I don’t normally do New Year’s Resolutions. However, back on January 2, 2010 someone on the Groundspeak forums started a thread asking about caching goals for the upcoming year. My answers were quite simple:
– More events / group caching. The more I cache the more I like the social interactions.
– More hiking caches — hope to bag five new peaks this year.
– Make it to my third GeoWoodstock
– Break the 3000 Finds mark
Since it has been nearly a month since I last posted anything on here I figured I’d fall back on what all writers do at this time of year when they hit a mental wall and do a look back at the year that has gone by and how well I did in meeting those goals.
Goal #1: More events / group caching:
Oh yeah, mission accomplished on this one, for sure. My logs show 21 events for the year, which is the most I ever attended. The other thing that strikes me about the events I attended was the variety of events I went to this year, as well as the places I traveled for those events.
There were two events in Priddis (I organized them, but they still count!), two events in Medicine Hat, one in Lethbridge, the Canadian Badlands Cache and Release out in Three Hills (with the wind-up event at Sam’s Pizza in the ghost town of Rowley, AB), plus multiple events in Washington state, most notably Spokane and Seattle.
These events ran the gambit from quick breakfast gatherings, to multiple day cache-marathons, to a small gathering of cachers in a mall food court to thousands of people taking over a State Park. We met at midnight in the parking lot of Deerfoot Mall, we met in downtown Seattle at Groundspeak Headquarters itself.
It wasn’t all formally organized events either. There was plenty of time to cache with other folks, from all-day road trips to death marches to the tops of mountains. That brings me to Goal #2.
Goal #2: More Hiking Caches
Wow, the “five new peaks” was an easy target it seems. A quick look at the significant hikes from this year shows why:
– Windy Peak Hills, February 14 — aborted due to wind, cold and snow
– Lusk Creek Ridge, February 27 — explored the north and east peaks
– Ole Buck Mountain, April 17 — more of a glorified hill than a mountain, but…
– Lusk Creek Ridge, April 18 — back to explore the southern end this time
– Baril Creek, June 26 — a great trail leading to a point with views all around
– Mount Margaret, July 4 — above the snowline to find the oldest Geocache in Washington state
– Neahkahnie Mountain, July 7 — great views of the Pacific Ocean from this one
Powderface Ridge, July 18 — I finally got to hike this wonderful K-Country ridge
– South Baldy Ridge, August 7 — my most difficult solo hike (so far!)
– Wind Ridge, August 24 — perhaps the nicest ridge walk ever
– Grotto Canyon, September 11 — first person to find the cache at the end in 1319 days
– Mount Yamnuska, September 26 — finally got to scree ski my way down the front face
– Pigeon Mountain, October 3 — I took revenge on the mountain that nearly bested me back in 2006
– Moose Mountain, October 10 — See it every day for the last six years, seemed like a good idea to finally climb it
– Fisher Ridge, November 6 — I think this was the hardest hike of the entire year
Goal #3 & Goal #4: 3000 Finds and GeoWoodstock
These ended up being the same thing as I was able to time it so GeoWoodstock VIII in Carnation, Washington was my 3000th Geocache find. Having the event so much closer to home than past years was great because so many Calgary area cachers were able to make the trip this time. Everywhere we went we were running into people we knew. I don’t normally make any sort of effort to pick which cache ends up being a milestone, but in this case I made an exception.
I went out caching on 122 days of the year (so far anyway) and found 491 caches. The 122 days represents my lowest amount since 2005, and my 491 Finds represent the third straight year that number of Finds has decreased. You would think that means I am enjoying it less, but that simply isn’t the case. I’m having more fun now than I ever before, mainly because I am putting more effort into doing caches I think I will like rather than just doing them to get another number.
So, that’s it. The entire year of caching wrapped up in a few paragraphs. If a picture is worth a thousand words, these next 110,000 words summarize the year better than I ever could.