't believe how fast time is passing us by. Our gorgeous Molly has officially completed her senior picture photo-shoot. They were taken at St. Paul's Raspberry Island to give Molly the industrial background.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2014 - A Portrait of Anna, New Ulm, MN

Photographs of our Anna taken along the Minnesota River in New Ulm, MN.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..

2014 - Flandrau State Park, New Ulm, MN

The family headed down to Flandrau State Park for our grand finale to the 2014 camping season. We spent the four day MEA weekend enjoying the spectacular fall weather and gorgeous fall colors. When we weren't hiking or playing along the Cottonwood River, the proximity of the park to New Ulm, MN, gave us an opportunity to visit the August Schells Brewery.

Enjoy the photographs (click thumbnails for larger view)..