Car challenge — Geocache of the Week

Traditional
GC593G5
by GeoCat
Difficulty:
2
Terrain:
3
Location:
Bulgaria
N 42° 10.933′ E 023° 15.386′

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
-Robert Frost

The Dark Tower

To say this Geocache of the Week is reached by the road less traveled is an understatement. Located in eastern Europe’s Bulgaria, the cache is at the highest point reachable by car in the country. After crawling up the steep switchback, you will start the search for the appropriately named cache, Car challenge.

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There are several ways to approach the cache. By car, by foot, or by bicycle. Whatever way you get there will be quite treacherous because the road is both steep and very old. By car and bicycle, you must take a switchback road that was built during the Second World War. Warning: This location makes the World’s list of dangerous roads so please be prepared and take a reliable vehicle with you.

Lost Tower

The road was created to serve the construction of hydropower dams and reservoirs. The existing water reservoir (hint: the cache is nearby) is at the highest altitude in the Balkans (2,394 meters/7,854.331 feet).

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By foot, you can either walk up the same road or hike through gorgeous mountain scenery on a 3-5 hour hike. You can also stay overnight at the picturesque Ivan Vasov Hut, named after the famous Bulgarian novelist, Ivan Vasov.

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In the summer, the road serves as a track for cycling and running races. From the starting point just a mile up the road, there is nothing but you, the road, the mountains and the geocache on the summit. The cache itself is in great shape and has plenty of space for you to drop off or pick up a trackable at this breathtaking spot.

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Testimonials:

Unexpected TTF – Thank you for a very nice cache (especially in Bulgaria measures) in beautiful mountains of Rila. I came for it by Jeep as I would never use my own “ordinary” car, although I have seen some other people climbing up there with a Peugot 30, so I guess it could be done…. T4TC!!! 
Mur3na11

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Finding this cache came as a little bonus. We went to close the summer season with a 4 day route through Maliovitsa, Ivan Vazov, the Seven Rila Lakes and back. We left an entire day to hike around Ivan Vazov and decided to go to the peak. I borrowed a GPS to record our route of the entire vacation in Rila and when I looked at the screen I saw that there was cache I had never found. What a nice surprise! We took a trip to look for the cache and the search was crowned with success.
Thanks for the cache!
TFTC!
Emo & Nati
Emil Petrov

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By cache we reached the Ivan Vazov hut. The entire valley from the hut to the array of Kali is incredible. I recommend the pedestrian option, although the cache is dedicated to the road. Thanks for the great and well-packaged box 🙂
Hellla

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Continue to explore some of the most amazing geocaches around the world.
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.

6 steps to organize a Cache In Trash Out® (CITO) event

Save the Earth while geocaching? Yes please! We call it CITO (Cache In Trash Out®).

In 2017, geocachers around the globe will gather together during the weeks of April 22-30 and September 23– October 1 to pick up trash, remove invasive species, repair trails and more—plus earn a pretty sweet new souvenir. If you’ve never hosted a CITO before and you don’t know where to begin, read on! Here are 6 steps to get you started.

cito

1. Choose a location and a date

Since your CITO event will result in an improvement to a public space, pick an area that’s important to you and/or that needs special attention. Make sure you have permission to host the CITO from the local land manager. If you are unsure about which location is best, call a local park manager or geocaching organization. They can provide assistance and support in selecting the best location.

947e18cc-972f-4139-b4ee-5aa1f7acf06e

2. Pick an activity

At it’s very basic, a CITO event should involve geocachers taking part in an activity that produces an environmental improvement to a park or another cache-friendly place. CITO activities have ranged from trash pickups, to tree plantings, to invasive species removals, to trail maintenance. Need inspiration and direction? Talk to the land manager to find out where volunteers are most needed. See if there are any local environmental organizations already doing volunteer work, with whom you can partner. Call your city’s Parks and Recreation department to find out if any city volunteer initiatives are planned.

kayak-cito

3. Fill out the cache submission form

Your CITO event will need to be submitted online at least two weeks before the date of the event. Give yourself a bit more time than that to square away any details.

