Rock Islands Frying Pan Tree – Geocache of the Week

by treequest
New Jersey, USA
N 41° 00.995 W 074° 37.107

I’ve always wanted to bring cachers to a unique location, not just a container in the woods” – treequest

Mission accomplished, treequest! This cache’s location is as unique as they come! This Geocache of the Week is for those with a soft spot for urban legends, abandoned places, and the weird and wacky things you find in the woods.

Rock Islands Frying Pan Tree (GC6VVF3) is located near a noisy highway in rural New Jersey, an unassuming place for such a mysterious cache. Although the actual “Rock Island” is located nearby, it’s obvious how this cache got the first part of its name. Two massive rocky hills rise above the sea of trees, which daring geocachers must climb to claim this cache.

Image by C.C.Cachers.

Summiting one of the hill (some might call it a cliff), the whoosh of cars fades and blends with the gentler sounds of nature– birds chirping, branches swaying, and leaves rustling. But as you approach GZ, soft metallic clanking sounds seem to come from all around. What is the source of the sound? Where is it coming from? Your eyes are drawn upward to a peculiar sight. Dozens, maybe hundreds, of metal pots and pans are hanging from the trees like strange wind chimes.

Image by Rabid_Llamas.

Legends of the pans’ origin vary; some say a nearby scout camp started the tradition, while others say it was local teenagers. Regardless of how the tradition began, the original “Frying Pan Tree” has slowly grown into a forest that covers the hilltop. Despite its size, a thorough search is required to find this cleverly-hidden ammo can nestled among the rocks.

Image by 2pinktigereyes.

A geocacher since 2004, treequest has a wealth of wisdom for new hiders. When placing a new cache, they advise players to take their time and develop their own style and motivation for hiding. For treequest, it’s all about the player’s experience and the stories their logs tell.

“I really enjoy reading the logs that go into detail about their experience at the site. It makes my day when a cacher had a fun and memorable time there.” –treequest

Caves, cliffs, and “abandoned oddities” are treequest’s particular specialty. As an avid geocacher, hunter, and explorer, they always search for new and unique hiding spots. With over 172 active geocache hides, treequest is a local legend for their clever hides in interesting places.

“Treequest hides never fail to amaze and never disappoint, this one was no exception. They are always wonderful and creative hides…usually challenging.” klizich

So next time you’re stumped for a good hiding spot, don’t ‘pan’ic! Ask yourself, what would treequest do?

Image by Roxbury Devil.

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Check out all of the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog. If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, fill out this form.

Emma is a Community Coordinator at Geocaching HQ. Emma loves all things weird in the woods from ferns to fungi, bugs to slugs!