26 March 2013 – Picking Up the Pieces

Fernkloof Nature Reserve in Hermanus, South Africa

S34°24.216 E19°17.523

Our third attempt to do the Fish River Canyon hike upcoming (weather, rain and draught finally permitting), we have started doing some short-distance, terrain-orientated caches.  Living in the Overberg, these type of caches all tend to be on the slopes of mountains, so, we are in no short supply of scenic walks and panoramic vistas…  And this one was no exception!

Following a quick slog up the mountain, we soon reached the final waypoint and that’s where the true multi-cache started!  You see, another thing about living in the Overberg is the fact that we all have at some point had the dubious experience of being involved in anything ranging from a simple walk-by ambush, or open-window vehicle raid, to a full-blown home invasion by the Overberg’s smoothest criminals, our local baboon troops!

Reaching the final waypoint, we started following a Hansel and Gretel breadcrumb route made up of colourful, somewhat melted crayons, swag, the container lid, writing utensils, and so forth…

That being the end of the fairy tale, we soon realised the mangled cache was yet another victim of a baboon raid.

Luckily, we were able to pick up most of the pieces and put Humpty Dumpty back together again…

Oh, and did I mention that we all lived happily ever after?

Visit Walkerbay View at www.geocaching.com


26 March 2013 – Finding our Nemesis

Along R44 near Pringle Bay, South Africa

S34°19.510 E18°50.217

Aaaah, finally…

We can rest, breath; our unlikely alien Nemesis conquered…

Well, be it on our fourth try…

And to be honest, it was not a Suikerbossies, but Mr Terunkie who spotted it first…

But, let’s start at the beginning…

We had spotted a new dot on our radar late last night – a new cache, just published near Hangklip.  So, why not?  Encouraged to add another FTF to our stats, we set off early this morning, making our way to what we soon realised to be a very unlikely ground zero: a shallow, water-filled ditch along a dirt road, in front of an open plot up for sale????

We double-checked the coords, restarted the GPS, even rechecked GZ with our cellphones, but alas, Ground Zero it was!

After wasting a good hour snooping and probing around the plot, irate at the realisation that the listed coords were clearly wrong, we had no choice but to turn the SugarMobile back home.  Lo and behold, who do we spot making their way to the cache site?  None other that FTF genius Mr Terunkie and KrugerRand!

We turned around and met up with them and the dys-coordinated GZ, spilling our guts and disgust at the situation.  Neither groups wanting to go home empty-handed, we decided to go give nearby Rock Art a try.

I do feel it imperative to briefly interrupt my lamentation here to mention that the Suikerbossies have failed trice before at finding this little Rock Art “alien”.  After two unsuccessful attempts, we employed the advise of some of the previous finders; one even sent us a spoiler pic, however, we had remained thwarted as, for some reason, no consensus were found on which rock represented GZ.

So, arriving at this bit of rock art resembling ET, or Sid the Sloth (whichever you prefer), imagine our embarrassment when Mr Terunkie managed to conjure the hidden container within seconds from the same spot we had previously scanned with a fine-toothed comb on three different occasions.

Mmmm, well, with our pride already knocked half black-and-blue, we signed the log, said our farewells and made our way back home, just to have the last bit of self-respect shaken out of us when Mr Terunkie called to say the Hangklip cache owner had finally contacted him with the correct coords and that they were standing with the FTF in their hands; should they wait for us at GZ?

With the FTF no longer an option, and our irritation levels simmering, we respectfully declined and decided to leave the offending cache for another day.

At least we had made alien contact…

Visit Rock Art at www.geocaching.com

21 March 2013 – FTF with Flashlights

Hemel-en-Aarde Valley near Hermanus, South Africa

S34°20.840 E19°16.562

Having to study/work really intrudes on one’s caching ability, so the Suikerbossies really jumped at the opportunity to get out of the books/work diary/emails/old questionnaires and grab a just-published cache surprisingly close to our home.

The sun was close to setting, so we rummaged through the camping-stuff container and made our pick of headlights and flashlights, entered the coords into the GPS and off we went.

Searching in the dark, we found this girly cache surprisingly quickly.  Clean log sheet and First to Find for us!

