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Tour de Kamas

A cache by HikingSeal Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 05/03/2016
2 out of 5
1 out of 5

Size: Size: large (large)

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Geocache Description:

This is an easy six stage multi with a fun gadget cache for a final. Since four of the six historic sites are private residences or businesses, all necessary information can be obtained from the street without going on to the property. The two that are businesses which are open to the public welcome you to explore during business hours. Again the information needed for those two stages can be obtained from the street.

It is about 10 blocks or 1.5 miles from Stage A to the Final, one way. You are certainly welcome to walk it, but I would recommend staying in your car or planning a bike ride.

Since several of the stages are current homes in addition to being historic sites, before doing this cache in the dark, please consider how you would feel about a strange car stopping in front of your house so the people in the car can stare at your home.


History of Kamas

On Wednesday, July 5, 1911, the board of County Commissioners of Summit County, State of Utah voted unanimously in favor of a resolution approving the incorporation of the Town of Kamas.

For many years, Kamas has been known as "the Gateway to the Uintahs" because of its proximity to the mountains. Like a jewel nestled in the valley, Kamas is surrounded by the beautiful Uinta Mountains on the east and the Wasatch Mountains to the west. The Provo River borders the south end of the valley with the Weber River bordering the north. Beaver Creek, a tributary of the Weber, cuts through Kamas, as it winds its way through the valley on its way to meet the main branch of the river downstream.

It has been claimed Kamas derives its name from a Mootka Indian word, "chamas", which through a series of changes became "Camass", a word used to identify any of several plants, the bulbs of which formed a staple food of the Indians of Western America. In a broader sense the word is used to designate a small grassy plain among the hills, which is a good description of the topography of this locality.

Thomas Rhoades was the first settler to come to the valley. He was sent in 1858 by Brigham Young. He came to build a home, raise livestock, hunt, trap, and look for gold. At first he brought 25 men with him. They built a stockade to protect themselves from the Indians. The stockade stood empty for two years. Thomas Rhoades and George W. Brown returned in 1860. They were the first people to spend a whole winter in the valley and were followed in the spring of 1861 by more pioneers. The legacy of Rhoades and the other early pioneers lives on today and fills the valley. It is known that Thomas Rhoades and his son Caleb obtained gold from somewhere in the Uinta Mountains, and more that 100 years later people are still searching for the Lost Rhoades Gold Mine.

Early years in the valley were very difficult. Crops were poor and the winters long and cold. During the winter of 1861-62, the entire community was dependent upon one coffee mill to grind wheat for bread.

The Native Americans, who were in the habit of using the valley for their hunting ground and grazing land, resented the invasion of the white settlers. In the spring of 1866, the settlers moved to Peoa, where a fort had been started. Here they assisted in the completion of the fort, remaining there until fall. The settlers came back to their homes in 1866 and commenced to build a fort of their own,which was completed some time in in 1867. This fort was made of hewn logs, measuring 30 rods square with walls 16 feet high. The walls of the fort formed the back walls of the houses. There were gates in both the east and west walls of the fort. There were about 47 families who lived in the fort from the time of its erection until it was abandoned in about 1870. In the center of the fort were two log buildings. One building was moved the north side of Beaver Creek where it had served as a school house since 1863 into the fort where it served as a schoolhouse, church and amusement hall. After the fort was torn down, the old schoolhouse was moved to 185 East 200 North where it still stands today. It looks more modern from the outside but still contains the original log frame. Within the second building in the fort operated a co-op store which provided the settlers with basic necessities of life.

The timber industry started early in the history of Kamas. In 1861, John Pack and Charles Russell set a sawmill in Beaver Creek Canyon, three miles east of Kamas with James Woolstenhulme hauling the first logs.

Easy access to the nearby tree covered mountains made lumbering a natural local industry. Prominent operators in the early days were John Carpenter, Joseph Williams, Joseph Porter, the Pack brothers, and the Lambert brothers.

Kamas has always been an ideal area for the grazing of cattle. The valley continues to serve as a summer pasture to thousands of cattle to be shipped to markets each fall.

Ward E. Pack was the president of the first home dramatic company which was organized in 1887. Many fine traveling groups also visited Kamas in years past and these too, were well received.

The first dance hall was built in 1887 by Jedediah G. Lambert and Silas M. Pack. This building also served as the first silent movie theater. John Carpenter afterward built a dance pavilion and the Kamas Opera House. It burned down in 1943. In 1946, Doug Simpson and Glen Gibbons open a new theater that is still used today.

The first orchestra was organized by George B. Leonard. Jesse R. Burbridge, John James Smithies, Mrs. Charles Pack, and Parley Neely were members of this group. Many musical entertainments were presented. 

At one time, the town of Kamas has its own local newspaper called the Kamas Courant. Mrs. R.B. Rand and her son, Julian, served as its publishers. Lauerence E. Fitch, a local carpenter and home builder, built caskets in the rear of the newspaper office.

In 1913, George Butler came and established a small electric light plant in the old grist mill at the mouth of Beaver Creek Canyon, east of Kamas.

Kamas's earliest telephone service consisted of only one phone in the home of Jedediah G. Lambert. The Kamas Woodland Telephone Company was organized as a stock company by Bert Potts. It was purchased by John Blazzard and Moses Taylor in 1921.

In June 1938, the citizens of Kamas Valley organized themselves for the purpose of promoting community welfare, renewing old acquaintances, and learning more about the valley. This tradition of Kamas Valley Fiesta Days continues today. Rodeo, bull wars, parades, entertainment, good food, car shows, and, of course, the Demolition Derby make the week of July 24 a great time to be in Kamas.

