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Featured Cacher For September 2010 - Maxwell

Maxwells' Hammer of Katy, TX.
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What got you interested in caching?
Maxwell's Hammer: My brother Brian (Me-Tarzan) was in town visiting, and my husband Rob (Mr. Maxwell's Hammer) and I invited him to go with us for a walk. He asked, "Where are we going?" I replied, "Around the neighborhood. You know, for exercise." He asked, "Well, can we at least see if there are any Geocaches nearby and go look for them?" I said, "Geo-what?" And that was the beginning of my obsession.

How did you decide on your caching name?
Maxwell's Hammer: That's a good question. Most people think that I must be some crazy Beatles fanatic. I'm not, actually. I mean, they are a great band, but not my favorite. I was creating my account at Geocaching.com, and when I saw that I needed a caching name, nothing came to mind at first. But the song, "Maxwell's Silver Hammer" by the Beatles happened to be playing on my iPod, and I thought, I'll use that for my name. It turned out to be too long, so I omitted the word "Silver" and "Maxwell's Hammer" was born. It turned out to be the perfect caching name for me.
When you cache, what equipment do you use? (PDA, Garmin, Magellan, software)
Maxwell's Hammer: Mr. Max and I are a team. He has a Garmin Oregon, and I have the Garmin GPSmap 60CSX. We like the bells and whistles on his Oregon, and the big bright screen on my 60CSX. We also have a Garmin Colorado for back up, and a Nuvi for the cachemobile. We use GSAK, and Rob has the cGeo app for his Droid phone.

What are your all-time favorite cache(s)?
Maxwell's Hammer: I really like BigBender's caches. His "Maybe in Plain Sight and Maybe Not" series is great.

Do you have any special caching adventures you want to tell us about?
Maxwell's Hammer: Mr. Max and I went to our first Geowoodstock event this year. It was awesome! We met people from all over the world, and did some impromptu caching with some of the neatest folks. One day, we cached for a couple of hours with a retired railroad engineer who called himself "Mr. Magic." He performed magic tricks for us as we walked from cache to cache.

Have any "Most embarrassing Geo-moment" you would like to share? Details please!
Maxwell's Hammer: I have many, many embarrassing moments. Honestly, I serve as pure entertainment for the people who go caching with me. Somehow, I manage to get myself in predicaments where I have to shimmy under barbed wire fences. My waistline is not my best feature, and apparently the sounds I make while trying to squash myself beneath a prickly fence is HILARIOUS to my fellow cachers.

What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle) and why?
Maxwell's Hammer: In the summer, I like urban caches. Traditional caches are my favorite, but I also love Earthcaches and Virtuals. In the winter, I love the long hikes through George Bush Park in search of ammo cans. I have found that if you dress properly and carry a hiking stick, the park is a great adventurous place to be. Mr. Max and I haven't had much success with solving puzzle caches. So we tend to avoid them for now. Occasionally we try to solve one, but we usually have no idea where to start.

What is your favorite local cache?
Maxwell's Hammer: There are so many great ones. I loved the Rosenberg Creepy Critters caches. And all of the caches hidden in cemeteries are fun for me.

How about your favorite out of state cache?
Maxwell's Hammer: I really liked finding "Queen Ann Elevator" in Seattle. We were fairly new to caching when we found it, and we were so proud of ourselves when we finally had it in our hands.

Summer or Winter caching? Why?
Maxwell's Hammer: Both! Why? In Houston, summer is the perfect time for grabbing park-and-grab caches and urban hides. Winter is great for the caches where bushwacking is required.

When a new cache is listed, are you tempted to go for FTF?
Maxwell's Hammer: No. I have only been the FTF twice, and one of those was a tribute cache that Cachin' Shark hid for me after I found my 1,000th cache. She gave me the coordinates ahead of time so that I could be first-to-find. The other time, I was with Kirbydox and we just happened to find a cache that had been published hours earlier. We were shocked to find a blank log. I only care about finding the cache. It doesn't matter to me how many people have found it before me.

Tell us about your cache mobile.
Maxwell's Hammer: My favorite cachemobile is my husband's 1978 Jeep CJ5. It is in pristine condition (he rubs it with a diaper), so we don't use it as often as I'd like, but when we do it's pretty sweet. Usually we take Mr. Max's Toyota Tacoma or my Toyota Camry. We load it up with all of my caching gear and off we go.

What other hobbies do you have?
Maxwell's Hammer: Hiking. Camping. Sewing. Swimming and soaking in the hot tub. Cooking.

Do you currently have any caching goals that you are working towards?
Maxwell's Hammer: I'd like to find a cache in every state in America. But I have a long way to go for that one. I'd like to add to my Beginner's Luck series. Most of the current ones are micros, and I'd like to hide some larger ones with swag in them for the kiddos.

Is it all about the numbers?Maxwell's Hammer: No. Not now that I have finally hit 1,000 and joined the comma club. It was all about the numbers until then. Now it's all about meeting other cachers and discovering all of the cool places I never knew about before I became a cacher.

Thanks for this interview. Is there anything you would like to add?
Maxwell's Hammer: The Houston area geocachers are the nicest folks I have ever met. They are welcoming, helpful, interesting and fun to be around. I'm so glad Rob and I moved here 11 years ago. As the saying goes, "I'm not from Texas, but I got here as fast as I could!"