|It's lovely to spend time with good friends.|
It happened on 23 February 2014 on a lovely day out with my friend Adrienne.
You may have met her through previous posts (linked below) or through an article in Interweave Crochet magazine.
The weather was gloriously sunny but not too hot to enjoy a local park.
|This park is popular for family picnics.|
|"Show & Tell"|
Geocaching is like a global game of hide and seek where people will hide a 'cache' or small object and leave clues online for other people (geocachers) to find them.
There is a geocaching website which lists various caches to be found. A cache is usually a small container but may be a tiny toy or some other object. Containers allow people to place even smaller objects or notes inside.
Sometimes the note will be another puzzle or clue to another cache nearby like a progressive treasure hunt. There may be an answer to a puzzle question posed in the clue.
Sometimes there will be an object which can be kept as a prize for the first person to find it.
|This geocache contained a pencil and a pad of 'sticky notes'.|
Each 'seeker' of the geocache had written their name and the date
as a record of having found the cache.
There are team challenges as well, sometimes on a global scale, to move a particular object from one city to another somewhere in the world, by moving it from cache to cache by different people. The object's travels can be tracked through a log on the geocaching website but before an object can be moved, it needs to be found first!
I first learned about geocaching from a friend who loves puzzles and technology. His accounts of his geocaching adventures sounded like so much fun. I longed to try it but my illness makes it very difficult to pursue energetic outdoor activities. How disappointing!
Instead I settled for using my imagination, local knowledge and experience with cryptic crosswords to help decipher the geocaching clues for my friends.
When Adrienne first discovered geocaching, I was able to bring my geocaching friends together. Through the sharing of experience, Adrienne is a regular geocaching participant and her whole family is enthused. She says it adds extra interest whenever they go on bike rides or outings to new places. They discover locations they possibly wouldn't have visited had they not been guided by the geocaching clues.
Even with the GPS functions on modern phones, it can be very tricky to locate caches, especially if the cache has gone missing which, fortunately, doesn't happen too often.
|Remnants of the original vineyard still grow along the park boundary.|
Our clue was "vine time to cache". The park is in a district that used to be full of orchards, market gardens and wineries. There are remnant grapevines dating back to some of the first European settlers to the area ; some in large reserves, others in small pockets along roadsides or boundaries. Obviously the old stand of abandoned grapevines in our park was a hiding place for a cache!
|A geocache is hidden somewhere in here!|
When I say abandoned, that is to say that they are no longer harvested for commercial winemaking; there were a couple of people helping themselves to their own free harvest of heirloom grapes while we were searching.
It took us some time to find the cache, even with an extra clue provided on the website, because the hiding place was camouflaged very well.
It took an effort as the wheelchair had to be taken 'cross country' to reach the vines but being at seating height, it gave me a different perspective to Adrienne. We could examine the scene from different angles.
|I had a lower vantage point when searching for the 'hidden treasure'.|
It was time to get down and close-up in order to find our Geocache.
Along the way, I met a grasshopper and a cute little skink sunning itself on a grapevine stump (as you do when you take the time to look closely at fine details). If we didn't find our cache, it would have been fun and interesting anyway.
The best part was being out and about.
Adrienne was ready to give up. We had been searching for ages and were getting hot but I couldn't bring myself to leave - I was determined to find the cache even though I wasn't really sure what it even looked like.
One last look before we go...and voila! There it was. A small container in a hiding place that perfectly matched its clue. It's always easy when you know the answer!
I decided to leave my 'calling card' in the cache - a stitch marker - as my way of saying "Jodie was here". (You will understand my affinity with stitch markers if you read the post Knitting & Crochet Blog Week: Day 6 - a Tool to Covet.)
|I placed a black stitch marker|
into the cache.
When someone locates a cache, it can be logged online to include the condition of the cache, its contents etc. I don't know whether Adrienne logged it, but if you ever find a stitch marker in a geocache, you never know, it might have been mine!
I might create a crocheted geocache for my friends to hide and forge future links between the crochet and geocaching communities. What do you reckon?
Have you ever been geocaching?
Links about Geocaching
Geocaching - The Official Global GPS Cache Hunt Site - www.geocaching.com
Links about Adrienne & Me
Adrienne's blog includes articles about her crochet: http://mrsski71.blogspot.com.au/search/label/Crochet
Adrienne's Pinterest board "Crochet Ideas":
by Kathryn Vercillo discusses crochet and health while giving insights into my life:
Interweave Crochet Magazine Spring 2013 Online Preview
(1 February 2013)
Adrienne & I are mentioned in the "Features" section as the subject of Kathryn Vercillo's Everyday Crochet article "Double Crochet":
Jodie's Pinterest board "Crochet Inspiration":
Lupey Loops blog post "Knitting & Crochet Blog Week: Day 6 - a Tool to Covet"
(27 April 2013) explains my love of stitch markers:
Lupey Loops blog post "Petal Pullover in Print" (6 June 2013)
tells how Adrienne and I worked together on a project and had it appear in Interweave Crochet:
Lupey Loops blog post "Crochet Connections & Companions" (12 August 2013) describes our acquaintance with Kathryn Vercillo and how she came to write articles about us:
Vercillo, Kathryn, author, blogger, crocheter:
Vercillo, Kathryn, magazine article "Everyday Crochet: Double Crochet", Interweave Crochet, Spring 2013, Vol VII, No. 1, Interweave, Loveland CO, USA 2013: