Archive for January 28, 2012
Today a group of geocachers including myself decided to head underground and do some urban caving to find some of the many geocaches that are hidden in the network of drains under the city and surrounding suburbs. The event was called “Tunnelling for smilies” and was an attempt to escape the heat of last week. I guess we weren’t far enough underground as it was both hot and humid.
A big thing with urban caving is keeping an eye on the weather above ground. Any hint of rain and it was to be called off. There was rain forecast today but not until later on in the afternoon. We had a ground crew up top watching the weather radars and we were in radio contact with the surface.
Including kids we probably had a group of around 30. we started out in the city with an easy one to warm up – GC38T1Y Tunnel-Do-Ku. This one only involves a 25 metre walk into a drain.
From here we headed east to GC18AZY The Shadowlands. This started with a pleasant walk from a path in an open drain admiring the artwork of the local youth on the walls – some of it was actually pretty good. Into the tunnel we went for about 200 metres (probably wasn’t that far) and hoisted up a light kid to grab the cache.
Next was GC2H2BE Tangrams – a walk along 3rd Creek and under the Schweppes factory for quite a way with the drain getting smaller as we went and with plenty of cockroaches lining the walls. We had some water in this drain but it wasn’t flowing. I wonder what the factory above is like given the cockroaches below and they were big ones too. The Burtons actually managed to maintain a GPS signal on this one – not sure how that was.
After grabbing a couple of nearby caches, it was onto GC1ZC57 Down the Drain. This was more like up the drain as it was a 1 metre pipe that went up at about 45 degrees. There was some intrepidation to go in due to spider webs, so rather than stand around I took the lead and cleared the way for the others. As we neared the cache a torrent of water came down from above. It was our ground crews idea of a joke to see how many they could get wet. We were hot by then so it wasn’t all that bad – I hope it just was drinking water.
Our last one for the day (well for me at least) was GCTRJ4 Ultraviolet but not before stopping for a hot pancake brunch supplied by Heidi from Team Scoobster (it was well received - Thanks Heidi). Ultraviolet involved heading underground and looking for a clue that could only be read with a UV light. We soon found the clue, found the cache and most of the group called it a day. The day was getting warmer and most of the kids had reached their limit.
I had run out of time due to commitments for fire crew duties at Speedway City but what was left of the group headed back to the city to tackle GC34WMY Wow, it’s dark in here! This one proved to be the biggy of the day with 950 metres underground – oh well another day.