Thursday, January 26, 2012

South Beach Park Webcam

Finally! A webcam!
sharkie crew [Premium Member] Premium Member [Caches Found] 577 
Our mission, to grab a webcam for Basswoodbend before they leave for Michigan. This seemed like the easiest one around. Before leaving from Stuart we looked to see if the webcam was operational. It was, but not taking pictures every 5 minutes as advertised. When we arrived a parking spot was available, but a hot dog guy was in our chosen webcam spot. Curse you hot dog guy!! We hung our cache name signs (we were channeling the Today show) on the railing near hot dog guy and waited for our picture to be captured. Thank goodness for refresh on smartphones. We watched the kiteboarders for aprrox 50 minutes before our images appeared on the webcam page. We are standing next to the railing near hot dog guy. Mr. Basswoodbend is in the yellow Michigan shirt, I am in the middle, and Mrs. Basswoodbend is on the otherside. Thanks so much. 
basswoodbend [Premium Member] Premium Member [Caches Found] 3259 · [Challenges Completed] 2 Webcam Photo Taken Webcam Photo Taken 01/25/2012 
We once again teamed up with the Sharkie Crew for a fun afternoon. Although we have tried on a couple of occasions in Michigan and once at State College Pa, we have never managed to successfully complete a web cam before. This one was a challenge because we couldn't figure out exactly what the refresh rate was but thought if one team member was on a computer and others were on their iphone, eventually we'd get it right. We dedicated today to the task. For insurance, we made signs with our team names on them to put in the corner of the boardwalk fence closest to the camera. When we reached GZ just after noon, we discovered a hotdog stand occupying the space at which we had hoped to camp out. We taped up our signs at the corner as planned, explained what we were doing to the hot dog muggle, and waited, and waited, and waited. It was a great day for gawking, lots of folks on the beach, surfers in the water and about 4 kite boarders doing their thing. (It appears that when two of them crash their kites into each other it creates a real mess and puts them out of action for quite a long time.) Finally, after about an hour, the team member on the computer (Chip) called and reported that a video with us in it had been generated and a still shot materialized on the iphones and we had earned our icon. For others in the future, based upon our level of competence, it seemed that today the camera was refreshing about every 1/2 hour and it took about another 1/2 hour for it to appear on the web site. 

After the webcam shot was verified,  Laurie drove us north on A1A from Boca up to Delray Beach - our old stomping grounds.  We had lunch at Boston's, our old favorite place.  It's right on the beach (well, across the street) and the upstairs has a fabulous view of the ocean.  Turned out to be pretty much of a perfect day - most memorable.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Look Out!

This is an example of something you do not want to see while geocaching!
It was a DNF anyway.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

JDSP Revisited

Laurie and Dick went back down to Jonathan Dickinson State Park for more caches. There were more than 200 caches put out there for Cacheapalooza, so there were still many not found by us.  I was actually home doing laundry - and I was definitely OK with that.  The two of them found 22 caches, which boggles my mind, but hooray for them!  They even made friends with a turtle trying to find water.

Meanwhile, back at the condo, we had another train experience. You know how close the train is to our front door, and how loud it is, Well, now we've discovered another "benefit" of living so close to a busy track. Today the train was carrying long, long pieces of rail, very slowly. So slowly that the train actually stopped in front of Harborage, blocking the driveway. Then, after that train finally moved on, a second train also carrying rails came along and came to a stop again blocking the driveway. See the train? See the nice red pavers in our driveway? See the line of cars full of people who will all be late for their appointments?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sugarwar's 'hood

