After a week of analyzing the geo-cache coordinates and their respective point values, I was ready to test my results. There was no way to prepare for the altitude we were thrown into. The terrain was raw and untamed. My geo-cache co-conspirator, Ken Robertson, seemed completely unaffected by the altitude as he scampered up the rock faces canvassing the landscape. It was clear that I was playing keep-up with a primed athlete. Occasionally, we would come upon coordinates searching high and low only to leave empty handed and in dismay.
Early in the rock scampering scavenger hunt, a stumble resulted in the loss of my only pen. Needless to say, this left all of our caches to be recorded by smart phone cameras, and then transcribed after finishing the three-hour grueling exercise in oxygen deprivation. The off and on again hail punctuated the topographical forested mountain scape, while daisy chaining caches one after another by point value left us as we eventually ran out of time. Returning to the finish line unaware of our standings with our geo-cache competitors, we felt defeated. Only after consuming our epicurean feast of soft shell chicken tacos would we learn that we had actually placed in the top 3 in this event. This very respectable performance had actually contributed to the relatively strong showing of how our Smart Armor and Picmonic (PicArmor) team has displayed. While never capturing first or second, every event left a PicArmor representative placing in the top ten. This just goes to show a team’s strength is better than one rock star.
Emboldened by our strong standing, we held strong and fast to the notion of maintaining our first place status in the subsequent trials. As far as your humble geo-caching narrator is concerned, it seemed as though time was against us, as we raced the clock in the next round of trials. Time management would be critical, as we recklessly flung ourselves into each challenge. Some events required every team member to participate, like “The Pull”, “Mob the Blob” and “The O-Course”. Others required a strategic selection of who would represent the team’s best. The Heist was my solo debut, although performing swimmingly in the Mob-the-Blob and The Pull, it was up to me to score on behalf of my teammates. Perhaps foolishly, our stratagem saved the Log Carry for one of our last events. It was all I could do to carry my own haggard corpse up and down the mountain, while my team members gracefully exchanged the log amongst them with almost choreographed surgical precision, while humping it up and down the mountain trail.
Thank you Nike for this experience!