Visit CIT goes Mogg-y at www.geocaching.com


17 March 2013 – Greyt Oewerzicht Weekend (Part 3)

And so, all good things come to an end… or does it?  In true Verimark fashion… “Wait… there’s more…!”

We decided to pack up our camp site, before setting off to find the final few caches for the day.  Tables, chairs, fishing rods, ground covers, tents, coolers, pole lights, and the kitchen sink, all securely and methodically put in its respective, geometrically calculated spot.  And we’re off… or so we thought…

Remember that rusty old nail at Middle of Nowhere?  Slow puncture.  Back passenger wheel.  SugarMobile.

So, everything neatly placed, had to be unpacked to access the very unbecoming doughnut spare!

Thankfully, Mr Tricky and Mr Terunkie were quick to assist a couple of crowbar-wielding, damsels in distress…

224 Noupoort Dam#224 NOUPOORT DAM (GC22CE8)
Greyton Nature Reserve in Greyton, South Africa

S34°02.132 E19°36.982

With the SugarMobile up and running again, the Suikerbossie-Chappie foursome could finally set off to log a few more caches the Chappies still had to find, before setting course for the final one for the day located in the Greyton Reserve.

Noupoort Dam is a small reservoir situated at the start of the Boesmankloof Hiking Trail and serves as a source of water to the town of Greyton… water, now rumoured to taste a bit sweeter and with a subtle flavour of Chappies…

Visit Noupoort Dam at www.geocaching.com

And so, with doughnut wheel wobbling along and the speed control set at 75km/h, it was finally time for the Suikerbossies to return home.

Thanks Tricky Vicky and Mickey for an epic weekend!

Read more about our Oewerzicht weekend in Parts 1 and 2 of this post.

16 March 2013 – Greyt Oewerzicht Weekend (Part 2)

Few things more satisfying than waking up to the soft drizzle of rain on the roof of your tent and the smell of freshly brewed coffee, while snugly knotted in the fluff of your sleeping bag…

217 Loerkop View#217 LOERKOP VIEW (GC1EEPM)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°04.910 E19°36.790

We packed our day packs, stocked the cooler, loaded caching buddies the Chappies into the SugarMobile and started our day with a hike up Loerkop where we were met by lovely views all around the valley.

Visit Loerkop View at www.geocaching.com

218 The Old Wagon Trail#218 THE OLD WAGON TRAIL (GC463R1)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°07.874 E19°47.348

This cache provides a scenic on-line history of the old wagon trail running over the Hottentots Holland Mountains, toward Grabouw, across the Houw Hoek Pass to Botrivier and on to Riviersonderend and the rest of the inland via Genadendal and Greyton.

The hide was a single waypoint multi-cache and a quick find before moving on to the next…

Visit The Old Wagon Trail at www.geocaching.com

219 The Overbergs Last Post#219 THE OVERBERG’S LAST POST (GC46D0Q)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°08.027 E19°49.296

Not the most scenic spot and have to confess, almost lost a few teeth on this one!

This cache is a classic example of the geo-fact that you will always find there is an actual, well-treaded pathway to the cache site, but only after you’ve already reached it via a semi-suicidal, shale-trail slip ‘n’ slide, mad scramble to the top!

Luckily, Blonde Chappie had hotdogs and cold drinks ready to nurse her colleagues back to tip-top caching condition…

Visit The Overberg’s Last Post at www.geocaching.com

220 Power Play 5#220 POWER PLAY 5 (GC456AX)
Near Greyton, South Africa
S34°10.718 E19°37.943

A clever hide and much more effective than what ESCOM appears to be these days…

Visit Power Play 5 at www.geocaching.com

221 Mountain Bike Rest#221 MOUNTAIN BIKE REST (GC47HRN)
Near Greyton, South Africa
S34°08.871 E19°36.229

Probably the closest Brunette Suikerbos will ever come to a mountain bike…

This one initially had us fooled, until Brunette Chappie strayed and quickly spotted it from down under…

Visit Mountain Bike Rest at www.geocaching.com

222 In the Middle of Nowhere#222 IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE (GCQWBV)
Near Greyton, South Africa
S34°08.643 E19°36.947

