I sat on a Cholla Cactus

At least I got these pictures!
I’m going to do the best I can to paint this story and mental picture as if it was an animated cartoon. Because I lived my life for about 15 minutes feeling like I had to be in some sort of fantasy fever dream. Either that or Bugs Bunny had chased me deep into the desert because I forgot to make a left turn at Albuquerque. Either way, cartoonish.

I wasn’t pooping. It was the middle of the night in Joshua Tree. I was taking pictures in the amazing Cholo cactus fields. The sky was crystal clear, and the milky way was shining in all her glory. I was taking pictures from the ground looking up, through the cactus. I was being very careful. I was doing a lot of sitting and laying in the desert to get the right angles. I was being very diligent, checking everything before I moved. It was pitch black, only light was my headlamp. I knew I had to be careful, so I was. One time I was not quite careful enough. I squatted down to check a setting on my camera. I sprung up, like I was shot out of a canon. Within a few seconds I noticed that I had a softball sized hunk of cactus attached to my left ass cheek. It went all the way through my shorts, underpants, and deep into my skin. Countless cactus needles were puncturing my cheek. I immediately knew I had a problem. I did not know what to do. I knew NOT to panic, and I knew that I was not mortally wounded, just a flesh wound. It was pitch black. I grabbed my underpants to try and pull everything away from my body. I could not, so many cactus needles had my clothes stapled to my body. As I started to pull a little harder, I realize this was not gonna be easy. All my playing in the woods and outside I have had a lot of stickers, bushes, thorns, spurs, briars, every imaginable natural thing stuck to and penetrating my body. I grabbed ahold of my clothes on both side of where the cactus bulb was glued. I started pulling and realized exactly how much cactus was stuck in me. It was painful. I would love to say that it was just like ripping a Band-Aid off, get it quick get it done get it over with. It took a lot of strength to pull that thing away from my body and that was only the beginning.
I’m standing there with two handfuls of my clothes and a giant cactus bulb wrapped in them, holding it out and away from my body once I finally got it out of my cheek meat. The elastic bands of my underpants and shorts were currently my biggest enemies. I then slowly started to take my shorts and pants down. There was no other way than to take everything all the way off. I was careful as I could be but somehow, I still panicked at one point and lost my grip on the elastic of my clothes. This caused the cactus ball to shoot straight in my knee and then ankle as I got close to being done. After I pried it away from my body for a second and third time, I finally get my shorts and underpants all the way off. Remember, this is happening in the middle of the desert, in the middle of the night. So now I am rocking nothing but a Donald Duck. Top only. I must walk about 10 minutes through this cactus field back to where I parked my van. I only saw one other person the whole time, and it was dark, so (hopefully) she had no idea I was Donald Ducking. I ended up with at least a handful of cactus spikes that I had to yank out with a pair of tweezers. They were stuck in such a way that even though I can get a hold of them with my fingers, I didn’t have enough strength to yank them out of my body.
All in all, I would definitely say worth it. A very valuable life experience. I now know the next time I photograph in a cactus field, in the dark, I do it naked. That way I will avoid getting cactus bulbs stuck in my cloths. Lesson learned, thank you Universe for the message. Most importantly I had a great time, a great memory, and hopefully made some fun pictures!

I started an album of this trip that I am updating regularly HERE.

I guess I didn’t take good notes these days, but I did get thrown out of Pebble Beach

Day 53:
12,500 miles and counting.
Today I met Quincy, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
Saturday I was finally able to leave the residence inn in Sacramento. I’m going to head for a few of the high favorited geocaches and other unfinished Geocaching business around here. Then I’m going to finally make it to Yuba City. And then back out to the coast, hopefully finishing the day by Monterey.
I finished up everything I wanted to accomplish around Sacramento by late morning and I’m finally heading up to Yuba City now. I have danced around, and circled around, Yuba City for what feels like a month now. I have been within an hour so many times, and put off swinging through there, but today is finally the day. Between broken windows and broke down vans, Yuba City has just been put on the back burner for too long.
After that I routed to some unfinished business, hunting for Jeremiah’s Gold. I came away with the prize this time! If you care about that entire sage, you can read that here: www.jimmysellers.com/jeremiah
It was another fantastic hike, a hike so nice I did it twice. It was at Morgan Territory Preserve near San Fran.
At some point I could not drive any longer and I stopped to sleep.

Day 54:
Today I met Petey, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
I woke up at a rest area on I-5. It’s where I ran out of energy and daylight yesterday on my way to the coast. My next destination is Monterey which is about two hours from where I started.

