Saturday, 7 July 2018

Back to gold country and a meeting with a Bear!!

So on June 22, I decided to take a spontaneous trip back up to the gold country to grab some of the Gold Country caches that I missed or had to DNF because of flooding on my last excursion out that way for the Gold Country Events in May, that you can read about in a previous Blog. I headed towards Lytton and was able to grab a Gold Country cache on the way thru Kanaka Bar that I DNF'ed the last trip thru. I also grabbed another Gold Country cache that I would have been FTF had it not been muggled before the event last trip up.
It was getting late and starting to rain by this time so I decided to travel a bit further before stopping for the night.
I awoke early the next morning and headed towards Cache Creek where I would grab a quick breakfast and 3 caches. I then headed to nearby Ashcroft and by 8 am I had already found 6 Gold Country caches that day!!

Can you see the cache??

One of the caches was in this cool little park and cammoed so it could be in plain view.

As I drove thru and cached in the little town of Ashcroft everything looks like it’s an antique and the town had a very antique feel to it. It sorta looked like a movie set and the buildings looked like they were just backdrops. Very cool!!
Kinda curious as to how long this car was there for the tree to grow thru it!!
The New firehall
The Old Firehall

NOTE: The highlighted or underlined words in my blog can be clicked on as they are links to other cool stuff!! Also if you click on any of the pictures they become bigger!!!

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I then headed up the road heading towards Logan Lake. I grabbed a few caches along the way including one more Gold Country Cache. I drove right by a cache that was published in May and had not been found yet, but I did not know this until I got back home. The first time I've not looked to see if any new caches were in the area I was travelling to. Aaaargg!!

This was the view from just down the road of Gold Country-Highland Valley Copper Mine
A very cool looking Canada Flag.

Got into Logan Lake and grabbed a couple more Gold Country Caches before heading towards Merritt. I finally grabbed the Gold Country- Merritt Viewpoint cache which I have tried to get anytime thru here, but the gate was either closed and last time the floods kept some of the bridges closed, so I was not able to get it.
Merritt Viewpoint
I then headed on down the highway, heading back towards home, with a stop for one more cache along the way.
So in total on my quick little trip to the Gold Country, I found only 17 caches of which 12 were gold country caches. I was not there to get as many as I could, I was being quite selective.

Happy Canada day caching

For the Canada Day long weekend my little boy and I headed out to Harrison Lake for a Canada Day celebration with about 30 other magicians and their families. We headed to Harrison Mills the night before and stayed at the Sasquatch Inn. We grabbed a few caches before checking into the hotel.
 We got up early the next day and headed towards Harrison Lake and grabbed a couple of caches along the way. What a great weekend of fun with my little boy!!

Happy Canada Day!!!

July 6th Pitt River Dyke Trail Caching

So this evening after work I decided to throw the bike in the car and head to Pitt River Dyke trail and ride the trail and grab a few caches that I have not gotten yet. I parked at Victoria Drive and Cedar drive. I unloaded the bike and headed down the Dyke. I had already gotten 1 thru 7 of the DS-PR series back in November 2013 while in town for a Magic convention.
I didn't stop at DS-PR #8 as I heard something moving in the bushes nearby.(I read about recent bear sightings) I stopped and grabbed DS-PR #9 and moved forward thinking I will come back and get #8 on the way out. Got the rest of the series and then "Pitt's Outpost-Bear Scare" (another hint maybe?) cache. I then headed towards "Hook Me Up", even after reading StickmanBC's log of seeing a bear nearby. I had already pulled out my bear spray from my backpack and was carrying it in my hand.

After taking way too long getting this one, because it was breezy and every little sound of brush movement startled me, I decided to head up the path to Oliver road as I thought it would be an easier route and possibly shorter. Shorter maybe? NOT easier!! Part way down the road before the turnoff to Minnekhada park, I came across the first of 2 bears I would encounter. I spooked him and he jumped out onto the trail. I jumped off my bike, pulled the cap off the bear spray and started backing up keeping the bike between me and him. As I backed up a bit further, I though he was just gonna head off into the bush, so I grabbed my phone to take a pic before he scrambled away. He then stood up on his back legs.

