We discovered Geocaching back in 2001 when our kids were still pretty young. It’s such a fun family activity, especially in our area. Early on–in August 2002–we decided to place a cache of our own near our home in Kellogg, Idaho. After filling a coffee can with an assortment of trade items, we set off up the mountain to place our cache near a scenic overlook of the Silver Valley. We would get an email any time another Geocacher found it. This is the original listing on the Geocaching website. We enjoyed reading comments and seeing where people were from. After a few months, we learned that the coffee can lid had been chewed by a critter, so we went to the Army surplus store and bought a metal ammo container to replace the coffee can. Even after we moved away from Kellogg, we went back to check on the cache every now and then over the years. We tried to keep it well stocked with fun trade items. It was fun to read the log each time we visited.
Last summer we received notice that several people in a row hadn’t been able to find it, and that it would be deactivated unless we were able to confirm it was still there. Since we lived in Colorado at that time we weren’t able to check on it, and so it was retired.
This past weekend Lyle needed to go to the Kellogg shop to check on some electrical problems. It didn’t take him long to fix the problem, so he suggested we drive up the mountain to see if we could find the old cache.
We got out and tromped around through the trees.We knew we had hidden the cache in a “hole” under a tree. Here’s our original “spoiler” picture. The cache is under some of the forest debris–pine needles, sticks, moss…
…should be easy to spot, right?
Wrong! A lot can change in a forest in 14 years.
I thought this might be a likely spot.It wasn’t.
So we tromped around some more. I did get some neat macro shots.We were just about to give up when Lyle hollered, “Found it!”He had been kicking around in some pine needles and heard something hollow. He said the box was buried under at least 4 inches of pine needles. Not a pile of pine needles. That’s just how thick the pine needles were on the forest floor.Since it had already been officially retired, we took it back to the car with us.We were impressed to discover that everything was dry and in pretty good shape for how long it had been buried in the forest. It was especially interesting to read the log book. I typed it up for our archives and you can read it here: Log Book for the Silver Valley View Geocache.We had originally placed the cache in that spot so that people could enjoy the view of Silver Valley from up above. At that time, a reforestation project had been started, and by now the trees are flourishing… and blocking the view at that particular spot.
On the way back down the mountain, Lyle decided to try a little bit of off-roading in the Sequoia. I mean, if you’ve got an SUV, shouldn’t you at least have a little fun with it? He said it felt more impressive than it looked.
I think we’ve decided to restock the ammo container but find a new place for its next incarnation as a Geocache. I’ll let you know if and when we place it so you can go look for it!
Have you ever been Geocaching?
Our homeschool group did it a few years ago. We went to all of the geocaches in our area.
Karla Ezell Cook
How fun! I expect it would make a great field trip.
This is interesting as a friend of mine just told me about geocaching last night while were out on a photo shoot in Western NE. We plan to go “shooting” again soon and will combine that (hopefully) with geocaching!
Karla Ezell Cook
It always add a little extra interest to whatever you might be out and about doing. Enjoy!
Fun post! My lil sis has been doing this for years, as well as letterboxing. I had to check your log to see if they had been there. For whatever reason, I started at the bottom of the log and worked my way up. I knew they would be at the top, and sure enough I found them there in about 2005. I wonder if she knew it was you? Or if you knew it was them? haha fun!
Karla Ezell Cook
Yes, she did… and we did. In fact, I think we may have been the ones that turned them onto it, back when we were in the same youth group together. I know we’ve gotten several people started on Geocaching, and some of them have gone on to find even more Geocaches than we have.