Monday, June 29, 2009


A lot happened between the time Craig left to drop the french fries in the Company yard in Bloomington, and the time he finally made it back to French Camp. While I waited, I got to experience record breaking temperatures in Modesto. It reached 110 degrees, and made me realize what a great idea it was to move to Washington! But I digress, back to Craig and his adventure.

As I mentioned in the previous entry, he only had enough hours to get into Wheeler Ridge Saturday night, and made the final leg to Bloomington early Sunday morning. He had been forewarned not to have a lot of fuel on board, as the trailer he would be swapping his french fries with, was loaded down with more than a few six packs over 45,000 pounds.

Craig had noticed that after hooking up the trailer of beer, the engine wasn't starting as quickly as normally, and that the voltage meter was reading low. He made a mental note of it and then drove a mile down the road to a small truck stop to scale the load. Upon returning to the truck, it wouldn't start, but thankfully, with an APU, it would charge the battery up enough after 10 minutes to get it started again.

Craig was happy he scaled out legally, but knowing when he picked me up and my belongings, we would have to play the fuel stop/weigh station game, and plan accordingly so as to not have too much fuel on board when crossing the scales, but enough to at least get us to our next fuel stop. Now onto his next problem, and what he guessed to be the alternator.

He made it about 15 miles down the road to the TA truck stop in Ontario, where much to his surprise, there were no trucks ahead of him to be worked on. He was immediately directed into a work bay, and if they had the part, would be in and out in record time. That would be necessary if he was to make the delivery on the beer load in Walla Walla, WA Tuesday morning at 7am. No worries, they had the part and he was on his way and headed to French Camp by 9am.

By 4:30pm, I had arrived with my Mom and Nieces, and we proceeded to try and find a nice cool restaurant to have a bite to eat before I said my goodbyes. The record breaking temperatures made saying goodbye a little easier, but with promises to be back in about 6 weeks for another visit. With the APU blasting cold air inside the truck, Craig and I high tailed it inside. Yep, it's great to be back home again, and Craig absolutely loved the new hair cut too!

Saturday, June 27, 2009


It may have been a very quick visit, but I left knowing that a little over 24 hours later, I would be back in the truck with Craig. After being loaded with the french fries and legally scaled by 3:30am Friday morning, Craig drove through the rest of the morning hours and into the afternoon before stopping for his break in Weed, CA. By 2:30am this morning, he had more than enough sleep, and was ready to hit the road again, which meant that I would be able to get a visit in when he stopped at French Camp. What we didn't know ahead of time was just how quick the visit would be. Craig called into dispatch to let them know that he was way ahead of his Tuesday delivery, and as luck would have it, the weekend dispatcher was looking for someone to take a beer load which would be in the Company yard in Bloomington, CA whenever Craig could get there. While Craig waited for my arrival in French Camp, he took a shower, started laundry and was set up to participate in a safety meeting on a conference call. When I arrived, he was happy to do a taste test on the banana muffins with coconut lime glaze and gave them a big thumbs up. As soon as the safety meeting was over with, we gathered his clean laundry and muffins and headed back to the truck. A quick check of the QualComm, a hug and a kiss, and Craig was on his way south. With what hours he has left for the day, he will make it to Wheeler Ridge tonight, and then get into the yard in Bloomington early Sunday morning. Then if all goes right, he will have just enough hours to make it back to the Company yard in French Camp to pick me up by late afternoon tomorrow!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


I seemed to have forgotten to take my camera charger with me when I got back on the truck a few weeks ago, and now my battery is dead. I do have a simple back up camera, but it does not inspire me to photograph like my good camera does, but I'll give it my best shot.

I thought it was time for a change, so I cut most of my hair off. I can't say that I totally like it yet, still getting used to the new look, but I can say, I don't miss all that hair around my face during the hot months of summer, and let me tell you, 100+ degress is hot, but as we like to say here, it's a dry heat.

Ed McMahan, Farrah Fawcett, and now Michael Jackson. WOW.... two of them we knew their time was near, but Michael Jackson? Who would have guessed. All I can say is WOW.

