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Is this still Earth? — Rainbow’s End: Grand Prismatic Spring (GC1JY47) — Geocache of the Week

Is this really Earth? Photo: "Grand prismatic spring" by Jim Peaco, National Park Service
Is this really Earth? Photo: “Grand prismatic spring” by Jim Peaco, National Park Service

Geocache Name:

Rainbow’s End: Grand Prismatic Spring (GC1JY47)

Difficulty/Terrain Rating:

2/1

Why this is the Geocache of the Week:

If you’re still searching for an EarthCache to find in order to earn your Nature Lover souvenir for the Seven Souvenirs of August, consider visiting a place that doesn’t even look like it belongs on Earth. EarthCaches bring geocachers to geologic formations and require them to answer questions about that formation in order to make the find. The Grand Prismatic Spring (or as the CO of this EarthCache points out: “GPS” for short) is the largest hot spring in the United States and third-largest in the world. However, what really draws the crowds are the amazing colors throughout the formation, caused by bacteria and mineral-rich water.

What the geocache owner, Frumious Jane, has to say:

“The Grand Prismatic Spring is my favorite place on the planet.  The longer I sit there on the boardwalk, the further away my troubles seem. We get so used to seeing streets, houses, power lines, and cars in our daily lives that these things become our Normal. Geocaching offers us caching options in pretty much every environment on the planet, and I’m a big sucker for the strange and glorious spots. I love being reminded that I live on a planet filled with rare and beautiful geologic features. The Grand Prismatic Spring offers a fascinating variant on the deadly beauty of volcanoes: the magma is underground, but we can see its effects on the steaming groundwater in the beautiful pools that dot Yellowstone National Park. Walking right up to something as resplendent as the Grand Prismatic Spring, knowing I’m standing atop a subterranean volcano all the while, gave me such a thrill that all I wanted to do was share it. We civilized folks just don’t get to experience surreal moments very often, and I wanted to let others know there was something worth pulling off the road for, something amazing to experience and think about.
Every time I read a new log telling me how awestruck the cachers were when they looked out over the spring for the first time, or how they’d never have pulled into the parking lot except for the EarthCache symbol on the map, I get all warm and fuzzy. Our lives are collections of experiences great and small. I’m both thrilled and humbled that so many people who share my hobby have also shared my enjoyment of this place I adore so much, taking home from their travels a little piece of joy and fun, and maybe a little snippet of knowledge, too.
I’ve been a geocacher for over nine years, and I’ve made tons of fun and exciting memories with friends and strangers who hunt for Tupperware in the woods with me. Geocaching can bring out the best and most generous in us, and my life has been changed for the better by all those I’ve met and cached with over the years. I’ve raised my kids to enjoy the hunt and to follow the arrow toward adventure. I’ve had so much fun geocaching that I was inspired to write novels in a second genre: mystery. Under my pen name Morgan C. Talbot, I’ve written the world’s only geocaching mystery series, combining my love of stories with my favorite hobby. The Caching Out series was picked up for publication two years ago, and I’ve gotten the same exceptional, positive feedback for my books as I have for my EarthCaches. My writing career has continued to grow and gain its own souvenirs, and I have the inspiration of the geocaching community to thank for their early encouragement. No matter how far I roam in this world, geocaching will always be close to my heart, and loaded into my Garmin.”

What geocachers are saying:

“What an amazing view from the road with all the colored mist rising! Spent a good two hours here. Such vivid color!” – Mommabre

“The Grand Prismatic Spring is truly one of the most amazing things in the natural world. When we planned our trip to Yellowstone this was one of the things I knew we definitely had to show the kids, and it was an absolutely perfect day to see it.” – bergmannfamily

“Grand Prismatic has always been one of my favorite stops in Yellowstone — the colors are always fantastic. Thanks for giving us a reason to come out to visit again.” – NepoKama

Photos:

An overhead view of this amazing place. Photo by geocacher AUBURN SONRAY
An overhead view of this amazing place. Photo by geocacher AUBURN SONRAY
Geocacher Bangers&Mash enthusiastically makes the find.
Geocacher Bangers&Mash enthusiastically makes the find.
The end of the rainbow. Photo by geocacher Eispiraten DD.
The end of the rainbow. Photo by geocacher Eispiraten DD.

