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Cacher of the Month - October 2011
Have you ever tried to get a FTF (First to Find) in the last year or so? Think you've missed out by only a few minutes? I think I know why, and they're the MBGA Cacher of the Month: klblue. Sometimes I think that "k" (Ken) never sleeps. It doesn't matter what time of day the caches are published, he's soon on site signing the logs. I've been fortunate to meet the entire family Mom, Dad and 2 little Blues. They're lots of fun to be around and very enthusiastic about the game. Let's learn more about them:
- When did you start Geocaching?
- How did you find out about Geocaching?
- What was it about geocaching that got you hooked into the game?
- Have you cached in any other provinces, countries?
- Have you ever introduced someone to geocaching? If so, who?
- How do you describe the sport of Geocaching to your family and friends who haven't tried it yet?
- What are other interests or hobbies that you have (please go into detail / accomplishments)?
- What are some things you don't like about geocaching? What are your pet peeves?
- What is the most interesting/unusual place that geocaching has taken you?
- What is the most memorable cache that you have found (or tried to find?)?
- What, currently, is your favourite, unarchived Manitoba geocache?
- What is your favorite Caching Story?
- What is your most interesting item found in a cache?
- What items if any do you carry with you when you go on a hunt?
- What kind of GPSr do you use?
- What methods do you use to avoid muggle detection?
- What is the meaning of your username?
- What was the most memorable travel bug that you have found?
- Which geocachers do you respect or standout to you the most?
- With whom do you normally go geocaching?
- If you could cache anywhere in the world, where would you like to go?
- Is there a challenging local cache you have in your sights right now? Which one?
- Of your placed caches, which is your favorite? Why?
- What kind of books do you prefer to read? What was the last book you read?
- Can you play a musical instrument?
- How far from your house is the nearest unfound cache?
- Besides your GPSr, what other tools (electronic or otherwise), or software do you make use of?
- Do you use your GPSr for other reasons other than Geocaching?
- What is in your iPod/CD player right now?
Lorna found an advertisement about geocaching in a parenting magazine. She tried it out and really liked it. Now Ken does most of the geocaching.
It is a family activity that can be done outdoors. The kids like to find treasures and they get exercise doing it. It is also fun because it is a challenge.
We have cached in North Dakota, Minnesota and Ontario. We have a trip planned to Mexico in the New Year and will check out any caches near our resort.
We have introduced our nieces and nephews to geocaching. We have told many people about it and all have been very interested in it. Ken's dad looks after our geocaches in Eriksdale and his brother has geocached with us as well. Ken's cousin Mike has tagged along and helped find some caches too.
We explain it to our family and friends as a high-tech treasure hunt using a GPS. We tell them about our kids trading items and the satisfaction we get from finding a cache. We also add that it is great to be outdoors instead of sitting in front of a TV.
Ken is a competitive athlete. He and his teammates have won 5 Canadian National Softball Championships and he has played in the Slo-pitch World Series. He has won various awards for his athleticism and sportsmanship through Softball Manitoba. He also coaches his son's baseball team and plays competitive sponge hockey. He is very competitive in other sports as well. Ken also has a very impressive collection of sports cards and memorabilia. The whole family likes to play games on our Wii and go camping in the summer.
We are disappointed when caches aren't maintained. For example, a geocache has been missing for awhile and nothing has been done to maintain it. Other than that, we love everything about geocaching.
One of the most interesting caches we went to was in Minneapolis. It was a 5/5 rating. Ken had to take a tool way out to a swamp to retrieve the cache. There is a geocache in Eriksdale (Ken's home town) that is called Eriksdale's Dirty Little Secret which is near a bomb shelter.
One of the most memorable caches was a multi-cache by ruylopez. It was a group effort with txnchk and pugbaby. It took quite awhile to complete this challenging cache. We finished in the wee hours of the morning. There are many other great caches that are just as memorable, but there are too many to list.