Craig made his delivery of the transformers Tuesday afternoon, and the business requested that he take an empty dry van with him when he left. We think that probably wasn't expected by dispatch, as he ended up sitting for over 34 hours, before he took over a produce load in Brooks, OR and delivered it this morning at the Safeway DC in Clackamas. Good news is that he has fresh hours and is well rested.

Shortly after going empty he was given his next assignment to go head to Hermiston, OR to pick up a load of frozen french fries to take to Long Beach. There is plenty of time on this load, and it looks like Craig will be there a good two days prior to delivery, so chances are he will either swap out the load on his way down south, or end up dropping the load at one of the Company yards.

I'm trying to stay cool in the Central Valley of California, and now glued to the TV watching all the coverage of the death of Michael Jackson.....again...WOW!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Monday morning, after a short drive into West Sacramento, we made our first drop of the day. Finishing well ahead of our appointment time, we decided to drive to the only truck stop in Sacramento and take a quick break to call the next drop to see if they would take us early. While at the truck stop, I was able to get up close and personal with a large field of sunflowers. They are growing all over the Sacramento valley and they are absolutely beautiful. Receiving the good news that our next drop would indeed take us early, we started our adventure into San Francisco. With both of us having spent our fair share of time in the Bay Area, it is always a thrill to cross the Bay Bridge and get your first glimpse of the City by the Bay. I don't think either one of us ever gets tired of the views, and having the ability to be sitting up high in an 18 wheeler helped with getting some shots over the bridge railing. We were both thankful that the way into our drop would be a relatively easy one, just one exit off Highway 101 and two left turns and we were on a tiny little street with just enough room to back into an alley way to off load the meat. While Craig checked in, I was observing some unsavory fellows who seemed to be checking out the truck and it's contents. With my prior years in law enforcement, I was sure they were up to no good, but with a sigh of relief, they turned out to be, well how can I say this, some "local residents" the receiver used for lumpers. My suspicions about these characters were confirmed as a couple of them started fighting after the unload and proceeded to bust a side mirror on a truck parked near ours. Come to find out, the one responsible had just gotten out of jail the day before. I was more than happy to get the paperwork in hand, put in our depart stop, and get the heck out of there. As I had mentioned before, there was two more stops on this dispatch, but at 1am and 4am in Vernon, CA. No possible way for us to make those, so we were directed to head to the Company yard in French Camp and drop the trailer for someone with fresh hours to take it into LA later in the day.

At least with us going into French Camp, I could call my Mom and have her head that way to pick me up for a visit. Craig was getting set to enjoy a nice dinner with us when the QualComm started beeping with another dispatch. Reluctantly, he had to hook up to a dry van (non reefer trailer), which was loaded with transformers that needed to be in Salem, OR by today. He took off to make it to Corning for the evening, and my Mom and I took off to Modesto.

Currently I am melting in Modesto as the temperatures are in the 100's, while Craig is chilling in Brooks, OR after having delivered his transformers and is sitting at the Pilot truck stop awaiting further instructions. I've already told my Mom that any running around we will be doing tomorrow will be done before noon. A girl can only take so much heat!

Monday, June 22, 2009


After our drop last Friday morning in Spokane, WA, we were happy to grab a few hours of sleep, do a Wal Mart run, and enjoy a Subway for dinner. We had received our next assignment and decided after our 10 hour mandatory break was over at 4pm, to drive to Pasco, WA to stage for our load in the morning in Kennewick. Upon arriving at Columbia Cold Storage in Kennewick, we were backed into a dock and loaded to the gills with frozen french fries. Even the dock workers commented on how much product they were placing in our trailer. I got to hand it to them, they did a great job, as when we scaled the load, we only had 40 pounds to spare before we would have been over gross, and it scaled out perfect on all axels the first time through. Then we got beeped and knew something was up. Seems another driver had truck problems and couldn't make it to pick up his load. We were told to drop our loaded trailer at our drop yard in Pasco and then head over to Tyson Meats in Wallula, to take over the other load. We arrived around 1pm, but the load wasn't suppose to be ready until 5pm. Normally they are done early, but it wouldn't be the case this day. Exactly at 5pm, the paperwork rolled off the computer and we headed out once again to scale. Having started this day at 7am, we had just a few more hours to drive before Craig's 14 hour clock ran out. We made it as far as the Oregon border in Biggs Junction where we called it a night. Up and rolling after our 10 hour break, Craig put in a full days driving where we got to see the fields of sunflowers and enjoy scenic Shasta Lake. We arrived in Dunnigan, CA to stage for an 8:30am delivery in West Sacramento, CA this morning. This load has 3 additional stops, one in San Francisco, and two more in Vernon, CA. The appointment times in Vernon make it impossible for us to deliver those, so dispatch is already planning a swap in French Camp sometime after our delivery in San Francisco. Let's hope it is smooth going through that City and we make it out safe and sound!

