We were greeted at the trail head by a beautiful doe, casually grazing on the lush greenery abundant in the area. She was not too worried about our approach, just moved slightly off the path and watched us get out of the car and start our first search. Our first target was Gnome Alone CCARS09 (GC1YAA4) which was an easy find to get us started. Sadly the gnome who was supposed to guard the cache was gone but the cache was in good shape. And the hike up to it go us warmed up for what turned out to be quite an afternoon of hiking.
Our entire hike was made more enjoyable by the scenery, the wildflowers, grasses and ponds we passed.
As we hiked to GCPF5C (Blueridge Micro), the trail dropped quite a bit in elevation and we came to a small creek to be crossed. However, the GPS was quite sure that the cache we were looking for was not across the creek. We searched in all the obvious spots and just could not see what needed to be seen. Then, I saw something that just didn't look right...and there was the cache. Again, just a unique way to hide a cache in plain site, but something that made this better than a bison tube in a tree!
Across a little bridge (watching out for trolls) we went, and up into a treed area. It was a welcome way to cool off a bit as the day was warm, but soon we were out onto the grassy hillside again and looking for a multicache called When You Feel Miserable (GC1AZJK). The first part of the cache was supposed to be near a fenceline but this area was covered in anthills and millions of large ANTS! We did our best searching but gave up as the prickles, ants and sun were taking their toll. We moved on.
Following the path led us down to a quiet road we had to cross to an area we had been before. There is a large pond here with lots of ducks and reeds and mosquitos!
The next cache itself was unremarkable but easily found in a grove of trees. (GC4AEAD) We had to reapply the bugspray and head to the next one before we were sucked dry by the mosquitos. GC32JGR (Goodbye Calgary) was a unique hide placed in a clever way. We looked around for a bit before finding it and after closing it up and walking away, realized we had to go back because the littlest goat was still holding the log book.
Our last cache of the day, after a long hot hike, turned out to be our 500th cache! We were excited to reach this milestone and a bit relieved to find the cache as we were hot and thirsty and tired of the bugs. The cache was hidden near a beautiful little pasture that was noted in the title of The Ponies Crystal Pasture (GC4AE98).