Orientation Week

This week marked a big change for me, at least for a little while – I relocated to Adelaide (SA) to recommence my Post Graduate studies.  But before that could happen, as I was packing and preparing for my move, I got a new cache notification – A nice simple park and grab style, on a quiet street corner in Woy Woy.  With nothing “better” to do with my time, and a slight drizzle outside, hopefully keeping the other punters at bay, I figured I may as well high tail it to GZ, and go for the First to Find.  I haven’t bothered with FTF chases for the past couple of years, but this one seemed to be calling, so I grabbed a pen and the car keys and went straight there.  I found a reasonable sized bush at GZ, and poking my head into the folliage I spied a Munzee tag -thinking I hadn’t seen one of those in a while, but also knowing they often indicate the cache is not far, I pushed the branch it was attached to asside, and there I found the cache tucked neatly into a branch fork beyond.  I unfurled the log, and was pleased to see I was indeed the first to arrive, happily claiming poll position on the page.  I returned to the car, and made a quick online log to alert others that the FTF had gone, and headed off home again – and as I pulled away, I noted another geo-mobile pulling up.  Turns out it was Mr and Mrs Fish, who I’d beaten to the punch by a matter of minutes.

Cache Found: Hanging Around (GC6ZZAW)  Find #1364

Date Found: 7th February 2017

Location: Woy Woy, Central Coast, NSW

 

Fast forward a few days, and I arrived in Adelaide, safe and sound, and began settling into Campus life.  Of course, as I mentioned in my previous post, I was looking forward to the cache density the move would bring, so I wasted no time in commencing the collection of the local smileys.  I have half in mind that I might get a daily find streak going, and break my current record of 20 days… although I’m not completely committed at this stage, I did take the geo-bros advice to not go straight for the ones closest to home – they may well be needed on a rainy day.

I needed to go to the local shops a few times in those first few days, in order to get myself settled in with all my comfort items and food-stuffs, and I found that the 45min walk to and from the main shopping centre in the area heralded a couple of caches on the way – a simple way to get me started – I found a small test tube under a stone at a street corner artwork on my first day, and another small pill box tucked into a tree by the storm water drain on the second.  Both caches were quick and simple, with the only really notable thing being the artwork at each site… and I admit I had a fairly large chuckle when I saw a Stoned Care Bear alongside an Anonymous face – quite a dichotomy of graffiti art.

Caches Found: Flow of Life (GC22E78) and Woody (GC4AQ2H)  Find #1365-1366

Date Found: 17th and 18th February 2017

Location:  Sturt/Tonsley, Adelaide, South Australia

 

I was still keen to get out and explore the local area so I decided I’d go for a walk along one of the other main roads to see where it would take me.  Unfortunately the first 2 caches I stopped to find along my way seemed to be MIA according to the logs, but eventually I came upon a small parkland.  The map showed the dot directly behind a bus stop, and with a large gum in view as I approached, it was obvious that’s where I needed to look.  As I reached the big tree, I could see a section of root that had been broken off and was just resting in place, so I gave it a nudge with my foot, and of course, revealed the small container hidden beyond.

With that simple find up my sleeve, the following day I continued venturing along the same road beyond the reserve, finding a resolved GZ from a puzzle solved before I came (probably by dad) was just a little further along.  Bringing it up on the sattelite map showed me exactly where I needed to look – on a guardrail along the edge of the building, and as I headed toward GZ I smiled as I noted the building next door to GZ was an Archery Shop…. quite fitting with the theme of the puzzle. The cache was your typical eclipse tin magnetised to the inside of the guardrail, making for another easy find, although the super powerful magnet used made retrieval more of a challenge.

Caches found: BYO Rags (GC4THHR) and Aim High (GC4MTYD)   Find #1367-1368

Date found: 19th and 20th February 2017

Location: Clovelly Park, Adelaide, South Australia

 

By Tuesday Orientation activities had well and truly kicked in, and a simple time factor between events meant that today was one of those days that a campus cache would come in handy.  Having already looked at the cache in the main library, and deciding to leave that one for a rainy study day, I picked out a simple traditional a little north of the main Hub.  GZ was on the edge of a building, and the cache hint, “beneath your feet” suggested that the decking boards held the cache. Luckily all the campus activity was happening down the hill, so there was no-one about to worry me much, which meant I was free to get down on my back and peer along the underside edge of the decks.  Spotting what I came for I got up and readjusted my position to make the quick grab… Another eclipse tin cache… but the bonus find for this cache was actually the building itself – Sharing the cache name, ‘The Cove’, I discovered, is a Post Graduate study space with computers, printers and smartboards available for PG student use – One Sweet Find if I do say so myself!

Cache found:  The Cove (GC6R56A)   Find #1369

Date found: 21st February 2017

Location: Flinders University (Main Campus), Bedford Park, Adelaide, South Australia

 

The following day I had a few hours to myself, and so I figured it was a good time to go a little further afield.  I jumped on the first bus that came along, and went where it took me – to Hallet Cove, which was much further than I imagined I would be going, so from there I jumped on a train and went back a few stops to Brighton Beach.  There was a cache in the station car park, and although the logs suggested it was a tricky nano, I had seen plenty of hides on fences like these so figured I might be able to find it – but after sticking my finger up each and every pole and finding nothing, I conceded that the cache was either MIA or hidden in a more local manner to which I am yet to become accustomed.  Moving on, I headed down toward the beach, making my way to a cache on the Esplanade…. I hesitated at first though – the cache was within the dune area, and I always hesitate knowing the importance of staying out of dunes and letting the vegetation do its job rather than being trampled and pulled out.  But standing on the edge of the footpath I could see exactly where the cache was hiding, and could also see a basic geo-trail that was mostly sand rather than vegetation, so I dove in and made the quick find, retreating to the footpath as quickly as I could. Done.