 

What incredible natural formations have you seen while EarthCaching? Tell us or post photos in the comments.

 

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, just fill out this form. Thanks!

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Find your knight in shining armor. — Castle Northmoor (GCX612) — Geocache of the Week

Geocaching HQ's own knight in shining armor, Bryan, victoriously makes the find.
Geocaching HQ’s own knight in shining armor, Bryan, victoriously makes the find.

Geocache Name:

Castle Northmoor (GCX612)

Difficulty/Terrain Rating:

1/1.5

Why this is the Geocache of the Week:

There’s hidden history all around us—and geocaching is a perfect way to discover it. Seeking out this geocache will bring you to a castle tower—no, not in Europe—in Kansas City. While Missouri isn’t traditionally known for its castles, this tower has been bringing joy to geocacher’s faces since 2006. The tower itself was constructed in 1980 by Harlan Shaver, which included the structure as well as the intricate carvings throughout the interior. For a more detailed history, the geocache page even has a phone number to call for a guided tour.

What the geocache owner, SunshineWalker, has to say:

“I was inspired to place this cache because the property owner used to walk at E. H. Young Park in Riverside, MO. (the town next to Northmoor)…He told me about a strange Tupperware container he had found in the bushes. He said it had notes and little doodads in it.  The container also had the Geocaching Logo and website information. I was curious and looked it up on the computer.  It was a cache that had been lost and Larry’s dog found it.

I got very interested and took my family to several local caches. I still walked in the park with Larry [the property owner] and he told me about his father. The more I heard, the more I wanted to see it. When I saw the castle tower I knew I had to make it a cache site.  Larry has been quite nice about sharing his property and he loves telling visitors about his artistic mother and stonemason father who built the tower.

I’ve really enjoyed the geocaching community and loved creating caches…It was great to take the family on hikes in places we would have never visited and look for treasure. A few years ago we even went to a cache on an island in the middle of the Kansas River. The kids LOVED the adventure, but we were a muddy mess! Fortunately the river was quite low and we waded most of the way.

I think Geocachers are some of the nicest and most interesting people I’ve ever met. They love adventure and are willing to search for hours in the dark for a camo box with penny trinkets in it. How devoted and determined! (The poison ivy generally doesn’t show up for two or three days.)”

 

What geocachers are saying:

“Found this cache thanks to the recommendation from a local friend. I was visiting from Seattle. Wow, what an amazing experience…It’s amazing to me that I never would have had this experience if not for geocaching. For this I am most grateful.” — Bryan

“This amazing cache was about 6 miles from our hotel, and it was well worth the trip. This place is amazing! Such amazing detail! I was glad that I made the trip out here! This one gets a favorite point for sure. I will be recommending this cache to anyone that travels to Kansas City. TFTC!” – croling

“This is one of my favorite caches to date. A further treasure was the builder’s son was nearby and told us much about the man who built the tower…Great geocache! Thanks for the cache owner and the property owner!” – Jawman173

 

Photos:

Castle Northmoor in all its glory. Photo by geocacher Unitzoid
Castle Northmoor in all its glory. Photo by geocacher Unitzoid
The Knight of Castle Northmoor. Photo by geocacher *pixie
The Knight of Castle Northmoor. Photo by geocacher *pixie
Hand-carved details on the door. Photo by geocacher Iscandar
Hand-carved details on the door. Photo by geocacher Iscandar

If King Arthur were alive today and wanted to go geocaching with you, which geocache would you take him to and why?

 

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, just fill out this form. Thanks!