What he did next, I was almost kind of expecting...he then charged at me and I sprayed the bear spray towards him, and started walking backwards again. He stopped, and I could now taste the bearspray. My eye's started watering and burning as I kept walking backwards, hoping I would still be able to see him. He then turned and headed off into the bush. I waited about a minute and then slowly walked past the spot he headed into. I was blinking quite a bit by this time and my nose and eye's were on fire, and I was gaging and coughing from the spray that may have saved me!!
After getting a little way past the spot, I jumped on my bike and headed away. When I got to the turnoff to the park, I stopped and drank some water and splashed my face and eye's.
As I got a bit further down the road a girl on a bike was coming towards the area. I stopped her and told her there was a bear up ahead. She pointed back down the road from where she came from and I could see headlights and she said that was the park ranger, out this way to chase off a bear. I thought she meant the one I was just with. NOPE, as we started to ride away, another one appeared across the ditch.

I took a couple of quick pics and continued on, as she continued to take pics. I stopped at the Ranger to let them know where the bears were, and she drove towards them. I made it back to the car, threw some more water on my face, loaded up the bike and headed home, with my eye's, nose, face and arms still burning. 8.1km round trip, 9 caches, 2 bears, 1 bicycle, What a great night. lol

Looking forward to my upcoming trip to Las Vegas, Nevada, Bakersfield, California, Los Angeles, and Hollywood. Probably not going to get too many caches as the 2 weeks will be filled with Magic conventions and shows.

Well, that's it for this month,
Keep on caching!!
Chris Yuill

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Heavy Favorites

Favorite Points for you!!!

I have found over 4500 different caches, but am still amazed with some of the caches and the containers when they are cool ones.
Check out this video link of a Cool Gadget Cache I found a couple weeks ago while in Agassiz to do a show.

Finding Favorite caches

In December when I was in Edmonton for Christmas and New Years, I grabbed a challenge cache called "Top 10 Challenge Cache" which sadly for a cool challenge cache of Top 10 favorites, it was only a magnetic light pole cache. (A favorite point can be rewarded to a cache by cachers if they feel it is a great cache)

But the challenge was a good one, it was to find the top 10 favorited caches within 20km of your home. I found and signed the log, but was unsure if I had found all of the caches need. When I got home I took a look and found there was still 4 that I needed to complete. I got the "CacheDuino" shortly after getting back from my trip and you can read about that adventure in a previous blog. The one cache on this list below called "Gold Star - Graduation Day Foundations" unfortunately is not just a simple multi. Nope, to do this cache you need to complete 10 other puzzle caches in a series to get several clues to be able to find the whereabouts of the cache and how to open it. So in other words to complete my "Top 10 Challenge" I have to find a total of 20 different caches. I started working on the 10 puzzles when I had time, and got a bit of help for a couple of them.

I started to grab all of the Gold Star caches, so I could work out the final co-ords to the multi. I got 7 of them one day, and the remaining 3 on the following day during the May long weekend.

On the last day of May, I had a day off, so I headed over to the final!! Here is my log from the cache:

     Well, today was the day. In December when I was in Edmonton for Christmas, I found a challenge cache that you had to find the 10 most favorited caches within 20km from your home location. I have already found several of them, but this cache was one of those that I needed, but as you know to get this cache you need to find 10 other puzzle caches to find all the info to get this one. Which basically meant I had to find 20 caches before I can log the challenge cache in Edmonton. I have been picking away at the puzzles over the past few months, and finally got them all solved. I then proceeded to find them over a couple of days, while collecting all the clues in them. Almost didn't find one and was about to bail on it, but did one more search further away than the Co-ords and made the find. With a bit of help from another caching friend, I deciphered the remaining clues, did all the math and got the final cords and the codes. Today I took a day off, and thought I would go make the find. When I got there, the GPS and my phone app took me away from the cache site as I was almost on top of the cache. Finally back on track, and looking a bit harder I saw the little bugger(actually quite a big bugger)(See pic)
I retrieved the container but then had to work out the field puzzle. It took me a bit, but finally came up with the right answer.
PS It is mixed, so no spoiler!!
Got the log book and signed it. Took some pics for my upcoming blog and put it all back together. Covered in white fluffy cottonwood fluff by this time(I am allergic to it) I headed back towards my car. I headed off to another of the caches that I needed for the challenge and after grabbing that one, I only have one left to get, so I can log a cache I signed over 5 months ago. Because of this log, I also completed May's challenge on "The Monthly GeoChallenge of the Month" Faceboog page on the last day of the month. Thanx again for this awesome cache and the fun and challenge it was to finally find it.

