Friday, February 29, 2008

Family strata

This evening as I was reviewing new geocaches, I was pleasantly surprised to see a photo of a rock that I immediately recognized. (OK, I can hear you snickering out there. Yes, it's true. I recognized a rock.) It's called the Gwynne Rock and it's located on the Iowa State campus. It's actually a boulder, and it is featured in a new geocache placed by called LCC 50th--Hitaga Sand Prairie Big Rock (GC19KX7) , a cache by Linn County Conservation and jimmygps. I have several "connections" with this rock. First of all, I'm an ISU alum and I walked and rode past that rock hundreds of times. Secondly, the rock is named after the late Dr. Charles Gwynne, a former professor of geology at ISU and my great uncle. Thirdly, several years after my graduation from ISU, I lived in Marion for seven years and one of my favorite places to go hiking, biking and cross-country skiing was Squaw Creek Park, where the rock was discovered before being moved to the Iowa State campus. Read more about Dr. Gywnne and the rock here.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

What do Iowans think about ... that word?

Today an Iowa geocacher submitted a geocache with the word "sucks" in it. I was born and raised in Iowa, and I was taught that this word is not used by polite people in public settings. I asked the geocacher to change the name of his cache, which he did. (Thank you.)

Then I got to thinking about it and I checked to see how many other geocaches are out there with that word in their names. Turns out there are quite a few. So in the interests of fairness, I wrote to the geocacher and told him he could change the name back if he wanted to. I added this note: "But I hope you don't."

Iowans, what do you think? Is "sucks" an offensive word we want to keep out of our geocache names, or does it not bother you at all? I'd really like to know.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Mystery at Gray's Lake

Over the years, I've seen several geocaches placed near Gray's Lake in Des Moines. In reading the logs for those caches, it seems as though strange things like to happen in that area. Caches disappear. Geocachers trip across the homesteads of homeless people. And now another unusual situation -- a geocache and a waymark that both lead to a hidden compartment behind a door in a tree. I first heard about it when Team Signal posted about it in their blog. You can read about in this story from the Des Moines Register.
Creative weirdness abounds.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Ever heard of Crabtown?

I hadn't, but now I have because there's a geocache there (GC195FC). It's one of several submitted in the area by plumberbutt. If you're a FTF hound who feels compelled to rush out tonight, be careful out there in the snow.