Monday, October 28, 2013

15 June 2013 McKean and Potter Counties

The first day of vacation was a quiet day retracing familiar steps through McKean and Potter Counties. We were searching for caches as they came with only a few older caches on our 'to-do' list.

Looking out from a peaceful cemetery...

It's peaceful now, but in 1911 400 million gallons of water pushed past this breached dam leaving behind seventy-eight dead people. As an engineer, this visit is always a sobering reminder of the need to do my best and to lead my team to do their best.

For dinner, we stopped stopped to dine at a familiar location. We had been to visit this couple's other restaurant for breakfasts a few years prior when we were vacationing on the Allegheny GeoTrail. It was a different geotrail, but the same pleasant dining experience.

Friday, October 18, 2013

14 June 2013 First Evening

It was our first evening of vacation. We stopped for one cache find as we made our way east. It was a peaceful evening.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

13 June 2013 Caching Lakeland Community College

12 June 2013 Penitentiary Glen and other Stops

It was another evening out with Eva and Gwen hunting Lake County GeoTour caches. We made a pleasant stop at the Herb Society of America site. The roses on the site were wonderful and reminded me of the varieties my mom used to grow throughout her yard. I have no idea what the plant above was, but it was interesting.

The evening included a visit to Penitentiary Glen to find the cache we had missed the the evening before. Eva was active on the trail so we took her down the steps to the base of the gorge. Neither of us had any real idea this was her last park trip and geocache find.

Send her my love, memories remain
Send her my love, roses never fade
Send her my love

11 June 2013 More Lake County GeoTour

Eva had a good night and a good day so we decided to take her for a few Lake County GeoTour caches. The dogwoods at the veterans memorials were wonderful.

Most of the caches were easy hides around Kirtland with one nice park walk at Penitentiary Glen. With apparently bad coordinates, we missed the find at the park, but enjoyed the trail.

It's a good thing Ali didn't marry me for my skill with an Etch-A-Sketch. We had traded for this as cache swag from a recent find.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

10 June 2013 Visiting the Vet

Eva seemed to be having issues with managing pain during the weekend so we took her to our vet to try making her more comfortable. After the vet visit, she seemed to be a little energized and ready for a short park walk. We stopped by South Chagrin to find the Metroparks first hide in a long time. There is a natural play area near the cache where Ali walked the "tunnel" with Eva and Gwen.

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

9 June 2013 Lake County GeoTour

Lake County which is near our home has the first Geocaching GeoTour in the area. These GeoTours are put together jointly with the sponsor and the staff from Groundspeak. They are designed to bring visitors to the area as Geo-Tourists. I don't think we qualify as tourists, but we were willing to try the caches since they were all smalls. Our post yard-work adventures this evening took us to the parking lot of the visitors bureau, a local playhouse, Wildwood Park, and Fairport Harbor lighthouse. We had fun on a quiet evening out, but I'm not really certain the attractions are going to make a geocacher set aside the gps and spend the day visiting (and spending money).

We stopped at the visitor center on a Sunday evening so of course they were closed. We travel a lot and other than the visitor center at Wytheville and a couple of visitor center's in West Virginia I can't remember any of these offering information or knowledgeable volunteers that added any great ideas for my travels or were even open tourist-type hours. This one's near the local minor league baseball stadium, but if minor league baseball were your delight, I'm certain the internet would have given you all the traveling information you needed before you arrived.

Our remaining stops were in nicer locations, but not the type of attractions to make either of us say we need to stop what we are doing and spend money or we need to come back to visit here later. There seemed to be some sort of contest related to the GeoTour and uploading images of ourselves with the cache. We had fun with a couple of locations, including an award-winning dramatic stage moment at the playhouse. ;-0 I'm not a big fan of taking one of our pictures at each cache and we are not active in social media so we had fun with a few photos and opted to just collect the smilies after that. We really enjoyed a chance to spot multiple cedar waxwings in the wooded area around the playhouse.

A nice resting spot at Mantor's Wildwood Park

For tourism power, the Fairport Harbor lighthouse was one of the two stops this evening that can draw visitors. The lighthouse is staffed by volunteers and has okay, but not amazing hours. By the time we arrived, it was closed. So was the rest of the town on a beautiful summer evening in July. Ohio like so many non-tourist states just doesn't get how hard you have to work at being successful in tourism. After evening one, we will keep seeking the rest of the series. They are not amazing caches at must-see loactions, but they were a pleasant way to spend an evening. I did think it was interesting that many of these have a 24/7 attribute. I had to wonder, why would you bring visitors/tourists to an area and them tell them it is okay to cache 24/7 when most of the attractions are closed and the local police are most likely to think you are up to bad behavior?

Sunday, October 06, 2013

8 June 2013 Mayfield Cruise

It was Mayfield's annual Cruise Night. Streetlights don't matter cause the roads are closed. While most of the hundreds of cars are parked and on display, the street is open to anyone who wants to cruise their ride. Mayfield police turn their head and say nothing if you light up your tires and make a little noise. Every car is welcome even the new retro wannabees. I've done yard work for years on the day of the cruise and enjoyed the rumble of muscle cars heading to the cruise. This year, the yard work was wrapped up and we spent the evening walking in the village. I had a great time remembering being young. If you remember these, enjoy. If not, don't worry, we'll be back in the woods soon enough.

Yes, you can wear your poodle skirt to watch the cars cruise even if you were born three decades after poodle skirts.

If you wanted to buy a vintage trailer to explore blue highways and quiet campgrounds, this was the place to be.

It looks like something from an I Love Lucy episode.

If you've never seen how Japanese cars got their start to becoming such a part of the US motoring scene, here's your chance.

The 100mph speedo seems to indicate the Japanese had a sense of humor when they sent their first Hondas to the US. If you were born after 1980, that small rectangular box below the glove compartment is an FM converter. They were used to turn the bad sounds emitted by AM Radios into even worse static filled noise once FM radio took over the air waves. At the time, FM was actually a place to go for new and varied music instead of a gathering point for Clear Channel profits.

Did you ever wonder where those bright engineers at GM got the idea for a retractable roof on the Envoy? The answer's easy. They looked at 30-40 year-old Studebaker designs from the 60's. This Wagoneer was rough, but it is a rare surviving example of an interesting idea.

It was a fun evening with lots of cars to see. It brought back memories of a different time and to sigh when looking at a few cars I would have liked to own in a different time...

I'm not too sure Mayfield sanctioned the activity below. Not that I have any idea of what they may have been doing. ;-)

"Tonight, tonight the strip's just right
I wanna blow 'em off in my first heat
Summer's here and the time is right
For racin' in the street

-- Bruce Springsteen

7 June 2013 Cache Maintenance

After returning from Cortland, New York, I made a quick stop on the way home to check a couple of caches we have placed in South Chagrin. The heavy rains from the evening before were really evident in the roaring Chagrin. The news was good for both caches.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

2 June 2013 Searching for Orchids

Our mission on a blue sky day was to walk our woods and hunt for orchid leaves. Ali had marked the location of the ones we located last spring. We were able to find those and a few new ones in a different section of the woods. There were no signs of spikes from blossoms though. :(