Epic Find, Epic Selfie — Kjerag (GCXKXJ) — Geocache of the Week

Perched precariously on a precarious perch. Photo by geocacher dipledocus
Perched precariously on a precarious perch. Photo by geocacher dipledocus

Geocache Name:

Kjerag (GCXKXJ)

Difficulty/Terrain Rating:

3/4

Why this is the Geocache of the Week:

When you see a 3, 4, or 5 next to “Terrain” on a geocache, you can usually count on two things: 1) it’s going to be a pretty good hike and 2) there will most likely be an epic photo-op at the end. Sometimes earning the smiley can take a backseat to the amazing photographs that get taken from GZ. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at the Geocaching Instagram or search #geocaching on Instagram. Photography and geocaching go hand-in-hand, so it’s only appropriate to feature a geocache with world-class found it photos.

What the geocache owner, Andix, has to say:

“My first visit at the Kjerag was in summer 2004 and I was led there by a friend not knowing what to see there. I was so impressed by the feeling standing upon the Kjerag stone, that I quickly decided: this is a MUST BE for a geocache. But I had never hidden a cache box and needed a prepared cache box. So I was planning another excursion two years later… Geocaching isn´t only a hobby – it´s a passion! Nearly my whole life has changed between the past 11 years since I got a geocaching-member.”

What geocachers are saying:

“Puh, what a stressful climb to the top. But after seeing the Kjerag every stress was forgotten. What an amazing view. Thanks for hiding :-)” – silkeli53

“This walk has been on our “want to visit” list for several years now, and it was amazing to finally be able to take the amazing hike.” – optimistene

“First time in Norway! What an nice and beautiful country. This one was found easy, TFTC! awesome hike, standing at the Krejag was pretty scary!!” – The Bennies

 

Photos and Video:

Amazing sunsets are the icing on top of this geocaching cake. Photo by geocacher dipledocus
Amazing sunsets are the icing on top of this geocaching cake. Photo by geocacher dipledocus
Sure, this looks like a great place to sit. Photo by geocacher HeideParkSoltau
Sure, this looks like a great place to sit. Photo by geocacher HeideParkSoltau
Epic view! Photo by geocacher dipledocus
Epic view! Photo by geocacher dipledocus
We're not saying you should, but there are quicker ways of getting down from this area than hiking. Gif from the trailer for "I BELIEVE I CAN FLY (FLIGHT OF THE FRENCHIES)" movie by  sebastien montaz-rosset.
We’re not saying you should, but there are quicker ways of getting down from this area than hiking. Gif from the trailer for “I BELIEVE I CAN FLY (FLIGHT OF THE FRENCHIES)” movie by sebastien montaz-rosset.

Show us your best “Found it” selfie in the comments!

 

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, just fill out this form. Thanks!

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That’s one way to get ahead. — Heads of State (GCE041) — Geocache of the Week

These fashionable gentlemen were always a'head' of the curve. Photo by geocacher TresHntrs
These fashionable gentlemen were always a’head’ of the curve. Photo by geocacher TresHntrs

Geocache Name:

Heads of State (GCE041)

Difficulty/Terrain Rating:

1/1

Why this is the Geocache of the Week:

There are some places that deserve to be seen. These rarely visited gems can be anything from a hidden pocket park to a piece of beautiful graffiti—or even a place full of giant presidential heads. However, you can’t always place a geocache there to bring people in. That’s where Virtual Caches come in. While a few rule changes made new Virtual Caches into Waymarks, some of the older Virtual Caches have been grandfathered in since they existed before the rule change. This spot, located in Houston, Texas, is where an artist sculpted and cast these presidential busts for use in a park near Mount Rushmore in South Dakota. You’ll also find sculptures of the Beatles here.

 

What geocachers are saying:

“I came down to Houston for the weekend to grab a bunch of challenge caches and virtuals…this one was on my list…..very cool place….added a few pictures to my log….thanks for bringing me here……TFTC!” – mightymouse21

“Wow, this was a hoot! Detouring through Texas on our way to GeoWoodstock and had to stop at this one. Glad we did. Took pictures so we will post after we get back to Florida next week. Thanks for the adventure.” – Wilemon

“Wow this is great…the things you get to see while geocaching, never would have come here or new about this had it not been for caching, thanks for placing!!” – Holn1b4IDie

 

Photos and Video:

Busted! Photo by geocacher MXTrekker
Busted! Photo by geocacher MXTrekker
Watch out for the giant Beatles! Photo by geocacher Drew136
Watch out for the giant Beatles! Photo by geocacher Drew136
Just "head" over to this cache to meet these folks. Photo by geocacher ArdentEnthusiast
Just “head” over to this cache to meet these folks. Photo by geocacher ArdentEnthusiast
Not even Abe 'nose' what you're looking for. Photo by geocacher Scorpios2931
Not even Abe ‘nose’ what you’re looking for. Photo by geocacher Scorpios2931

What little-known spots have you discovered by geocaching? Tell us in the comments.