From there I headed along the Esplanade toward the Brighton Jetty, enjoying the wind coming off the Southern Ocean as I did.  I was keen to see the Jetty while here, as its not something very common at NSW beaches, but was a little dissapointed that the cache here was a Wherigo… and I have zero idea about how to get my Whereigo app to work with the cache.  The hint and the logs gave me a pretty good idea about where GZ might be, so one day I suspect that I will head to the location I guess hides the cache, and hope for the best!

adl-brighton-slscThere was one more cache along this section of the Esplanade, next to the Brighton Surf Lifesaving Club.  Checking the details in the logs made it perfectly clear the cache was NOT along the fenceline, which is what seemed most obvious, and so I stood for a moment or two while I scanned the area for other possibilities…. if I was a cache, where would I hide? – A small round metal ‘thing’ on the Traffic island nearby intrigued me, so I wandered over to it, giving it a nudge with my foot – realising it shifted in place, I waited for the passing cars and then quickly bent down and lifted the circle thingy…. BINGO!  I retreated back to the footpath to sign in, and then had to wait a minute or 3 before I could safely plop it back into place without the worry of muggles thinking I was up to no good. Clever find on the part of the CO – a perfect cache sized hole inside a standard looking nothing. So I gave it a favourite point just for that – fancy finding something so unnaturally perfect for the game.

 
Once that was done I headed toward the local cemetery…. who doesn’t like a cemetery multi after all?  And as I got closer and my cache map zoomed in, I realised this was actually a 2 for 1 bonus, as there was an Earthcache icon hiding behind the multi icon on the same spot.  And as it turns out, I was in for a history lesson about the Antarctic explorer Sir Charles Mawson, buried at St Judes, and memorialised with a bit of granite stone.  Arriving at GZ I took note of the details on the memorial stone, finding all the answers I needed for the Earthcache, before I moved onto the multi.  adl-mawsonThe multi couldnt have been simpler – all I needed to do was check one of the trees to my left, equal to the number line Mawsons’ name appeared on his grave.  The stone plaque showed his name on the first line, so off I went and buried myself in the first tree along…. but finding nothing of note in there I returned to Mawson for an answer…. and only then the penny dropped and I realised that a Memorial Stone is not a Grave Stone – and there to the left of the stone was a grave, Mawsons grave of course.  And that enscription showed his name on line 3 – so this time I went to the third tree, and quickly found the container hidden within its branches.  Der Kel.

Caches Found: 161 Esplanade (GC4A17J)Life of the Beach – Brighton SLSC (GC2W00R)A Polar Experience (GC10JKJ) and Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration (GC6A1E4)  Find #1370-1373

Date Found:  22nd February 2017

Location: Brighton, Adelaide, South Australia

 

The following day I was back at the main shopping centre topping up on groceries…. knowing there were quite a few caches within walking distance of the centre I decided to take the geo-bros advice and go for one further afeild rather than close by. So I picked out a dot on the map a few blocks away and headed in its direction.  Finding a simple neighbourhood reserve, the map clearly showed which tree to search.  Rounding the trunk I found a couple of chunks of dirt covering a hole in the trunk, which could only mean one thing – I shifted the dirt and there, of course, was the cache.  I considered picking up another few while I was out and about, but then decided against that, knowing there will be plenty of other days ahead of me.

Cache found: Gregory Reserve (GC6NK5M)   Find #1374

Date Found: 23rd February 2017

Location: Oaklands, Adelaide, South Australia

 

By the end of the week my schedule had started to fill up, with meetings and so forth with course and topic coordinators, so I didn’t have a great deal of time to get off campus and make a find… Thinking I would have to use up one of the close to home/campus caches so early on, I wasn’t all that keen, but I eventually found enough time in my schedule to go for a short cache walk in the early evening.  I headed towards a puzzle cache that I (well the brainstrust) had resolved back at home, but arriving at GZ I found virtually nowhere worthy of a cache hide, and felt fairly suspicious poking around someones front garden, so I moved on to the next dot along the line – another puzzle, but this one being Auslan numbers I was much more confident with my final.  A short walk down a bush track, and a slight diversion off the path and I was at GZ – rounding the tree in front of me heralded a gaping hole in the base of the trunk, and hiding in was the decent sized cache.

Cache Found: Auslan Numbers (GC1CZAY)   Find #1375

Date found: 24th February 2017

Location: St Marys, Adelaide, South Australia

 

So I’ve gotten off with a good start for my South Australian caches, although looking at my schedule for next week, the first week of classes, I dont like my chances of continuing along with a cache a day to keep the doctor away – so I’m thinking I’ll leave that run until March, and focus more on the reason I’m down here for the following week.  So stay tuned – when I’m looking to procrastinate with my studies there’s bound to be another blog post!

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