What got you interested in caching?
Manofsteel73: I was attending a company training class in Phoenix and as a part of the training, we had to do a group presentation on any topic of interest. One of the individuals in my group was a geocacher. He explained geocaching to the group and we did our presentation on that subject. When I got back home from the training, I was telling my son about geocaching and he immediately got on the internet to check it out. After a couple of months of my son asking for a GPSr, I finally ordered one on the internet. The two of us made a couple of unsuccessful searches and finally a year to the date of creating the geocaching account, we found our first cache. We were hooked and the rest is history.
How did you decide on your caching name?
Manofsteel73: My son created the geocaching account using Manofsteel73. He played football and his teammates called him Man of Steel because of his strength. His football jersey number was 73 thus the father-son team was created. When my son went off to college, he created a separate cache name, Manofsteel72.
When you cache, what equipment do you use? (PDA, Garmin, Magellan, software)
Manofsteel73: I use a Garmin 60CSx with GSAK to load caches and GeocacheNavigator on a BlackBerry for paperless caching.
What are your all-time favorite cache(s)?
Manofsteel73: My all time favorite caches are the FTFC trophy caches. I enjoy the challenge of solving the puzzles and making the run to be first to find regardless of the time of day or night.
Do you have any special caching adventures you want to tell us about?
Manofsteel73: We took a vacation to the Northwest three years ago to complete the Northwest Trifecta. We found the Original Stash Tribute Plaque cache, visited Groundspeak Headquarters, and the Ape cache, Mission 9: Tunnel of Light. At the time, the old abandoned rail road tunnel on the trail to the Ape cache was still open to the public. We hiked the 2.25 miles through the tunnel with flashlights, which was a neat experience. The Ape cache was our 500th find.
Have any "Most embarrassing Geo-moment" you would like to share? Details please!
Manofsteel73: We were caching the Pastor series on the back roads of East Texas. I had missed the turn into a small cemetery to grab a cache. I decided to back up the 300 feet to get the cache. Before I realized it, I had backed into the drainage ditch along the road and was stuck. We worked unsuccessfully for about an hour trying to get out of the ditch. In my frustration, I set down on the side of the road and set right in the middle of a fire ant bed. It didn't take long to realize I had ants in my pants. I had to take drastic actions to get the ants out of my pants. My wife and son were of no help as they were laughing too hard.
What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle) and why?
Manofsteel73: My favorite type of cache is a traditional cache hidden in the woods and involves a good hike along a trail or remote area of a park. I like to get outdoors, do some hiking, and possibly see some wildlife.
What is your favorite local cache?
Manofsteel73: That's a tough question to answer because there are some many great caches around Houston. Donde Esta's Sleepy Hollow cache was soo realistic. The reaction of some fellow cachers was hilarious. I also really enjoyed 2bentbikes House Series.
Summer or Winter caching? Why?
Manofsteel73: Winter caching because the hikes are easier during the cool weather and there are fewer mosquitoes.
When a new cache is listed, are you tempted to go for FTF?
Manofsteel73: Yes, obviously I am always tempted to go after a FTF. My son got his first FTF by himself. The FTF bug bit him first and with him pushing me to go with him, the FTF bug eventually bit me.
Tell us about your cache mobile.
Manofsteel73: My cache mobile is a maroon 1996 Acura Integra. I got the car as a work car for the good gas mileage and it has been perfect for caching.
What other hobbies do you have?
Manofsteel73: After geocaching there's not much time for other activities but occasionally I get the opportunity to do some camping.
Do you currently have any caching goals that you are working towards?
Manofsteel73: I would like to reach 5,000 finds by year end. I also have five caches remaining to complete the Finds by Placed Month which I would like to obtain by year end. This will require some traveling out of state to complete.
Is it all about the numbers?
Manofsteel73: The numbers is a big part of it but it's also about getting out to places and seeing areas you would never see otherwise.
Thanks for this interview. Is there anything you would like to add?
Manofsteel73: I would just like to say thanks to all that have placed caches to make this adventure so much fun.
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