So with one more heavily favorited cache to find, my little boy and I went Sunday morning to Science World to check out the Pixar Exhibit. On the way home we decided to stop and grab the cache called "In-Tree-Ging"  (Video was filmed by Oliver)

I was finally able to log the cache I found in Edmonton back in December. The sad thing was that after all these heavily favorited caches, that had to be found to log the challenge, the container was a simple magnetic cache on a lamp post. Pretty lame for a challenge that asks you to find some very cool caches. I actually thought about not logging it, and searching out another Challenge cache that is similar.
Well, I am not sure where my next adventure will take me, but in August I will be heading off to a couple of Magic conventions in Las Vegas and Bakersfield, California. I will also be heading to Hollywood and the Magic Castle. Although I will be pretty busy with show and magic lectures, I have already planned out which caches I will be trying to grab while there. Mostly some more virtuals, several cool ones, and hopefully some heavy favorited caches!!

Well, that's it for this month,
Keep on caching!!
Chris Yuill

Monday, 14 May 2018

Geocaching turns 18 years old!!

Happy Birthday Geocaching!!

GPS, or Global Positioning System, was developed by the US Department of Defense. This satellite navigation system was intended for military use and therefore the signals were scrambled, limiting accuracy for civilian use to about 100 meters. On May 1, 2000, President Clinton announced that this scrambling, known as Selective Availability (SA), would be turned off. Civilians were then able to enjoy accuracy on the order of 10 meters.
On May 3, 2000, Dave Ulmer proposed a way to celebrate the demise of SA. He hid a bucket of trinkets in the woods outside Portland, Oregon and announced its location in a posting made to the USENET newsgroup sci.geo.satellite-nav. This announcement is remarkable for laying out the essence of the hobby that is still in place today. It's all there. The container. The trinkets. The log book. The rule of take something, leave something, sign the logbook. Dave Ulmer invented geocaching in one fell swoop in that newsgroup posting.
Within a day, the original stash had been found. Within days, more stashes had been hidden in California, Kansas, and Illinois. Within a month, a stash had been hidden as far away as Australia. The hobby was fast on its way to being a worldwide phenomenon.
18 years later and there are over 3 million caches hidden worldwide!!!! #geocaching

I found my first cache find on 09/07/2008 and have been caching now for almost 10 years, and writing this blog every month since 2012!!!
I was fortunate enough to visit the original spot on July 1/2010 where this momentous cache was placed. The original container is no longer there, but it has been replaced by the "Original Stash Tribute Plaque"
Magicman65 at the Original Stash Tribute Plaque

Original Stash Tribute Plaque

That same weekend we found the A.P.E. Cache and went to Geowoodstock VIII

 The A.P.E. Cache

Geowoodstock VIII
This was my log from the Geowoodstock event:
This was my first Mega event, and I must say it was AWESOME!!!! Had a ton of fun, met a load of interesting people from all over. Met MNT-MAN(He was our BC cache reviewer at the time) Saw lots of interesting stuff and grabbed lots of interesting caches on the road to get here. All in all a very cool trip. Thanx to all that made it happen, and I was glad to have done it with some great friends from BC. T4TE

Was at a Lego convention with my little boy last month and I purchased an engraved Lego mini figure and keychain. It is now trackable on
 PS Feel free to discover this!!! #lego

Gold country caching

Cache for Gold - Merritt

The weekend of May 11-13 was the Gold Country Events.
I went to the second of three gold country events in Merritt. I got to town early to check-in for the event and saw some familiar faces from Vancouver Island, and the Vancouver area.

Some new caches were to be released and coordinates were given out as they were not published yet. I shared a first to find with Kylekite, which is very weird because we just shared for first to find on 4 caches back in Coquitlam about a week and a half ago. Lol
Last time I was through this area there was so much smoke it was ridiculous with all the fires that were burning in the Logan lake and cache Creek areas and this time, no smoke but flooding everywhere.

The Fraser river was flowing fast!!

They had to move the event in Merritt before it even started, because of flooding and two of the bridges where closed.
After the event was over and I went to get the FTF on one of the new caches, I then went to leave town and one of the bridges that was closed had opened briefly, which was good, that I got through as it was only an hour long trip to the next event in Lytton versus 2 1/2 hour roundabout trip to Lytton through Logan Lake and Ashcroft.

I did several caches along the way trying to collect the rest of the stickers I need for the gold coin from gold country.

I got to Spences Bridge and met up with some other cachers from the event this morning in Merritt, I grabbed a cache with them and then I then continued on down the road heading to Lytton grabbing a few more caches along the way. I got a cache called "A wise man once said...." 
It was in a yard and there was a bunch of art and sculptures made out of many different objects.
My new ride!!

Cache for Gold -Lytton

Day three of the events but only day two for me

Today was the wrap up event in Lytton in Caboose Park, so I got up this morning and went out and grabbed a few caches nearby that I did not get yesterday when I got to town. The event was a good one, with some mini events that took me around town on a scavenger hunt with some other cachers (Momma and Baby Bear)

Had a great time at the event and even won a couple of prizes including a cool geo coin that is a limited addition coin.