Finally, this trip is back on track…for now!
My day started with a 10 mile walk around Monterey. I started around the lover’s leap area. I parked and started walking. I walked across the peninsula, and then took the coastline all the way back. I walked a giant, sideways, letter D. It was breathtaking the entire way. I followed a trail of geocaches, and other natural wonders worth looking at. After that, I went for a sit down dinner. I wanted seafood, and this is the place. I had a wonderful dinner at the Fishwife, and then I found some parking along the ocean. I took a shower, photographed the sunet, made new friends with a nice family currently living in the Monterey area, possibly my new press agent, and then settled in to see what the night sky looks like.
They looked great! I took pictures until I couldn’t any longer. Then I went to sleep. I got rousted out of where I was sleeping in the middle of the night somewhere near Pebble Beach. The kid was super nice, and I thought I was going to talk him into turning a blind eye for a few hours, but he apologized and said he couldn’t. I moved down the road another 20 minutes or so to a Safeway. That looked and felt very safe, oddly enough 🙂

Day 55:
Today I met Nola, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
12,900 miles and counting.
I spent the entire day meandering south on the Pacific Coast Highway. I got almost nowhere. I ended my night in San Luis Obispo. I didn’t get very far south. But I did have a day full of amazing views, picture opportunities, a handful of short to medium hikes, I met some fun people, and I found a bunch of great geocaches. It was somehow a very uneventful, and overly stimulating day. I finished in SLO, just as the sun was setting. Sadly, it was very hazy, and there was no amazing PCH sunset to speak of.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

Boring, nothing happened, skip this

Day 51:
Today I met Sammy, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
The only place I will be traveling today is .4 miles to drop my van off at the service center. Then I walked back and had second breakfast at my hotel. Not everyone has heard of second breakfast. I spent the entire day in my hotel room, catching up on real life stuff. Work, pictures, etc… I can’t believe how much time I spend in front of a computer in normal life. Hardly any for the past 2 months, it’s been great. If you really want to know what I did today in all it’s boring details, reach out, I possess a certain set of skills.

I think this is the first day in a couple months I have not found a geocache…there is not even one in this hotel parking lot…

Day 52:
Today I met Rebar, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.

The man in green

I woke up this morning in a hotel in Sacramento without my van yet. I slept as long as my body and eyes would allow me, before forcing me up and open. I got cleaned up, had a continental breakfast, and then got a ride to downtown Sacramento. My plan was to do a walking tour, like I do anywhere I’m at. Usually navigated by geocaches, because they always take me to the most interesting, funny, entertaining, and creative locations. I ended up logging about 10 miles around Sacramento.
I started in the old town, around the museums and the water. I did a walking tour of old town Sacramento. Very interesting stuff. Not crowded on a Friday morning. I looped there twice for various GC things. From there I made my way to the Capital and the capital park. I took in some history, some art, some heros, and some fun. About midday I got the call that my van was ready for pickup. Now I need to plan ahead and find somewhere to replace a couple tires ASAP. End of next week at the earliest, and hopefully latest, it being a Friday already. The fun never ends!
After that telephone call I made my way back to my hotel, got my van, picked up laundry, and will spend the rest of the day finishing up work stuff so I can get back to my roadtrip tomorrow morning! Back to the PCH, and onward south.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

Yosemite! I love it so much it’s my tire cover picture

Day 48:
Today I met Roald, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
11,850 miles in counting.
I woke up at the Golden Gate Bridge rest area this morning. That’s two mornings in a row I woke up at the Golden Gate Bridge, nothing to complain about, I guess. Yesterday was such a fun and successful day, and completely unexpected for the things that I have planned, that I slept better, as long as my body would allow me. I woke up to the sun high in the sky, got cleaned up and got moving. The only thing certain is I have a campground reservation in Yosemite starting today, through the next few days until my van repairs on Thursday.
I toil with what to do and where to go and what route to take to get to Yosemite. Like every other day of this trip, I have changed my mind 100 times in 20 minutes. Originally, I wanted to go back and visit Jeremiahs Gold again. That final is going to haunt me forever, unless I find it. But I think I decided to head out towards Bodie and then work my way into Yosemite from the other side.
I drove East all day. The most beautiful area being Lake Tahoe, obviously. The weather was perfect, and the skies cooperated for me to get some of the most amazing views from above, down onto the lake.
My first real stop of the day was Bodie California. Bodie is an abandoned mining town, that CA maintains as a park. I made it out there about mid-day. I spent a couple hours wandering around, taking pictures, being unbelievably fascinated about this time period. This kind of stuff has always fascinated me. I know I say if I had one I wish, I’d lived back then, I’m wrong. But I wish I could travel back in time for a vacation. you know, kind of like a dude ranch? West World style. If anyone has connections with robots and AI, get in touch.
Since I was driving right past, I had to make a stop at Mono Lake on the way from Bodie to Yosemite. I first heard a mono lake in 2013, the first time I visited Yosemite. But I’ve never been here. Glad I made a little pitstop, it was the perfect time of day. The sun was behind everything and casting that beautiful “sun is setting” light.
Now into Yosemite where I will make my home for the next few days. I’m killing time, and giving my van a rest, before hopeful repairs on Thursday in Sacramento. I guess I just called 3 days in Yosemite “killing time”. More examples I’m the luckiest person alive. I’ve never driven over Tioga Pass before, I don’t believe. I’ve been to Yosemite a few times, but don’t think I ever left the park on the eastern side. That’s one of the more unbelievable passes I’ve ever passed through. I pulled over so many times to look and take pictures I lost count.
I love Yosemite so much. I saw a big brown bear wandering around shortly after I entered the park. Also, it’s the only place where I can enter the gates and think to myself
“Yay I’m in Yosemite!” And then I still have a 2 Hour drive to get to where I’m going in the valley.
What a great place.