  • Type & Location: Select Cache In, Trash Out as the event type, and enter the coordinates where your event will take place.
  • Waypoints (Optional): Is there parking near your event? A trailhead you need to find to get to the right spot? Let folks know.
  • Description & Summary: Where is the event, what time does it start and end, and what will folks be doing? Is any special type of clothing or gear required? Will there be activities suitable for young children, or do you have to be a spring chicken to partake? Will there be a lunch break? Any safety concerns? The more details you can supply, the better.

68464641-0f8c-40bb-8342-5a8f0e33e6af

4. Wait for the event to be published.

Once you’ve reviewed and submitted your event listing, your local Reviewer will likely publish the event or request changes to it within a week. If you don’t hear from your Reviewer, check to make sure the event listing is actually submitted and enabled. Check to see if the Reviewer has posted any Reviewer notes in the cache logs section. Once you’ve made any necessary changes, review and submit the listing once more. Feel free to ask your Reviewer for advice if you’re struggling with the event listing.

5. Once the event is published, let people know about it!

Is there a local geocaching organization you can reach out to, to let them know about your CITO? Maybe there are even some non-geocacher volunteer organizations you could recruit…the more the merrier!

Zug5

 6. On the day of the event…

  • Show up early.
  • Watch the cache page and your e-mail for last minute questions.
  • See to it that every person knows what the activity is, and how to do it.
  • Agree on a time and location to meet up and debrief at the close of the event.
  • After the event is over, keep the event listed long enough to allow people to log the event. Then write a thank you note, and archive it. Voila!

That’s all, folks! Remember: the CITO 2017 souvenir will be available for events during the weeks of April 22-30 and September 23-October 1, so if you’re planning to host an event that weekend make sure you submit the cache listing at least two weeks in advance, preferably more.

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Hagen med det rare i— Geocache of the week

Letterbox Hybrid
GC51MPR
by thomfre
Difficulty:
1
Terrain:
1
Location:
Buskerud, Norway
N 59° 45.869′ E 009° 57.503

When daydreaming of Norway, one may think of fjord laden landscapes, snow-capped peaks, and the midnight sun. Norway is also home to over 5 million people, 72,080 active geocaches, and a thriving geocaching community. This Geocache of the Week, Hagen med det rare i, is located in the town of Steinberg along the Drammenselva river, one of the largest rivers in Norway.

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When you arrive in Steinberg, it won’t take you long to spot the remarkable garden filled with wood carvings, metal art and a Signal the Frog® lookalike.

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All of these distracting installations may increase the difficulty of finding the cache, including the large troll that guards the yard. In Norse folklore, trolls can sometimes be tricky and unhelpful to humans, so don’t let this troll trick you into going the wrong direction!

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Not only is the cache entertaining for geocachers and muggles alike, it also attracts LetterboxersLike geocaching, letterboxing is another form of treasure hunting that uses clues instead of coordinates. In this case, the cache owner has made their container both a letterbox and a geocache, making it a Letterbox Hybrid. These types of geocaches will contain a stamp that is meant to remain in the box and is used by letterboxers to record their visit.

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Of my 200-something hides, this is my personal favorite. The cache is located right outside my grandparents’ garden, a place I spent a lot of time when growing up.

Some of my earliest memories are from that place. And even though there’s some things that are as old as me there, there’s always something new to look at whenever I visit. I am thrilled that I get to share this awesome place with other geocachers! And the best part is that so are my grandparents! I might be a bit subjective here, but they are simply awesome!

I’ve received so many great logs, and I really enjoy telling my grandparents about all the nice words people write. Several people have noted that they see where I get my creativity from after visiting this cache. They’re so right! -Thomfre (cache owner)

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Thomfre, the cache owner is also very involved in the geocaching community with an interesting geocaching blog and a website that helps Norwegian geocachers to plan their next geocaching vacation.

