Sunday, May 20, 2007

River Idyll GeoCache and Charles DeGaulle Travel Bug

River Idyll GeoCache
Charles DeGaulle Travel Bug

Several years ago, I bought a Garmin eTrex Vista GPS device and started playing with it. Soon I learned about the whole world of GeoCaching: essentially playing hide and go seek where the clues are a combination of latitude/longitude coordinates and some additional hints if needed. It is a sport in the sense that it gets you out hiking to find a little boxes of trinkets (a cache) hidden in the woods. It is a two part sport in the sense that you can both look for caches as well as create and hide them.

After first trying to find caches with varying degrees of success, on August 31, 2004 I created my first cache out near our summer house in the Birkshires -- a cache named River Idyll. It is situated in a lovely spot overlooking the East Branch of the Westfield River.

At the same time, I placed a travel bug in the cache. A travel bug is a tag attached to some artifact which has a goal. A travel bug is placed in a GeoCache. The idea is when you discover a cache with a travel bug to take the bug and advance it to its goal. My Charles DeGaulle travel bug is a picture of General DeGaulle and his mission is to make it back to Paris, France.

Well, that may be his goal, but over the last 2 3/4 years he has made a little progress, but still has a long way to go. Today I received notice that someone had retrieved my travel bug and was going to move it somewhere else. Over the period that Gen. DeGualle has been traveling back to Paris, he has already traveled
3036 miles!, but is still somewhere near Fayetteville, NC. I was very hopeful when he made it to the Atlanta Hartsville Airport, figuring that he would be taken to France by some traveler going from Atlanta to France. But, no such luck. In any case, it has been fun to watch him knock about the southeast on is random travels. Below is a map of where he has been in the last 2 3/4 years:

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