APRIL 30, 2016 – San Diego (beach bike caching)

April 30, 2016

From Warner Springs I drove to San Diego for 2 days of bike caching. First stop, Mission Bay. Immediately the front brake assembly fell apart. So I rode around with the rear brake only. I was careful to not roll off the dock at (GC5ZWW0) Barbras Previous Intention [no typo].
042816_02_dock
Some caches weren’t so scenic or easy, Bike Bridge (GC3HNYB).
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The next day I worked my way south by vehicle along San Diego Bay, unloading my bike near cache clusters. This is Harbor Island. Oddly, there’s no bike path here even though there are bikes for rent.
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I stopped at a random parking lot to get my bearings and stepped out to find an easy cache just a few feet away, Marina Gateway: National City (GC1WB6J). I think that this is Supergirls’s adopted home city.
042816_04_marsh
Most of the caches along a stretch of the New Bayshore Bikeway seemed to be missing. I wondered if someone removed them. The one here, a magnetized tin, should’ve been easy, Friendly Fisherman (GC4JZ4B).
042816_06_sculpture
The view from just a few steps away made up for the DNF. There was no cache on the pier but I rode to its end.
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My luck was better along desolate parts of the bikeway where there were no muggles.
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As a non-athletic 55 year old, I count myself fortunate that in 5 days I hiked 25 miles, biked 10 and found 57 caches with no bodily breakdowns. Someday if my luck runs out I hope that it’s on the trail, hiking or biking and not attached to a bunch of machines in a hospital. 


APRIL 23, 2016 – WARNER SPRINGS, (San Diego County – PCT)

April 23, 2016

A long string of caches and pictures of vast grasslands on the PCT were too much to resist. To prepare for my visit I posted logistical questions on Facebook. Orange County cacher ThatsRoxie responded and agreed to a car shuttle. Roxie arrived at the Warner Springs Community Resource Center first and set up for car camping. Two hours later I checked in, made a donation and tried to set up my tent for the overnight stay. A slight breeze repeatedly knocked down my efforts until Roxie suggested assembly in the windless space between our 2 vehicles. d’OH! It worked! We carried the assembled tent to the end of the lot where it was easy to stake down. Then we found a few caches before dark. Ask me offline about the bathroom & shower situation.
041916_00_tent
In the morning we drove 15 minutes to the southern trailhead at Barrel Springs. Unfortunately the cache there was stuck out of reach #11 Alternate Desert Route (GC4RKN0).
041916_01_barrel
We crossed the street N onto the PCT. The first mile was a gradual but steady uphill and the view was the same as what I’m used to seeing near home.
041916_02_unimpressive
Beetle porn!!
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We gazed down at what was ahead.
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ThatsRoxie’s geodog MissVivian carried her own water and bowl. Later she had to wear a cooling suit. Even then she overheated.
041916_05_geodog
Even without a GPSr it’d be hard to get lost. Here’s ThatsRoxie and MissVivian.
041916_06_thatsroxane
I visited a spot I’d seen in many PCT blogs and videos.
041916_07_OLdweeb
The caches were easy finds. Several thousand PCT thru hikers will obliviously pass them all.
041916_07a_cache
The trail skirted a riparian area with lots of caches. Somewhere inside we split up for the heat-ailing MissVivian. Roxie & MissVivian went ahead to complete the trail without caching. I continued hiking at a slower pace, talking with passing thru hikers, caching and skipping those that were uphill or more than 50’ off trail.
041916_08_scrubland
The trail descended back into the grasslands. Caches here were sometimes in random open spots 20’-50’ off trail. Perfect coordinates allowed me to find those. I reached them only because the foxtails were still green and attached. A month from now cachers will need gaiters.
041916_09_forever
Unlike the Eagle Rocks in Topanga State Park and near Glendale, the one 3 miles S of Warner Springs actually looks like an eagle. I DNF’d the cache there, Eagle Rock (GCZFME) because a group arrived to take pictures and I didn’t want to be in their way.
041916_10_eagle
The final mile was through another riparian area, alongside a running stream.
041916_11_riparian
Most caches here were small tins hidden in burned out downed trees. The rest were bison tubes or other tree hangers.
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At about 9 ½ miles I reached the gate across the street from my tent where ThatsRoxie was waiting to drive me to retrieve my vehicle.
041916_13_gate
Instead of following my original plan to camp another night and then cache N the next day, I packed up and drove to San Diego for 2 days of bike caching.

I refuse to skimp on gear. Except for the windblown tent everything functioned perfectly.
Tent: Big Agnes – Copper Spur UL1 mtnGLO
Sleeping bag: Western Mountaineering – Alder
Daypack: Marmot – Ultra Kompressor 22
Trekking Poles : Black Diamond – Trail Pro Shock
Camp stove: Snow Peak – Litemax
Headlamp: Princtontec VIZZ
GPS: Garmin Oregon 550T (discontinued)