Sue and Gary had told us at lunch the other day about the caches hidden right in their neighborhood, so naturally we had to go check them out. Once again, it was a beautiful day - just the right temperature, blue skies and plenty of warm Florida sunshine. Winter in Florida has many advantages. If it weren't for the traffic...
Our time in the warm is running out. This is the longest we've ever managed to stay away from our own "stuff". No matter how cold, there really is "no place like home". Before leaving we knew we had to check out the ocean and breath that air one more time. In addition, we had this cache and a couple of others nearby on our "must do" list. The owner is right, it is the absolute largest cache we've ever seen. We didn't have anything that would do it justice but we traded the largest coin we've ever seen for the TB and left a gator finger puppet, our tag and our card. Thanks for the fun and we're sorry we missed you at CP6. 
It's the Bee's Knees 
We got a bit of a late start on the day, still draggin' a bit from the weekend. We are winding down this years fun in the sun trip and wanted to do a few caches up here as well as get in another drive down the island. We figured we had just enough time to finish before dark if I could make this find quickly. I clocked the walk at just over 1/2 mile round trip. The clue threw me since I have a find a cache down at Battlefield Park near a tree that fit the description better than this one did. Not sure what kind that one is but it sure knows how to bite. It drew more blood than the skeeters. Anyway, I made the find, signed the log and hotfooted it back to the cachemobile in time to get out to the ocean before dark. Thanks for the fun and we hope to get together again next year.
I always want to see more ocean, so we went for a drive on the island, and stopped at a great beach. It was a very windy ocean day, but it's still such a treat to experience the colors and the power of the ocean.

We stopped for lunch at a really nice restaurant with a great staff, The Captain's Galley, at the end of the causeway in Fort Pierce. Six caches for the day.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Cacheapalooza Continues

I stayed home while Dick, Laurie and Mary went back to Jonathan Dickinson State Park to do some more caching and to participate in the flash mob.  From all reports they had a fine time, and I know Dick enjoyed it immensely.

Event Cache A nifty salute to 60K, a flash mob event! 

 This was only our second flash mob. We climbed to the top of the tower for the view, some pictures, and to check the elevation for the earth cache.We came down to sign in - signed in, then got our picture took and wandered off in search of more caches and earth cache answers. This was sure a friendly group!
01/22/2012 Hobe Mountain We really enjoy most Earth Caches. Like this one they usually teach you something about your environment. As visitors to Florida we find the flora here to be highly exotic. We completed the requirements for the cache today following the flash mob at the tower. This was a lot of fun. We appreciated the ecology lesson and got a chuckle out of a number of the signs located where the plants were not apparent. (Prickly Pear Cactus?) I also was reminded of Susie "Way down yonder in the Paw Paw patch." Thanks for capping off another enjoyable day in Jonathan Dickinson.
Those three intrepid cachers found nine caches altogether today. Then Dick and Laurie waved bye bye to Mary as she headed home to Fort Lauderdale.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Cacheapalooza 6

If a geocaching event goes over 500 attendees, it qualifies as a mega-event!  This year Cacheapalooza became Mega, and so we got our first Mega icon.

We went with Laurie, Chip and Dylan, and their friends Mary,  Bob and Andie.  It was a perfect day - not too hot, not too cold, bright and beautiful.  Dick and I got there early, and were signed in by our friends Sue and Gary (Sugarwar).
 The first thing we did was go to a class on GSAK, which was a total waste of time.  We didn't learn a thing!

Laurie brought lunch for everybody, and we had a fun lunch. We sat at a picnic table in the shade to avoid the noisy family in the pavilion!  After lunch we cached along one of the wonderful paved trails in Jonathan Dickinson State Park.  Sixteen caches were found for the day.

We all had dinner in the evening in the big pavilion - pizza, chips and cookies mostly.  Then they held a marathon raffle drawing that lasted for at least 3 hours.  Dick and I left before it was over - it became deadly dull.

All in all, it was another enjoyable Cacheapalooza with friends and family.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Most Unique

Met Sam and Sandy for lunch in Kissimmee - it was about a 2 hour drive for both couples.  It's always good to catch up with old friends and hear what they've been up to and what their kids are doing. It was one of those 2 hour lunches! It was very nice to see them looking so well.