True to its name, we found this cache along a middle-of-nowhere country road. Plenty of friendly cows were there to welcome us, as well as a tiny, little hitch-hiker – the rusty nail that ended up causing a slow puncture on the SugarMobile… but more on that later…

Visit In the Middle of Nowhere at www.geocaching.com

223 TB Hotel Greyton#223 TB HOTEL GREYTON (GC45XAB)
Greyton, South Africa
S34°03.066 E19°36.446

Mmmm… loved this one… well… loved the pub where this one is hidden…

We do remember some cocktails, maybe a whisky or two and then a couple of famous brandy-and-cokes for the Chappies and Blonde Suikerbos.  The rest, best remain unsaid, except boring Brunette Suikerbos delivered all back home safely!

Visit TB Hotel Greyton at www.geocaching.com

Follow the rest of our Oewerzicht weekend adventure in Parts 1 and 3 of this blog.

15 March 2013 – Greyt Oewerzicht Weekend (Part 1)

Hi, we are the Suikerbossies, and we are addicts… caching addicts as defined by the Tricky Vicky and Mickey Modified DSM IV classification of mental illness…  Symptoms and signs may include the following:

  1. Tolerance, as defined by either a need for increased amounts of caching to achieve the desired effect or diminished effect with continued current number of caches found per day.
  2. Withdrawal, as manifested by either psycho-motor agitation, aimless doodling at mystery caches, constant checking for newly published caches or overindulgence in on-line cache-related activities to relieve withdrawal symptoms.
  3. The continued firm belief that there is always just one more cache to be found, or one more trackable to be launched, or one more geocoin to acquire…
  4. Cutting down on caching is not an option.
  5. A great deal of time is spent on activities related to caching, such as generating geocaching statistics or designing related websites, blogs or Facebook pages.
  6. Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up to allow for caching activities.

Now that we have a diagnosis, the next step is treatment… MORE CACHING!

Thank goodness for Tricky Vicky and Mickey, as they ensured adequate caching therapy by arranging a superb Event Cache at Oewerzicht camp site along the picturesque Sonderend River near Greyton.

But… in true dramatic style…  Wait, there’s more!  Additional to the Cache Event, they had placed 17 brand new caches, ranging the near-full spectrum of cache types, sizes, D/T’s and true container ingenuity, while ensuring still sufficient quantities of fire, activities and snacks to fulfil any remaining addiction to braaiing, socialising and food appreciation.

206 The Old Bridge#206 THE OLD BRIDGE (GC46ZTX)
Near Genadendal in the Overberg, South Africa

S34°03.895 E19°33.364

We started our day early, hoping for some FTF’s at the spanking new published caches…

This cache, located at the old bridge across the Sonderend River near Genadendal was our first for the day and also our first of five first to finds – whao, that’s a lot of F’s!

Visit The Old Bridge at www.geocaching.com

207 Greyton Meander#207 GREYTON MEANDER (GC47A0V)
Greyton, South Africa

S34°03.163 E19°36.281

This interesting and fun, multi-stage cache took us on a quick tour of Greyton before delivering us a FTF and our first Letterbox cache.

Visit Greyton Meander at www.geocaching.com

208 Greyton Puzzle Cache#208 GREYTON PUZZLE CACHE (GC46A0B)
Greyton Nature Reserve in Greyton, South Africa

S34°02.320 E19°36.831

Brunette solved this one on our way to the Event Cache – nice and easy mathematical puzzle and beautiful hike into the reserve and view of the waterfall.

Also our third FTF and cache type for the day!

Visit Greyton Puzzle Cache at www.geocaching.com

209 High Living#209 HIGH LIVING (GC4621F)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°05.475 E19°38.974

This one was a favourite for the weekend, as what is more fun than rekindling a favourite childhood past time?  Wish we could tell you more…  Another FTF!

Favourite Point!!!

