Author Topic: The Levels  (Read 3146 times)

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Starkiller

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The Levels
« on: September 17, 2012, 12:53:47 »
The wonderful season of fall is nearly upon us... and it is (arguably) the best season of the year for geocaching. In the fading days of spring I was part of the three person team to find Rockumulus’ level caches in the LaRose forest: http://coord.info/GC3GJWE . We are the FTFs, and really the “only to finds” on nearly all of the geocaches (not counting the beta tester). It is a very creative and satisfying series. Even in the spring, the ground was very dry except for established streams (that all seemed to have natural bridges), so you can probably make it through with dry feet. The trails are minimal to non-existent, which really adds to the wonder and satisfaction of finding a cache “out there”.

The puzzles really aren’t as bad as they look... just start off with the lower level ones to get into the game, and plan a return trip to get the rest. If you had the right team with the right tools, it could be done in a single day, but I think it would be more enjoyable over a couple of trips.

With all the geocaching talent in the CCC area I hope some of you will step up to this Golden Challenge (D’Or)!



GopherGreg

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2012, 15:45:34 »
Funny you should mention these, I have been working on them for quite some time now. I have almost solved the first one, 90% done it!

marvin_gardens

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2012, 21:04:42 »
Ah, so many great puzzles caches...so little time...  :-\/

Xira

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2012, 22:32:57 »
Quote
Ah, so many great puzzles caches...so little time... 

... and at least an hour's drive away. Some day.

bluelamb03

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2012, 08:36:50 »
Quote
The wonderful season of fall is nearly upon us... and it is (arguably) the best season of the year for geocaching.

Quite right! I was part of the geoMob that found the 'Space' series Rockumulus placed for SNCITO in the spring of 2011 and it was an easy decision to skip the "Levels" series this spring once we saw the terrain we were expected to traverse. The 'Space' series had some technical mistakes (Astéroïde Thalès (6001), http://coord.info/GC2TCAQ) and some poorly designed caches (Battlestarship, http://coord.info/GC2TD2M) and a freaking hard field puzzles to solve (Ce n'est pas la fin du monde, http://coord.info/GC2TBPF) but the real kicker was the awful terrain! Just a hellacious place to be in the spring! It's a swamp!

We were hoping that after all the time and effort he had expended on the 'Space' series for so very few finders he had learned his lesson on what kind of caches to place for a social event like SNCITO, but we arrived in the area for the 'Levels' caches (Area 43 – Vampires prohibited, http://coord.info/GC3GJY1) and discovered that nothing had been learned from last spring. It was an easy decision to postpone any attempt on these caches until winter; snowshoes will make this a much nicer day out.

Watch for these caches on the geoMob thread in December or January.

Blue -
Without shared stories we are strangers.
- Sheila Mendonça


GreyingJay

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2012, 09:55:50 »
Ooh, a winter snowshoe road trip! I'll be there! :D

cron

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2012, 10:53:26 »
Ditto bluelamb03's comment (except I didn't think the puzzle was so difficult, but it's just me ;D).

Anyway, I would have tried them out if it was closer from home. I was definitely planning on going this winter, but my only fear is some of the caches may have disappeared with time or will be on the ground under the snow (he didn't learn the lessons, so I'm not sure the containers are all attached).

It's so far out that I don't want to waste two trips on this. Hopefully, someone will go and confirm everything is there and then we'll all be able to enjoy the series on a long snowshoe hike.

Starkiller

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2012, 14:04:52 »
The containers are all regular/largish sized, obvious hides in winter friendly locations. There is an extremely low chance of them being muggled. Some are pretty creative, like http://coord.info/GC3GJY8!

Again, we did this series in May and rarely had issues with water (only while crossing a few obvious streams, and even then there were natural bridges). Enjoy!

GopherGreg

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #8 on: October 06, 2012, 13:41:45 »
I started on these puzzles, got quite away into the first one, the dicovered cron's puzzle, hulahup... and tryed to solve that. For 3 months, or so. Ughnn. Massive headache. Went back to the 'levels', but I realized I forgot everything I learned from that puzzle over the time, and I've been progressing slowly on them. Hope to find 'em!

Xira

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2013, 19:45:24 »
Despite my love of geometry based caches, the distance factor and the low number of finds on these caches were enough to deter me from going out to find them. I wanted to see more logs before making the trek out there. So, when the mob provided exactly that, I decided the time had come. I proposed an outing to Penguins42 and she picked Friday.

Our goal was to be the first to do the entire series in one day. Sadly, we failed. We didn’t get going until late morning, and the charts we prepared for Levels 7 and 10 had errors in them. As a result, we only made it to Level 11. Pitch dark combined with some nearby barking (disturbing after a day of near total silence except for us) were the factors that made us stop there. I think that without our errors and just a touch more observation on our part along the way we would have gotten them all done. I challenge someone to do that!

We had a lovely day for the outing but having to be on snowshoes in snow that occasionally let us down slowed us down. I think late summer or fall would be the ideal time to do these. I doubt I’d do it in spring. When all this snow melts, the creeks are going to be difficult to get across. The big benefit to going in winter was that they were a non-issue. In fact, at one point, we made decent time by following along one.

Although we didn’t make our goal, we were totally enjoyed our day. The puzzles are excellently thought out, the coordinates are excellent, the caches are super easy to spot, and the information in them is thorough and durably presented. I highly recommend this series of caches.

GreyingJay

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2013, 22:54:41 »
I echo Xira's sentiments (I thought I saw relatively fresh tracks in the snow...)

The series was not TOO difficult once you sit down and work out the math, the first few levels progress quite quickly, and you can do all the math using just a basic calculator and a GPS unit for the projections. The hides are obvious and easy to spot, large containers, and the terrain is pristine and peaceful. The elevation changes are a minor challenge in snowshoes, not sure I'd enjoy them if the ground was wet or muddy.

My only concern with this series is the relatively remote area. It's an hour's drive to get out there and the cell phone reception was very spotty. Definitely bring along a friend or two, and tell people where you're heading. There are properties next door (hence the barking) but still, you don't want to be caught unprepared, especially with the aforementioned elevation changes.

Xira

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2013, 21:19:26 »
Congratulations to Cron and Les Routards for completing this series in one day! And not only did they get the series, they got the other 6 physical caches, too.

SigsPig

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Re: The Levels
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2013, 16:51:04 »
I remember this series being posted for SNCITO as well & quickly decided that there were better fish to fry. The prospect of having to make repeated trips to Larose for a series of field puzzles isn't what I would describe as appealing. Nor having to bring along an Engineer to handle the mathematics. Too bad as Larose is one of the few winter spots where dogs ARE allowed  :-\