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While visiting  family in Loesmoen we had to make the trip here. Exciting and fun garden with an ingeniously made geocache. Deserves all its blue bows. Fun that this was our first letterbox. Left our travel friend Reflexus, ready to embark on an adventure.—BråtenStabæk

A round after work to grab some caches in Steinberg and Hokksund with jonnyloe28 today. Today’s fourth discovery and our first letterbox. Parked at the zero point to mirror quickly heading to Hagen med det rare i. Wonderful garden and great installation. Certainly today’s highlight this here. Clear favorite points from me.Thanks so much for the cache. —supertoga1

On drive from Hamar to Vegglifjell and only time for one cache. The choice fell on this, and all your favorite points are well deserved! Great box, crazy garden, and now it has another favorite points. Thanks!—Schrøder


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Continue to explore some of the most amazing geocaches around the world.
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.

Laguna de los Tres: Maya-treasure-06 — Geocache of the Week

Traditional
GC5TQT9
by CacheGert
Difficulty:
1.5
Terrain:
4
Location:
El Chaltén, Argentina
S 49° 16.806 W 072° 59.031

The plains of Patagonia are boundless, for they are scarcely passable, and hence unknown: they bear the stamp of having lasted, as they are now, for ages, and there appears no limit to their duration through future time.” – Charles Darwin

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An enchanting, semi-arid plateau with glacier-encrusted Andean peaks, Patagonia is an adventure seeker’s dream destination. Travelers journey to the region for its iconic vistas, and vibrant wildlife, but stay for the delicious Malbecs and rugged gauchos.

3The Patagonian town of El Chaltén is named for local peak Cerro Fitz Roy’s Tehuelche name, meaning ‘peak of fire’ or ‘smoking mountain’. Once you arrive in El Chaltén you will find colorful buildings made of corrugated steel, built to withstand the harsh Patagonian weather conditions including forceful winds that will knock you off your feet. Traditional geocache GC5TQT9 will lead you to El Chaltén, where you will begin your journey to the cache location.

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You’ll want to allow about 8 hours to complete the full trip to Laguna de los Tres and back. There’s also the option to make it into a multi-day trek with two different overnight camping sites along the way: Camping Laguna Capri and Campamento Poincenot. The last 1.5 kilometers of the hike are very steep and exposed, so many hikers choose to camp below at Campamento Poincenot and then push for a sunrise view of Cerro Fitz Roy.

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Once you arrive at Laguna de los Tres, feast your eyes on the cobalt blue waters glowing before the magnificent peak of Cerro Fitz Roy and take in 360 degree views of the entire mountain range. If the weather takes a turn for the worse, which is a very real possibility, there are plenty of boulders to seek shelter underneath and search for the geocache.

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This geocache is part of an amazing series that cache owner CacheGert created for his daughter. He hopes to pass his love for traveling on to her by hiding caches for her in all parts of the world. When she turns 18, he will give her a list of all “her” caches, along with an airline ticket to wherever she wants to go. CacheGert is lucky enough to visit this cache often since he travels to Argentina for work.

¡Qué copado! (How cool!)

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Recent logs:

redgecco

What a hike, what a view! Starting in El Chalten, first part is easy. Well maintained hiking paths, beautiful landscape and the FitzRoy in the background. The last 1,5 km you have to climb uphill, the path is also well marked, but steep. The wind blows you away, the knees hurt … but if you reached the edge, this breathtaking view makes you forget everything. We made a little break, enjoyed the amazing scenery and as an extra we get the box! Finally we had around 24 km and 1400 m altitude difference on our GPS. Probably our best hiking tour ever, thanks for hiding a cache there. Of course a favorite point from us, redgecco

mach401

What an amazing view of one of the most beautiful mountains I’ve ever seen. I arrived just before sunset on a perfect weather day and watched the evening shadows crawl across the lake. Wish I could stay longer, but since my time in Chalten is limited, I dropped off a geocoin instead. May it travel farther and longer than me!

Gaiemo

Quite a hike, especially at the end of a full day trip to Lago Torres, Lago del Madre y Hija and finally up here. But the place with the spectacular view is more than worth the effort! Great place for a cache! Thank you for putting one here! Greetings from Switzerland, we will be back 🙂


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Continue to explore some of the most amazing geocaches around the world.
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.

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Isla del Encanto: Puerto Rico — newest Geocaching souvenir!

A territory of the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is a paradisal Caribbean destination. Adventure seekers will find it worthwhile to cross crystal blue waters to visit Puerto Rico’s stunning beaches, beautiful mountainous landscapes and one of Puerto Rico’s best-kept secrets: its extensive cave system.

