The Geo Boo Gang is a social group made up of geocachers from northeastern New Jersey and the Lower Hudson Valley of New York. The Geo Boo Gang holds regular events, including monthly ice cream socials and quarterly dinners. They race each other for First to Finds and often run into each other on local trails.
The Geo Boo Gang at their annual picnic
(l-r): Jack Russell, Olga Caramel, Bo Woolensworth, Felicia Furrball, Caesar Taylor, Balto Kaasen, Cody Cook, Cornelius Taylor
It was during one of their ice cream socials that the following conversation occurred:
Olga: ... and that's how I developed a love for cooking.
Bo: Wait, I love to cook too. How did I never know this about you?
Cody: Well, all we usually talk about is geocaching. I don't think I really know much about any of you, besides the fact that you enjoy finding plastic food containers in the woods using a super-expensive satellite system!
Felicia: Hey, that gives me an idea! Why don't we create a puzzle series together; each of us would create a puzzle based on something that interests him or her? Olga or Bo could use cooking if they wanted to, for example, since they both love cooking. And then together we can create a final, bonus puzzle, based on all our individual puzzles. This will be a fun way to get to know each other better.
Cornelius: Caesar and I are brothers. Can we put together a puzzle as a team?
Balto: Jack and I hang out all the time. Can we create a puzzle together too?
Felicia: That sounds great guys! So we'll have six puzzles, which works out perfectly. Let's coordinate the bonus puzzle, and then we'll go create our individual puzzles on our own.
And that's how the Geo Boo Gang puzzle series was born.
Bonus Cache - The End of the Puzzle Series
Today is the annual Geo Boo Gang picnic event at the local duck pond, and everyone is in attendance for a pot luck dinner and geo-chat. After dinner, the gang gathers around to discuss the Geo Boo Gang puzzle series that they have created over the past year.
The Geo Boo Gang discussing their puzzle series
“Welcome, everyone,” said Felicia. “At last year’s picnic, we came up with the idea of creating a puzzle series based on our personal interests outside of the game. It took almost the entire year, but we did it! Congratulations to everyone for finishing your puzzles and getting them successfully published! I hope everyone enjoyed the putting the series together, and getting to know more about each other in the process!
“Caesar and Cornelius, you were the first to publish your puzzle. What was your experience in creating the puzzle, and how did people like it?”
Caesar and Cornelius Taylor discussing their logic puzzle
“It was a lot of fun publishing the puzzle,” said Caesar. “We have to admit, we did have it easy, as our parents were the ones who came up with the ten possible coordinates for us as part of our birthday present. When our parents surprised us on the morning of our birthday celebration, we were thrilled, and we wanted to share our love of logic puzzles with the rest of the gang. My parents said it was really tough to come up with ten coordinates that could be possible solutions while fitting into the puzzle structure that my dad saw while he was in Singapore, but it worked out well.”
“I enjoyed your puzzle,” said Bo. “Logic puzzles are fun. It took me two attempts to get the right answer, and I thank you guys for confirming my solution before I went to find it, since you didn’t have a geo-checker.”
“Anytime!” said Cornelius. “Sorry about the lack of a geo-checker; the possible solutions were all listed and it would have been easy for cachers to just plug in all ten numbers until they got the right one. It seems that finders have been enjoying the puzzle. A couple of cachers figured out the solution in the first try, some in the second, and there were even some brute force finders!”
“Jack and Balto, I really liked your video game puzzle!” said Caesar.
Jack Russell and Balto Kaasen discussing their video game puzzle
“Thank you, Caesar!” said Jack. “The idea for the puzzle came easily, as Balto and I are always playing video games together. We used to be into computer games, then we moved over to console games, and now we spend most of our game time playing mobile apps. We’ve been playing this particular game for over a year.”
“That’s right, we love our video games!” said Balto. “The biggest problem cachers seem to be having is what specific information is implied from the puzzle. We’re hoping the hint helps resolve the most common question we’re asked, without giving too much away. It was tough to create the puzzle without being too obvious about what the solver needed to do.”
“Cody, your puzzle was really tough!” said Jack. “We finally solved it though! Was that actual GPS data you used to create the puzzle?”
Cody Cook discussing his technology puzzle
“Yes, it was,” said Cody. “That was the real data I got from my GPS receiver when I was trying to mark the coordinates of my puzzle final, just like my write-up says. My receiver has been working better since that day, thankfully; I was so worried it was broken! I gave the puzzle a 4.5 difficulty rating because the math isn’t easy, though the problem is straightforward and not meant to be tricky. It was really cool to see multiple solution approaches by various solvers, giving the same answer!
