GC2FDX2 - Texas Challenge 2011

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We had an amazing time at the Challenge.  The weather was perfect.  The Challenge committee did a great job planning this event.  There were volunteers, always being very helpful, which contributed to a smooth-running day.  Georeynozos undertook a very daunting task, and all of the planning paid off in the success of the Challenge.

Now about our team- they were amazing; some even perservering through dehydration and exhaustion, they just did everything right. Sonny (from sonnyandsticks), Hedge Hopper, Team Four Paw, Travelling Geek, and Mr. Muddy Buddies were a great help to us.

We were getting texts from cachers - this one is 6 feet up in a tree, this one is 40 feet off- always communicating, I always felt like I was right there on the trails with them.

It's always nice to win prizes, but sometimes the real prize is camaraderie, friendship, and how ethically you play the game- our team was number one.  I am so proud to have worked with Mrs. Muddy Buddies, and proud of the SETX team. O0 O0 O0

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so we wanna get some nite caches  any ideas of some good local ones?

BLOODY MARY (NIGHT CACHE)

Star Light Star Bright ~ Night Cache

Starry Starry Night -- Night Cache

Step into my Parlour ~ Night Cache is about 35 mins away :)

Thanks to those that had night caches nearby the challenge.  I always love getting to do night caches at the challenges.  CCQ, I wish we could have done yours too, but we just ran out of time before we needed to be back home last night.  We'll get it eventually. 

We had done Star Light Star Bright quite some time ago, but we were able to do Starry Starry Night and BLOODY MARY last night.  Since we were rushed to get back to Houston last night we didn't wait around for groups.  I missed the fun of doing it with a group, but we had fun with them doing it just with the two of us and passing groups on their way out or way in.  I was glad that Stan marked the car for Starry Starry Night because it does a lot of winding and light bushwacking, so you can get a bit disoriented and there are no tacks to take you back to the car. 

BLOODY MARY was great.  The multi aspect of it was great.  The tacks were laid out close together and very visible once you found the first one for each leg and it had tacks to lead you out.  I think it's one of the best laid out night caches that we've done.  I highly recommend this one. 

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I had a great time. I'm really glad that I was able to go because it just so much fun! On top of getting another milestone, I actually got to participate in the challenge and it was a blast. The weather was perfect, the scenery was gorgeous, the people were friendly and fun, literally everything about this was awesome.

Even though we didn't win, I still had a really good time and that's really all that matters. Huge thanks to everyone who put this event together! This is the most fun I've had in a while.

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Can someone from the organizing team please post the scores?

It was hard to hear at the announcements and then the SETX was not announced at all.

It would also be nice to see how many evil hides that each team found.

I know that SETX found 1 evil hide (BittyBit got the find)

At the SETX basecamp, it was crazy diuring the competition.

Lots of text messages flying in and out, puzzles being solved, a computer failure, some problems with certain models of GPSr....

The base camp team never gave up.  Thanks to TeamFourPaw for solving our computer issues and the GPSr issues, and remained the calmest of all of us.  He got a bit of a late start on the trails, but once he got going, he gave us valueable info from the trails.  Davarle (Arlene and David) are truly a wonderful team and kept the team on task.  I watched in amazement as Arlene solved the cryptogram in her head and just read off the solution.  Sunny (of SunnyandSticks) provided some of our early puzzle solutions, and also helped in getting text messages written up.  Kathy of Muddy Buddies was kept busy with coordinating all of the outgoing messages, and communicating to the organizing committee.  A few times, we were several messages behind, but the team helped her catch up.

It was amazing how many cachers were participating in their first challenge.  I'm really glad some of the walk-ons got to play.  They went away with a great experience, as I saw a big smile on their faces later that day.  I think we all learned a lot about getting such a large group of cachers out to the field and the communications to keep such a group informed.  I enjoyed getting to play such a different part this time.  In the past, I've hunted, been on the evil hunt team, organized the hide team for the 2007 TC... but this is my first experience helping out at command central. 