Saturday, June 20, 2009


As I get older, I find staying up late has less of an appeal, and getting up early is now more to my liking. Why is that? I won't spend much time trying to figure it out, and just go with the flow, but what I can say is I am very happy to not be up with Craig driving all night long. We finally got out of that pattern after our unload in Spokane, WA Friday morning.

Here's another thought. While at the Flying J in Tacoma Thursday afternoon, I saw the truck driver parked next to us leave, and then a few hours return to his truck in the company of a young woman. Question.....what is the proper etiquette when this happens and then the truck next to you starts rocking back and forth? Divert your eyes to anything else around you, or chuckle to yourself and try not to let the movement out of your peripheral vision distract you too much? Thoughts anyone?

While perusing my favorite website I came across this cartoon. What a revelation it was for me, as here all along I always thought BFF was best friend forever. Boy, was I mistaken.
My final random thought is actually this quote I saw the other day........"Try not to get the Summertime blues, because apparently, there ain't no cure"...... I'll keep that in mind as we head south into the heat of California with our load of frozen french fries!

Thursday, June 18, 2009


It's been a rough couple of days, which in actuality, seems like a week in my mind. We ended up getting a dispatch on Tuesday out of Fresh Express in Salinas, that didn't load until 4pm. But true to past experience, the load was done early and by 2:30pm we were loaded and on our way. The dispatch was to deliver to Charlie's Produce in Seattle at 3:30am this morning. Oh Boy........we were thrown right smack dab into night driving mode.

We didn't get to stay long enough in Salinas to get a restart on Craig's hours, so working around the system was going to put a strain on our body clocks. We also knew we had to drive as far as we possibly could when we left Salinas, CA and that is exactly what Craig did. We pulled into Canyonville, OR around 3am Wednesday morning, and somehow managed to find a spot and crawl into bed. I think Craig was actually asleep before his head even hit the pillow.

With what hours we had left to work with, and with that 3:30am delivery time looming ahead of us, we ended up having to stay in Canyonville until 7pm. Thankfully, that gave us plenty of time to sleep and relax and even do a couple of loads of laundry. At 7pm we were headed north with Charlie's Produce in our sights. It was a pleasant drive, and thankfully, Craig was much more awake during Wednesday nights drive. I think the couple of those Little Debbie's snacks he bought before leaving helped.

Charlie's Produce is literally in the bowels of Seattle, tucked amongst a construction area that never seems to be finished. The streets are old school, tiny and intertwined around overpasses, and maneuvering through them and the detour signs, we were thankful it was early morning and had no other traffic to deal with. When we arrived an hour early, there was already another TWT truck getting unloaded, but within 10 minutes he was on his way to his second stop and we were backed into the dock.

I took that opportunity to try and get some sleep between the jostling of the forklift going into and out of the trailer. Somehow I did manage to drift off, but it was short lived as they were done after 30 minutes. Then it was time to try and figure how to get back out to the Interstate through the road closed and detour signs through the construction area, and with the help of the GPS, we followed the signs through blurry eyes to a successful arrival onto the freeway.