Day 49:
Today I met Pierre or PeePee as he is affectionately known, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
12,270 and counting.
I woke up in a Yosemite valley campsite this morning. There won’t be a lot of miles today, because I’m in Yosemite and may not even move my little girl. I got up at about five and drove out to Valley View for sunrise pictures. It was a bit hazy, understandably. But beautiful for all the right reasons. Then up to Tunnel View. I watched the sun come up over the mountain and took some pictures. What an unbelievable life I have. I made conversation with lots of other traveling strangers. It was an amazing way to start my day. Then back to camp where I made myself a wonderful bacon and eggs and fruit breakfast. I think that’s the first time I’ve actually “cooked” a meal in my van. I’ve made a lot of boil in bags, sandwiches, dry foods. But I broke out the cooktop and whipped up some eggs and bacon.
My possible plan for today is to at least make a big walking loop around the valley. I can’t believe there’s still so many geocaches I haven’t found in Yosemite? I’ve been here twice before, both times since I started Geocaching. But there are just a whole lot of unfound geocaches. Lots of them found, but way more than should be unfound.
The way I had to get campsites in here is strange, but I’m just grateful to have them at all. I was in one spot for one night and then the next morning I had to move a quarter-mile to another site for the next two nights.
I did about an 8-mile walking loop around the valley. I got back in the perfect time to move my van from one site to the other. I still cannot believe there are so many geocaches that I had not found in two prior visits here. I walked a big loop. It was about 8 miles, a couple virtuals, whereIgo, very unique question mark in the middle of a national park, and earth caches of course. I had to move my mobile home from one campsite over to campsite number 69 in upper Pines. Hee hee.
I slung up my hammock and rested for a while, just taking in the sky. At the time of day when the sun was highest in the sky, a sunshower came through. Bright blue in one direction, and terrifying gray in the other. The drops were as big as quarters, they felt great in the blazing sun, and that smell of the ozone in a thunderstorm in the trees is delightful.
I finished the night with pictures on the famous bridge that looks into the valley. I set up there a good two hours before I needed to. That gave me the opportunity to have at least a dozen wonderful and meaningful conversations. Most notably I met the most fascinating person so far of the trip. A young fellow from New Jersey named CJ. He’s an inspiration to what we can be.
Then it was back to the campsite. I made a steak and mashed potatoes, and went to bed for the night.

Day 50:
Today I met Ozzy, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
12300 miles and counting.
I woke up in Yosemite Valley, campsite #69. Coolest part of the trip so far.
I had nothing planned. I had to drop my van off for service in Sacramento in 24 hours, so I had that long to play. I made myself a lovely breakfast at the campsite, eggs and bacon. I turned my back for 5 seconds to get my water and walk it to the picnic table, and a crow stole all 4 pieces of my bacon. That left me very depressed. Thankfully the delicious cheesy eggs fixed everything. I spent a while wandering around the campground, enjoying the sounds and smells, and chatting with tons of strangers. About mid-morning, I wrapped up everything, packed up nothing, and got on the road. I had a hike I wanted to do in Yosemite before I left. I parked at Tunnel View, and hiked straight up the side of the mountain, toward Glacier Point. Glacier Point is about 13 miles straight up. I only went about 2 up, almost 4 miles round trip. I found this awesome and old virtual geocache there. Thanks for brining me to this hike. Sadly, the haze was really bad today, and the views were all silhouetted outlines. Still amazing in its own, but different way.
From the park, it was time to get to Sacramento, I had a bed in a hotel waiting for me there. I took my time driving, enjoying the scenery along the Merced River. No picture opportunities today, sadly. I made it into the city, got Pervvie to a nearby truck wash, picked up some stuff at an amazon locker at a 7-11, stopped at the auto depot for more Pervvie liquids (she loves the green stuff), and finally checked into my hotel. Tomorrow morning I take my baby to the infirmary to hopefully find out what ails her.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

