jdpen74

GBP TEXAS - soda tubes on tallows

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Soda tubes zip tied to tallow trees. That's what we came across on our first try at the TEXAS series. They are weak trees but drop seeds everwhere. They are invasive. Is this what the TEXAS series is mostly? 

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Sometimes you have to love the one you're with, and so Chinese Tallows look awfully good when few choices abound above ground. After the fire some years ago, it seems the two things that grew back quickly were Tallows and anything with thorns. You're right of course about the weak trees, and yes soda tubes are about the hardiest container for the task. They are used on Alphabet Soup and the Elements Series too, but they've held up incredibly well all things considered.

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We were so discouraged to dnf half of what we looked for. The only one found on the top half of S was tied to pvc pipe stuck in the ground and, on the A we found 3 out of 4 -- 2 soda tubes in the water and 1 fire damaged ammo box. I will just say this...the series looks good on paper, guess we should have started at the T since those have recent logs. There were no found logs or maintenance logs since 2/2015 on the S and A that we looked for. Getting to GZ wasn't extremely terrible except for A7- that was a nightmare, but it was sooo frustrating spending 25 minutes AT the other GZ's wasting time. I disagree -- Soda tubes may work well but not in this environment. We actually found 2 of them tied together in three inches of water below one of those clumps of crappy tallows because BBLF's group added it last year in February to; what I assume was a waterlogged soda tube at the time they found it. 

Edited by jdpen74
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I've had great luck with soda tubes, both as caches I've hidden and one's I've found over the years.  I'm not sure what the OP is expecting -- for the hiders to plant better trees for the caches to be hung on?  Placing traditional caches to form geoart doesn't leave a lot of leeway on where to hang them.  It's a reservoir that floods (when it isn't burning) and any hides out there that haven't been found in going on a year are likely to have a few issues.  Contact the cache owners before you head out next time and they'll probably meet you and give you some replacement containers and logs in case some need attention.

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Kirbydox meet us at the event that morning and gave us some replacement containers for the section the group did. I'm sure she would have gave you some too if she knew you were doing a different section. She gave us container on all 3 trips that I made out there which made completing the geoart fun and "easy".

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As we continue the geocaching game most come to appreciate the hardiness and utility of the soda tube. If elevated, tethered, and mostly upright, an intact dry log usually greets infrequent visitors and puts a smile on the COs face when that "Found it" email arrives.

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I understand you dislike of tallow trees, but given what is there, what do you suggest?  Soda tubes are fantastic to the degree that the last person actually screws the cap on tightly.  But this is true of closing any container.  I have found that they are not perfect, but better than any other container in situations where water is a factor.  Be it GBP or on a kayaking series.  Nothing works better when they are occasionally submerged. 

While I appreciate the frustration of DNFs, given the D/T of the series you were on and knowing what you're getting coupled with infrequency of finds (this is normally done as a group for a variety of reasons), what do you suggest for alternatives?  If something is better out there for the CLAPS series that is cost effective, I'd definitely like to see it / hear about it before it gets redone.  ;)

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I am new to this so I don't know all that's out there for containers. I've found plenty of soda tubes in great shape, don't get me wrong. The problem seems to be soda tubes zip tied to extremely fast growing trees on small branches. Won't the growth bust the zip tie in a short amount of time? And, given the fact that this series doesn't get attention on a regular basis, I think they aren't the best container. Besides the facetiousness ( I wouldn't plant a tree out there, so I wouldn't expect anyone else to) I do appreciate the conversation and this is a unique series. How best to keep it going, I don't know. I hope it stays forever possible so, containrs that can stay watertight (as much as possible in a controlled retention pond) and tethered to the base of something so it doesn't get washed away as easily? We found one soda tube tied to pvc pipe.

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Cachestacker, I don't know what the containers are on CLAPS but I've found some lock-n-locks that claim to be made specifically for yakers in the sports section of wacko world. I have one as a cache container near a bayou but it hasn't been tested for flooding- yet. I let it sit in a sink full of water and it didn't let in water.

Edited by jdpen74
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The bigger factor than tree growth for me has been the way people manhandle the container (CLAPS series) -- balancing in a yak reaching, pulling, etc.   That, coupled with the UV exposure, has been far more detrimental to longevity of zip ties and containers than tree growth.  I have had a few -- on tallow trees -- where the tree simply grows over it and it is absorbed into the tree.  That works -- until it doesn't, obviously. 

I know what you are talking about for the LNLs and Pelican type containers.  They are great for yakkers where something occasionally takes a dunk.  But not for long-term flood-prone areas with constant element exposure.  You'll need to come to the spring paddle event to see firsthand.  ;)

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I have a cache that stays under water 365 days out of the yr and it is still the original soda tube after 4 yrs.  Soda tubes do have there place.  I would think the pelican case's would be too costly on on a series.  My little P&G series in LA is over 90 % soda tubes and it seems like everyone is ok with them.   Could be worse.  They could have drove a piece of rebar in the ground then put a magnetic nano on to of it.  Found one like that in the  Angelina National Forest.  And at that put I said " who puts a nano in a Forest."  

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Pelican cases are not waterproof by any means.  I have had some and found others and after time they all have water in them.  Great for a splash or going turtle but not for endurance.  My submerged ammo can is full of water, too.  Lasted about a year or so.  But still good as the log is a slate tablet.  ;)

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A nano in the forest!? On rebar in the ground? I hope it was right next to a solid structure. 

I forgot to mention, we carry spare logbooks and a small spiral notebook to replace wet logs. I don't mind if water has to be dumped out of a container and the log needs replacement as long as I find the container! 

