Forum: Western and Southwest Regions
Topic: Warm Weather Dangers
started by: Quinn
Posted by Quinn on April 05 2002,1:15 amI just got back from a visit to Virginia the other day and while there we did some caching to pass the time. I saw (as did my brothers) a couple of cotton mouth snakes on the trails that we were walking and also in the log of a cache that my brother placed, a guy mentioned he saw two rather large snakes the day he went after it. This made me wonder what precautions do people take to avoid what really could be a dangerous problem should someone happen to be bitten.
Living in Upstate Ny this really does not become a factor, but for you warmer weather cachers I can see that special planning is needed and maybe some guidance could be used to explain to the much younger tag-alongs as to what not to do.
One cache we went after was covered with dead pine needles, now this is great bedding material for many breeds of snakes and reaching in to grab this cache might be fool hardy. I can see where a walking stick in regions where snakes and maybe scorpions can really come in handy to prod and poke in places you are not sure about.
Has anyone ever come into contact with snakes or any other type of creature that could pose a threat?
Posted by DxChallenged on April 05 2002,1:37 amHey Quinn, We just got back from a vacation near your way. We took our time and planned a leisure drive to the Willmington NC area.... geocached while on route in Harisburg, PA and in Raleigh, NC. While in Raleigh we unleashed a horde of nasty beasties....I posted the story on gcaching as one of the little beasties became quite "attached" to me. This being the more "personal" forum I didn't want to go from the quilt lady to the bug lady ....but in the interest of safety here is what I posted on March 26th.........................................
I'm wondering how many people have been attacked by ticks while geocaching...
Today we most definatley were! Last weekend we were in a park in Erie PA where they had tick warning signs at every trail head. We used tick spray last week but today the group scoffed at me and bounded down the trail with naria a waft of bug spray. We spent our morning looking for a cache in NC. On other caches we have puposely removed travelors but up until today we were never the mode of transportation for a mass exidus.
My family and I are from Western NY. We left home on Saturday to go on a caching vacation to end at my mom's house in Bolivia, NC. We headed out to our second cache just as the heat was starting to go up (30s at home near 80 while we cached). Stayed on the main trail for quite a bit and then, as guided by the GPS, darted off on a path less taken.
A bit of "whoa", "hot", "thwank", "ouch" and "is that a tick?" could be heard from various members of the group. Eversure and I found the cache box right off. We traded items and the cache was in fine shape....but we weren't once we had finished our trip out of the bush....
We renamed the cache, at least for our group...Moutain Joy Tick Trap....because we unleased a virtual horde of the nasty beasties. We took a different path out as usually we find a quicker way out than in. While traversing this, a lot more less taken path, we discovered many shrubby bushes and brambles....Well there must have been ticks laying in mass waiting for unsuspecting humans. As a matter of fact butterfly girl (who had never seen a tick before) commented "I have spiders all over my arms". She says she pushed 10 to 20 off her. Once we got out into the main path we all began to remove ticks...this we continued to do on the walk out, where the van was parked, as we administered after the fact spray, while in the car (I had one crawling up my stomach), in the parking lot, on the balcony of our hotel room and then found them slipping down the drain as we each took a shower....we will always, always, ALWAYS put on bug spray when we go geocaching!........................................
I was told while in the sporting goods department of Wmart...that this season the ticks are out early (at least in the South). I bought 2 bottles of the best stuff they had...repell..........
May you be tick free and have a great vacation!!
Posted by GeoRockers on April 06 2002,11:37 pmWe have many creatures that add to the caching adventure in California!
Rattle snakes, black widow spiders, ticks, fleas, bees, wasps, hornets, ants, and mosquitos just to name a few...
An encounter with a rattle snake, while reaching for a cache in the hollow of a tree, near dusk, was what convinced me to carry a hiking stick.
I hope I never run into as many ticks as DxChallenged, and on the positive side, the mosquitos don't have squadron numbers and call signs like they do over there on the east coast!
Posted by Choberiba on July 28 2002,10:15 pmI still vote for running out of water as by far the biggest danger in the SouthWest.
Snakes and other creatures are out there, and people do get bitten if they're not careful.
In the desert heat a man can't last long without fresh water and that's a constant that's much more deadly than a snake.
Don't pull a Steve Irwin and you will probably come out on top of the food chain and survive to cache another day.
Posted by Clown Knife on Dec. 19 2002,3:20 pmI live in the Sierra Nevada foothills in Northern California; about 30 miles East of Sacramento. Ticks are very common around here. I must have removed about 50 of them over a three hour period on a geocache hunt one week ago. Rattlesnakes are very common in this area also. I'm looking for a nice hiking staff to use for finding cache containers. I'm very careful about where I will use my hand to turn over forest litter or logs and such. I've been very lucky so far; but I've only been geocaching for 10 weeks. I'm alone for most of my hunts (got laid off) and I've learned to be very careful and very observant while bushwhacking in the boonies. On one hunt I did find the remains of a deer that some big cat had devoured. Probably a cougar, and I may never see one. But what if I do? That is why I want a hiking staff now; but I want one made of wood and harvested in the wild; if possible. This is my first post by the way. Sorry to be so long winded. I'm still a newbie with 16 finds.