Jimmy vs Jeremiah’s Gold: The Squeakquel

The mission was simple, I’ve done it 1000 times. Actually, now I have done that 10 times. I put all my best hiking gear on, filled my backpack full of water and camera equipment, go for a hike, find a very specific geocache, and any others that fall along that hiking route. Not too complicated. Something that is right in my wheelhouse. Recently, in some foothills near San Francisco, I thought I met my match. I went to Morgan Territorial Regional Preserve to find a geocache dating back to the year 2000. One of the oldest in the country, probably the world. It was going to be a few mile hike round-trip. There were several other geocaches along that route, so I knew they would get my whole attention. I was moving right along, minding my own business, and Jeremiah shows up in my life. It is an entire series that culminates in a final puzzle, put out by a young brother that runs by the name of Jesse. Very little I like more than a puzzle. I did like all these ammo boxes that were lugged up here. 1 was the size of a coffin. Others were the size of a really big ammo box. And yet another was so big it had to come in by copter.
There were six or seven, each with a hint on where to find the final. I found one and immediately dismissed the bigger picture. It was just a traditional geocache I found, great, plus one for me. Then I found a second one. I thought to myself, I better take a look at this. So, I found one of the four spots of shade in the county, and I sat down for a few minutes to figure it out. The route I was taking to my ultimate goal, if I veered off of that just a little bit and doubled my original plan, I can get all of these! That’s not bad. doubling only goes from 3 to 6 miles, or something like that. Still no big deal. I decide that’s what I’m doing. I even study the Geocaching map and notice an empty area where I am hoping the final will be. That would mean it was put there strategically so that you could do this loop and wind up back at the final on the way back to wherever you parked. I got to about the fourth or fifth one and realized I had went the wrong way. I look to my right and realized I had to be 500 feet above where I was right now, almost straight up. I missed the turn to walk along the ridge line. I thought to myself OK, I wasn’t meant to find Jeremiah‘s gold anyway. I didn’t know about it until a few hours ago, I can’t be too disappointed.
I just had to accept the fact that this is where my quest for the gold ended. About 10 minutes later I kicked myself in the ass and said no, I got to do this. I walked backwards adding about another mile of uphill walking to get back to the ridge line. And then I walked along the most spectacular ridge line, stellar views, and some of the most unique trees I’ve ever seen growing out of rocks. If for no other reason I’m glad I double back for that. So, I was back on track! I had already completed the task that brought me here, now I was 80% of the way to a new bigger, even better task. I find the last geocache with the clue in it. I find one of those other spots of shade. I sit down and put the puzzle pieces together. I plug-in the coordinate numbers of where this geocache wants me to be. Oh bother. It is all the way back past even the farthest point I was all day.
On a normal day, that would be no problem. But this was a different kind of hot desert hiking that I wasn’t used to. It was over 100°. Completely exposed, no shade. I’m used to hiking in trees and forests. And earlier today I had put on another 15 or so miles of hiking. So I’m tired. It is rare that it happens to me, but I was completely wiped out and couldn’t do anymore.
I barely slept for the next few nights. All I could think about was not completing the task that I didn’t even know I had. Tossing, turning, lashing out at strangers, breaking things that I haven’t paid for yet, just a wreck of a human. I can’t believe how close I came to Jeremiahs gold, and it slipped away from me. I should’ve just grit my teeth and walked back. But I did not.
Sometime shortly after that, the young gentleman that owns these geocaches, and my new best penpal in the world, Jesse wrote to me to say hello, and that he was happy I had a great time finding all his geocaches, all the things that I would want to hear. Jesse went so far as to offer me a free “find” on the final puzzle. Quoting Jesse in his original communication with me, “Dr. Sellers: You seem really cool. Please help yourself to a find on the final puzzle, based on handsomeness alone.”
I was so flattered, but I knew I could not take that. I have cheated plenty in GC’ing, but only in the ways we all agree is OK. Plus, in the back of my mind, I thought I might still go back another day. I was going to be in the “area” for a bit longer. But I knew that was ridiculous to drive hours out of my way to do a hike I already did, but I’m not on any real itinerary.
It is very well known by my friends and family that I will go way out of my way, do almost anything, just to make 1 person laugh. I’ve done things like drive 12 extra hours, buy domain names, spend too much money, lie cheat steal, whatever it takes to make someone laugh or smile. My specialty is overdoing it for 1 person. I thought to myself, if I went way out of my way just find this one geocache, I bet that would make Jesse smile. But I just couldn’t fit it into my busy schedule. My calendar was wide open with nowhere to be any particular time at all. The one day I was going to go, I’m glad I didn’t. I have nothing but respect for Jesse. But I ended up having an amazing day in San Francisco. I did a walking tour, smelling the smells, and I even took in a baseball game. I had to because my Phillies were in town. I just kept meandering around the San Francisco area for different reasons a lot longer than I expected. Take pictures of the Golden Gate bridge sunrise one morning, middle of the night the next day.
Finally, I was done with San Fran/Sacramento area, and I’m heading to the PCH to pick my road trip back up! And wouldn’t you know, the optimal route to get from Sacramento to Monterey includes Morgan Territory Road! I had to do it, and I better take a picture because people are gonna think I’m a liar and a cheater. Mainly because I am 100% a liar and a cheater
Finally, the day came. It was 9 days after my initial discovery of Jeremiah’s Gold. These were days 44 and 53 of this mad road trip. I’m so glad I did not throw away those shoes and socks. They are definitely gone after today though. I took off walking after packing up my water and needed supplies. It is a very well defined trail system, easy to navigate. VERY up and down, lots of quick elevation. I jogged everywhere it was downhill or flat-ish. All in all, it only took me two hours round-trip. I got a message from Jesse later saying that I made his day and maybe even his year. Since then, Jesse and I have become best friends. I believe I am now godfather to his imaginary children. And I have even named him executor of my upcoming will.
I just love the amazing things that I accidentally get myself involved in, mainly because I try to leave myself open to all the nonsense.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

3 days of nonstop moving and shaking

Day 42:
Today I met Twinkie, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
11,000 miles and counting