We can all take a deep breath of relief that it's over and look forward to next year (10th anniversary)

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Scores (rounded off):

South Texas - 1228

North Texas - 1095

Central Texas - 985

Southeast Texas - 858

STX actually had one of the lower scores for the averaged scores with the punches, but found 4 out of 5 evil hides, which really boosted their score.  The bonus for the evil hides had a big impact on scoring.  NTX and CenTX found two of five evil hides, while SETX only found one.  Without any evil hide bonuses, North Texas would have won.

I split the evil hides into four groups based basically on geography -- trying to make each team cover the same amount of ground to get to them all.  I put them on separate USB drives, then mixed the drives up and had my wife randomly stick the labels on them.  So you can blame her for any frustrations that came your way!  ;D

South Texas also only had 20 players as compared to CenTX's 61,  NTX's 89, and SETX's 102 -- which makes their four-of-five evil hide ratio even more impressive!

That's almost exactly how we won last year out in West Texas -- by fielding the smallest team, but with mostly hard-core experienced cachers.

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Thanks Larry,

At least we beat the West Texas Team ......  oh yeah, they didn't show up!  ;)

That's almost exactly how we won last year out in West Texas -- by fielding the smallest team, but with mostly hard-core experienced cachers.

Last year (at San Angelo State Park), your comment above was true, but then the evil hides were treated as high value caches only, with no bonus points.  It seems we have a consistent problem with bonus points. 

I'm not complaining or anything, but it was really good to have all of the new cachers and first timers at the Texas Challenge.  I think we showed them a new way to have fun while caching.

Hats off to gsguru, who took around a group of girls (newbies) that really kicked butt in the scoring.  They were right on up there with the power cachers.

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I really enjoyed the challenge!!  Can't wait for next year!  Hoping maybe it's in Corpus somewhere.  Thanks for everyone who made this event possible!  Keep us posted on MEGA status. 

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I had a great time too! I did more hiking than I though I EVER could, and I'm definitely feeling it tonight.  ;D I was really dragging the last hour, and was certain I wasn't going to get my scorecard turned in, so I was just slowly hobbling behind while catherine (catwoman10) and jason (thacatfish) hauled booty to the nearest aid station. then 2 cachers from another team came up behind me talking about a scoring judge that was only 300 feet away from where we were, just through the woods to a nearby trail, at a puzzle cache. we got to him (houstoncontrol), with 3 minutes to spare and we were all able to do the challenge at that cache, getting a score of 15 on the BopIt game. :D Jason came back to find me then we met catherine at the aid station. they ended up sprinting the last mile to the aid station and caught the judges as they were leaving. We were all so surprised and relieved that we got our score cards in. then we had another 45 minute hike to the parking lot. Haha. i'm so sore that i can barely move and my feet are covered in blisters, but it was all worth it. I'm definitely looking forward to next year!

Thanks to all those who made this event happen!  O0

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Hats off to gsguru, who took around a group of girls (newbies) that really kicked butt in the scoring.  They were right on up there with the power cachers.

Was that the cross country team that ran past us a few times?  I remember hoping they were on our team!

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Sorry I couldn't walk back with you stirfrie, but I needed to get those cards back to the lodge ASAP so we could begin the scoring -- and it still took me over 20 minutes by bike just to get to the trailhead! (I passed a lot of slow-moving, tired cachers the last half mile or so).  As it was, the scoring still took 3 hours.  That was a lot of cards to check, verify, and enter into the computers!  Maybe next time we can use Scantron scorecards and automate the tabulation!  O0  :D

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Hats off to gsguru, who took around a group of girls (newbies) that really kicked butt in the scoring.  They were right on up there with the power cachers.

I went along with them and had a great time. Thanks for letting me hang out with you guys, Gsguru!

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I felt bad that right around 2 p.m. I put my phone in my pack to walk over to the lodge from our base camp and I had gotten a text from someone wanting a lift back because they were exhausted and I didn't hear my phone or feel it vibrate, so I didn't see the message until much, much later when I pulled my phone out again to text Stan.  I was hoping that someone had given the person a ride.  I know Nov64 gave a few rides.  I'm sorry for  possibly leaving someone stranded. 

