Friday, June 19, 2009

Ungrounded

This week, I was grounded from doing much of anything. Well, not really, but it felt that way since I was on call for jury duty with the county of Los Angeles. Here, we have a one day, one trial system for jury duty. You're on call for a week. So Sunday evening, I called in and the automated system told me that I didn't need to report on Monday, but to call Monday night for Tuesday. I continued to do this and discovered I had to report for jury duty on Thursday of this week.

Because my youngest also had three doctor's appointments this week for various things, none of which were earth shattering or scary, I ended up using the first three days of this week shuttling him to his appointments. He got a clean bill of health for his appendectomy, so he was really happy about that, so happy, he ended up finding a cache on top of the parking structure at the hospital where we were. "Oh, so that's why we parked way up on the top of the structure today!"

Thursday, I ended up sitting around in the jury assembly room for most of the day. At 3:20 in the afternoon, they called about three quarters of the group to head down to the court room and ten minutes later, they let the rest of us go. My jury service having been completed, I'm free for at least a year now. I decided to go out and celebrate a little by finding a couple of caches. Well, actually, I found one cache. The other caches I had in my GPSr at the time were all in direct line of sight with muggles, so I decided to pass on them. The cache I found was also my first cache find on a Thursday since last December. That streak is over too.

I'd chosen this area of Diamond Bar because of another challenge that I'm starting to work toward getting in the future. The Los Angeles County Quadrangle Challenge requires you to find at least one cache in each of the USGS quadrangle maps for all of Los Angeles County. There are 81 quads covering Los Angeles County. The cache was created in December 2006 and one of the requirements is you can't count caches that you found before December 2006. That little requirement has cost me about half a dozen quads. Not that it's bothering me because more than likely, I'd go back to those areas again in the future to find more caches, which is exactly what I did Thursday.

The Yorba Linda quad covers a small area of south Diamond Bar in the southeast corner of Los Angeles County. It's a small sliver and there aren't many caches to be found in this little area. I'd found a couple of caches in the quad prior to December 2006, but those didn't count so I needed to find a cache for that quad for credit on the challenge. It made sense to try on Thursday since the area is only 7 miles from the courthouse where I was serving jury duty. If I got out early, I might be able to find a cache or two and also get home before traffic got heavy.

During my "grounding" this week, I've been going over my cache finds for the past couple of years to see what quads I already had. The geocaching maps work well for this because you can scan the map and see the smiley faces. The USGS website has a nifty little site that allows you to see the boundaries of quad maps using the same Google map interface that geocaching does. All I had to do was zoom in on one of my smileys and then check the corresponding map at USGS to see what quadrants I already had. I found out I had 42 quads already covered out of the 81. I'm now up to 43 with the Yorba Linda Quad.

Saturday, the Tadpole and I are going to be visiting the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley. We'll be taking a roundabout way to get to the library, taking the coastal route along the Pacific Ocean. The quad grid I've posted I grabbed from the Los Angeles County Quadrangle Challenge cache page. I'm coloring it for myself so I have a visual record of the quads I have and the ones I need. The greens ones have been done, the white ones need to be done. The light blue ones are ones we'll be attempting to complete this Saturday on our trip to the Reagan Library. Hopefully, some of those blue ones will be painted green after Saturday.

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2 comments:

whatmegmakes said...

That's a pretty cool idea for a cache challenge. Do you know if anyone else has done that for any other cities?

Webfoot said...

There's one for the Bay Area as well as the Sacramento Valley Quadrangle Challenge. You might also want to check out this bookmark by esquimaux. It's quite an extensive list of quadrangle challenges, DeLorme challenges and county challenges (finding a cache in each county of a particular state).