With very little time left on Craig's 14 hour clock, we managed to find an easy back into a spot at the Flying J truck stop in Tacoma, sent in a message about our hours and drifted off to sleep. It is now 5pm as I write this, and we have received our next dispatch to pick up chicken in Renton, WA at Drapper Valley Farms. Our load is suppose to be ready at 8pm and it delivers in Spokane at 5am. Yep, you guessed it, another night of driving, but we only have a little under 300 miles to drive, and I'm sure our body clocks have adjusted somewhat over the past three night. If not, I'll be sure to have that can of Red Bull Energy drink ready!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


I hate Summer. There, I said it. Of all the seasons, Summer is the one I least like. It's hot, it's crowded no matter where you go, and the Interstates and rest areas are packed with RV'ers. But there is one thing I can tolerate during the summer months........fresh fruit and veggies! And there is no better place for that, then in the Salinas Valley of California, where the temperature is also to my liking, unfortunately it is very crowded, not with RV'ers but with tractor trailer rigs!

After going empty yesterday morning, and dispatch thinking we had plenty of hours to do 3 pick ups of assorted fruits and vegetables headed to Spokane, and then us having to inform them we only had 2 hours of driving time available for the day, we dropped our trailer at Fresh Express and bob tailed to the Pilot Truck Stop. There I waited patiently, knowing that at any moment, I would see what I was dreaming of. And then there he was! On his first pass around, his eyes never met mine. Heart broken, but not discouraged, I knew he would come around again, and when he did, our eyes met and my heart skipped a beat. It was pure heaven, as he walked up to my door, displaying before me his bounty of cherries and strawberries. Like a kid in a candy store, I had hit the Mother Lode, and eagerly paid my money for the red, luscious, sweet fruit we would soon be enjoying. After all that excitement, it was a day of relaxing, as we knew we would not receive a dispatch until sometime today. But the weather was great, a cool 70 degrees with a gentle breeze, the people watching entertaining, and with TV and Internet reception, life was great. We couldn't ask for anything more.

This morning we awoke to this:
Good thing we probably won't get a dispatch until later this afternoon, or there would be some pounding on some doors in order for us to get out of our parking space. The guy parked on the outside got interrupted so many times by people trying to get out of parking spaces on the other side of him, that he finally got wise and moved to a legitimate spot. Time will tell just how long this driver in the black truck in front of us will remain. It looks like we have time to wait him out, but I may have to resort to something other than eye contact to find my fruit man today on his rounds!

Monday, June 15, 2009


We left Pasco, WA Saturday morning after sending in our message about how far we could get driving for the day. It only took about an hour, before we received our instructions to meet another driver at the Pilot truck stop in Chemult, OR to swap loads. It was funny, when we pulled into the parking lot around 2pm, we were behind another TWT driver. Seems he was swapping loads with another driver too. It was like a well choreographed dance, watching as four tractors unhooked and then rehooked up to different trailers. As we said goodbye to the boxed meat, we took our trailer of apples across the scale. It couldn't have scaled out more evenly, and we were off towards Salinas, CA to Fresh Express for a Monday morning delivery. With a quick stop at the Company yard in French Camp to drop off some trip packets and refill our water jugs, we had just enough time for a "pit stop" at the Starbucks in Santa Nella, CA before getting into Salinas for the night and finding a parking space. We first thought about staying at Fresh Express, but seeing that there were still plenty of spaces at the truck stops, decided to stay down the street and come back in the morning. As was the case the last time we delivered apples at Fresh Express, they were in a hurry to unload us, as apples must be in short supply everytime we come here. It really doesn't matter to us, as Craig's driving hours are pretty much done for until Tuesday. In fact, after we finish up here, get the trailer washed out, and then drop it back at Fresh Express, he will be down to only about an hour left. That will leave us taking a nice long break at the truck stop, and hoping that the fruit vendors are out in force. We could go for some fresh strawberries and cherries delivered right to our door!

