Touring Georgia, Boating the Fake Ozarks, Watching Sunrise

Day 80:
18,740 miles and counting.
Today I met Razzle Dazzle, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
I woke up at the Modoc South Carolina 2000 geocache trail head. I slept fantastically and slept in so late. That was great, I did not sleep well the night before. I left South Carolina and went straight back to Georgia. I think it’s Jefferson County area, kind of near Athens. There was some big Geocaching event nearby recently. And this area is very well-known for having a lot of fun gadget geocaches, or so I just found out from my friend Drew the other day. So, I started off with a small circle of challenges up north and then worked my way south. I did a walking loop around a giant outlet complex. There was a whole series of challenge geocaches that hopefully I qualify for. It was also a nice way to start the morning, the weather was perfect, and I could get some steps in. I found them all but 1. I started and finished in the same spot and didn’t find it twice. Then I zigged zagged all over town. I followed a trail of highly favorited geocaches. These were some real doozies. I come from the land of a guy named West Virginia Tim. I am lucky, I understand. These were another level in some ways. I had to walk away from quite a few. I could not figure it out, I didn’t know what I was looking for, or I didn’t know what to do. I still nailed quite a few of them. I had a fantastic time, felt like a kid in a carnival all day. After that I did a bunch of the cow whereigo’s last night. I knew I was not doing them all, I can’t possibly do that. Sounds like a nightmare, like mailman purgatory. BUT, I wanted to get some to finally qualify for a challenge. These were super easy, and as well done as I have seen any series. So, a few random of those will help me get closer to a stupid checklist goal that nobody but me knows about. My last stop of the day is lake Lanier. I took the longest possible way to get here. I am getting on a boat at 8:30 Saturday morning for the old geocache out on a lake island. I wanted to see where that was, and it looks like that will be my home for the evening, awaiting vessel boarding time. Before stopping completely for the night, I went around the corner for the other old geocache. That was a very quick jog out and back. I then met a young man named Jeremy. He worked at a boat store. He looked friendly. He was outside washing things with a garden hose. I struck up a conversation, and then hit him with the big ask. Can I please fill my freshwater tank from your hose? He was so happy to let me. I offered him a little Debbie oatmeal pie, he declined. I invited him in and gave him the 13 second tour. That means he saw everything twice. I think we will be best pals for life. Finally, it was back to the boat launch parking. There is good telephone service, so I will catch up on some work. I had a very tasty beef stroganoff for dinner, watched the sunset and the moonrise over the lake, and smashed this drivel into a keyboard.

Day 81:
18930 miles and counting.
Today I met Jamie a Bernese Mountain Dog, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
When I left home, I watched the interstate numbers count down from 95 all the way to 5. Then I watched the horizontal interstate drop from 90 all the way down to 10. As I head home, I see those numbers gradually climbing higher. I’m already back at 75 and 85. Booooo. I will be at 95 before I know it.
I woke up this morning to a perfect sunrise over Lake Lanier. There was nothing good to see until about 7:20am, that is so late. I love this season, but hate the brevity. I took a bunch of sunrise pictures, and had a great conversation with a local. He comes there every morning to watch the sunrise. I think he and I will be pals forever. That was the first time I took out my cameras in at least 4 or 5 days. I came to accept that the photography portion of my trip has come to a drip, from the geyser it has been for the past few months. I had an 8:30 launch time with Captain John. I showed up and there were 2 other cachers coming on the boat. We all got along just fine, the captain was a delight, and we were back at the dock in about an hour. I thought it was more adventurous, but apparently not. My favorite part was all the info Captain John had about this area being the filming location for Ozarks. Once back at the dock, I got in my van, took a shower, got cleaned up and left the boat launch area about 10:30 AM to head towards Charlotte. Lake Lanier was a wonderful place I could see myself coming back here. Ultimately, I was going to end up near Charlotte. I’m gonna look for that old geocache nearby there, and then I think tomorrow I’m going to go to a Renaissance Festival. I’ve never been to one of those and I would imagine it’s a thing I would enjoy very much. I made my way slowly east, stopping a lot. Some of the tourist attractions, a couple places for pictures, and a geocache here and there of course. One of the funnest parts of my day was an accidental discovery. I was cruising along the main road into Greenville and I looked over and saw what looked like a bunch of people racing toy cars. I know what that scene looks like as it was a big part of my past. I verified that’s what it was as I drove by, then made a U-turn. I went back and watched a bunch of grown man race toy cars for a while. The sounds and the sights and the smell in the air brought back a lot of fun memories. Also, a lot of bad memories, but isn’t that how nostalgia works? You have to take the good with the bad.
Mostly I stopped for a bunch of old virtuals. Then I ended up in Charlotte, at the trail for the old puzzle here. I did not realize that was going to be a ‘get my tootsies wet’ type of party.
After all that was done, I found myself in central suburbia. I needed a shirt for a wedding on Thursday. Men’s Warehouse was happy to accommodate. Then it was pick up a pizza, and get parked for the evening.

I have put more photos of my roadtrip HERE.

Easily the greatest geocache on the planet GC8DQ55

That I have found, anyway.

Day 78:
18,300 miles and counting.
Today I met HansDown, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
Last night I got Publix chicken for dinner and went back to the nearby truckstop open area for the night. I am right by I-59. Tomorrow I should be able to checklist a few high favorited geocaches and a few old ones. I believe just shortly after I start driving, I am going to cross into Georgia, and lose my last hour. My first destination is a very highly favorited gadget cache……This is now my all time, overall favorite geocache, Kwango Kate Gadget Cache, if you are a geocacher. I just realized this code has DQ in it. Anyone that knows me knows that my favorite thing ever invented is Dairy Queen ice cream cake. Coincidence? I think not. It feels like an actual escape room. I can’t gush about it enough. I spent 3 minutes short of 3 hours there. That’s right, 2 hours and 52 minutes. A very fun 3 hours. I did spend some time on a personal phone call. But my brain was working the entire time, and not paying attention to whatever the nerd on the other end of the phoneline was talking about…something about a tweezer reprise. The setup was amazing, and the fact that it has been visited so many times and is still in perfect condition is a real credit to the owner and the community. After that unexpected 3 hours, I wandered around Rome for a little while. There are a lot of fun things to do in Rome. Wish I had planned better with my time. I have to be nowhere at no particular time, I got that going for me. After a Rome roam, I continued north to seek out 2 old hides from 2000. First was rocktown. What a cool place. It is a cross between 2 very popular places back home. One is bouldering the other is a rock maze. I am glad I know this is here. I jogged all the way out and back. I jumped up, on, over, and around a lot of rocks that I did not need to. There was definitely an easier, softer way to get where I was going. But no others allowed me to feel like a spiderman. After that, on to the iron horse. I had no idea what I was in store for here. Not a long trek at all, but then suddenly, boom! A scary tunnel. It felt very surreal, like I stepped into a spooky movie. I loved it. I turned around and tried to make it happen again, no luck. From there it was time to get back to civilization. I found a truck wash that was open 24 hours about an hour toward Atlanta. I made that my destination, and then also my sleeping arrangements for the night.

Still constantly updating the album of my roadtrip HERE.