Over the next few months we want to highlight some other great geocaching locations in our beautiful state. This month we are featuring Townsville and we want to thank Burgo78 for his great write up of his own personal playground!
Geocaching in Townsville
With more than 320 days of sunshine each year, World Heritage-listed national parks and lush tropical gardens, Townsville is home to some spectacular natural landscapes, attractions and of course great geocaches.
With over 600 caches within 50km of Townsville’s CBD there is plenty to keep even the most seasoned cacher entertained. Visitors have plenty of variety to choose from: Remote Hikes, Park and Grabs, Challenges, Gadget caches, Powertrails, Tree Climbs, Adventure Labs, Island Hopping, Puzzles and even a Scuba Cache on a Shipwreck.
The full 81 combinations of the DT matrix are available for those looking to tick off their first or their next loop.
For the puzzle lover Townsville is home over 100. The Breaking Bad Geo Art series, themed on the TV show of the same name includes 17 puzzles, with accompanying field puzzles along 11km of National Park trails, overlooking the ocean and lagoons. The series has been very well received racking up the favourite points and includes ‘Scales’ (GC7AVR5) which at the time of writing has the honour of being the top cache in Queensland by favourite percentage at 93.75%. A further 2 caches in the series also sit in the top 20.
Besides Brisbane’s ‘A Dark Night’, Townsville has the only other geocache in Queensland that has been awarded Geocache of the Week by Geocaching HQ. ‘A Box of Red Herrings’ (GC6NQC2) is hidden with permission inside the Aitkenvale Library. It is not difficult to spot, but the logbook inside is as well protected as J.K. Rowling’s sorcerer’s stone.
Other noteworthy hides include Legoland (GC74CPA), the most favourited cache in the region which combines a Lego puzzle box with a magnificent view of the city and the island below. Key Element (GC4ME3F) is a recreation of one of West Virginia Tim’s Birdhouses. While Steps (GC6ZNVE) is an online puzzle which requires some lateral thinking to progress up the virtual steps before tackling the physical steps of Castle Hill to claim your prize.
The Ross River Power Trail (RRPT) has been replenished by Geocaching Townsville since the devastating floods of February 2019. The RRPT stretches 28km from the mouth of the Ross River all the way to the Ross Dam and boasts 74 hides along the river banks for walkers plus a further 31 which can only be accessed by boat or kayak while avoiding the ‘big green lizards’ (I’m joking – only harmless freshies are found here).
If you enjoy adventure, then Townsville will soon have you feeling like Indiana Jones. There are caches on many local peaks and trails, around bays, up trees, underground and as mentioned before even underwater (GC6VGM0). Friendly locals may be able to assist with TOTT’s to prevent the excess baggage charges accumulating as 4WD, boat, kayak, climbing gear and ladders have all been employed around the region. There is even one that requires a boat and a ladder (GC7P58W).
Step back in time visiting abandoned mine shafts at GC8FV0Q and wander through disused train tunnels at GC8BM2M. Search a WW2 Catalina wreck on a deserted island to uncover its ‘black box’ (GC6WM4D). Visit the mangrove lined S.S. Adelaide wreck off the coast of Magnetic Island (GC7V99M). Or let the Wherigo guide you through history on the ‘Early Townsville Heritage Trail’ (GC7PAND).
Want to claim a 5/5 then Townsville has 3 to choose from. GC7JR20 ‘Caching Bingo Challenge’ rewards well rounded cachers who qualify with a golden ammo can and another golden view. The multi ‘The Ross River Challenge’ (GC8TTGY) hits all the adventurous attributes, with a puzzle, a paddle, a UV field puzzle, a drone (yes that’s right a drone only accessible location to collect info) and finishes with a tree climb. Finally, the plain evil ‘8 Bit Caching Rebooted’ (GC6QHW8) requires players to complete a Geocaching themed Mario style platformer that has caused many to scream with frustration.
Whatever you choose you will not be disappointed. Just ask those that have visited in the last couple of years such as Crooked Pete, JACS Team, Slow Puncture, Karicka, bella at waggy and Pprime’. Failing that visit this bookmark for a list of (in my opinion) Townsville’s finest hides.
With Queensland open for Queenslanders and return flights from Brisbane on offer for under $200 what are you waiting for?
This month we welcome Jezza_theGeoKid to the Kids Caching Corner
Tell me how you started Geocaching?
We used to travel between Longreach and Townsville a lot and Mum thought it would be a fun way to spend ‘family time’ and we had found the solitary cache at that time in Longreach. Now it’s a love/hate relationship… Mum loves it and I hate that she loves it! It’s nearly all she talks about. And we have SO much geocaching stuff!!
What are some of the coolest spots caching has taken you to in Townsville?
One weekend we took the back road from Charters Towers to Townsville. Along the way we stopped to climb ‘The Rock’ GC1RR6C. It was a bit of a walk but not too hard going. You get to climb a cool rock chimney and I made it all the way to the top easily. Mum’s fear was a little overpowering that day but she’ll do it another time I’m sure with a rope, she did however get the cache. Before heading on to Townsville we also visited The old Greenvale line tunnels GC8BM2M. This was a VERY long walk but it was awesome to walk through the tunnel and it was that pitch black you could barely see the light at the end of it. We visited the second tunnel but there had been a landslide so not as impressive as the first. Oh, and while we were there, we found the cache too – Mums log may give you a giggle.
Have you ever had a FTF?
My very first FTF was on the road between Barcaldine and Aramac. Mum had to promote my account to premium just so that I could log it. We were lucky to have enough signal. It was also a bit of a tree climb. My other FTF’s were awarded to me at the Queensland Outback Geocaching muster in both Barcaldine and Blackall.
Have you been to many Events?
Our local events are usually in Townsville on the strand so I can either swim in the rock pools or scooter along the beach front. Every Easter Mum books us in to a Mega. We have been to Alice Springs, Lake Macquarie and Canberra (As a tradeoff we flew home Business class). We were supposed to go to Millicent, but we were in lockdown. There is lots to do at Mega events – even an Easter egg hunt and the lab caches are fun. I had my 15 seconds if fame at the Clearwater event performing a card trick in Cachers got Talent! The downside to Mega’s… camping… no power…no Xbox – good old family time.
Thanks for sharing with us this month Jezza, we look forward to seeing you at Dayboro!
We couldn’t let the month go by without a photograph highlight. Recently alphag_25 completed Tunnel Vision 2 in Townsville, these images were posted on the Geocaching Townsville Facebook Page and they have given us permission to share them with you all. Loving the suits!
Complete the puzzle and find the code word. Remember to retain it for the big event!
Puzzle counting squares and numbers across:
Square 3 position 4
Square 5 position 8
Square 6 position 8
Square 8 position 9
Square 5 position 3
On the 15th we will post another Dayboro update. So stay tuned we will be advising the dates of our shop opening ready for campground bookings.