The creator of a “school” for geocache hiders, an extreme geocacher with hides along mountain trails and the person who’s the glue that helps bind an entire state of geocachers together. We’re honoring each of these nominees for Geocacher of the Month for their contributions to the geocaching community. Each will receive worldwide recognition and a prize package from Geocaching HQ in Seattle, but which will be named Geocacher of the Month?
This is your opportunity to help decide who will take home the earned, never for sale, Geocacher of the Month geocoin (at left). Each featured Geocacher of the Month will receive the exclusive special edition Geocoin, a hat and a profile icon. They’ll also receive a certificate acknowledging their contributions, signed by two of the founders of Geocaching.com.
In December, Siig was named Geocacher of the Month.
One geocacher who commented wrote, “Hands down winner this month must be siig! There is a reason why they are by far the team in Denmark with most favourite votings (and not just 100 as hinted above….almost 2800 favourites received!). You always leave one of their hides with a silent smile or a big and noisy laugh, as they are most often very innovative and funny caches. Their caches are well kept and always an experience.”
Now it’s your turn to help us select the next Geocacher of the Month. Write a supportive comment at the bottom of this blog for the nominated geocacher that you feel should be awarded the title. A panel from Geocaching HQ will then use your comments to help guide the decision of which geocacher is awarded the Geocacher of the Month honor.
Here are your nominees for the January 2014 Geocacher of the Month. Some testimonials have been edited for length.
Tim Werbrich writes, “MikeOtt is Delaware’s Geocaching Ambassador and the Presidential leader of the Delaware Geocachers. Mike has over 16,500 finds and owns over 300 caches! Mike took the lead in creating the Delaware Geocaching Trail in conjunction with Delaware Tourism. This trail of about 70 caches takes cachers over scenic trails and to unique attractions throughout Delaware. He also created the C & D Canal Power Trail, a trail of over 150 caches that border the scenic Chesapeake & Delaware Canal. Mike also began the First State Challenge, an annual challenge series of caches in each of Delaware’s 3 counties. There are a lot more things he does for geocaching.
Mike is passionate about caching, but he also promotes caching throughout the state and region. Mike is at every event and CITO. He encourages others to give back to caching as well. I think he is the glue that keeps caching alive in Delaware. Mike is the perfect example of a ambassador to geocaching. Having cached with him in Alaska and the Northwest US, I know first hand his passion for caching. It is my honor to nominate him as Geocacher of the Month!”
He is an active part of our local geocaching community. Martin owns a mixed variety of geocaches, such as night caches, really difficult mystery caches and a nice range of clever traditional hides.
What makes him a good candidate as a geocacher of the month is the fact, that he developed a “Geocaching Owner School” which he offers as part of event caches in our local region.
Goal of these school events is to make new and old cachers aware of our guidelines, do’s and don’ts, rules, and all other aspects. Attendees of his “Owner school” will learn how to do it right.
His efforts to train and make people understand the basics of our hobby makes Martin a very good candidate for the geocacher of the month.
He owns one of the best Night caches in our local area. “The Hunt @ Night”
Natalie Gray (Coralteach) writes, “I would like to nominate Cass Kalinski, otherwise known as CKayaks, for Geocacher of the Month. He not only finds all sorts of high terrain caches, etc…himself, he also places a lot of caches for others to enjoy, including an entire challenging trail in one of our largest parks. Even more than that though, is what he gives back to the geocaching community. Besides placing caches, he holds GREAT events. For two years in a row he has hosted a big event in Los Banos, CA.
He puts out 50 caches and cachers come from miles around to go out and have fun for the day. This year they were all puzzles, which was really great, and a lot of additional work for him! He had really great coins made up for both last year and this year, and it is becoming an annual event, and could even develop into a Mega Event! In addition, he hosts CITO events, and has one coming up on Jan. 18th. His caches are clever and fun, his stats are incredible, but the time and effort he goes through to host events, is incredible. His events draw cachers from all over the Bay Area, down to the Central Coast, and turns us into a community. I don’t think you’ll find a more well rounded cacher, or anyone more deserving of the award for Geocacher of the Month. He is a legend around here, and truly merits this award.”
Please inform your nominee that you have submitted them for the award. Nominations for the next Geocacher of the Month should be received by March 3. Once Geocaching HQ has received the nominations, we will choose the top candidates and post them on the blog. You will then get a chance to champion your favorite. Our goal is to involve the entire geocaching community in this process so that we might learn from each other.
Rodeo Drive, Fifth Avenue…middle-of-nowhere, Texas? If you’re trying to figure out what these places all have in common, it’s something you would probably never expect: Prada. Yes, the luxury clothing brand you can see fancy people around the world wearing. There’s one thing different about this Prada store, though: it’s never open and it only has right-footed shoes. Just outside of Marfa, Texas, artists Elmgreen and Dragset collaborated with multiple people, including Miuccia Prada herself, to create this piece of installation art. While the shoes and handbags in the store are pretty, we think the smiley you earn for finding the nearby geocache is way cooler.
