US Trip 2018 – Day 18 – Mountains and valleys

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The route this day took us from Baker, NV to Parowan, via Great Basin National Park, Wah Wah Stash and a couple GeoTour caches. Another awesome day on the road!

Approximate time on road/out caching:  11 hours, 35 minutes
Total miles driven: 229.8 mi / 369,8 km
Total cahes found: 20
Total DNF: 1
States visited: Nevada, Utah
Famous places visited: Great Basin National Park, Lehman Caves
Most memorable cache: GC2ERKN Lehman Caves
Biggest surprise: How good the road to Wah Wah Stash was
Weather: Sunny, light clouds
Highest temperature: 33,9°C / 93°F
Lowest temperature: 16,7°C / 62°F

Into the mountain

The first we had on the plan today, was Great Basin National Park and a tour of Lehman Caves. We’ve never been in a cave like this before, so we didn’t know very much about what we would see.

If you ever get the chance to do a tour like this, do it! It was awesome! The cave was amazing, unlike everything else we’ve seen before, and the ranger was very knowledgeable! He did a wonderful job of telling us about both the (human) history of the cave and the geology. We learnt a lot in there, that will help us when doing earthcaches later.

It was also interesting to hear how they balanced the preservation of the cave, and the tourists (us) wanting to see it. I would never have guessed that lint was one of the biggest problems with humans in the cave! It’s so big, that they have to dust the entire cave every year!

On top of the mountain (almost)

After the visit to the cave, we continued up to GC2ERK9 Wheeler Peak. We stopped at the parking lot, which is where the cache is, and were satisfied with some pictures of the peak. Maybe we some day can actually hike to the peak itself?

Up and down

After finding the two other caches in/outside the park, we started on the long way to Parowan, Utah. The ranger in Great Basin NP had a very simple explanation of how all of us got to the park: «You came here by driving over a mountain, through a long valley, over another mountain, through a long valley, etc». And that was true, that is what they call basin and range topography. We had to drive through the same topography on the way back from the park.

A famous cache in the middle of nowhere

One of the caches we had on our plan for the day, was GCA8 Wah Wah Stash. We were a bit unsure about the road out there, since the «Google Car» haven’t been out here. But the road was mostly very good, with only minor rougher sections. I think it helped a lot that we had several waypoints on our plan, to make sure we took the easiest way to the cache.

We made it out there, in the middle of nowhere, and it was awesome. Beautiful weather. Far away from muggles. No noise or pollution. Just us, some cows, a cache, beautiful scenery and a log to sign.

Frisco

The first GeoTour cache of the day, GC6F3ZT Utah GeoTour-Beaver – Frisco Ghost Town, took us to this interesting place. We even found a nice bonus cache there 😀

Saying hello to Philo

We stopped at a couple other caches along the way to Beaver, including another GeoTour cache, GC6F3WK Utah GeoTour-Beaver – Minersville Reservoir. We had a non-cache stop planned in Beaver, too bad this place didn’t get a virtual reward cache. We visited the birthplace of Philo a couple days ago, so we had to visit the statue while here now!

The funny thing is that we logged a cache right down the street last year, without knowing that this statue was here. That was bad planning!

We did a find a nice bonus multi nearby, GC16BWR Beaver Stake Tabernacle, since it was so close.

That does not look very healthy

We stopped a bit further down the road to get something to eat, and while there, we decided to wash some of the mud of the car. The windows were starting to get so dirty, that it was hard to get them clean with the normal «tools». And while at it, we might as well clean the worst. There was one muddy spot on the way to Wah Wah stash, and this nasty looking wheel cleaner did the trick.

The making of a new feature

We only had a short stretch on the interstate left, before arriving in Parowan. We did one last cache stop, on GC13WWP Parowan’s Pit Stop, before checking in at the hotel.

Since we arrived so early, and since I easily get way too many new ideas when we drive on long open roads, I used the next hour or so to add the first version of a new checklist feature to the cachetur.no app. A hotel room wasn’t the worst place to code a hotel departure checklist 😉

Pictures

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