If that’s not enough and you need another reason to visit, we’ve got you covered. You can now earn a geocaching souvenir by finding a geocache or attending an event if Puerto Rico!

puerto_rico_souvenir

When you visit, be sure to meet up with local geocachers. The Puerto Rican geocaching community is famous for its warm hospitality and friendliness to strangers.

Puerto Rico by the numbers:

  • Over 1,000 hidden geocaches  
  • 9103 sq km. (3,515 sq mi) island. ~ 1 geocache every 3 miles
  • 3.548 million people
  • 6 Olympic Gold Medals
  • 13 living, native mammalian species, all of which are bats
  • 65 km (40 miles) at its widest part
  • 400 years of rum history and contribution to the economy

Here are our 5 bucket list caches in Puerto Rico.

puerto-rico-map


1. El Árbol Solitario

El Árbol Solitario
El Árbol Solitario—GC1GN4M

GC1GN4M | by El Surveyor | D3.5/T4.5 | Traditional | 24 favorite points

Hiding this cache required some hard work by the cache owner and friends. A two hour hike takes you to the top of the mountain where you can take in the gorgeous view of the Puerto Rican countryside. You’ll notice an interesting standalone tree that gives this cache its namesake. When you visit  this cache, make sure to snap a shot with the Puerto Rican flag as well!

2. Cat/ Dolphin/ Giraffe

Cat/ Dolphin/ Giraffe
Cat/ Dolphin/ Giraffe—GC2JWTD

GC2JWTD  | by lulusoy | D1.5/T1.5 | Traditional | 73 favorite points

The Cat/Dolphin/Giraffe sculpture at this cache location observes the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista. Alonso Manso, a bishop in San Juan, was responsible for the construction of the San Juan Cathedral in 1521, making it one of the city’s oldest structures. Behind the sculpture, you can find the Museo del Niño (The Children’s Museum), a non-profit organization involved in preserving the island’s cultural heritage and presenting subjects in an interesting way for children.

3. Cueva del Viento

Cueva del Viento
Cueva del Viento—GC1XB18

GC1XB18 | by vocho725 | D2.5/T4.5 | Traditional | 14 favorite points

This cache is located at the entrance to Cueva del Viento in northwest Puerto Rico’s  Guajataca Forest. The forest is also the location of Camp Guajataca, the island’s main camping grounds of the Boy Scouts of America. Make sure to bring comfortable shoes, water, and a strong flashlight!

4. Playita Rosada, La Parguera

Playita Rosada, La Parguera—GC1BBAY
Playita Rosada, La Parguera—GC1BBAY

GC1BBAY | by milton_fmh | D2.5/T4.5 | Multi-cache | 14 favorite points

The Parguera village in Lajas is famous for the beauty of its coral reefs, mangrove islands and channels, and bioluminescent bay. As an ecotourism destination, you can enjoy a simple coastal town where scuba diving, relaxing and swimming all take place. The cache may bring you to Playita Rosada (Pink beach), but the views and warm water will keep you there.

5. Karate Kid

karate-kid-collage

GCXBH7 | by outsidegroup | D2.5/T3.5 | Traditional | 14 favorite points

Located along Road 333, Karate Kid is located on Playa del Tamarindo in Guanica. This area is home to many threatened and endangered species, including the dry forest anole (a type of lizard), the hawksbill and leatherback sea turtles, the Puerto Rican crested toad, the blue-tailed ameiva (another type of lizard), and the brown pelican. Don’t be fooled by the D/T ratings as the 4.8 km (3 mi) round trip and the intense heat and sun make it more challenging. If you enjoy bird watching and staring off into the ocean, this is the cache for you!


We’ll unveil one or two new souvenirs every week until all FIVE are officially released and awarded by mid December. Souvenirs that are currently available can be found here. A list of currently available geocaching souvenirs and even the ones you’ve already earned can be found on Geocaching.com. And, if you’ve already found a geocache in Puerto Rico, we will automatically add this souvenir to your profile.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or right here on our Blog to find out which countries are next.

Have you found a geocache in Puerto Rico? Tell us your experience in the comments below!