Biking to an Earth Cache

This past weekend got me outside and into the California lifestyle in a couple of ways. First, it was International EarthCache Day, which meant that if I found an EarthCache, I would get a souvenir on my geocaching profile.Screen Shot 2015-10-16 at 1.35.36 PM

EarthCaches are slightly different from regular geocaches, in that there are no containers to find. You go to a location and answer some questions about that location to the cache owner. Sometimes you have to take a picture of yourself at the location and post that. Often there are EarthCaches around interesting geological sites. And you can learn a lot from answering the questions. Sometimes the kids think it’s a little too much like school, but the teacher in me thinks I will probably be setting up an EarthCache of my own someday, if all the good sites aren’t already taken.

I don’t have alerts for new caches set up on my phone, the way my husband does, but some of our new area geocaching friends had already chosen a suitable Earth Cache to go after: Santa Clara Sub-basin. I loaded my bike in the car and went over.

It was an easy ride, and then we had to answer some questions about water. The subbasin is a recharge zone, where water pools in recharge ponds and then gradually seeps back through rock into the aquifer to recharge the ground water. There was still a surprising amount of water in the recharge ponds. Enough for a turtle to swim in!

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Swimming turtle. You could see it from the bridge.

I’m glad to be getting back in the swing of cycling, too. I used to ride my bike to work 5 miles each way, when I worked in Cambridge MA. The Boston winters were hard on the bike. I realized the rear brake was almost completely frozen, and got it fixed this week.

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The four of us at the Earth Cache, I’m in the back on the left.

And, it was another day in paradise: gorgeous fall weather. It’s not New England foliage, but it’s pretty all the same.IMG_3339

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