“We had just visited Marfa and were continuing west when we ran across this amazing, surreal place in the middle of the desert. We were stunned that there was not already a geocache there so we just snuck one in. We had no idea that it would become as popular as it is, but in retrospect it is such an unusual site that it makes sense. We’re honored by the positive reviews and favorites, but we are most happy that we have been able to help a few other people discover it. I’d love to give a huge shout out to the amazing geocache community: “Hey Geo-Brothers and Sisters… CACHE ON!!”
“This was my favorite cache of the whole trip. I love Prada and I love Marfa (it was my first visit) with it’s great stories, food and cute hotels. What a great idea, to put a cache here. I am sure we would have missed this if there was not a cache.” – Mrs_HiDude
“We just had to check this one out! Never would have believed this. Just another reason to get out and geocache. Thanks for putting a cache here.” – DaveandDeb
“This was the highlight of the whole trip. The wife loved it! Found the cache quickly, then hung around to snap a few photos. What a riot! TFTC!” – HoustonControl
Continue to explore some of the most engaging geocaches around the globe. Check out all the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog.
If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, leave a comment below with the name of the geocache, the GC code, and why you think we should feature it.
Geocachers united from across the world to sing the praises of three sets of geocachers last month. Each of the nominees is already a winner, with a prize package headed their way. But only one geocaching person, or couple, can be named the Geocacher of the Month.
All the nominees add a special contribution to their local communities and inspire the global geocaching community. Each will receive special recognition for their contribution to the adventure of geocaching. Before naming the Geocacher of the Month, Geocaching HQ reviews community input and blog comments. Each comment is read.
A geocaching couple from Denmark with some of the most inspiration hides on Europe claimed this month’s prize. Siig is December’s Featured Geocacher of the Month.
One comment reads, “Hands down winner this month must be siig! There is a reason why they are by far the team in Denmark with most favourite votings (and not just 100 as hintet above….almost 2800 favourites received!). You always leave one of their hides with a silent smile or a big and noisy laugh, as they are most often very innovative and funny caches. Their caches are well kept and always an experience. It is very clear that they stay true to the notion: Would I personally like to find this cache – due to its nature or the environment surrounding it? With this in mind when you place a cache, you cannot go wrong – and Siig don’t!”
Siig will receive the earned, never for sale, collector’s edition Geocacher of the Month Geocoin, along with a Geocacher of the Month hat and a certificate acknowledging their contribution, signed by two of the founders of Geocaching.com.
If you know an outstanding geocacher who should be considered for the honor, send an email to email@example.com.
Every nomination must include the following items and abide by the following guidelines:
Please inform your nominee that you have submitted them for the award. Nominations for Geocacher of the Month are accepted at any time.
Congratulations again to Siig for being recognized as the Geocacher of the Month for December.
Alane Brown created the In the Andes of Perú GeoTour. It’s the first GeoTour in South America and it very well may be the highest GeoTour on Earth, climbing more than 13,000 feet (4,000 meters) above sea level. The GeoTour is one of more than two dozen GeoTours around the globe.
Here are Alane’s answers to questions from curious geocachers:
I’m a Peace Corps Volunteer assigned to one of the small towns in the Yanamarca Valley. (My town is Marco, population 1,700 and dropping.) I’m in the Environment program. We’re here to find ways to work collaboratively with local people to improve awareness of the value of the natural environment and also to improve environmental conditions. The local environmental action group and I decided that a GeoTour would be a creative way to do both of those things. Local people are learning more about their own natural resources as they come together to work on the GeoTour. We’re also including environmental action projects in the tour. We placed geocaches in areas where problems exist and also at local success stories, such as reforestation projects. And, of course, if this eco-tourism project improves the economy in this low-income area, that should lead organically to more interest in caring for the valley.
Geocachers like a challenge! The Yanamarca Valley floor is at 11,300 feet above sea level, and the surrounding hills go up to 13,000 feet. You’ll explore all of that. We recommend spending the first day walking or biking around the valley floor if you need to acclimatize to the altitude. It’s a lovely area to explore. Over 90% of the buildings are traditional adobe with red tile roofs. Farming is the center of the economy. You’ll see grandmothers in their colorful mantas watching their sheep, pass fields of quinoa, and complete a challenge that will take you to 10 brightly-painted neighborhood chapels. This area is bursting with genuine Peruvian folkways, and as a geocacher, you’ll see it all up close. Above the valley floor, you’ll hike into the hills to find archeological sites, interesting rock formations, and lovely views of the distant Huaytapallana glacier. This is a great location for geocaching because here are so many little delights to be discovered, that you would definitely not come across without geocaching.