Saturday, June 13, 2009


When we were finally able to leave the Pilot truck stop in Chemult, OR Friday morning, little did we know what was in store for us. As we enjoyed taking Highway 58 across Oregon, and taking in all the beauty around us, dispatch was busy with other plans for our day, other than a leisurely drive. About an hour into our driving day, the QualComm started beeping at us and we had our instructions that would occupy the rest of our day and evening. The first of the messages were to take the bananas and drop the trailer in the drop yard in Troutdale, OR. After that was accomplished, we were to hook up to an empty trailer that was there and deadhead to Wallula, WA to the Tyson Meat Plant where we were to pick up a load this morning at 9:30am. Craig had enough driving hours to accomplish all of that, so off we went for a full day of driving. We made it to Tyson by 8pm, and were informed our load was ready for us. So as Craig had done three previous time during the day, he parked, unhooked from one trailer and rehooked up to our now fully loaded trailer of boxed meat. With just enough time left, we drove to the Flying J in Pasco to scale and fuel the reefer, and then finally some down time to unwind and relax a bit.We have never really had any slow times with the refrigerated division of this Company, but I have to believe that freight is really moving hot and heavy, as everyone, including us, has been driving non stop for the last couple of weeks. We aren't complaining, as we like to keep moving, but as it turns out, we will be 2 hours short on Craig's 70hr driving clock to be able to deliver the meat in Vernon, CA on Monday morning. Anytime you can use up your 70 hours is a good thing and dispatch is already looking to hook us up with a swap somewhere between here and there. Stay tuned!

Friday, June 12, 2009


After our delivery Wednesday, and the nice people at Gibson's Nursery washing out our trailer for us, we headed back to the Company yard in Spokane. Finding parking spaces at a premium, and liking the facilities a little better at the Petro across the street, we headed there to spend the night. We knew it was highly unlikely that we would receive another assignment, and when 5pm rolled around and we heard no beeping, we got ourselves comfortable and called it a day.

Thursday morning we were up and taking showers. We even took a stroll around the perimeter of the truck stop and logged in a little over a mile of walking. The QualComm kept showing no signal where we were parked, so we decided to go back to the yard to await our next assignment. We ended up parking next to a driver who was leaving the profession. That didn't surprise us, but what did, was the amount of "stuff" that was piling up on a pallet beside the truck, and you are only seeing one side of the pallet too. I couldn't believe the amount that finally ended up being wrapped up and stored, for when the driver could come back with a vehicle to take it away. Would you believe the driver actually had about 3 plants in pots inside the truck? It really was fascinating watching it all come out.By 11:30am, we had our new assignment. We were to head to Quincy, WA to Custom Apples and pick up a load headed to Carson, CA for a Saturday morning 4am delivery. There was no way we would even come close to making that delivery, and word was sent to dispatch to inform them. They were already on top of it, knowing that they would have to have us swap with a team, but for us to get as far as we could.

On thing about apple loads, as with french fry loads, they put as much product on as they can within the legal limits. We were just a shy under 80,000 pounds by the time we were loaded and scaled. On our way back out to the Interstate, we came across a semi truck in quite a predicament. We surmised that possibly the patrol unit was pulling over the truck, and the driver made the fatal error of pulling over where there was a pretty drastic drop off from the pavement. Look closely and you can see the back right rear tires are about 3 feet in the air, and his left drive tires are in a nice big rut. Definitely one of those "uh oh" moments!With a beep of the QualComm we were told to meet up with the team drivers in Chemult, OR at the Pilot Truck Stop. Anyone familiar with that place, knows that it fills up quickly, and with us not getting there until well after 11pm, we were wondering if we would find a place to park. But no worries, upon arrival there were still a few spaces open, and we quickly found a home and crawled into bed to await the drivers we were going to swap with in the morning.We are now in possession of a trailer full of bananas that don't have to be delivered until Sunday at 4am in Clackamas, OR at the Fred Meyer DC. We won't know if they have plans for us to drop it and receive another load, or if we will end up doing a 34 hours restart on Craig's driving hours. But what we do know is that we will have the joy of taking a secondary highway from where we are to Interstate 5, and be able to take in the beauty of the landscape of Oregon. All in all ,not a bad way to spend a few hours on a Friday afternoon.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


