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Cacher of the Month - April 2012




This month's Cacher of the Month, Derivative, didn't believe me when I told them that they were this month's selection. I had to reassure them that the statistics didn't lie, they were indeed on the top of my list. Getting to the top is no mean feat either. You have to have longevity in the game, significant finds, a number of hides, and be actively using the GC.com website. In addition, you can garner brownie points by being nominated. Caching since August 2007, and hiding over 20 geocaches is probably what got them to the top this month. Hailing from the Westman region of the province, they have hidden many quality caches, including a challenge cache (my favourite type of cache). Reading through their responses to the questionnaire, I see they plan their roadtrips in a similar manner to myself. I set my sights on accomplishing certain challenge caches and use the roadtrip to fulfill the requirements. In fact, I have to travel out to Brandon to pick up their Unusual Violet cache to fulfill a challenge cache where you have to have the whole rainbow (ROYGBIV) of colours in cache finds. (I'm still looking for Indigo, hint, hint cache hiders!!). Read on to learn more about this month's Cacher of the Month, Derivative:

  1. When did you start Geocaching? How did you find out about Geocaching?
  2. In the summer of 2007 there was a picture on the front page of the Brandon Sun showing soldiers from Shilo geocaching in the parks in Brandon. It seemed like a fun use for the Garmin Etrex our daughter had given us for Christmas. I immediately registered online and we found our first cache that evening, a cache within easy walking distance of our home and placed by Mosesrip.

  3. What was it about geocaching that got you hooked into the game?
  4. The clever urban micros placed by Mosesrip, the puzzles and walks in the woods submitted by Dragonfreys and the chance to play outside have been irresistible.

  5. Have you cached in any other provinces, countries?
  6. We have a colorful assortment of souvenirs from six provinces and 23 states and we found one cache in France.

  7. Have you ever introduced someone to geocaching? If so, who?
  8. We have taken every family member out to find a few and have talked to lots of people about it. One of those people was a staff member at the school where I taught. Now she and her husband are cachers.

  9. How do you describe the sport of Geocaching to your family and friends who haven't tried it yet?
  10. We use a battery powered GPS unit to find containers in the parks or the woods. We sign the log in the container and online. It's wonderful motivation to get off the couch and go for a walk.

  11. What are other interests or hobbies that you have (please go into detail / accomplishments)?
  12. We are both avid readers. We dabble in photographing the birds and animals we see. We're season ticket holders for the local junior hockey team and active church members.

  13. What are some things you don't like about geocaching? What are your pet peeves?
  14. Garbage in public places! Everyone who's been out for a walk understands that.

  15. What is the most interesting/unusual place that geocaching has taken you?
  16. Grasslands National Park in Saskatchewan. We spent two days walking those hills. It's a really different area, very solitary, wide open vistas and just enough animal life to spy on.

  17. What is the most memorable cache that you have found (or tried to find?)?
  18. Finding Beverly (GC28) was really special because of its age, Manual GPS Trilateration (GCWBHN) was the most challenging puzzle, Brown (GC1BJD8) took us the most tries to find (Who else but Hogger Jeff would put a nano in the woods!).

  19. What, currently, is your favourite, unarchived Manitoba geocache?
  20. Our favorite caching experiences tend to be the ones that have great walks. Brambles (GC1C2Q7) and Einstein's Challenge (GCV4QF) for summer and Wildlife Tracking Telemetry (GCTA3N) in the snow with snowshoes. Old Stone (GC8643) in the fall.

  21. What is your favorite Caching Story?
  22. We had stopped on the way home from Grasslands National Park to look for Birds, Saskatchewan TCDNSK (GCMYFE). D2 (the offline member of this team) had found the envelope made from an inner tube and reached inside to get the cache. With a shriek, he pulled out his hand with 2 or 3 mice running across it.

  23. What is your most interesting item found in a cache?
  24. haven't found it yet

  25. What items if any do you carry with you when you go on a hunt?
  26. We usually carry a pen, but we have borrowed one from a nearby hotel and bought one at a university cafeteria. If we take the backpack, there's a camera, flashlight, tweezers, magnet with extendable handle, towel, zipper bags, and CITO bags.

  27. What kind of GPSr do you use?
  28. Garmin GPSMap 62

  29. What methods do you use to avoid muggle detection?
  30. shoe tying and talking on cell phone - not too creative, often we tell adults in the area about geocaching to avoid just looking creepy as we prowl around

  31. What is the meaning of your username?
  32. In math, a derivative gives a rate at which something is changing. We took up caching at a point when we were both about to retire. The structure of our lives was changing and our use of technology was changing. In common use, the word means something that is derived from or the product of something else. Who we are is very much a result of our experiences. As I registered for geocaching, it seemed like the people we already were were about to be affected by this new activity.

  33. What was the most memorable travel bug that you have found?
  34. It was the biggest, Curious George sitting in a big yellow wooden car about 20 or 25 cm long.

  35. Which geocachers do you respect or standout to you the most?
  36. Besides those mentioned already, OHMIC for Caching the Marsh and the prolific array of informative caches.

  37. With whom do you normally go geocaching?
  38. just the 2 of us

  39. If you could cache anywhere in the world, where would you like to go?
  40. Texas

  41. Is there a challenging local cache you have in your sights right now? Which one?
  42. Mosesrip has recently published his 6th incarnation of Swamp. We took a look and will need to take a couple more.

  43. Of your placed caches, which is your favorite? Why?
  44. Unusual Violet (GC36AR3) is the first Manitoba cache to make use of ultraviolet light and invisible ink. Yellow Quill (GC2FCAJ) overlooks the junction of the Souris and Assiniboine Rivers and is a great walk.

  45. What kind of books do you prefer to read? What was the last book you read?
  46. Mostly we read well-written fiction, lately the series of mysteries by Charles Todd.

  47. Can you play a musical instrument?
  48. D2 plays the guitar

  49. How far from your house is the nearest unfound cache?
  50. Last month it was 47 km. Last week it was 12.5 km. Today it is 0.75 km. See what I mean about the rate at which things change?

  51. Besides your GPSr, what other tools (electronic or otherwise), or software do you make use of?
  52. GSAK, Google Earth and a topographic map of Canada are basic these days. There's a story about caching before we started using Google Earth that's too complicated to tell here but involves a long walk on a cowpath and no cache at the end.

  53. Do you use your GPSr for other reasons other than Geocaching?
  54. Occasionally we've used it to find our way on the road and I have checked the date on it.

  55. What is in your iPod/CD player right now?
  56. Better question would be what's the next challenge cache you plan to complete? After finishing Manitoba ABC, the provincial parks and the cache attributes, we took on the alphanumeric cacher names. We'll be heading to Morris next week to sign the log on that one. Actually, we find those the most addictive caches and they have helped guide some excellent road trips

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