Every Cache Has Its Thorns
In Texas, United States
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Finding this cache will take you on a 5-mile loop hike of the Upper and Lower Sunset Trails in the Franklin Mountains State Park. This is a four-part multi-cache, with the final cache being an ammo can.
I hope this is a fun and challenging cache that introduces you to another great Franklin Mountains hiking trail. All four parts are within 100 feet of the trail. Here's the breakdown:
Parking coordinates are provided below, and the trailhead for the Upper Sunset Trail is at the same location. Parts 1 and 2 of this geocache are along the Upper Sunset Trail.
After finding parts 1 and 2, continue along the Upper Sunset Trail until you reach the picnic site. From there, you take the steps down to the west, then follow the trail that heads northwest until it meets the Lower Sunset Trail and you'll soon find cache 3.
Between cache 3 and the final, you'll hit a place where the trail splits, with one way labeled "more difficult" and the other way labeled "most difficult." You can take either way because the trails meet up again before the final. The "most difficult" is more direct, and isn't too bad for hikers. The higher difficulty is noted mainly for mountain bikers.
After finding the final, continue on the trail back to the parking lot.
Other notes: Unless you have a Texas State Parks Pass, fee to get into the park is $5. Hours are 8-5 during the winter. In summer, park opens at 6:30 a.m. on the weekends. Complete hike takes about three hours at average pace, so make sure you leave time to find the caches and get out of the park before the gates close at 5. Permit for this multi-cache is on file at park headquarters.
Park map will indicate the loop hike is longer than 5 miles, but you will skip part of the Lower Sunset Trail with this hike. Don't worry, the total for this hike really is 5 miles.
A note on the difficulty ratings: The trail is a good one, but like any in the Franklins, there are difficult spots. Lots of elevation gain at the beginning, but eases after that.
FTF prize is getting to be the first to sign a log that lived three years in the wild without ever being signed. Why? The first part of a fun Big Spring, Texas, multi-cache was never found before being replaced. When I found the cache 3 years later, I also found the original first cache and promised I'd use the log in a special El Paso cache. So here it is. More on the Big Spring cache here: (visit link)
SO DON'T BE CONFUSED BY THE COORDS IN THE FINAL LOG. YOU HAVE FOUND THE FINAL. You don't need the coords in the final unless you are traveling to Big Spring soon!
I want this to be a fun, challenging adventure, so if there is anything wrong, or something needs improving, please send me an e-mail.
Fgntr 1: Fznyy ghccrejner, pbirerq ol ebpxf.
Fgntr 2: Cnl nggragvba gb gur qrfreg'f pbybe cnyrggr.
Fgntr 3: Terra zngpufgvpx pbagnvare, va n ubyr va gur ebpx, pbirerq ol ebpxf.
Fgntr 4: Gbb rnfl.
Last Updated: on 7/13/2017 8:32:40 AM Pacific Daylight Time (3:32 PM GMT)
Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum