Hello folks,

We have 5 days until Texas Challenge!!!

I wanted to make sure I sent out to everyone the things I’ve talked about at the events and other things that I’ve gotten and have popped into my head.

I need to know what device everyone is using for finding the caches, make and model of your GPS and I would like to know how you normally load caches onto it.  iPhone users will need iPlunder and Android users need to have c:geo.  people using android we need to test it and make sure I can get the file to you at challenge, once I know who is who I’ll send the GPX file and the “walk through” on loading it.  There is a slim chance that the cell phone coverage out there my keep us from emailing / downloading the caches to smart phone users, I can’t find a way around this on iPhones, but most androids I can dump the gpx file onto using a cable, if yours can I highly recommend you bring your cables.

I plan to use GSAK to load the caches onto all gps’s  If you’re not sure yours will work for this or you want to just make certain you’ll have what you need, then by all means bring your computer with you if possible to load the caches, it won’t hurt my feelings at all.  I will have my laptop and my wife’s out there to get things done as quickly as we can.  We will have about 45 minutes to get everyone loaded up and ready to go.

Other things:

  • Remember you will be in the woods, wear boots if possible, watch out for animals, take lots of water and some snacks as we will be out there when most of us are normally eating.  Walking sticks are a plus!
  • Cache in small groups, safety in numbers.  If one of you gets hurt others can call for help!
  • Fully charge those cell phones, especially if you are a smart phone cacher!  If you are in a group of all smart phone cachers, I recommend only one or two using their phones to cache and the others reserving their battery for phone uses.
  • If your GPS has it, turn on tracking out there, so it can help you find your way back if you get turned around.  I’m very good with cardinal directions and I got turned around more than once out there.
  • Turn in your scorecard, even if it’s late this is a way to make sure all cachers are back in from the hunt.  Your score cards will be returned to you after the event.
  • Obey the State Park rules, ALL OF THEM.  These include: No Alcohol on open display, no speeding (this includes on bicycles, don’t go into closed areas of the park etc…  The full list of park rules is on the Texas Parks and Wildlifes webpage, a link is on the TC2012 cache page.
  • The park will be opening at 6 AM on the day of challenge to help get everyone in there, make sure you get there as early as you can manage.
- Reminder about FTF tokens -
As stated in the rules, caches will have a FTF token.

While scorecards will be returned to everyone after the event, Any FTF tokens turned in WILL NOT BE RETURNED. 

If a cacher finds a FTF token, they have the option of:
a)turning it in with their scorecard for additional points toward their own individual score,
b) OR to keep it as a souvenir of the challenge. 


So a cacher who has a FTF token has a decision they have to make, "Do I keep the FTF token as a souvenir or turn it in for points?"
Trust me, You will fully understand this dilemma when you see what the FTF tokens are. (we are so evil....hehehehe.....)

Each scorecard will have a wire to attach any FTF tokens to the individual scorecard.

If you are registered to compete and you decide not to at challenge for whatever reason, do not pick up your scorecard, if you do it will be counted against our teams score.

It is highly recommended you carpool as much as possible to minimize traffic in the park
SPECIAL RULES CONCERNING THE HIDES (from the Hide Team/Cache Monitors)
– tethered punches cannot be untied, everyone must punch their own card.
Example – if a 5/5 cache punch is tied to the top of a tree, then everyone must climb the tree in order to receive the points for themselves.
  • One person cannot climb the tree and punch a bunch of scorecards for a group of people at the bottom of the tree.
  • One person cannot climb the tree, untie the punch, and drop it to the people standing below.
  • In this case, it is not a “5/5” for the people at the bottom of the tree.
  • Cache monitors will be watching the harder caches to assure compliance.
  • This is only fair to everyone involved that a “5/5” cache is earned,
– As per published rules, anyone caught violating the rules will result in a zero that is not part of the dropped 20%
– Most of all, Know your limitations Safety first. This is suppose to be a FUN weekend, a trip to the emergency room is NOT fun!!!
– Those on bike or equestrians remember pedestrians have the right away
– No machetes or destructive tools
I have been told by the VERY creative hide team that the following things MAY or MAY NOT be helpful (We have no personal knowledge on the hides, so don’t ask us):
  • Duct tape
  • Boat
  • Horseshoe
  • Hiking boots
  • Kevlar suit
  • Chinese-to-English Dictionary
  • Long walking stick
  • Bathing suit
  • Fishing pole
  • Icey hot
  • 1909 Honus Wagner baseball card
  • Gps
  • Phone
  • Computer
  • Calculator
  • bubble gum
  • Vaseline
  • Ladder
  • Doner card
  • Gloves
  • Water
  • Energy bars
  • Horse
  • 3/16″ Allen head wrench
  • Channel locks
  • Band aids
  • Parka
  • Tweezers
  • Magnet

And lastly, there has been some stuff going around about non-competitors on the trail during the event.  Here is the latest sent out on that:

“The Texas  challenge committee has heard feedback from the membership and has acted on this information.

The previous motion that “everyone on the trails must have a scorecard” has been modified.
“Rule modification – Everyone on the trails actively seeking challenge related caches must have a scorecard in their possession OR be in a group of people in which one person has a scorecard. Any cacher seeking specifically challenge caches that is violating this rule during and immediately before the challenge will have any tokens/evil hides confiscated and a score card will be deducted from the team’s top 80%.” The intention of the previous motion was to prevent participants from getting an early start on gathering FTF tokens after the coordinates are given but before the official start of the actual challenge. We overlooked the impact on casual cachers, families with one scorecard, muggles, etc. Just like everyone else in the world, we occasionally make mistakes.
Instead, we are adding additional cache monitors to the trails specifically for the pre-challenge time on Saturday as well as the “evil” hides.

Thank you for your feedback.”

See ya’ll at the challenge!


About scribedscribbles

Like most people, I hate filling out profile pages. Who am I? Well, I’m a wife, teacher, daughter, and friend. I’m also an intellectual, an introvert, a night owl, and a bookworm. I work with struggling readers and overachievers, ages 11 to 15. I take care of students, a cat, two rabbits, friends, and my husband. I enjoy geocaching, reading, volksmarching, gardening, crocheting for charity, lecturing, science fiction, learning, and teaching. My favorite colors are blue, green, and purple. I am judgmental, dyslexic, sweet, overweight, graying, short, generous, loving, supportive, and chronically early to meetings. I’m afraid of snakes, putting my head underwater, heights, depths, and failure.

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