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Royal Cascade Virtual Cache

Hidden : 01/02/2003
Difficulty:
1.5 out of 5
Terrain:
2.5 out of 5

Size: Size:   virtual (virtual)

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Geocache Description:

Tumbling off the high cliffs of Yosemite Valley, a prominent cascade terminates its fall near this site. This special, private spot is incredibly close to nearby accommodations yet is not nearly as heavily visited as more famous features in the park.

Gecko Dad and Groovy Gecko have enjoyed walking this alternate trail to Mirror Lake in summer and winter for a number of years. The cache site is very close to the beginning of that trail. Parking may be available nearby but a better option is to take one of the free Yosemite shuttle buses to the closest stop at N 37 44.826, W 119 34.475.

After plummeting several thousand feet, the creek flows quietly down from a small terminal pool and at times covers the nearby trail for a short section of 20 yards or so. At certain times of the year, be prepared to step across on small rocks or wade through this stretch before climbing to the cache area. Because this slope is south facing, it remains relatively free of snow most of the winter except immediately after a major storm.

The original cache container was hidden by flashlight on the night of 1/2/2003 to celebrate the New Year and introduce geocache-inclined visitors to one Team Gecko’s favorite places. On the evening of placement, the valley was cloaked in snow from two previous storms. The scene was further accented by marvelous purplish-rose sunset-lit clouds drifting across the western sky above the mists of a nearby meadow.

To comply with NPS rules, the cache has been converted from regular to virtual. Very near the cache coordinates - not at the pool - is a large vintage-looking inscription of a name on granite. To the east of the inscription is a conspicuous vertical crack that features a precariously perched tree. To confirm your find, please email us with the following information:

1. The name inscribed on the wall (flash photographs reveal it best)
2. The type of tree
3. The number of baseball-sized holes in the granite that are lined up immediately below the tree

GPS reception in the valley is notably variable at times, especially in forested areas such as the cache site. As a result, the posted coordinates are rounded to nearest .005 but even these are approximate.

The main trail continues beyond the cache site and is worth exploring eastward all the way to Mirror Lake and beyond, even at night in the winter – with proper apparel and equipment, of course. Among the landmarks along the way to Mirror Lake is Indian Cave. We hope you enjoy the cache hunt and the hike if you continue on.

Additional Hints (Decrypt)

Vafpevcgvba vf 15 lneqf rnfg bs gur grezvany cbby ba n ornevat bs 65 qrterrf zntargvp. Iregvpny penpx naq gerr ner snegure rnfg. Ubyrf ner nobhg 20 srrg nobir tebhaq yriry.

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)