Friday, July 11, 2014

Crazy wild guys and gals






On August 2nd, a large group of geocachers are meeting somewhere northeast of Baytown to hike into some of the most inhospitable section of woods in East Texas for the soul purpose of finding 4 geocaches, one of which is 15 feet up in a tree.  It will be very hot and humid and potentially dangerous and that is exactly why these intrepid people are drawn to it.

It is what is known in geocaching circles as an “Event”.  An event is a gathering of geocachers to do something and this usually means they are going to eat, chat, share stories, and trackable items, called travel bugs and geocoins.

This particular event is to meet to do all of these things, except maybe the eat part if you exclude the boxes of donuts and kolaches.  Afterward, machetes in hand, they will tackle the wild and when I say wild, Borneo has nothing on East Texas when it comes to brambles and thorns.  The snakes are a trade-off and there will be snakes, feral hogs, spiders, and if there is water, maybe a gator or three.
2 men - 3 women event/11 mile hike

If you think this is a men only event, think again.  Chances are there will be an even split between males and females, as the geo-women will pert-near go any place a geocache resides.  I know one lady who tackled the One Huge Smiley series of caches in George Bush Park by herself; an 11-mile hike through deep vegetation.  This is a hike very few people will attempt by themselves, as GB Park is primitive, potentially hostile, and full of thorns.

I can say it is an extreme feat because I did it solo back in 2010.

There are only 4 geocaches hidden in this vast stretch of woods and when they published 2 years ago, the original 2 turned back the first to find hunters, then sent the next 2 geocachers to the hospital due to dehydration.  One very experienced geocacher from Beaumont left an online log of his experience and here it is: 

“Came over with Cache Control to try for this one. Parked at the listed parking coordinates to start our hike out from there and actually made it to ground zero without too much trouble. However, finding the cache was another thing all together. We looked for a good hour and a half, climbed every tree, looked in every hollow, and even used our scuba equipment in the nearby watered down area. All I can say is that the cache got the better of us.”

“Heading back towards the truck was where our bushwhacking skills were put to the test. We chose to do some exploring while we were there and found that the route we chose was not a good one at all. Briars, thickets, gullies, and more briars were the obstacles of the day on this trek. We eventually made
it back to the truck but not without pain and the shedding of much lost blood.”
  
Finally, an ex-Marine from Baytown named Ricky Rodriguez – who works for the city and goes by the geocaching handle Muddy Bones, on his second attempt, got the first to find honors:  “FTF @ 9:00 pm. When Cache Control first posted it as found, I figured only a Devil Dog would do this at night and in the rain...Semper Fi.  But, since it was changed to a note I knew that I had to go in and try my hand after work.  My oldest son and I got to the parking area about 1 1/2 hours after somebody else left (who had reportedly been there "all day"). At that, we figured we'd be second but wanted to give it a shot since we were already there. Sure was nice to find the blank log!  This one is definitely for those who prefer the road less traveled. Will get a favorite point.”
Now bear in mind, he wrote this in February.  We are going into the woods in August.  I’ve put out a call for a couple of paramedics or EMT’s to be on hand and my Jeep will be available to traverse the nearby pipeline in the sad likelihood someone will need medical attention.

The reason I am asking for medical help and offering my Jeep is because I organized this Bataan Death March type event.  Some folks want to jump off of bridges, cliffs, and buildings to get an adrenaline rush.  Geocachers simply want to challenge themselves in the woods over difficult to get to caches, or hard to find caches in parks, cemeteries, and trails.

Another reason they are coming is a couple of us are going to document the adventure with a video camera and post it on youtube.com.

This one is not for everyone and is not meant to be, but the sweet feeling of success that will come from finding these 4 geocaches and logging close to 4 miles in the dense woods in August’s extreme heat will make it worth all the blood, sweat, and tears that are shed getting there and back again.  I’m pretty much sure I’ll write about it after the fact – if I survive.
.

6 comments:

Buddy said...

Looking forward for the follow-up on the adventure !!!

Anonymous said...

I would have to bring a rifle on that trip. While trying not to ruffle the wildlife seems some gators and hogs let you know who the real estate belongs to. I emptied a 45 running backwards from a gator and never hit him. Good for me, he stopped chasing. Great Job guys and gals. -Steve Liles-

Anonymous said...

Really makes me want to start doing this!

Anonymous said...

You're crazy. You're crazy and trying to take a bunch of people with you. Might as well go ahead and line up a helicopter now, you may have to snake them out in a hurry. SW

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'll sit this one out. Good luck to these warriors and be safe!!! WC

Anonymous said...

Looks like thick deep bushes with bugs and maybe thugs. But outdoors that I love myself. An adventure other than a couch in AC. That's for sleepers. Great Blog!

Thankfully, we have an anchor!

 Today is Thanksgiving? Already? My grandson swam in the pool Monday. Am I the only one who feels like we are hurtling over the sur...