Hein (fub) wrote,
Hein
fub

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Caching in stages

Last Sunday, we were out caching again. We were doing the Holiday Kampina Wandelcache, which we broke off mid-way on a previous try -- something to do with a miscalculation involving the width of a tree.
Anyway, we came to the end of the really nice walk, and so it was time to calculate the location of the cache. But our initial calculations yielded a position some 10 kilometers away from the parking spot -- and given the fact that the whole walk was 10 kilometers, that didn't seem right. And sure enough: we added all the numbers we collected, and it didn't add up to the specified checksum.

We knew the north ordinate was correct, it was the east ordinate that was giving us trouble. So we tried to put in the east ordinate of the parking spot, and use the hint for the cache location to see if we could spot the usual Unnatural Pile of Sticks. The location thus determined was next to a path, and it was even outside of the nature preserve -- so a very likely candidate. Unfortunately, there were many people walking along the path, so we couldn't really look around undisturbed. We did check here and there, and found nothing.

Then klik theorised that one number should be increased, so that it all would add up to the checksum after all. We re-calculated, and this yielded a location in the middle of the forest, next to a stream. There was no path leading to that spot on my topographic map on the GPS. This being a nature preserve, it was unlikely that that was the cache spot -- cache-layers have to get permission of the owner of the land to place a cache.
So we were ready to give up, and went on to the car. But then we passed an info-board that held the info that klik thought to be suspect. We re-checked, and it turned out that she had been right! And so all the numbers added up to the checksum, even if the location seemed a bit weird...

We went back in nevertheless. And lo and behold -- there was some sort of path leading off into the forest. It wasn't very clear, and it was probably a path made by the ponies and cows grazing in the nature preserve... We followed it, and even before we got to the designated spot, we saw where the cache was hidden! It hadn't been found for over a month, which makes it extra-special. We also liberated a coin out of the cache that had been in there for two months...

When we cache, we have a very good division of labor. I handle the GPS, klik handles the info-gathering and calculations (with me as backup on the calculator). Works quite well that way -- with, once again, a found cache as a result.
Tags: geocaching
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