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Featured Cacher For February 2007 - Popeteers

The Popeteers of Houston, TX.
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How did you learn about caching?
Popeteers: We were introduced to caching by one of Papa Popeteer’s coworkers, Mrs. ssmw. In the time since we started, we’ve done about 1800 caches and they’ve got about 150. We’ve embraced the sport a little bit more avidly than they have.

What kind of equipment used (PDA, Garmin, Magellan, software)?
Popeteers: We found about 1200 caches with a Garmin E-Trex Legend (Ole Blue as we call him). We got a Garmin Vista this past year which has a lot more bells and whistles but we don’t think that it gets us as close as the E-Trex. For paperless caching, we use an Ipaq 3000 series PDA with GPX Sonar and Mapopolis.
What are your all-time favorite cache/s and or adventure while caching?
Popeteers: Our favorite all time cache is called CABO Cache. (GC2C59) We did this cache early in our first year of caching. The cache takes you to a panoramic vista over Cabo San Lucas. You get a great view of the city as well as the Pacific Ocean to the west and The Sea of Cortez to the east. We did this cache without our GPS and hoped we could find it from the photographs posted on the cache page. We got lucky and found the cache and a great view. We also very much enjoyed Almost Trespassing (GCMRYN). This cache was placed by Team Sydster and adopted by us. We also have a very special fondness for Four Cache Loop. Everyone should do this one. Our favorite multi’s are four Cache Loop, Three miles to 1000, and Treehouse. On our most recent caching adventure, we drove the kids from Houston to Topsail Island, North Carolina and back. We got caches in 10 states on that trip.

Do you have any other hobbies?Popeteers: We do a lot of camping but always manage to incorporate geocaching into each outing. We really should spend a lot more time on the house and the yard but geocaching always gets in the way of that.

Have any "Most embarrassing Geo-moment" you would like to share? Details please!
Popeteers: Papa’s most embarrassing moment would HAVE to be the day out at Lake Woodlands Mud Hole (GC6CE). As the cache page reads it was placed by Shorty-pen from a kayak. It says it’s best to go by boat but can be walked. We (mostly Papa) decided that we would need a boat. So Papa went out and purchased a blow up kayak. He even “practiced” using it in a pool. When the big day finally arrived to go out to get this cache we loaded up all the equipment and took off. We loaded Baby into his backpack and Mama carried him. Scout carried our air pump and Papa hauled the kayak and paddles. We made our way through the brush and trees to waters edge. Papa began the slow process of trying to blow up his kayak. Mama who was impatient kept nagging him that he had enough air and to go “as is.” He soon became agitated with the nagging and put the boat into the water not completely inflated. He “attempted” to sail to the other side. He pushed off from shore and jumped into his seat, only to find his seat hitting the bottom of the “mud hole”!!! At this point he was sitting on the bottom and water rushed into both sides of the boat. The more he tried to rectify his situation the wetter and muddier he became. Mama and Scout were on the bank trying to hold back their laughter. They both ended up on the ground laughing. At the sight of their laughter Papa became angrier and finally stood up, grabbed his kayak and WALKED through the knee deep water to the other side. At this point Mama and Scout were in tears from their laughter.
Next would be Scout’s most embarrassing moment. This took place in the middle of NOWHERE New Mexico. We had just found the cache in a desert area. He backed away from it and lost his balance. He landed in a sitting position in a huge cactus. We used our entire first aid kit on his backside and eventually threw away his pants, as we couldn’t remove the “prickers.”
Baby’s most embarrassing happened at the Evil Nanite Cache in Memorial Park. We were out with several of the “mama’s” when he had a diaper “BLOW OUT!!!” Mama proceeded to haul him to the car for a change. We were right off Memorial Dr (a fairly busy street) when she had to strip him down, improvise a bath and put him in a make shift outfit of left over items from the car. His original outfit was thrown in the trash. So YES he mooned all the passers-by!!!
Mama has more moments than we can count. So we’ll go with her most recent. While searching for a cache, Red Light District no 4, which puts you at a busy intersection she had a run-in with the FUZZ. She was caching with some of the Mamas, following her GPS’r and not completely paying attention to the surroundings. At this point she found a spot at a pole that looked promising and bent down and began prodding around the base. No luck! Once again she grabbed her GPS and began walking away looking for another area to search when she heard, “WHAT are you looking for?” Her first clue that something was going on should have been that all the other mama’s had RUN AWAY!!! Leaving her here alone. As she turned to see who the heckler was she realized it was a motorcycle cop. “WHAT are you looking for?” he repeated. Knowing he wouldn’t be able to hear her over his motorcycle she answered,” a geocache.” He couldn’t hear her so now he called her over and ask again. She held up her GPS and said it’s a high tech game, “Do you want to play?” He said no and still inquired as to what she was looking for. “I don’t know, I haven’t found it yet,” she replied. The cop asked again, ”Really what are you looking for?” Mama answered honestly, “I told you, I don’t know I haven’t found it yet.” He shook his head and drove away. The other Mama’s returned to inform her that as she searched the pole her butt was up in the air and only a few feet from the police officers motorcycle. The moral of the story … FOCUS!!!

How did you decide on your caching name?
Popeteers: We got our caching name by complete accident. We choose several other names but all of those names had been taken. We just kept making up new names until one took. It is a spin off of our name and is pronounced as Pope-Tears.

What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle) and why?
Popeteers: We like almost any kind of cache but we mostly like the ones that have good coords. We enjoy finding a cache and standing in the location being able to say, “I never knew this was here, or this is a place I would have NEVER come to.”

Tell us about your cache mobile.
Popeteers: We’ve got a minivan with a navigation system that plays DVDs in the back for the kids. They’re happy, we’re happy.

Do you currently have any caching goals that you are working towards?
Popeteers: Our New Years resolution for geocaching was to put out better caches. We would like to put out more that are informative and some that are environmentally friendly. Basically, we would like to be “happy cachers.” We stay off of the forums and try to avoid grumpy cachers who have lots to complain about. We are now looking forward to finding our 2000th cache in the next few months. Also, we would like to cache in all 50 states. After that, the world.

Is it all about the numbers?
Popeteers: It’s not all about the numbers for us. Geocaching has SOOO many ways to be addicted. Our interests change from time to time. Sometimes we get into finding/making TB’s. Other times we collect coins. In the past year we surpassed our goal of putting out over 100 caches. We have always enjoyed going to events, meeting other cachers and even trying to convert a few muggle friends into geocaching. Everywhere we go, we get to see sights that are off of the beaten path.

Any closing comments?
Popeteers: We enjoy our family time together and geocaching provides entertainment for us all.