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Featured Cacher For August 2011 - cook cachers

cook cachers of Katy, TX.
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What got you interested in caching?
cook cachers: Oh Captain, my Captain had some friends who cached and he thought it would be something we could do as a family. At the time our three daughters were 21, 19 and 12, so while the first two sporadically cached with us, the youngest has been avid from the start. “She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Mentioned” logs as cachin shark. Since the Capt. is pretty busy in real life, I do most of the Houston area caching and will be answering many of the questions in first person. Only references to “The Capt.” apply to him in any way and all other answers, stories, lies and insinuations are my own.

How did you decide on your caching name?
cook cachers: We were so excited after our first day out at Stephen F. Austin State Park near San Felipe where we had grabbed 3 caches. When it came time to log them, creativity went out the window and we just used the most obvious names available. Later, after seeing other more interesting cache names, we talked about changing, but decided ours was good enough.
When you cache, what equipment do you use? (PDA, Garmin, Magellan, software)
cook cachers: When we started we already had an old Lowrance we used on the boat. That and a pad of paper got us through our first year caching. For Christmas the boat got a new Garmin Colorado 400C (c is for nautical charts if you didn’t know), and we still use it for caching today. The Capt. can use GSAK, but I am mostly computer illiterate and happily so.

What are your all-time favorite cache(s)?
cook cachers: We had an amazing 1000th tribute cache placed for us by bografan, easygroomer and criffree called Bottle Shock (GC1XWGE). Bogra and Mish came out to root for us, beer and wine were served, two of our three daughters were there and we made a boyfriend climb a tree. It was very memorable. We did Danger Island (GC1EV7K) for our 1500, and if you read our log you will see it was an amazing adventure. For our 2000 we went to Port Aransas to find Shell Shocked (GCVDB3), which we had looked for 5 times before. Ended up using a PAF, but had invested so much time in it, we were just glad to have it off the list. Land Ahoy (GC2K3A8), Toadal Shock (GC2JWR7) and CC Limps to 2000 (GC2JWVF) were excellent tributes to the Good, Bad and Ugly parts of my caching life.

Do you have any special caching adventures you want to tell us about?
cook cachers: We love to travel, so our favorites will always be ones we get elsewhere. A couple of years ago we were headed to Belize for a sailing vacation. At the time, the oldest unfound cache in the world was “Oh so blue” (GC15D). We knew we would be sailing right by the island, so planned our trip to stop for it. The island is a fish camp and the cache had been given to one of the locals for safe keeping. He had since disappeared, but the camp owner was supposed to know where the cache was. He was out fishing while we were there and we never got to speak to him (although we did get some great fresh fish for dinner). Back in the US we contacted the CO to let him know how things went, and he finally decided to contact the camp owner. It was decided the original was missing and needed replacing, which he did. Another cacher had an amazing adventure getting FTF a few months later and that was that.

The next year we went back to Belize and there was an unfound multi available. We got to the first waypoint, used the info provided to solve for the second and set off down the beach. Approaching GZ, it was obvious what the COs had done, but it was also obvious the cache was not there. Suddenly the groundskeeper appeared and asked if we were looking for a red thermos; of course we were! Found the log and FTF prize safe inside. We figured it was good karma from the year before.

Have any "Most embarrassing Geo-moment" you would like to share? Details please!
cook cachers: You would think it was the day the Capt. tore his rotator cuff doing the TXPDGC at Monument Hill while reciting the “Charge of the Light Brigade” to entertain cachin shark. Or the time I broke my leg showing davarle, atennisbabe and cachin shark a cache I already had. But I really think it might have been criffree’s Cinco Ranch Song Series. We had just become premium members when these popped around 10 at night. The Capt. was already in bed, but the two younger girls were game. It was 11 when we arrived and seeing the first blank log made us excited to get the rest. We finished around 1am and had a .5 mile walk back to the car, across the front of Seven Lakes HS. We did not know how well patrolled it was, but within moments a squad car was upon us. We had ID and a good excuse for being there, so I proceeded to tell the officer about geocaching and pull some things out of my geobag, one being a collection of very small log Baggies. The cop took one look at them and told me it was a very bad idea to show things like that to an officer. The looks on my kids’ faces told me I should understand exactly why this was a bad thing, but for quite a long time I hadn’t a clue.

What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle) and why?
cook cachers: The Capt. likes to cache when we travel, so his favorite are virtuals, Earthcaches and more exotic traditionals. I love them all, including LPCs on a hot summer’s day and a 2 mile hike into GBP for a single FTF. I am not a very good puzzle-solver, however the Capt. is, so we make a good team.

What is your favorite local cache? cook cachers: Much as I hate to admit it, we really had a good time doing Houston Area Pick 6 (GC219QQ). We could not have made more mistakes in getting around BNC, crossing swamps unnecessarily, walking the long way around, twice, for one cache, having to PAF the letterbox finally because we were soooooo tired by that point. In the end we got it and came back for the 10 year event. BNC caches are a lot of fun, but ssssshhhh, don’t let on to HC.

How about your favorite out of state cache? cook cachers: How about out of country cache? This summer we went to England and Wales. The first cache we got there was on a walk To the Pond (GC2VX7R). The light trickled through the tree cover and on to the ivy-wrapped tree trunks, giving the path a verdant, ethereal glow, like a LotR Elven wood, sweet!

Summer or Winter caching? Why?
cook cachers: Winter because there is less chance of PI, snakes, ticks, and all out heat stroke.

When a new cache is listed, are you tempted to go for FTF?cook cachers: Yes.

Tell us about your cache mobile.
cook cachers: 1998 Chevy S10 named Charlie, the best truck a girl’s ever had!

What other hobbies do you have?
cook cachers: We sail a classic S&S designed Yankee 30 out of Kemah Boardwalk Marina. Some may have seen a few of our caches there. We also ride motorcycles with a Law Enforcement MC. Mostly we like to travel, which all of our hobbies allow us to explore.

Do you currently have any caching goals that you are working towards?
cook cachers: 366 day matrix, D/T matrix, 3000 finds and staying ahead of JustKeely!

Is it all about the numbers?
cook cachers: There are numbers in this game??? I like numbers, but good hides, time spent with family and friends, new and interesting places to remember caches by, that’s what really keeps me caching.

Thanks for this interview. Is there anything you would like to add?
cook cachers: To the ladies I cache with most often - atennisbabe, cachin shark, davarle, kirbydox, Maxwell’s Hammer, and the lately absent because she’s working Mrs. Muddy Buddies, thanks for your friendship, good humor and for saving my bacon on any number of occasions.

To my arch nemesis MOS73 – sorry about all the stuff I write about you in my logs…you did know about that, right???

Finally, a shout out to the WSFTFC – bografan, cachin shark, criffree, easygroomer, familieryan, geogeex, lgne, and everyone else who has made a nighttime FTF run and stood around chatting into the night afterward. That’s why we named the new Westside Event FTF, because everyone is welcome and all we do is stand around talking!