When people think of Peru, they think of Machu Picchu and the Inca Empire. Over the span of the history of the Andes, that was just the blink of an eye, less than 100 years. Before that, there were hundreds of cultures spread like a patchwork quilt across the Andes. In our valley and the surrounding hills, it was the Xauxa culture. I’m from the American Southwest, and the Xauxa culture is very similar to the Ancestral Puebloan (Anasazi) culture. Lots of little stone buildings remain to tell the tale of a vanished civilization. In this tour you’ll build up a picture of these people as you visit the remains of their towns, roads, aqueducts and graves. You can even hire a local shaman to do a traditional ceremony with you to thank the ancient spirits for letting you explore these sites.
We hope that people from around the world will visit us. Many people here take their home for granted. Seeing it through the eyes of visitors will help build local pride. This valley is in the lowest 25% of communities in Peru, economically. If you visit us and spend a little money in the valley, that truly matters for us. Young people are migrating out of this rural area. A little bit of tourism income might entice a few of them to stay. We’d like to see a small but steady stream of visitors. We don’t want to become Machu Picchu—a GeoTour is a perfect way to generate some light tourism without destroying the traditional way of life of the valley. We’d like to have some friends from around the world stop by to share the gentle beauties of our home.
My Peace Corps service runs through the end of 2014. Over the course of this year, the local committee and I would love to get input from our pioneer visitors. Please join our Facebook group and let us know when you’ll be here. Maybe we can meet so we can give you some pointers…and you can give us some suggestions!
UPDATE 2/5/2014: Geocaching Travel bug Weehawk made it to the MetLife Stadium to witness the Seahawks win the 2014 Super Bowl. Geocacher and Seahawks fan Bogey53 picked up the smallest 12th man and took it along to celebrate the first SuperBowl win for Seattle’s football team. Here is the proof:
A Geocaching Travel Bug might just be the key to winning it all for a major sports team. Skeptical? Don’t try telling Swanny6416 their fiery little world traveler didn’t help propel the Seattle Seahawks to football’s biggest game. The family of four die-hard Seahawks fans launched Weehawk in August. The Travel Bug’s mission was simple.
Swanny6416, or Shawn and Criselda as their non-geocaching friends know them, say, “On August 17, 2013, we sent Weehawk on his journey to Super Bowl XLVIII in New York. He was placed in a cache location in Federal Way (near Seattle) in hopes of eventually finding his way to the big game where he would meet the team. We had high hopes that Weehawk would work his way across the country but figured it would be a long shot, at best, for him to make it through hostile territory since a lot of “enemy” NFL team fans live between us and New York.”
Geocachers will move Travel Bugs from geocache to geocache closer to it’s goal.
But as the Seattle Seahawks won football game after football game, their small Travel Bug mascot named Weehawk drifted farther and farther from New York.
The geocachers say, “On December 27th, Weehawk was picked up in Hawaii and the following message was sent: ‘Well, I guess the little one had his vacation in Hawaii — quite far from its goal. Luckily, I am in a position to help it along towards its destination, with however quite a big detour…’ Even though the odds of Weehawk returning to New York were seemingly insurmountable, we had every expectation that he would succeed, just like our beloved Seattle Seahawks journey through the playoffs.”
Fate, in the form of motivated geocachers, would intervene. Weehawk was now far, far, and yet another “far” away from New York. The Travel Bug wondered to Indonesia to begin 2014. But the geocachers who launched Weehawk, believe the Travel Bug would be crucial in helping to the Seahawks make it to New York for the big game.
The Travel Bug was taken from a geocache in Indonesia by a geocacher. Weehawk landed in a New York geocache just miles from Met Life Stadium, where football’s biggest game will be played this Sunday.
Shawn and Criselda say, “He was then taken to New York City on January 19th and dropped off a mere 15.8 miles from Met Life Stadium! This was the same day that the Seahawks beat the San Francisco 49ers for the right to go to the big game!” Coincidence? The Swanny6416′s don’t think so either.
But it’s not close enough. They say, “Weehawk is waiting for a [Seattle Seahawk's fan] to pick him up and take him to the game. He is currently at Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx, NY hiding near some granite pillars that were to be used in the construction of Grand Central Station! We’re hoping by sharing our story with you, you can share our story, and maybe another fan can get him to the game.”
So many questions. Will Weekhawk’s appearance at the game ensure a Seattle Seahawks win? Are you going to the game? Will you make this Travel Bug’s dream come true? Answer them all in comments below.
Still want more? Watch the TV news story about Weehawk’s adventure.
Geocaching Presents: Favorites
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