2016 was a down year for some but for me it was a great year of Geocaching! Here's a list I made of the great experiences I've had this year so far.
10. First Earthcache PublishedThis year in addition to my first CITO event, I had two Earthcaches published. I had a bit of trouble getting an earthcache published a few years ago so I kind of gave up on making them. This year it was a big goal of mine to get one published and thankfully the first got published with almost no issue! I now have own a cache/event of every possible type.
9. Midwest GeobashThe Midwest Geobash was a new event for me this year and I went with the Geobears! The Midwest was located in Fulton County, Ohio. So we had a great weekend of Geocaching there. We took a great route down, visiting virtuals such as the grave of Nancy Drew writer Mildred Wirt Benson and the amazing Roche De Boeuf, a historic rock formation with an abandoned bridge passing right over it.
|Roche De Boeuf with the abandoned bridge in the background|
The day of the Mega was a whirlwind tour of the area, grabbing a variety of cache types for challenges. The most interesting was probably the Traffic Jam Webcam cache which took us a while to track down.
|At the Webcam|
The final day was a wash out with pouring rain much of the morning. We ended up completing a challenge trail, visiting Bowling Green, Ohio and grabbing a whole bunch of virtuals before heading Toledo where the clouds parted and we were able to get some older caches including NovaNikki, a 2001 geocache in central Toledo. We look forward to going back to Ohio again sometime in the future!
8. Iron Man Challenge
Back in May I wanted to get a 5 Terrain/5 Difficulty cache for May 5th (a 5/5 on 5/5), which was a segment for a challenge. I then saw that for the Iron Man Bingo Challenge I could complete the series with 4 more days of 5/5s and 15 Days of Unknown caches. That then snowballed into a 44 Day Puzzle cache streak. It was a great year for Challenges for me!
7. Lennox and Addington Mega
Lennox and Addington has been a tradition for me for the past four years. Last year was cut a bit short so this year I was sure to spend the whole weekend. Staygold678, Farm.girl and I set out to complete the entire DLA Passport Tour and we succeeded. We also got an FTF on the amazing The Devil made me do it. Night Cache. The next day we joined forces with the Geobears and had a successful day on Amhearst Island despite the pouring rain!
|Waiting for the Ferry at Amhearst Island|
6. 100+ US Counties
This was another challenge cache focused run that turned out to be a fantastic adventure. I needed 5 more US counties to achieve the 100 US Counties challenge. While visiting my family in Pittsburgh for American Thanksgiving we went down to visit Frank Lloyd Wright's FallingWaters and the amazing Ohiopyle Falls! The journey to that got us Westmoreland County
|Selfie with family at Ohiopyle Falls|
From there we headed to West Virginia! On a limited schedule we had to pass on some visitor centre caches I had planned in Preston County but we ended up lucking out getting one of our Challenge caches just beside the border. Sharon12, Farm.girl and I then did a big power trail of challenge caches in Monongalia County as dark was falling which including a tough 30m elevation hill climb with wet leaves everywhere. The next day we took a route up through Ohio home and nabbed another 4 counties putting me at 104 US Counties total.
|County #101 was the World's Largest Teapot in Chester, WV|
5. Valentines Day Caching
Valentines Day this year wth farm.girl was a lot of fun. We went to the West Montrose Covered Bridge (aka the Kissing Bridge), the last wooden covered bridge in Ontario! We had a great day of caching around the area before visiting the St. Jacobs farmers market for lunch. It was a fantastic day.
|At the Kissing Bridge with farm.girl|
4. My Cacheversary
For my 6th Cacheversary farm.girl and I took a trip to Pittsburgh to visit Sharon12! We had a great time visiting The Most Radioactive Town in America and the interesting Room 266 Travelbug Hotel. We then crossed over into West Virginia for farm.girl's first West Virginia cache!
|At the Room 266 Travelbug Hotel|
|With Randy at Randyland|
3. ASP Geobash
This was my 5th year in a row of the Alleghany State Park Geobash! Unfortunately I couldn't stay for the Sunday this year but we made the most of my time there. Our route to the event took us through Erie, PA where we stopped at Pennsylvania's Oldest Geocache and then over to the NY State Corner Virtual. After checking in to our cabin we did a long night of virtual caching!
|Geobears at the NY State Corner|
The next day of the event we had fun doing your typical event things, shopping geocaching stuff, entering prize draws and lab caching. At lunch Ally mentioned to us the Kinzua Bridge and I had a sudden flashback to a internet article about the Kinzua Bridge. The Kinzua bridge was a magnificent bridge that ended up being destroyed by a tornado. We had a fantastic time visiting this area and made for an awesome trip!
|Geobears at the Kinzua Bridge|
GHAGAFAP has always been one of my favourite events and this was my 6th year in a row. We had a great time camping with the Geobears. We did a lot of caching in the area and did the amazing Cave Dweller Earthcache. We had fun collecting information for their games and even found some baby turtles.
|Inside the cave|
We all won some prizes from draws and then we had some dinner at their potluck. After it became dark we did a nearby night cache where we ran into a large porcupine. On the Sunday we had breakfast at the great DJs restaurant before heading ot the Wrap Up Car Rally. This was my first time at this event and it was a lot of fun.
Honorable MentionsBefore going into the final I wanted to mention some caching days that didn't make the list.
- The Battleship Series by Ally&Joe where farm.girl, coalminefarmer and I got 49 FTFs
- Multi-cache Days with Oh Joy Oh Bliss I
- Niagara Region caching with Ally of Ally&joe, especially getting the 1/2 Kahuna virtual and Niagara Parkway Tour Pt. 2
- Doing the Carni-Water Trail and Friendship Trail with the Geobears
- Completing Southern Ontario counties with Ally&Joe and Farm.girl
- Leap Year Day with the Geobears
- FTFs with Farm.girl
- GHGMC Winter Fun with farm.girl and dmlookhere
- The Hides of March
1. 10,000th Cache!
For my 10,000th cache I wanted a worthy milestone. The 25 kilometer Hilton Falls Loop multi fit that bill for me. farm.girl and I set out fairly late in the morning and got several interesting caches including the Hilton Virtual, Hilton Falls Waterfall Earthcache and Look Inside The Niagara Escarpment.
With around 10 km left in the hike we had run out of water and the terrain was horrible, but we pressed on. I was run ragged by the time we were joined by Ally&Joe, Pixie&Bones. Pal and dmlookhere. We then finally got to the final just before nightfall for #10,000. What a tiring day. (I then had to race back home to get to work on time!).