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.

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2 February 2013 – Very Clever Caching…

MysteryUp until now, we have done our fair share of traditional caches with the occasional multi-cache popping up.  One type of cache we have not yet attempted, is the mystery cache…

A mystery cache (sometimes also called a puzzle cache) is a cache that requires the finder to solve an intricate puzzle to obtain the true coordinates for the cache container.

The puzzle can be anything from a simple decryption or substitution cipher, to a complex enigma requiring ingenuity, logic, mathematical skill, lateral thinking… and a whole lot of luck!

The big challenge solving mystery caches and then blogging about it, is that we can’t share with the reader the bit that enthused us the most – how we got to solve the puzzle!  A typical sword of Damocles – sharing the fun, automatically spoils it for the next cacher.

So, for the sake of this blog and out of respect for the caching community, we will just post these types of caches without giving away too much on how we managed to solve the final coordinates…

167 Google Spy#167 GOOGLE SPY (GC2BJCT)
Westridge in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°04.990 E18°49.298

Our first mystery cache, and not just any mystery cache…

Google Spy, with its 5-out-of-5 difficulty rating, is an awe-inspiring, cuber-reconnaissance challenge requiring level upon level of cyber-sleuthing, intel-gathering and internet snooping.

We decided to draw fellow cachers, the Chappies into our spy network and with a clever shake-and-a-stir of our intellects, we achieved the remarkable feat of solving this one in the space of an afternoon.

Suffice to say, even the great Mr Bond would have been obliged to offered us a Martini toast on solving this one…

Visit Google Spy at www.geocaching

168 Dragon Slayer#168 DRAGON SLAYER (GC2TBCV)
Roundhay in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°04.824 E18°51.224

This was another mystery cache that required an on-line stroll with Google Earth, and soon the penny dropped…

Visit Dragon Slayer at www.geocaching.com

169 Sarahs Cache#169 SARAH’S CACHE (GC3JZ1A)
Nature’s Valley in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°04.423 E18°52.161

This was a quick park-and-grab in a grassed park with beautiful kid’s jungle gym.

Visit Sarah’s Cache at www.geocaching.com

170 Red Tree Cache#170 RED TREE CACHE (GC452M6)
Nature’s Valley in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°04.257 E18°52.095

And another park-and-grab next to the Helderberg Nature Reserve…  Still trying to figure out the name – Red Tree, as the cache was placed under a large, red rock with no tree in sight?!

Visit Red Tree Cache at www.geocaching.com

171 Gummi Glen#171 GUMMI GLEN (GC1VNQE)
Shady Glen in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°03.720 E18°51.892

“Gummi Bearrrrrrrrrs, bouncing here and there and everywhere…” – pretty much what Blonde Suikerbos did after having a close encounter of the reptilian kind in this beautiful and secluded blue gum forrest.  Still not sure what it was, but needless to say, she quickly retreated to an open, shady spot, leaving the bundu bashing to Brunette.

Oddly enough, it was Blonde who from her vantage point soon spotted the perfect hidey hole – quite a way off the given coordinates.  A quick grab by bush-whacking Brunette and on to our next.

Visit Gummi Glen at www.geocaching.com

172 Anobium Punctatum#172 ANOBIUM PUNCTATUM (GC1JDD3)
Radloff Park in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°04.975 E18°52.188

This cleverly hidden micro, named for the common furniture beetle, was hidden along the Lourens River.

Interestingly, the Lourens used to be known as the Second River, with the First being in Stellenbosch.

Visit Anobium Punctatum at www.geocaching.com

173 Baby Makes Her Genes Talk#173 BABY MAKES HER GENES TALK (GC1PKD1)
Rome Glen in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°05.520 E18°52.350

Our last one for the day, was a mystery cache requiring some deciphering of DNA, base nucleotides, codons and amino acids, and eventually brought us to a hill in Rome Glen with a panoramic view of False Bay.

Visit Baby Makes Her Genes Talk at www.geocaching.com

Seven done, and time to return home for a cold one and a dip in Brunette’s folk’s swimming pool.

1 February 2013 – A Hot Day in Worcester

165 Nano# 165 NANO (GC1WHNR)
Church Street in Worcester, South Africa

S33°38.369 E19°26.978

Not much to say about either these caches, except that Worcester is HOT!  40.5° Celsius hot…

The first one was a quick park-and-grab magnetic nano found before Brunette Suikerboss’s meeting…

Visit Nano at www.geocaching.com

166 Golf Anymore#166 GOLF ANYONE? (GC15Y3P)
Van Riebeeck Park in Worcester, South Africa

S33°37.068 E19°26.894

…and the next was a short distance multi-cache found after Brunette’s meeting…

Visit Golf Anyone? at www.geocaching.com