My next big milestone would be 200 finds. If I were to put a date to hit the milestone on, I would pick March 21. That is in 17 days and falls on the first day of spring. Nine more finds.
I got closer to 200 today as I picked up find #191 GC1J0VQ Twin Cottonwood Colonels' Offset. This might be my first offset cache find. An offset cache can be a few things, and in this case it involves finding one container, and it is not at the coordinates listed. Instead, it is in the vicinity of the coordinates. You have to use your geo-sense. Sometimes you must solve a puzzle or find another container with different coords to get the final location of the container.
Because we recently read about insects in winter, we searched for evidence of insects. I always need to keep things fresh and new to keep a familiar place from getting boring. Books has been good that way. We did not spot any galls or scales or larvae that were described in our book. But we did find worm wood. "N" of GAIN was peeling bark off a fallen stick and uncovered the tracks of some larvae. After inspection, he and "I" of GAIN found some holes -- either the mom's entry hole or a baby's exit hole. I also found worm wood near the cache. I don't know that I would have had access to this worm wood once everything leafed out. This was in a low, boggy area where the kids had fun breaking the remains of ice sheets.
I find a lot of value to hiking in the winter. I see more things and go more places without underbrush. But there is more. For example, the sheets of ice in and near the river. Click on the pictures so you can see the details. The birds' nests. This one, and another one that I photographed were found a little higher than my knee. I have a bird nest ID book that I hope to use. Having your hand in the photo is nice to have a sense of scale when you look things up in the reference books.The seed pods (there is a chapter on winter weeds that I did not read aloud). The low volume of foot traffic -- big bonus! The many migrating birds, their noise, and their scat. Gotta keep on your toes with all the scat. Sometimes we get to see other animals and their tracks. Today the water was very high, so not much mud bank was visible for tracking.