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Ward Mountain Traditional Geocache

Hidden : 10/26/2002
Difficulty:
2 out of 5
Terrain:
3.5 out of 5

Size: Size:   regular (regular)

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Geocache Description:

The cache is an ammo can and is located near the remains of a Forest Service lookout at an elevation of 9110 feet. There are good views of the Selway Bitterroot Wilderness and the Bitterroot valley.

It was mentioned some of my caches are a little ambiguous, so here goes:

From Hamilton, MT, follow US93 south. three tenths of a mile after crossing the Bitterroot river, you'll see a Forest Service trailhead sign for Roaring Lion Creek. Turn west on Roaring Lion Cr. road and go straight. one half a mile after the paved road turns to very well graded gravel friendly to lowriders, there are three metal FS signs at an intersection. One of them will indicate Ward Mtn Trail 208 and point left. Immediately apply the brakes; you are there. Do not proceed further up the road to the Roaring Lion trailhead. That is another day, and another cache. Park along the road or in the small cul de sac to the right.

Ward Mtn Trail leaves the road slightly east of the intersection; there is another wooden FS sign on a tree at the trail juncture. The trail is well maintained, and climbs through several different zones, including a recovering burn area (1988). Switchbacks add appreciably to the direct line distance of about 3.75 miles but make the hike easier. The trail does not intersect any other trails, and terminates at the old lookout site. The cache is within 100 yards. Please stay on the bare ground and circle around the ground cover; it is not necessary to plow through it. An alpine shrub doesn't have an easy life to start with, and doesn't need to be walked on. The cache is near the vegetation, but not within its area. There is permanent water 1.25 miles before the cache.

Am I missing anything? Oh, yeah, there is very close to 5000' of ascent involved. You didn't really think this was a drive-by, did you?

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

ybbx haqre gjb fznyy, guva ebpx cyngrf cebccrq ntnvafg n ynetre syng ebpx.

Decryption Key

A|B|C|D|E|F|G|H|I|J|K|L|M
-------------------------
N|O|P|Q|R|S|T|U|V|W|X|Y|Z

(letter above equals below, and vice versa)