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For me the whole purpose of the Texas series is to see the word Texas spelled out on your found cache page. I suspect some of the frustration would be going out there to find the caches missing but that is the nature of the flooding of the reservoir. I was under the impression that a group had already gone out on the Texas series but maybe they didn't put out any need maintenance logs.

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10 hours ago, SockPuppet said:

For me the whole purpose of the Texas series is to see the word Texas spelled out on your found cache page. I suspect some of the frustration would be going out there to find the caches missing but that is the nature of the flooding of the reservoir. I was under the impression that a group had already gone out on the Texas series but maybe they didn't put out any need maintenance logs.

Every time my group went out there we met the CO and did the maintenance for them. The part of the series he is referring too hadn't been touched since February 2015. A year is a long time for something to go wrong, especially with all of the flooding we had in 2015

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 I'm a girl. But yes tuba_dude, from what I remember from reading logs when yall were out there, you had to replace only one of Donna's w/permission from her. This is what I meant by it looking good on "paper" ( geoart/map/smilies on map for the word of this state) which is ..Certainly, I would appreciate help with maintenance if I were co-owner of it. Understand that we had to wing it on the S since we got there so late but we were determined and prepared. W/all that being said, isn't nearly a year w/ no found or maintenance logs excessive for such a great series? 

From some of the responses, I gather the series is a group effort from everyone around here. But, being in the environment it's in, nobody goes back once they get all the TEXAS or is that not right?

 

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Ok -- condensed version of what I tried to send and hit submit and it just disappeared.

>> W/all that being said, isn't nearly a year w/ no found or maintenance logs excessive for such a great series?

What do you mean by this? More people should be visiting? Or owners should be coming by more often to check on them?

>>would appreciate help with maintenance if I were co-owner of it.

While I understand this, let me tell you it's no fun getting logs where people have replaced without asking and future finders say "found both and signed both logs." For this reason, many COs don't want people just replacing. We may be picky about who we let replace.

>>nobody goes back once they get all the TEXAS or is that not right?

Let's say you did the S. And the A. You going back? Certain series lend themselves to that. Many attendees at CLAPS paddle events are waiting on the new series to come out but will come paddle that series at any event. But that's a bit different than just about any normal series. CLAPS, Once Cache Loop, Four Cache Loop, and Soda Tube Trials #2 are the only other caches/series like that I can think of around here that most people voluntarily go do again just to do it again.

Think of this first as a game. Second think of the location and ease of maintenance and the time commitment necessary. TEXAS is not easily maintainable. And partly for the reasons you state -- infrequent visits -- the maintenance factor is lower than a normal series with easier access.

With GBP, you know what you're getting into. I hate having an unfound in the middle of art or series. I feel bad when someone goes 1/2 up the bayou and can't find one. But I don't want them swapping it out without facetime or it being someone I trust. And on my paddle caches, I'd say the DNFs truly result in missing caches about 50% of the time. Sometimes a DNF is just a DNF no matter how frustrating.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Okay, thanks. When we plan to go out again, hopefully soon-- I will do as Houston Control suggested and contact the owners first to see if they've been out there (some folks do check on their caches w/out posting a maintenance log) or not. I don't really want to throw a container out there though, just because I DNF the cache unless (and this seems almost impossible) the owner could tell me exactly where it should have been placed. 

I'm still confused but oh well, will figure it out.

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I am the owner of the "A" in "TEXAS".  Did you check each cache page for the pictures i put up showing the exact location of the cache?  I did that so folks could tell if something had changed in the area or could look around close to GZ if the area had flooded or maybe the trees (especially in the "A" where the fire hit a few years ago) have deteriorated.  I use rope (or string) to attach most (if not all) of the caches because I think zip ties will break from growth or from exposure to the sun.  Soda tubes are by far the most resilient containers (metal ammo cans are also very good) as long as people put them back together tightly.  I have had issues lately with a large ammo can that had lots of water in it because a finder didn't put the cap back on - I can't fix those kind of issues.

The ammo can on A7 survived the fire so I left it out there as a reminder of how hot it got at that time - it's not from lack of maintenance.  If there's a leak or something that is different and I'll check on it next time I'm out there.

This was the first DNF on the caches out there for the "A", so I wouldn't necessarily go out and do maintenance until I know there are issues.  If you looked at the pictures and the cache is definitely not there, that would be very helpful to know - too often I go to a cache that is DNF'ed and it's still there.

I have added a note to the cache description on A1 to let folks know that I will provide replacement containers to anyone heading out in the case that caches are missing.  I also added a note to each page reminding folks that there is a picture of the exact cache location for each "A" cache.

 

I also have another plan to help with replacement caches - stay tuned.

 

All being said - I am going on a maintenance run tomorrow (2/7/16) at 7am, leaving from the east parking lot.  Anyone can join me if they'd like - haven't been out slogging in the park for a while.  Message me if you'd like to join.

 

Larry

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Oh good! Just read your logs on the A. Next trip, we will definetely start at the top of A and work our way down the west side, then hopefully get A1 to complete that letter. After that, a trip over to the X, depending on how exhausted I am. 

We DNF'd A1 after I literally plopped down on the ground and kneed it all around GZ. Wish I hadn't missed the container, darn! And believe me, I took my time searching that way just to get off my feet.  We also began our way to A4 after getting A7 but called it off because of time and sticker clouds- has it EVER been like that out there?

Thanks for checking them. I know who to get ahold of when we head out that way for A and X!

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