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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Horn of the West: Geocaching in Boone, NC

sumajhuarmi....back where we started dating!
One of my favorite places is Boone, NC. Many years ago I wanted to be a public high school teacher so I set out on the four-year adventure of preparing for that vocation. I did it at Appalachian State University. Compared to today it was a small college. The campus has grown significantly since my days there. Recently sumajhuarmi and I had the opportunity to spend a few days in and around Boone. We got in some geocaching while there.

sumajman with friend Daniel Boone

Since we had gotten in late in the afternoon we spent the last hours of daylight walking around and reminiscing.  We decided to come back the next day to find the one on campus. Boy had the weather changed! There weren't many students wondering around in the cold and rain. We made our way to the GZ and then had to scratch our heads. Finally we figured it out and made the find. We had a great view from the GZ but soon had to take shelter from the cold wind. At the top (GC16EAFT) was a fun cache! 


When sumajhuarmi lived on campus she had to park her car at a tourist attraction not too far from campus. It is called Horn of the West, an outdoor drama depicting life in the mountains during the 18th century. We had read about Strawberry Hill (GZ2HYMW), located on the hill overlooking the facility. We drove to the old parking lot. This was off season and the drama was closed. We parked in a parking spot close to the road and began our steep climb up a partly grassy and partly wooded hill. We were huffing and puffing but made it up the hill just fine. This cache referred you to a geodetic marker named "Horn". I understand some people hunt these just like I go for the caches. Most of them will get to some great locations with great vistas of the countryside. While the view wasn't anything spectacular, the hunt was fun. I'd have classified this cache as an offset cache since the instructions since my GZ was in the area of the geodetic disk. It actually took us a while to find the geodetic disk. The grass had grown up and it was covered. When we found the disk we were able to then estimate the location of the cache itself. All in all, it was worth the climb up the hill and it was fun using angles and foot measures to find the cache. I may have to look for some more hybrid letterbox caches soon. On our way down the hill we noticed a security vehicle parked behind our car. It looked like we were in for a scolding but we were able to get in our car and drive away.

If you get the chance be sure to visit Boone, named after the famous explorer and hunter. Yes, he passed through these parts.
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