Visit High Living at www.geocaching.com

210 Greyt Oewerzicht Weekend#210 GREYT OEWERZICHT WEEKEND (GC44V43)
Oewerzicht along the Sonderend River near Greyton, South Africa
S34°06.065 E19°39.978

And we camped with the Chappies, and we braaied, and we slept in tents, and we made fire, and we had braai broodjies, and it rained, and we swam in the river, and we got caught in the rapids, and we spoke to Tricky Vicky and Mickey, and we met other cachers, and we paged through the Tricky’s awesome Geocoin collection, and we got clues to other Mystery Caches, and we fished, and we caught two barbers, and we had a flat tyre, and we had steak and chops and salad and bread and pâté… and it was FUN!

Just one question?  Does arriving first at a Cache Event count towards a FTF…?

Visit Greyt Oewerzicht Weekend at www.geocaching.com

211 Aloe Aloe What's the Difference#211 ALOE? ALOE? WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? (GC46Y0R)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°04.310 E19°36.722

This clever multi cache is a perfect example of why one should avoid “thinking too much”…

It’s not that difficult, the solution is right in front of you…

Don’t try to make it harder than it is…

Sometimes things are really as simple as it seems…

Needless to say, we approached this one from all the wrong directions, but still managed our fourth FTF for the day!

Visit Aloe? Aloe? What’s the Difference at www.geocaching.com

212 Just for the View#212 JUST FOR THE VIEW (GC46ZRR)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°06.657 E19°40.497

This was a quick park-and-grab.

Loved the container.  Long time, no sea… you’d think…

And off to the next…

Visit Just for the View at www.geocaching.com

213 Power Play 6 Rural Electrification#213 POWER PLAY 6 RURAL ELECTRIFICATION (GC4749C)
Near Greyton, South Africa
S34°07.381 E19°40.987

You thought you had us, but you didn’t!

This cache was of an unusual type and one we had not seen before… with a twist.  Always interesting to add a spanner to the works by employing a decoy cairn of stones…

Visit Power Play 6 Rural Electrification at www.geocaching.com

214 Het Ziekenhuis#214 HET ZIEKENHUIS (GC46RX6)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°07.754 E19°42.433

This was a very cleverly constructed multi-cache that had us going for a while, but then we spotted it and it was a simple hob, knob and sticky knot and we had the coordinates for the final.

Visit Het Ziekenhuis at www.geocaching.com

215 The Lowveld Chestnut#215 THE LOWVELD CHESTNUT (GC46A90)
Near Greyton, South Africa
S34°08.514 E19°44.938

A classic example of “spot the difference”….

Odd to find a chestnut in a Bloekom tree?

Visit The Lowveld Chestnut at www.geocaching.com

216 Moonlight Wonder#216 MOONLIGHT WONDER (GC47FY0)
Near Greyton, South Africa

S34°05.988 E19°39.853

Our final cache for the day was a joint FTF go at a multi-staged night cache.

However, except for the few with UV-lights, it ended up more a mass-Exodus resembling some bright-eyed flock of sheep following their herdsman…

Regardless, we all signed the log en masse and returned to the camp site for some more braaiing and socializing…

Visit Moonlight Wonder at www.geocaching.com

Impressive day!  We proudly ended with 11 caches, including 5 FTF’s, as well as 5 different cache types (Traditional, Multi, Puzzle, Letterbox and Event) and our first night cache!

Not too bad for a day’s fun…!

(You can follow the rest of our weekend adventure in Parts 2 & 3…)

11 March 2013 – Table Facts

205 Table Mountain - Cape Town#205 TABLE MOUNTAIN – CAPE TOWN (GC1ABZK)
Table Mountain in Cape Town, South Africa

S33°57.452 E18°24.200

An Earth Cache about Table Mountain…

Table Mountain’s level plateau flanked by Devil’s Peak (formerly called Windberg) to the east and Lion’s Head to the west, together with Signal Hill, forms a dramatic backdrop to the Mother City and a natural amphitheatre to the Cape Town and Table Bay harbour.  Further westward, the gabled peaks of the Twelve Apostles stretch as sentinels to SA’s own Natural Wonder of the World, the only natural site on our planet to have a constellation of stars named after it – Mensa, meaning “the table.”

Visit Table Mountain – Cape Town at www.geocaching.com