If you’ve seen my county map on the Challenges tab at this point, you’ll have noticed I have some gaps along the Southern edge of the state. This last weekend, I met up with 8601 and TC in Hastings and we took some time to fix those gaps before spending the rest of the day in Hastings about 4 hours later. We worked until midnight to see how many we could grab. We had a good day, but by the end, we were tired of the DNF’s and ready to head back to Lincoln.
The route through the counties we needed wasn’t too bad. I quickly guided them through to Hastings, and we then whipped around to grab what we needed to complete those counties. Visiting various historical markers along the way, including some locations along the Oregon Trail, we worked our way back to Highway 6, East of Hastings. We then headed back to Hastings and TC left for Lincoln to take care of what he needed to do. 8601 and I then began work in downtown Hastings.
The Hastings Pict-O-Cache was part of our plan, so we started there. I had not done one completely before (I had tried one in Lincoln, but it is poorly done). As we went through the cache, we attempted a few others, adding Shelter1 and Geo-Inn to our find list. This pict-o-cache, on the other hand, was well done. Carefully walking you through 22 pictures, we both agreed that this was a great example of how this type of cache should be done.
After that, we cleared out a few more in the area before lunch. At one of them, we ran into Seeking Hearts, who tried to scare us, but it didn’t work. An officer uniform might have had us in a bit more of a defensive mood, but we got a good laugh as we remembered why we each looked so familiar to each other. We had met at the North Platte events last November.
After taking a look at the map on my GPSr, we decided to work on a nearby loop centered around Heartwell Hide. We got some DNF’s along the way, but we also met Good Looking, Seeking Heart’s brother. Alongside meeting another cacher, we grabbed some interesting caches and a few ticks as we worked our way through a counter-clockwise loop back to my car. Then we finished off some more caches in a nearby cemetary. By this point, we were ready for a quick bite to eat, especially after a few DNF’s in a row.
After dinner, we made a bad choice for where to go next and ran into about 5 DNF’s in a row, some of which were a result of too many muggles. We moved to a different park and began grabbing caches again as the day winded down to a close. Our last cache in the area, Fisher Fountain Cache, allowed me some time to get some photos as we waited for some muggles to leave the area around the cache. I need to go through and process some of the images and see which ones I like in the end. This is definitely a cache that will be more enjoyable at night as the fountain is lit up by colored lights. It’s cool to watch.
Having made it to midnight, we hopped in the car and began the drive back to Lincoln. Reaching York, we switched roles and I slept back to Lincoln. We each took a much needed shower before sleep. Good thing too, as I found one more tick who apparently liked my stomach. It was a long day. With a full day and some good luck and planning, we could have had some great numbers from this. As it was, only 8601 set a new record, finding 35 caches in one day. But, we had a fun day that not only allowed us to add some more counties to our list, but to relax and visit some fun caches in Hastings.
Four more days to our big Western Nebraska caching trip,