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, just fill out this form. Thanks!

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Geocaching: The Video Game — LostSailRs: Uncharted Waters (GC55CDQ) — Geocache of the Week

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Geocache Name:

LostSailRs: Uncharted Waters (GC55CDQ)

Difficulty/Terrain Rating:

3/1

Why this is the Geocache of the Week:

Getting creative with a new geocache hide takes some skill. Whether that’s just learning the art of how to hot glue camouflage without burning yourself or a bit of woodworking. Or you could take it a step further, like the cache owner of this geocache did and teach yourself HTML 5 and create an immersive geocaching video game experience. The time, effort and creativity that went into the puzzle, the game and the geocache itself are a perfect example of what makes a GREAT geocache.

What the geocache owner, LostSailRs, has to say:

“I love designing puzzle caches and try to put a lot of thought behind each one.  Some of them are fairly complicated, others, not so much.  But I try to do something slightly different each time.  Currently I am on summer vacation and decided it was time I taught myself something new.  I started to watch hours of YouTube teaching myself HTML5 game design and began implementing the basics into some of my other video-game based caches.  Since I started teaching myself how to make games I had my eyes on doing something to satisfy puzzle cachers of all ranges: Strategy, logic, skill, dexterity, etc… This took about 6 weeks from start to testing.  Every few days I would get it to a playable stage and tell my wife, the Lost in LostSailRs, that it was done, but would wake up the next day and start learning something new and adding it to the game.  Towards the end I started writing and recording the background music and sound effects, and put the finishing touches on some of the graphics.  I sent out a request to our local geocaching society and got some great replies.  After another week or so making changes and fixing bugs it was ready to release.   The idea for the multi-stage final came late in the stage, once I received the containers.  I thought they were so perfect and wanted to make use of the bulk amount I received.  So I added a very simple puzzle/riddle that will take the person straight to the final.  I chose the location because of it’s scenic view and isolation during the weekends.”

“We are so grateful to be part of this amazing community of cachers who have warmly welcomed us into the fold this past year.  On Sunday, July 6th, my wife and I celebrated our 1 year cache-aversary.  In that year we have found some amazing hides, clever containers, and friends-for-life.  We can’t wait to see what’s in store for year number 2.”

What geocachers are saying:

“Really enjoyed this cache. The puzzle was well done and just enough work. Made it to GZ and spent a few minutes thinking through the hints. Thankfully, my daughter made the last connection that allowed us to find the cache.” – PowerDime

“Marvelous game, well played from start to finish! …Not having read the logs, though, I was very pleasantly surprised when I arrived this afternoon and found that there was more adventure to be had! I love it when there are unexpected twists and journeys! This one gets a favorite for the concept, a favorite for the game, a favorite for the twists, a favorite for the… WHAT? I can only award ONE?!!! So be it.” – GoldenStateBoy

“This was fun, I like it when someone really puts out a clever cache and this is definitely a cache that will get many favorite points. I don’t believe I have done any other caches of yours but I sure will now. Thanks for an adventure.” – oldwood

 

Photos and Video:

Your booty awaits. Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
Your booty awaits. Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
X marks the spot! Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
X marks the spot! Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
The view from GZ. Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
The view from GZ. Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
Yarrrr better be privy to all the muggles! Photo courtesy of LostSailRs
Yarrrr better be privy to all the muggles! Photo courtesy of LostSailRs

What new skills have you learned because of geocaching? Tell us in the comments.

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, just fill out this form. Thanks!