There were many great caches by Trove Chasers that we have found. I think Splashing New York Style possibly would get the nod. There are so many great caches out there, it's hard to single out just one.
I took my nephew Kyle with me to find a cache on the way to Kenora. We had to go through a rock tunnel, follow train tracks, and then follow a trail to ground zero. It started to rain and on the way back as we reached the train tracks, a train came chugging around a bend. We quickly got off the tracks and made our way back through the tunnel. We both had tripped and fallen a few times to and from the cache because of the light rain. After finding this cache, we both said that it was our most interesting and fun cache to find. A another funny caching story was when Ken found Zach's Place. It was 5 AM and he was waiting with a 12 foot ladder to cross the street. A van with two senior citizens passed by. They sure had puzzled looks on their faces. They must have wondered what the heck was this guy doing with a ladder at 5AM in the middle of the winter.
We have found many beautiful geocoins and trackables in caches. We found a partial pack of cigarettes that we permanently removed from a cache. We have found a beer cooler bag, a thermos, a flashlight, and other items in the vicinity of a cache.
We usually carry a bag full of tradable items with us. Elijah and Hayden just love to trade for items in caches. Ken carries a reachy tool, a magnetic pick up tool, tweezers, flashlights, extra batteries, and a few other items in his toolbox. From time to time we have a 12 foot ladder that folds up in the vehicle. You never know when you might need it.
Ken primarily uses his Garmin GPSmap 62st. The boys have a Geomate Jr that they use from time to time. We also use our Garmin nuvi 265 to help navigate to caches.
The boys tend to be the best way to avoid muggle detection, especially in playgrounds. Sometimes you just end up explaining what geocaching is to people and that seems to work well.
Lorna picked our name. She used our first initial from our names combined with our last name. Ken would have probably picked a more interesting name.
We picked up Officer Bobby from Hôtel des Voyageurs. Lorna's dad was a City of Winnipeg police officer. We have picked up so many cool geocoins and travel bugs that it's hard to narrow it down to just one.
Manitoba has so many great cachers. Some of the cachers that we respect or stand out are ruylopez, Trove Chasers, Dani_Carriere, OHMIC, Jean Déniche, Jbrandt36, gnirips, crackerjackie, GeoPahkers, trag_cachers, txnchk, Angelfreak, pugbaby, and 1purplemonkeydishwasher1. These are only some of the cachers we really respect, as the list is quite long.
Normally Ken does most of the caching, but getting out caching as a family is always fun. We have cached with txnchk, pugbaby, ruylopez, and a few other cachers from time to time. We have taken many family members out caching with us as well.
We would love to cache in Australia and Hawaii. New Zealand would be a cool place to cache.
We would love to find The Changeling by ruylopez. There are also a few other 5 star caches that we would like to find.
It is hard to pick a favorite of the caches we placed so far. You may have noticed many of our cache names include the word "blue" to represent our family name. Many of these are our favorites.
Ken doesn't read books but he does read magazines. His favorite is FTF Geocacher which we subscribe to. Lorna likes to read but has little time to do so. Elijah and Hayden's favorite books are the "Skippy-Jon Jones" series and anything related to Star Wars.
0.3 miles. It's called Bob and Prunella's First Cache and is just down the street from our home. We haven't looked for this one yet because we thought we would save it as one of the caches for our OBG Bingo. Now that we have completed the OBG Bingo, we'll be picking up Bob and Prunella's cache soon.
Lorna sometimes uses an app called "Geocache Navigator" on her Blackberry, but hasn't figured out all of the features of it yet. Ken has a myriad of tools he brings geocaching…some of these are "Mr. Reachy", mirror on a expandable handle, rubber boots, tweezers, flashlight, ladder, etc.
Yes, we use it when we are out of town and need directions to a location.
We don't use our Ipod or CD player much. Instead we listen to various stations on XM Radio. If the kids are with us we are usually listening to "Kids Place Live" on XM.