I woke up this morning in Arcata. I came to town last night and visited very old and great friend. We spent a few hours together while I interrupted their band practice, and I saw no practicing at all. I was looking forward to seeing some live music. Instead, they just hung out and did things Humboldt County people do.
After that I found a nice community center that was friendly for sleeping, and got a few hours rest. I was up long before the sun and moving south. I had quite a few things I wanted to get done over the next two days before I had to be in Sacramento on Thursday, so I need to get moving.
Obviously when given the opportunity to stay on a main road or detour south on something called Avenue the Giants, I must choose the Avenue of the Giants. That was a beautiful drive right at sunrise. It was still dark but every once in a while, a little light leaked through. Of course, everything was constantly befuddled with the clouds and fog and that is relentless.
My first destination the morning was going to be at Bovine Mountain for the Cow stash. It’s been a while since I’ve drove any insane Forest Road off-roading in the van, so it seems like this might be the place. I drove my baby Pervvie as far as I was comfortable with. I parked and did the rest by foot. It was 3.5 miles, and an hour fifteen, and zero shade. I jogged anywhere flat or downhill. Glad I parked her when I did. It got gnarly immediately. I’m used to going up and then down. This hike was backwards to what I was accustomed.
After leaving the bovine area it was time to head to the rabbit stash.
The rabbit hole was not a huge success for me. I got the old one, but I left with a few DNFs. I put in a lot of work too, so that’s a little upsetting.
There’s a good chance that with these clear skies this is where I’m going to clean myself up, have dinner, and plan to be to take pictures of tonight‘s night sky.
The night was amazing. The sky was crystal clear. There was a sliver of a crescent moon. That was gone quickly, and the milky way danced across the sky in front of my eyes.

Day 43:
11,300 miles and counting.
I woke up this morning after taking night sky pictures over the ocean near the San Francisco Bay where the rabbit stash is. Last night was amazing. The sky was crystal clear. There was a sliver of a crescent moon. That was gone quickly, and the milky way danced across the sky in front of my eyes. I was up until about 3 AM taking pictures of the Milky Way over the ocean. I have a feeling this could be some of the best photos I’ve ever made. I’m very excited to process them. Update after processing, these are 100% definitely my favorite pictures I have ever made.
My plan today was to continue to circle around San Francisco area. Hopefully I don’t have to enter the city proper at all, but my goal is the rest of year 2000 geocaches that lay nestled in the San Francisco area. My ideal plan would be to make a big loop south on the coast and then come back up and around the city, and then make it to Sacramento by tomorrow night. I don’t think I have nearly enough time for all that, but knowing me I am going to go as hard as I can until I run out of steam, or the wheels fall off.
I made my way to Stinson Beach and then navigated into the forest for the firestone hide. I guess I got here too early for everything, thankfully the one main gate was open, but everything else was still closed. I parked much farther away than I had planned, but that gave me the opportunity to go for a sunrise stroll. I can’t imagine this is what it looks like here every sunrise?! Above the clouds? Yet so low in elevation? I don’t even understand how to explain the climate and skies here.
After I wrapped up at firestone, which I loved! It was time to keep heading south and down to the dog poopy one. Another old hide that happens to be a multi.
Another easy to drive, and wonderful trail system. Not like most of the year 2000 geocaches I found on this trip.
I had a very successful loop around the open space where born free is located. It was shade off and on, thankfully. I made good time and found everything I looked for. Lots of two thousand’s I am finding today. Also walking in a lot of parks which is the greatest thing ever.
I made my way to Igor next. I’m hoping when I get there it’s a place I can stay for the night. It is not, they have an actual gate. So, I ended at the nearby WallyWorld.
Now that I proofread this day, this was quite a successful day of checking things off an imaginary to-do list! I am so proud of myself right now.