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Hats off to gsguru, who took around a group of girls (newbies) that really kicked butt in the scoring.  They were right on up there with the power cachers.

I went along with them and had a great time. Thanks for letting me hang out with you guys, Gsguru!

We really did have alot of fun. The youngsters were all gung-ho and ready to go the disctance. Nebulus703 is a maniac when it comes to getting the caches. We sprinted/powerwalked/hobbled to the aid station to make sure we got our cards in. I, being the last in our group, arrived with 5 minutes to spare.... whew... GOOD TIMES!!

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I had a really fun time at this challenge. I flew solo and tore up the trails... well more like they tore me up...

According to my track log I didn't get moving until 10:45ish and it would be 11:03 before I found my first cache.

I sprinted across a fallen log over a creek bed... when that thing started flexing I was sure my fat ass was gonna snap it. It sure got the adrenaline pumping.

All in all I survived and happy that my score was higher than Keely's  >:D and even happier that my team hosted one of the best challenges yet.

Here is my and Keely's tracklog if anyone is interested.

http://goo.gl/lCy7h

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Very cool, TFP. First time i've seen all the challenge caches laid out. Did anyone find 42M? At one point we had 10-12 cachers looking in that little corner, maybe not realizing it was part of a multi.

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Here is my and Keely's tracklog if anyone is interested.

You guys definitely covered some territory!  Great work

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Hats off to gsguru, who took around a group of girls (newbies) that really kicked butt in the scoring.  They were right on up there with the power cachers.

I went along with them and had a great time. Thanks for letting me hang out with you guys, Gsguru!

We really did have alot of fun. The youngsters were all gung-ho and ready to go the disctance. Nebulus703 is a maniac when it comes to getting the caches. We sprinted/powerwalked/hobbled to the aid station to make sure we got our cards in. I, being the last in our group, arrived with 5 minutes to spare.... whew... GOOD TIMES!!

That's my girl! Go Diane!

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Sorry I couldn't walk back with you stirfrie, but I needed to get those cards back to the lodge ASAP so we could begin the scoring -- and it still took me over 20 minutes by bike just to get to the trailhead! (I passed a lot of slow-moving, tired cachers the last half mile or so).  As it was, the scoring still took 3 hours.  That was a lot of cards to check, verify, and enter into the computers!  Maybe next time we can use Scantron scorecards and automate the tabulation!  O0  :D

It's cool. We made it to the trail head around 3:00. And to our disbelief there was a NTX cacher there with cold water and gatorade, waiting to give stragglers a ride.  O0

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With our scoring spreadsheets, we were able to save everyone's result.  In a day or three (or 20) I plan to go back and see how many times each cache was hit.  I know some of mine in the more remote sections only got found once or twice.  It would be nice to see the find numbers on a map.  I put several caches way off the trail, just to take advantage of all the available terrain in the park.  In hindsight, that probably wasn't such a good idea...

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i was wondering what my score was i never got to see my card just wondering if anyone has that information available

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i was wondering what my score was i never got to see my card just wondering if anyone has that information available

Same here. I would love to get my score card back if that's at all possible.

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i was wondering what my score was i never got to see my card just wondering if anyone has that information available

Scorecards were made available at the CITO Sunday morning and I think some people picked theirs up.  I'm not sure what happened to the rest, if the team captains got them or what.  Lynne or Elisa would know.

Here's the electronic version of thacatfish's.

post-28-131759833674_thumb.jpg

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Stirfrie2005's score.  You rocked it, girl!  It was that last game of Bop-It before the buzzer sounded that put you over the top!  :)

post-28-131759833681_thumb.jpg

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With our scoring spreadsheets, we were able to save everyone's result.  In a day or three (or 20) I plan to go back and see how many times each cache was hit.  I know some of mine in the more remote sections only got found once or twice.  It would be nice to see the find numbers on a map.  I put several caches way off the trail, just to take advantage of all the available terrain in the park.  In hindsight, that probably wasn't such a good idea...

A breakout by hits would be interesting to see, especially for all the hide team members.  As far as the score cards go, the last time I saw them Lynne was planning to hand them over to the team captains for each region.

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