The last 24 hours has been a whirl of activity. We arrived for the delivery of the chilled juice in Milwaukie, OR ahead of schedule. Once in the dock, we felt the usual jostling and jerking of the product being off loaded. Craig gave them time to inventory the stock, and after almost 3 hours, went inside to get the paperwork. What he wasn't expecting, was to see 8 cases still in the trailer. Upon further inspection he saw that some of them were wet, and he was then informed that a case of apple juice had leaked onto 7 cases of orange juice. Oh Boy.... here we go again. Visions of the ice cream that were left in our trailer awhile back came rushing back. A quick call into claims, a few photographs to document the damage, and we were headed to the Oregon Food Bank to donate the juice. You can see from the photo, that on the cases of orange juice, the boxes were wet but not damaged, so the food bank was more than happy to take ownership of the juice. What happened next, took us on an adventure we have yet to experience in trucking. We get a cryptic message to call a number to get the details on our next load. Strange....we normally just get a dispatch and off we go, but feeling a bit James Bondish, Craig made the call and the fun began. First he was told to start heading towards the TA truck stop in Aurora, OR and that we would receive a phone call with further directions. Sure enough, a short time later the phone rings. Craig hands it off to me and I start writing down directions to our first stop. Two pages of directions, consisting of turning right at the tree stump, and then left once past the bridge, and then look for some green houses, and we were at a nursery out in the middle of nowhere. Unbeknownst to us, the nursery business is one of the largest industries in Oregon. At the first small nursery, we loaded on 400 small plants, and then tried to figure out how we would get turned around. But first, we had to call our connection to get the directions to our next pick up. Thankfully, this time, it was only one page of directions and right off of Interstate 5 in Brooks, OR. Here we had to wait while they retrieved about 15 pine trees from another location, and brought them to us. With 24 different types of trees on board, it was time to call the connection again to obtain instructions to our third pick up location. After starting our day driving at 5am, we finally pulled into our last pick up at 5pm, and watched as they loaded 275 assorted trees and plants into the trailer. With only one foot of room to spare in the trailer, we made the final call to our connection to confirm that we were fully loaded, and taking our mandatory 10 hour break on the premises of the nursery in Corvallis, OR. Our last instructions where to leave as soon as our 10 hour break was over, and drive 450 miles to Spokane, WA to make the delivery at Gibsons Nursery. Keeping the plants and trees at a cool, comfortable, 45 degrees, we are currently on our way, enjoying the scenic beauty of the drive along Interstate 84 and the Columbia River. Having started this morning at 3am, we should be able to deliver these plants by 1pm and have just enough time after unloading, to make our way back to the company yard for the night. This incognito assignment has turned out to be a lot of fun!

Monday, June 08, 2009


After 6 weeks of being alone at the house, it was nice when Craig took some home time after his trainee bailed. As you read in previous entries, we went on a couple of treasure hunts, and even found plenty of rocks to take back with us to outline some of our landscaping at the house. I even convinced Craig to go along with me, when I met up with my best friend Cori, at The Farm Chicks Antique Show in Spokane on Saturday. Really, it wasn't so much antiques as it was old junk. But you know what they say, someones junk is another one's treasure.Craig called into dispatch Sunday morning to see if there was anything for us, and we were happy to receive a dispatch for Monday morning out of Spokane. That left us all day Sunday to relax at home and watch movies, although I did get some laundry and packing done as well. It's amazing how much stuff we actually take back to the truck with us. What is even more amazing is that we find room for all of it!Monday, after getting the truck all organized and cleaned up, we were told that our 11am appointment had been changed to 1:30pm due to them running late. We are picking up 42,000 pounds of chilled juice at Johanna Beverage Company, about 5 miles from the company yard. With plenty of time to spare, we drove across the street to the Petro truck stop, grabbed us a Subway and watched a movie in their driver's lounge. It was perfect timing, because when the movie was done, it was time to mosey on over a little early to check in for our load.