Day 44:
11,700 miles and counting
Woke up in a Walmart parking lot somewhere near San Jose. I intended to sleep at a park last night, but that park closed and had gates. So, I went to the always safe backup plan, WallyWorld. I started first thing in the morning to find a multicache and a WebCam nearby and then off to Igor from 2000.
Today ended up being a pretty big day for me. I hiked at least 15 miles overall, with some pretty serious elevation changes. I saw some beautiful scenery that looks like another planet compared to where I come from.
I say it all the time, and I stand by it, the trails feature is worth the price of premium alone for Geocaching. I was planning to be at Igor when he opened, but I was about eight minutes late. Thankfully the gates were open, I parked, and I jogged out to Igor and back. A beautiful first thing in the morning jog to get my blood flowing, my day started perfectly.
From here I will drive over to the mother of dragons hide.
I am in a different part of the world from home. I’m in a part of the world where this morning in the coffee shop, I was eavesdropping on, and then interjected myself in a conversation. The conversation was amongst the employees. The lady was making suggestions for nice places for her coworker to go with a new girlfriend on a day trip. That suggestion was Yosemite. That’s right, Yosemite. I’m in a part of the world where people take Yosemite for granted as a potential day trip. Nothing like where I’m from. The answer to that question would be, hey why don’t you take her to the Strausburg railroad and play putt putt.
I made a nice long jogging loop out of the dragon ball hide, and found all those on that loop that I looked for. What a beautiful park! Golf course nearby looks great too, it almost makes me wish I brought my golf clubs on this road trip, but not really.
Now to go check out what’s going on with this world famous lightbulb?
From there I’ll head to the survival cache just north of here.
I think the survival part is surviving Morgan Territory Road. Boy that road is a lot of fun! I parked at the trail head and proceeded to start walking and looking for hidden treasures along the way.
I would have made a lot better time on the survival cache hike had I not had to stop countless times and pick ouchies out of my socks and shoes. I don’t wanna throw these shoes away, so if anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.
So much poop everywhere, yet I saw absolutely no animals who made it.
I thought I might have bit off more than I could chew here, but I am not choking to death, and I survived to sit here and type this.
These ridgeline tree clusters or nothing less than beautifully fascinating.
I did not know anything about this Jeremiah’s Gold geocaching series until I got here. I assumed it was something for locals, and it was not on my radar to complete. I didn’t even know about it. At least now I have the final coords for the slim possibility that I’m never back here. I guess the way I traveled the route would require me to have done 2 loops to get this final. I was very tempted, it was hard not to, but I did not, I was close to my end.
Without a doubt this hike around this preserve is in the top 3 or 4 hikes that I’ve done so far on this road trip.
I scrapped a couple other things that I plan to do today. I’ll follow up with them over the weekend hopefully. But right now, I need to get to Davis, through Stockton and Sacramento. Perrvie’s van window repair scheduled for tomorrow, hopefully this time it will happen. I am staying in a hotel in Davis for at least the next 2 nights. So not much will get done for geocaching.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

I drove all the way across CA, to drive back across CA

Day 40:
Today I met Sandy, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
I woke up in the most perfect location after sleeping along the PCH. I got up, rub my eyes, stretched, brush my teeth and got ready for another day. I wasn’t sure where I was heading yet, but once I started looking and thinking about it my brain was racked with decisions and choices. I think I changed my plan 100 times over the course of 30 minutes. I even turned around from where I was heading , and then re-turned back around around. I know I have to land in the northeast corner of California at some point. That’s about six hours from where I was. So, I think right now my plan is to head there, backtrack, hopefully for the night at Crater Lake, and then back out to the coastline immediately after that.
Everything turned out as planned, even better actually. I left the coast and head inland. I passed through Veneta Oregon. Home of the Oregon country fair. I’m an East Coast person, but that fair holds a lot of amazing memories of my adolescence. I used to spend two weeks each year out here with friends in Eugene, around the country fair. I did that for four or five of my most formative life years. I had to stop in. Luckily there were a couple of geocaches that brought me exactly where I wanted to be. I think the best memory I now have of the Oregon country fair is driving my van all over the empty fairgrounds, at the end of August, a month after the fair. Seeing all the permanent hippie dippy structures and signs, with nothing else around or nobody else around, that’s a memory I’ll have forever. It put a giant smile on my face and still has me giggling.
Vitreous here I come. Most of the morning I drove through the forest of southern Oregon making my way to Northeastern California. Vitreous falls into the category of things I’m looking for on this trip. Only by one single day, but it made the list.
I pulled up to the diesel pump and parked next to this guy with unbelievable log cabin on a pick-up style RV. We got to chatting and he said “I guess we’re heading to the same place?”
I thought quickly. I’m driving about 14 hours out of the way to find one geocache from the year 2000, so I doubt it. But I simply answered, “Doubt it, where are you heading?”
Burning Man he said. OK now maybe I’m going to burning man for a day. I found out later, the guy I met buying diesel is a bit of an internet celebrity: Truck House Life https://www.youtube.com/c/TruckHouseLife
I made great time and found Vitreous and one of it’s neighbors. I chatted with some ladies that were finding obsidian ‘needles’. I got an interesting education about that. Then it was time to boogie toward Crater Lake. I made everything in perfect timing somehow. As I got into the park and did the ring road, the sun was setting. Every corner presented a new sunset view. It might be the most epic sunset I have ever seen. I shot it from many angles. Then I found a pull off to call home. The sky is crystal clear. I parked, ate, and got my camera set up in perfect time to catch the galactic band passing by. So unbelievably amazing.
I set up camp and had a giant pull off all to myself all night. It was a perfect southwest facing view. I was able to photograph the stars in the Milky Way and the galactic band all night with crater Lake as the foreground. It was hypnotic and mesmerizing.

Day 41:
10,700 miles and counting
I woke up in crater Lake this morning. I have no idea how I got here, but I’m sure glad I was here. I got here just before sunset last night. So, I had to race around and take photographs from different angles before I lost the good light. Then I set up camp and had a giant pull off all to myself all night. It was a perfect southwest facing view. I was able to photograph the stars in the Milky Way and the galactic band all night with crater Lake as the foreground. It was absolutely hypnotic and mesmerizing.
When I say I woke up in crater Lake, I was awake most of the night taking pictures. But I had to be ready for the sunrise. I was! I made it around to the other side of the lake around 6 AM to catch the sunrise pictures from there. After that was done, I then took the time to drive the rim Road and investigate each of the virtual and earth caches around the lake.
After all those tasks were complete it was time to clean up for the day and make my way back to the coast. I spent all day yesterday driving from the PCH, inland, to Northeastern California, just to turn around today and head back to the PCH to continue my journey south on that.
Crescent City is where I will pick up the PCH again. I will travel south from there, hopefully stopping around Eureka. I have a very old, dear friend that lives there. He used to be the front man of a very famous rock and roll band back in the 90s. I don’t want to say much more and give away this persons location.
I continued south, keeping the ocean on my right for the entire afternoon. I had to be in Arcata around six. I leisurely drove and stopped for random tourist options, and mostly non-traditional geocaches.
Boy those redwoods sure are impressive.
I caught up with an old friend for a few hours, had a blast, more fun than I deserve. It almost makes me wish I could live a normal life. Then it was to a nearby community center and tuck myself in for the night.