 While in the area, we picked up three caches before driving home, one of which was Most Unique.
Purple Penguins Trippy Treasures! 
We drove up this morning to meet and have lunch at the Olive Garden with some friends we taught and coached with over 30 years ago. The food was great, the conversation even better, and afterward, as we were leaving, we noted that there was a cache in the parking lot. Expecting what we have come to call the standard Florida Park and Rob, we lifted the skirt. Boy were we ever surprised and gladdened when we actually got out the GPS and discovered that rarity, the cache with stash. We took a little notebook and some trash from near the cache, left our card, our pathtag and a punch ball. Thanks for the very unexpected pleasure.
Circle, Ring or Whorl? 
Found it Found it 01/20/2012 After enjoying a geezer lunch with some fellow retiree's at the Olive Garden, we came across the street to grab a cache. Quick find. Signed log and replaced as found. TFTC
Virtual Cache World's Most Unique ??? 
We love Virtual Caches, We regret the Groundspeak decision to terminate them although we do understand. Just as the ammo can in the woods morphed into the film can in every parking lot and the bison tube on every fence post, so too, the virtual with a unique view or attraction was becoming every plaque on every street corner. The task of the virtual cache owner has also become more difficult. As we have found with ours, folks are constantly attempting to log them without fulfilling the requirements. The owner has the unpleasant job of deleting those logs and then putting up with the abuse some chose to rain down upon you. This baby definitely ranks as a unique treasure that only a virtual cache will show to you. Truly, truly unique! Thank you very much for giving us a reason to visit. "Were it not for Geocaching etc. etc. etc."

This monument was begun in 1941. It has plaques from every State - they are either wood, metal or stone. There are also some plaques with the names of governors of the period. There were many, many from Michigan. It was hard to tear ourselves away - something else fascinating would be spotted. It certainly is Unique!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

South Fork and Port Mayaca

I'm using Dick's log for the Port Mayaca Lake Okeechobee EarthCache Reborn - I couldn't improve on it!

 Dick's log, with pictures interspersed:

What a mellow day we had! We started with a geo-geezer lunch over barbecued ribs with Greyt Dog and Sugarwar. After swapping tales both short and tall, we bid them adieu and then joined up with Sharkie Crew for a tour of the South Fork HS grounds. What a great looking facility that is. We doubt that there are many schools with their own golf course on the grounds.



It was a beautiful January day, much nicer than the -3 degree wind-chill we are missing back home. Coming from the shores of the largest body of fresh water in the country, we enjoy a visit to the Florida version so we targeted this cache as a fitting conclusion to our afternoon. We enjoyed the view from the top of the dike, the resident gator swam past for us and the sun glowed through the clouds. Fantastic and not a patch of ice in sight. 

 We answered the questions, which we have submitted and have had approved by the owner, took many pictures, and then drove back to Palm City through the canopy of trees on Martin Highway.

Tom has arrived home from China and is safely ensconced in San Diego!  Welcome home Tom!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Choo Choo

Mr. Mattingly, our landlord, told us that we would get used to the train. Oh no - far from it! It's so close to our building it actually makes the floor rumble.
Sometimes it's interesting, though. I wish that there had been a car with a giraffe's heading sticking up!
Can you tell how close the tracks are to our building? Rumble rumble.

Monday, January 16, 2012

76 Golf World

This morning I promised myself that I would try to catch up on my blog a little bit.  So I spent the entire morning uploading pictures and updating the blog.  OK, I'm a little slow, I admit, but I'm also still struggling with the new blogspot format.  Anyway, I got quite a bit done.

After lunch, we picked up Chip and Dylan (Laurie's at work) and we all went to Golf World to play miniature golf.  It's a family joke that Dylan used to call it immature golf, so sometimes we all call it that.  We had a great time - it's really a lot of fun.  We kept having to let people play through because there were 4 of us and we took longer.  It can't be that we were just slow!

I played 18 holes with them, but begged off for the second round on a different course.  I had my phone for games and iced tea for sipping so I enjoyed myself anyway.  Chip and Dick each claim that they got a hole in one on the second course - Dylan didn't deny it, so it must be true!
A good time was had by all:

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would have been 83 years old today had he lived. We sincerely enjoyed the holiday memorializing him.