By 2:30pm we were scaling the load at the yard and then heading towards Milwaukie, OR (out skirts of Portland), to United Grocers for an 8am delivery tomorrow morning. We decided to call it a day at Biggs Junction, OR, which will leave us just a little over 100 miles to drive in the morning, but more importantly, we will be able to get a 10 hour break in. With fresh hours in the morning, we will have plenty of time to receive a new dispatch and get another load, after we deliver the chilled juice.

It was a long time to be off the truck, and more than once we both commented how it felt right to be back together again driving down the highway. Craig is not sure if he will be interested in training again, and of course, I will always take time off the truck to visit family and friends, but as we have always said, when we are in the truck together, we make a helluva team, and we couldn't be happier!

Saturday, June 06, 2009


Having had such a great time the day before, we headed back out into the wilderness for more geocaching, after taking some time in the morning to stain our storage shed. Our first stop was near a gravel road, and the GPS informed us that it was up a rather steep grade, into the thickest part of the forest. My search and rescue husband was off in a flash, and I was doing my best to keep up with him. At first it wasn't so bad, but then any resemblance of a trail vanished, and we were in the middle of nowhere, trying to forge our way through thick brush and downed pine trees, all the while trying to swat away the insects that viewed us as fresh meat. After going this way, and then that way, and seeing no benefit to being the luncheon buffet for the creatures that resided in this remote area, we started making our way back down the very steep hill. You should have seen the look on my face, when Craig casually mentioned, "Oh by the way, this was listed as the hardest find, and there were several people that had to seek medical help after wards". Oh yeah, I'm sure they were in need of medical assistance after their significant others got done whooping on them after taking them into such rough terrain. But we regrouped and headed to the next area and by the time the day was done, we had located three more caches. The one we liked the most was the one where we got to check out an old deserted log cabin, along with the location of the outhouse, and the remains of the cans and bottles that had been tossed. This particular cache contained 75 35mm film cases and we had to find the log inside one of them to sign to show we had found it. Very clever! After almost 4 hours of searching and wandering the lay of the land, we were ready to head back home for a well deserved shower and dinner. We both agreed that we want to try our hand next at some urban geocaching and from our research, we will have to keep our searching covert from the "muggels" (non geocaching people). That sounds like the makings of a fun and exciting time!

Friday, June 05, 2009


Who doesn't like a treasure or scavenger hunt? If you do, you need to check out geocaching. Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment. Leave it to my former search and rescue husband, who was in search of a new hobby to find this one, and right up his alley too! When we headed out today, our first destination was to find a benchmark. Benchmarking is very similar to geocaching, in that you head out in search of a marker used in surveying. Using our hand held GPS we drove as close as we could to the benchmark we were in search of. Then it was off the beaten path, onto railroad tracks and when we came upon the exact coordinates on our GPS we found this: Nothing but weeds and over grown vegetation. Not willing to venture any closer into the thicket, we just assumed it was there somewhere and made our way back to the pickup, a bit disappointed, but wanting to try finding the treasure that awaited us on our geocache search, but not without me having to become one with nature in the middle of the boondocks. Enough said there, I think, except that men are much more equipped to handle this type of emergency situation than women! Following the coordinates on the GPS we came to a stop near a turnout. Upon closer inspection we saw an old boot by a guardrail. Thinking that we had found our first treasure, we excitedly picked up said boot and were disappointed when finding nothing inside. Craig ventured around, feeling that his new found hobby was going to be bust, until he heard me yell "I found it". Tucked within the guardrail, I saw a small white plastic box. Craig come running over and we began looking inside. There was a card informing us of our find, and a few trinkets inside. The rules are if you take something you have to leave something of equal or greater value behind. Not wanting to take from the treasure box, but wanting to leave our mark, I left a tape measure key chain inside. We then signed and dated the log stating that we were there, and then carefully tucked it back where we found it. What a fun way to spend a few hours, driving out in the country and finding a little treasure. We are now in the process of creating our own treasure box to hide somewhere along our travels, and looking forward to going on many more treasure hunts in the future. If you are interested, click on this link to get more information on geocaching. I'd thought I'd sign off this entry with a few of the sights we saw while on our treasure hunt. Enjoy!


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