Here is my longest and probably best time lapse so far. Around 400 images:

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

If the options include rainforest, always choose rainforest

Day 34:
Today I met Bluto, hands-down the coolest dog of my trip.
9100 miles and counting.

I woke up in HOH Rainforest, Olympic national Park. I was not supposed to be here, and had no idea it existed. Now I am waking up here.
I stayed up late into the night taking pictures out along the river where the earthcache had me walk. Because of that, I slept in a little bit. I woke up to a hustling and bustling national park parking lot and skedaddled. I made it to Forks which is where I officially started my day with a couple of finds, learning some information about the town, taking pictures of vampires for my wife, and having breakfast.
From there I decided since I was close, I’d head out the Cape Flattery. That wasn’t originally on my agenda, or even on my radar in anyway. But it looks like the top left corner of our country, so I thought I better visit. It was a fun drive out, and indescribably beautiful. I failed at almost every geocache I looked for. I made time for the earthcache and the virtuals as well.
Once I walked out to Cape Flattery, I realized that is where I need to be tonight, overnight for the sunset and photographing the night sky. Once again, the galactic band is going to be right over top of an amazing foreground. Cloudy right now, hopefully that clears up. It did not clear up that evening. So I just slept instead of partying all night.

Day 35:
9250 miles and counting.
This morning I woke up in the Makah Reservation, at Neah Bay. The top left-hand corner of our continental country. I stayed out here overnight hoping to get some pictures, but the sky was overcast and cloudy all night. So that did not work out. Today I’m heading back towards Seattle area. On the way there I saw a van like mine parked on the rock and sandy beach. So, I stopped and chatted with that family for half hour. Turns out they are from DC, right by me, out here living life in a rental Beast. Took some great pictures of a Beached Beast.
I decided to take the ferry, even though they said it was a two hour wait. Because in life when you have a chance to take a ferry, always ride the fairy. I got to the ferry port and had a couple hours to kill. I walked around town, took in the sights of Kingston, and did the things I normally do in a strange town. Now I have another new best friend.
I put my van on a boat and road across the water. That was neat. I used that time to brush my teeth and get cleaned up a little. As soon as I got out on the other side in Edmonds, I head straight for Seattle proper. First, I had to go back to a giant needle and wrap my mouth around a bolt. After that it was time to head towards the Fremont area, I had a 4:30 PM visit at the Geocaching Headquarters. It is always brought up as a big time deal. I figured I better check it out. I would regret it if I did not. It’ll be dull, but I’ll have the memory and picture. I got there with about 2 1/2 hours to walk around and find all those world ranked favorited hides. Justifiably so, some really fun stuff for being in the heart of the city. After that it was time to go in and head up to the 3rd floor. I can honestly say I was visiting headquarters, because I think that’s what I was supposed to do. Without being disrespectful I hope, it wasn’t really the kind of thing I thought I would enjoy. I’m not big on history, memorabilia, tradition, any of that kind of stuff. I learned years ago that traditions are just peer pressure from dead people. But of course, I did what I was supposed to do. Boy, am I glad I did. I had a really nice time. I felt a real connection to something that I have a passion for my life, and lots of other people do as well.
After that I visited in the library, and then I skedaddled out of the city. Tomorrow I plan on doing the hike to Monte Cristo and hope to be at the trail head tonight before sundown and find a place to sleep.
I parked myself for the night at the picnic grounds just down the mountain from my big hike tomorrow!

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

I made this video of the Milky Way:

International Geocaching Day, of course we have all heard of it

Day 32:
Today (8/20/2022) is the long time celebrated, International Geocaching Day. It is also the day of a giant event in Seattle. Today was an unbelievable day for me. It was a day that NEVER SHOULD HAVE HAPPENED. I have been minding my own business, working my way from coast to coast over the past month. Taking pictures, finding geocaches, breaking my van Pervvie, setting world records, released an album…I mean it has been a really decent month for me. Yesterday I was at Snoqualmie Tunnel. Apparently like every other geocacher on the planet. I had no idea why there were so many people/geocachers there on the same day. Turns out, there is a pretty big deal event in Seattle today. I had no idea. This is not my part of the world, events are not my favorite thing about geocaching, I have been on the road living in a van for just over a month. I thought that was neat, but I probably would not go. This was the first I was hearing of it. I didn’t have anything in my wardrobe. I am socially weird, awkward, and do not interact great with others. 
My wife made a great point. She said, and I quote, “if you spent a month driving cross country, having a great time, finding all the geocaches that you think are important, and then you accidentally end up 30 miles from the biggest event ever…that would be like smacking the Karmic Universe in the mouth, Fresh Prince style.” She had a great point.
I landed here, because of my own travels, mere hours before this big-time event. So, I went. I hate cities. That was the primary reason to not go in the first place. Parking, people, yuk. But this is Seattle, there is still plenty of parking. I can contend with NYC, anything else is basically sprawling.
I had a blast! I did a bunch of the labs and found all the caches within a miles walk in all directions. So many favorite points! I talked to a lot of strangers. Mostly, I did the multicache 3 times. I walked it and did the math 3 times, because I could not get a green light. Turns out I was mistaking an uppercase I for a lowercase l. See? Even as I just typed that I can’t see the difference!
I hung around town until mid-afternoon. That was enough for me, time to get back to my road trip. Next was the coast. So, I started driving toward Aberdeen, stopping and finding a bunch of the most favorited along the way. I didn’t make it all the way to Aberdeen. I had an altercation with a certain King of Burgers and found myself sleeping at a nearby rest area. I can’t thank my wife enough for making sure this day in my life happened. Socializing with a bunch of other socially awkward rejects, hell of a way to spend my day.

I did start an album of this trip that I am updating as I process. HERE.

Not sure why I get to do this, Geocaching by Jetski, Lake Powell Arizona

Today was unquestionably the funnest day of “geocaching” I have had!

Day 21:
I woke up in Page Arizona, not actually realizing where I was. I mean I knew where I was, I got a hotel, paid for it, lay down and went to sleep. But I mean I only came here because of the old geocache nearby, and didn’t realize what a mecca of beauty, uniqueness, and photographic opportunities I was in. I wasn’t even supposed to be here, so didn’t really do any research.
I kicked it around town early in the morning for a bit, finding a few nontraditional’s. Then I was set to meet a guy (turned out to be a gal) at the lake at 9 AM, He (she) was going to give me a JetSki to use for the day.
Last night before I retired for the night I went to the local store for some food. They had what I could only describe as the most local radio station in the world playing. I heard a lady read an announcement, about a lost dog. The poor thing was deaf, almost blind, and not wearing any collar. She then proceeded to give out the owner’s name, address, and phone number in case you saw this dog. While I love this, it is not something I have witnessed since I was a little kid. After that, I heard mention that tomorrow was the first day of school, meaning today. I thought this can’t be right it’s still the beginning of August. At that point, I disregarded the dog situation as crazy shock-jockery. Thought maybe it was a fake radio station. But there’s no question about it, this morning this town is a flurry of activity of people going to school to get smart. I hope that dog got home.
The jet skiing on Lake Powell was insanely unreal!
I may have to retire and not look for any more geocaches after this Labyrinth Canyon. Nothing is ever going to provide such an all-around experience.
After doing my research I decided a JetSki would be the funnest way. I spoke to the wonderful people at Surf Powell Lake and they agreed to let me borrow one of their JetSki‘s for a nominal fee. She showed up when she said she would, launched me, and I was on my way at 9:30 AM. I made it to the “parking” coordinates in about two 2 1/2 hours. I haven’t been on a JetSki in quite a few years. The waters in the slot canyons are very choppy. Constant waves with nowhere for that energy to go. But I also found miles of stretch that was like ice and got it up to 50 miles an hour. I kept laughing and giggling and forgetting that I was on a mission.
I put it in the mud. I sure hope it’s there when I get back. Spoiler, it was.
I made a costume change for my feet, and away I went. 10 minutes and I realized I went the wrong way. I had to backtrack and get on the other side of where the water was dried up in the slot canyon. Then I picked a direction and walk whatever was the path of least resistance. Not terrible, other than a couple of suspect inclines here and there.
Once I was at GZ, I looked for quite a few minutes, getting discouraged. There were two places I wanted it to be. So, I went to the first one because it was easier. From there I spotted the prize I was looking for off in the distance, at about the same height.
The walk back was very eventful. I stopped for pictures lots of times. All total I walked about 3 miles in two hours. I also put on about 65 miles on a JetSki. And I still can’t get the smile off my face.
I went and stole a shower from the campground for seven dollars. Then I went back into town to have Mexican lunch. That was delicious and the protein that I needed for what was next.
I headed to Horseshoe Bend. Quite a mob scene, but breathtaking. A place I’ve wanted to be at and photograph for years. From there I decided to make the walk to the left, to find the other geocache. With about half a mile left to get to the cache I ran out of seeing the selfie takers. That’s fine, all these breathtaking views just for me tonight as the sun is going down.
From here I intended to finish the evening asleep in Zion. A crazy storm ended up coming through just at sunset. I didn’t get much further away from horseshoe Bend, I pulled over and rode the storm out and took pictures of lightning strikes. It was amazing. Not what I wanted to do, but probably better.

I did start an album of this trip that I hope I will remember to update. HERE.

I did also make this short video of a very small amount of my Lake Powell nonsense.