“Hey Olga, it took me a few days to solve your puzzle,” continued Cody. “It was really colorful and fun! Do you really design and create mosaics?”
Olga Caramel discussing her art puzzle
“Thank you, Cody!” said Olga. “And yes, I do. Since that particular art class, I’ve create a mosaic of my family; it was several thousand pieces and turned out great! It’s hanging on my wall at home. I’ve had great feedback about my puzzle so far. While cachers say it’s taken them several days to solve it, they all have enjoyed the finished product. ‘Colorful’ is a word that’s used often about the solution.
“Felicia, what a great puzzle you made about your trip! When you were showing me your photos after you got home, I never imagined what sort of puzzle you would come up with!”
Felicia Furrball discussing her travel puzzle
“Sorry Olga!” said Felicia. “I had that puzzle idea planned out since before I went on my trip, and I was so excited to get it published right after I got home. Only a couple of cachers have found it so far, but that’s fine; I’m so proud of my puzzle! My trip was amazing. Want to hear something funny? As I was signing the logbook of the Original Stash Tribute Plaque, I saw that the name signed before mine, found on the same day as me, was someone from this area! Actually, one of the First to Finds! What a small world!”
“Hey Bo, I liked your puzzle and learning about your cooking techniques!” continued Felicia.
Bo Woolensworth discussing her cooking puzzle
“Thank you Felicia!” said Bo. “I’m sorry my puzzle took so long to publish! I had one idea for a puzzle, but I couldn’t get the solution to work out! Then I had another idea, but that idea didn’t work out either. It wasn’t until I was at my summer cooking camp that I came up with this idea. It’s not a tough puzzle, but it does reflect my biggest passion – cooking! Thank you Olga for being the guinea pig for my puzzle idea!”
“Ha ha!” replied Olga. “Nice one, and no problem! Hey, what are we going to do for the bonus puzzle? Any ideas?”
“Should we do something simple?” asked Jack. “Like ‘the solution is at N40 58.ABC W074 03.DEF’?”
“I don’t think so,” said Cody. “That solution doesn’t work with the clues we used in the puzzle finals.”
“I think we should use the puzzle final coordinates somehow,” said Caesar. “So much effort was made by the cachers solving these puzzles, we may as well incorporate them in the bonus final.”
“That’s a good idea,” said Bo. “Should we put the bonus final at the geomidpoint of the six puzzle finals?”
“If we did that,” said Cornelius, “we wouldn’t be using the clues we gave. Let’s use both the puzzle final coordinates and the clues for the bonus puzzle.”
“Let’s make the bonus final something larger than a micro,” said Balto. “After six micro sized caches, this should be bigger.”
The Geo Boo Gang talked out the final puzzle, and decided on a method to use both the puzzle final locations along with the puzzle clues.
“Okay, we have it!” said Felicia. “The bonus puzzle will be the following:
- Step 1: Calculate the geomidpoint of the six puzzle final locations. Look at the related site link for a good online calculator.
- Step 2: Multiply the decimal minutes of the geomidpoint latitude by 1000 and call this X, e.g. 58.123 would result in 58123. Repeat for the decimal minutes of the geomidpoint longitude and call this Y.
- Step 3: Calculate P = X – (7*A) – (3*B) + (5*C) – D – (4*E) + (2*F) (where A-F are the puzzle clues)
- Step 4: Calculate Q = Y – (9*A) + (3*B) + (11*C) – (5*D) + (11*E) – (3*F)
- Step 5: The final location is N40 P/1000 W074 Q/1000.
“Sounds great!” shouted the Geo Boo Gang. “We did it! We hope everyone enjoyed the Geo Boo Gang puzzle series!”
Can YOU find the geocache?
Per the rules of geocaching, a Found It log must correspond to a signed logbook.
I hope you enjoy the entire Geo Boo Gang puzzle series! The series consists of the following caches:
GC62D9B: Geo Boo Gang Series: Caesar and Cornelius Taylor
GC62D9D: Geo Boo Gang Series: Balto Kaasen and Jack Russell
GC62D9F: Geo Boo Gang Series: Cody Cook
GC62D9G: Geo Boo Gang Series: Olga Caramel
GC62D9J: Geo Boo Gang Series: Felicia Furrball
GC62D9M: Geo Boo Gang Series: Bo Woolensworth
GC62D9P: Geo Boo Gang Series: Bonus