Sunday, January 15, 2012


DuPuis Management Area

23500 SW Kanner Highway 
Canal Point , FL 33438

DuPuis is a 21,875 acre multi-use natural area interspersed with numerous ponds, wet prairies, cypress domes, pine flatwoods, and remnant Everglades marsh. The area provides miles of hiking and horseback trails, an equestrian center, graded vehicle roads, backpack and group campsites, and seasonal hunting. There is no fee for camping in DuPuis, which is on a first-come, first-served basis. There also is a group camping site off the DuPuis Grade.

Wildlife: Several bald eagles nest here. Herons, egrets, wood storks, and white ibis hunt for food in the marshes close to the road during the wet season. Look for white-tailed deer, wild hogs and turkeys around dawn and dusk. 
Laurie and Dylan, Dick and I went on the DuPuis Auto Tour this afternoon.  It's a wonderful, varied, huge area which contains many different types of eco-systems.  We didn't see any wildlife at all, doggone it - except for a couple of birds.  But it was the perfect day for a drive, and we were fascinated with the variety of vegetation - many types of trees and shrubs.  My favorite is the beautiful dahoon holly.   It was a total standout in a sometimes bland landscape!

Dick discovered that there were caches in the park, and with our three teams we couldn't miss!  Dylan is now a member by himself and his caching name is Zoroan.  We found two caches - my favorite was the Shell Lake cache at the fishing pier.  I've never seen such elaborate wasp structures as these mud dauber "buildings".  We all searched and searched - and it was quite a thrill when Laurie found it!

Found it 01/15/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Swamp Monster
 Riding with the sharkie crew on the Dupuis road tour and a close cache popped up. A short walk and a quick find. signed the log, took a tea bag and left a fire truck. TFTC

Sharkie Crew searching for the swamp monster:

 Found it 01/15/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Shell Lake Visit Log We were out for a ride with sharkiecrew and zoroan this afternoon. Their goal was to share and show this beautiful park to us. We enjoyed the road tour, came to the finish and resolved to find the cache at the end. Four pairs of eyes searched low as well as high with out success. We poked and prodded numerous mud dauber nests without finding either insect or cache. The Basswoods had reached the end of their rope when Mrs. Sharkie said, "Here it is" Thanks to Gator Man for the cache and to Mrs Sharkie for the find.

What a pleasant afternoon we had!

 For dinner we went to Lola's Seafood Eatery - it's a great little place - emphasis on the little - with great food.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Boat Show and Gates, Gates and More Gates!

The Boat Show is in full swing today! Lots and lots of people are there - many have to walk three blocks from the parking area. There are some shuttles, though - buses, bicycle rickshaws, golf carts - but most people are just hoofing it. Admission is $10 per person - they must be making a bundle! Dick took the opportunity to walk on the Roosevelt Bridge and take pictures of the festivities.

Even though the show is right outside out front door, it's really not a problem.  They have it all very well organized and they've anticipated anything that could go wrong.  We haven't had any problems with extra people in the area, or with parking at the condo - it's very well patrolled.

In the afternoon we went back out west to finish the Citrus Gate Series.  We almost succeeded!  After we recover from gate aversion, we'll probably go back out there and find the rest of them.

DNF 01/14/2012 You couldn't find [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #7
 I think we got tired of rubbing gates this afternoon.

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #6
 Another nice hide. TFTC

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #5
 The baggie was ripped so we replaced it. TFTC

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #4
 LOL This is the hide we've been looking for. Signed log and left a jack. TFTS
 (It was a wire down a pipe.)

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #3A
 The No Parking signs made us a little nervous but what are you going to do? Signed log, TFTC

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Almond Joy
 The boat show and all its traffic is in our back yard so we decided we needed a break and a ride in the country. We came out here to seek a few caches. This is a very nice change of pace from running our hands up and down and all over fence gates. Very creative hide. We signed the log and left Jack Squat. TFTC
(It was in a coconut!)

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #3
 Wow! A huge cache! Took away some trash and left our card and a punch ball. TFTC

 DNF 01/14/2012 You couldn't find [Traditional Cache] Citrus Drinks
 Don't know why we thought we'd be able to find it when so many others could not.

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #2
 Very tricky. TFTC

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Citrus Gate Series #1 - South End
 We'd had enough boat show traffic so we came over to grab a few caches. TFTC

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Lost and Found
 Well, I did it again. Why take the time to find the best route to the cache when you can just bushwhack? Of course we don't have the wonderful saw palmetto in Michigan. Signed the log, it's a bit damp but still functional, took some roadside trash and left our pathtag, some skin, and a bit of blood. TFTC
 (Quite a bit of blood, actually!)

 Found it 01/14/2012 You found [Traditional Cache] Caitlin can see you!!!
 We're thinking that Caitlin goes to the nearby school. Since we came by on a Saturday, she probably didn't see us today but we left her a prize if she visits her cache soon. The log is full so we placed a new one. Signed log and left the perfect coin for this cache.
 (It was a magnetic key holder coin and it went into a magnetic key holder. Sometimes life is just fun.)

 After all of this caching we were feeling a little scuzzy (and bloody) so we went back to the condo to freshen up a bit. We picked up Chinese Take Away at Pei Wei and took 5 dinners over to Chip and Laurie's. Pei Wei has Dylan's absolutely favorite food so we knew it would be a winner. Watched a little football and then came home.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Loxahatchee River Battlefield Park

This park used to be called Riverbend Park. Laurie's family has used it many time for biking, canoeing and kayaking. The other day when we drove down to Ft. Lauderdale, Laurie noticed the name change, and wondered what that was all about. Today we went back down there to check it out. It was especially nice because all five of us went. There's a nice new road, and several caches. It was a great drive and we enjoyed the whole day immensely. It turns out that the name was changed to Battlefield Park because it was the site of two battles in January of 1838 during the Seminole War.
Loxahatchee River Battlefield Park ENTRANCE: 9060 Indiantown Road, Jupiter, Florida 33478 CLASS: historical/regional ACREAGE: 64 acres HOURS: seven days a week (including holidays); sunrise - sunset LOCATION OF Second Seminole War Battles Powell's Battle - January 15, 1838 Jesup's Battle - January 24, 1838 Loxahatchee National Wild and Scenic River
Buddha's Tree
 Found it 01/10/2012

 A visit to the park with the sharkies today. We parked and "bushwhacked" to the cache. Although, in Florida, can you call it a bushwhack when you don't get your hat knocked off, your legs ripped by saw palmetto's, and your socks covered with various burrs and other hitchhikers? When we arrived at GZ, (with proper reverence I assure you) as a northerner, I had to have explained to me the propensity of the Florida version of the ficus to assassinate the tree which provides it shelter as a child. At home in Michigan, the fig is much better behaved. (Of course it doesn't live as long). Since we didn't really expect to do any caching today, (and when we do, down here, ammo cans are a rarity) we didn't have our stash bag with us. Signed log, left nothing and took only oranges,(That's another thing we don't gather up north) and hopefully, not a dose of poison ivy. Thanks for one of our favorite Florida caches.

 Cachers Box
 Found it 01/09/2012
 We came down today with the sharkie crew to check out the improvements which have been made since our last visit a couple of years ago. We are impressed and vow to return for at least another canoeing expedition. We weren't thinking about caching when we left home but the smart phone said it was here so the dumb guy tagged along and found it. Thanks for the excuse to get out of the car and enjoy the sunshine. BTW, there is a neat osprey nest just above GZ. He yelled at us but when we refused to leave, he did because he didn't want his picture on Facebook.

 Since we were near Jupiter, we went to lunch at this great place that Laurie had heard about but had never been to. It's called Guanabanas, and it's an open-air, tiki/chikee kind of a place with great service and very good food. We felt very "Florida" having lunch there :)  It's the kind of a place you want to go back to.  I think that next Christmas we should plan for the whole family to come here!  It is really special and different.