On the highway heading towards Hope from the gold country area, there are 7 tunnels that you go thru along the way.

Some are curved and longer and some are quite short. But there is a cache called "The 8th Tunnel" in an awesome location.
It is a tunnel that is about 100 metres off the road on a short hike thru the woods, that does not see any Vehicle traffic . The 8th Tunnel was part of the old Trans-Canada highway that included the Alexandra bridge used in the 1950's before the new highway and tunnels were built. Below in this blog, you will see that I did some caching at the Bridge also.

The Fraser Canyon Highway Tunnels were constructed in the late 1950s to about the mid 1960's as part of a Trans-Canada Highway project. There are 7 tunnels in total, the shortest being about 57 metres (190 ft); the longest, is about 610 metres (2,000 ft) and is one of North America's longest. They are situated between Yale and Boston Bar.

In order from south to north, they are:
Saddle Rock,
Sailor Bar,
Hell's Gate,
Ferrabee and,
China Bar.

The Hell's Gate tunnel is the only tunnel that does not have lights, while the China Bar tunnel is the only tunnel that requires ventilation. A project at the Ferrabee Tunnel was to install warning lights that are activated by cyclists before they enter the tunnel. This was required because the tunnel is curved. Later on, the China Bar and Alexandra tunnels got the same warning lights as they too are curved.

Grabbed a cool new virtual called "Water Under the Bridge to Nowhere" where I met up with a couple of other cachers Hugh and Hughling

from the event also heading home, so we teamed up and grabbed several caches together. Left the bridge and grabbed a few more on the way back into town. A great 2 day trip!!!

Well, that's it for this month,
Keep on caching!!
Chris Yuill

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Day trips and Magic

Bellingham April 15/18

Today I went to Bellingham, Washington with another caching friend to do some caching.
We got a total of only 21 caches although I only logged 19 as I had gotten 2 of them already, but the main goal today was not to get a ton of caches but it was to get 7 or 8 different Icons.
We first got a traditional cache (we would get a few more of these as well) then we went to a virtual cache that I had already got a few years back on a trip thru town. We then hit up a cool puzzle called "sushi.glue.sides" I had no idea on this puzzle when I looked at it originally but my caching partner knew exactly what to do and I am now armed with the app for this kind of technology.

We then did a very cool Wherigo called State of the Solar System
It was a nice walk as the sun was out and the cool thing was this week groundspeak was giving out souvenir's for the solar system, so this was the perfect cache to get.

The Sun on a sunny day!!

After the nice walk and stopping in a shop or two along the way, we headed over to the University of Christi where there is a webcam cache. I have already done this cache a few months back on a trip down to Seattle, with a magician friend. But it was the first webcam cache for her.
At the fountain

Next we grabbed a multicache, followed by a very cool letterbox cache called "Geo Post Office and TB Transfer Station"
It was a locked cabinet on the side of a garage and was very well organized as you can see by the pics.

Awesome cache and definitely a reason why it has 245 favorite points.
Next we did another puzzle but this one was also a challenge cache called "An Uber Icon Day Challenge Washington State"
I have done 7 icons in a day already here in Washington state on October 14/17 but I also completed another 7 icon day during this trip. We also found a couple of benchmarks while here also which gave us bonus points.
We then headed east of town to grab another Virtual since I had already found the previous one. It was called "Triplin' the Rock Fantastic"

It was in a park and had a ton of very cool sculptures. We spent a good 30 mins just wandering thru looking at all the artwork, and sculptures. Check out the map and some other pics at this "Link"

We then went nearby to grab an earthcache with some waterfalls. Very cool stone bridge.

We then headed back into town where we found a couple of benchmarks to complete our Icon finding day and then stopped by a local pub for some food and refreshment to celebrate our finds. Then we headed toward home and grabbed several traditional caches and another letterbox on route. All in all an awesome day of caching and fun!!! Look forward to doing it again soon.

FVMC Bombs Away Magic Competition

I performed last night in the Fraser Valley Magic Circle "Bombs Away" competition
This is where the Fraser Valley Magic Circle members dig out a routine / prop / trick that they own but have NEVER PERFORMED it before for any audience!

The person that does the best job - based on a panel of experts AND the audience will be crowned the winner! And guess who brought home the trophy!!

Bombs away trophy

Well, that's it for this month,
Keep on caching!!
Chris Yuill

Back to gold country and a meeting with a Bear!!

So on June 22, I d ecided to take a spontaneous trip back up to the gold country to grab some of the Gold Country caches that I missed o...