Introduction is taken from Kamas Centennial brochure which is derived from Heart Throbs of the West, Vol 5 , A Daughters of the Utah Pioneers publication and Kamas with the Komets by Roy Lambert. The brochure takes such pains in noting the names of the town's founders because many of their descendants continue to live here today.

The Cache

You will visit six historic sites in Kamas collecting information from each site. It should be a nice little tour around the town. The information will be used to determine the coordinates of the final cache. Nothing fancy just answer the questions to get A-F and plug them into

N 40° 38.ABC W 111° 16.DEF


Stage A - Warr Store (100 E 300 South)

Posted Coordinates/N 40° 38.300 W 111° 16.730

 The Alma Warr store building has been a landmark in Kamas for over 100 years. Mr. Warr worked as a clerk in the co-op store in the Rhoades Valley Fort in 1869. In 1892, he started his own store on the corner of 200 South and Main Street. Later it was moved to the southeast corner of the same block where the building still stands today. It has a couple of additions and now serves as a home. The iron gate still guards the front door. You can easily imagine swinging it open to walk into the store as the tin cans hung above clanged to let Mr. Warr know you were there.

What is the original building made of?

  • Stone A = 7
  • Glass A = 5
  • Legos A = 3
  • Log A = 1


Stage B - O'Driscoll Home & Dairy (215 S 300 East)

N40 38.371 W111 16.455

The Isaac (Dop) O'Driscoll home was built in 1883. A dairy belonging to Clarence and Walter Jones stood in the rear of the home at one time. The Jones bought the first milking machine in Kamas and used it in their creamery.

Notice the small building behind the home. The coordinates for this stage are slightly to the right (south) of the home so you can see it. If you can't see it, please move farther south. DO NOT ENTER THE PROPERTY of this private residence. This is a good example of what a home of the original settler may have looked like long before Mr. Fitch assisted with the building of the beautiful home in the front.

What is the primary material from which the building is constructed?

  • Brick B = 1
  • Stone B = 4
  • Log B = 3
  • Legos B = 9 


Stage C - First Settler Monument (160 E 100 South)

N 40 38.485 W111 16.658

John Lambert Home Monument - Thought nothing remains of that first log cabin with a dirt roof, it was constructed here by John Lambert in 1861 just before the snows of winter set in.

C = Second digit of the year of the first settler's death


Stage D - New West Country Store (95 S Main St.)

N40 38.497 W111 16.834

The Green Hall has been a popular feature in the community for many years. It was constructed in 1924 by the LDS church and known as the Kamas Amusement Hall. It was the site of many plays, programs, Halloween parties, dances, church bazaars, and wedding receptions. It was closed January 24, 1984. It is now the home of the New West Country store. The original curtain valance across the stage is still there. After you find what you need outside, take a peek around inside. It is a neat building with supplies for any cowboy or cowgirl. They even have a hat maker if you have a hankering for your own 10 gallon.

D = Last digit of the year the store was established+2   (don't forget to add two!)

Stage E - Summit Inn (80 S. Main St.)

N40 38.530 W111 16.857

The Summit Inn, originally known as the Summit Hotel, was constructed in 1910. The hotel was erected as a means of income for the family of the widow Lucy Williams. It has served as a hotel, patient recovery area for one of Kamas's doctors, a candy factory, offices of a cleaning service, and a home. Today it is a pizza parlor and ice cream shop. (Great place to grab lunch after you find the cache!!) 

E = Number of supports for the balcony-3  (don't forget to subtract three!)

Stage F - Fitch Home (210 N Main St.)

N40 38.788 W111 16.831

 Lauerence Fitch was a noted carpenter in Kamas in the early 1900's. His home was constructed in 1905. Many of the "gingerbread-type woodwork" on the older homes in town can be attributed to his talents. Remember the O'Driscoll home from Stage B? He also lent his carpentry skills to casket building which he performed both in the rear of his home and eventually in the newspaper office. Laws office now occupy the home.

The Fitch home has a feature that is of unusual length. What is it?

  • Weather vane F = 7
  • Chimney F = 9
  • Front porch stairs F = 4
  • Garage F = 0


Congratulations to MelKel801 on the FTF!!!

Many thanks to Kim Peacock for being the contact, speaking with the Mayor, making the all important phone call to Matt, and for her enthusiasm for the project. A huge thanks to Matt for helping get the cache installed. **insert Tim "The Toolman" Taylor-like grunting here** Finally thanks to the Utah Office of Tourism for allowing me to include this cache on the Utah GeoTour.

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Qba'g jbeel nobhg gur vasbezngvba fvta ba gur fvqr. Vg ernyyl pbhyq or vasbezngvbany sbe bguref ohg vg'f whfg pnzb gb lbh. Gung'f ernyyl gur pnpur. Jnag uryc bcravat vg? Fpebyy qbja.
Ghea TRAGYL yvxr n qvfcynl enpx.Lbh znl arrq gb yvsg be TRAGYL chfu hc gb ghea vg. Ab sbepr vf erdhverq. Ab gbbyf erdhverq. Ab ernyyl, qba'g hfr lbhe zhfpyrf, hfr lbhe urnq.

Decryption Key


(letter above equals below, and vice versa)



194 Logged Visits

Found it 176     Didn't find it 2     Write note 7     Temporarily Disable Listing 1     Enable Listing 1     Publish Listing 1     Needs Maintenance 1     Owner Maintenance 5     

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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum

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