Welcome! If this is your first visit, please read the introduction at the bottom of the page. You are welcome to leave comments, but comments including hints will not be published. If you have a puzzle you'd like to recommend, please contact teamajk through geocaching.com -- Enjoy the puzzles!

Friday, September 30, 2016

String Figure It Out - 9/30/16

While today's puzzle from Canada's province of Manitoba took me a while to sort out, it's not really that difficult.  I suppose you can add a star or two if you're trying solve it at work, though. ;)   I've been doing a bit of crocheting lately, so I had no trouble finding the materials for today's puzzle which I stumbled across the other night after asking myself "I wonder if there's a puzzle ..."  The images gave me a real grin (don't miss the one for letter R*) and I remember doing this as a kid ... and wishing I were better at it then too.  See if you can:

String Figure It Out

Tomorrow we'll be in ...

*I originally said "S", but "R" is the one I meant.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The Birds Know - 9/29/16

Today's puzzle takes us to Arizona.  It always amazes me how the birds know all that they do.  My friend who does research on crows is always telling me how smart they are, and I believe it.   A lot of birds need to know when to migrate, where they're going, and how to get there. We've got birds of all kinds around here, both year round and seasonally.  The nights are getting colder (it was in the 30's the other night) and the geese are starting to make their way south.  Recently I had a near-miss with a wild turkey when I was driving to work ... I didn't stop to ask it why it was crossing the road.  ;)  For the answer to today's puzzle you'll have to ask these:

Bids on a Wire

Tomorrow we'll be in Canada's Manitoba province.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

A Snail's Pace - 9/28/16

Sometimes I feel like my progress with a a project (be it a puzzle or otherwise) feels very slow ... perhaps not glacially slow, but slow.  Thanks to today's Minnesota puzzle, I can now quantify:

A Snail's Pace

Tomorrow we'll be in ...

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Spray Paint - 9/27/16

Today's puzzle takes us to California.  A few years ago I watched somebody paint a picture on the side of a building using just spray paint.  It was pretty amazing how he was able to control the paint. Most of us will never approach that level of artistry but might use some to decorate a golden ammo can or some such thing (with a lot of newspaper spread on the ground around it).   But did you know that it's illegal to sell spray paint in the city of Chicago? Back in 1995 when I was living Skokie (a suburb to the north and a little west of the city), the Supreme court upheld the local Chicago ordinance banning the sale of spray paint.  Try as you might, you won't find a can anywhere, be it a corner hardware store or the Home Depot.  It's all in an effort to reduce:


Tomorrow we'll be in ...

Monday, September 26, 2016

Those crazy CATS - 9/26/16

Today's Australian puzzle prompted me to research the origin of something I've seen before:

 MMOG #1: All your base are belong to us

Tomorrow we'll be in California.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Papercrafting - 9/24/16

You know I enjoy a puzzle that lets me get out my scissors.  Today's puzzle from the Netherlands caught my eye, and I didn't even need to Google translate to tell me it was a:

Papercrafting mysterie

Tomorrow we'll ...

Friday, September 23, 2016

"21" - 9/23/16

Today's California puzzle isn't as hard as a lot of the Friday puzzles I post, but I did find it a fun challenge trying to come up with:


Tomorrow we'll be in the Netherlands.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Geocaching Tales - 9/22/16

I'm not sure about other folks, but I really enjoy going back and reading my old geocaching logs.  I'm instantly transported back to another time and place and can relive the fun of solving a puzzle and/or finding a cache ... picturing the area/the kind of day it was/whoever I was with brings back a lot of fun memories.  After a couple of long caching trips, I used a couple of GSAK macros to get a printout of all of my caching logs from the trip, which I set aside along with my photos and other scrapbook items as a souvenir. They will also serve as good reminders in case anyone is every interested in hearing my: 


 Tomorrow we'll ...

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Chicken or Egg? - 9/21/16

It will come as no surprise to you that I select a lot of puzzles based on their clever titles.  A well-chosen title can add a lot to the puzzle experience.    Sorting out the meaning behind the title often serves as a clue to the puzzle, but in some cases I only figure out the title after solving the puzzle.  On one memorable occasion it was over 4 years later that I actually got the connection. Whichever a-ha moment comes first, they're both fun:

Anita, Benny, Calvin, Dulé, ...

Tomorrow we'll be in ...

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Opposite Day - 9/20/16

I was surprised to learn that there actually is a day (January 25) designated as "Opposite Day," since I remembered it mostly as a really annoying thing from childhood.  But if it's "Opposite Day" on "Opposite Day," does that mean it really isn't?  While I ponder that logical conundrum, you can take a stab at today's Pennsylvania puzzle:

Opposite Day

Tomorrow we'll be in California.

Monday, September 19, 2016

A Tribute to First Mates - 9/19/16

From the beginning it's been very beneficial to have an able partner to back you up and help you along the way.  Today's New York puzzle is a:

1st Mate Tribute Cache

Tomorrow we'll be in Pennsylvania.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Spin the Wheel - 9/18/16

Today we travel to California.  Some days you just want something straightforward for your puzzle fix ... it doesn't get much more straightforward than this:

LostSailRs' Wheel of Fortune - a video game

Tomorrow we'll ...

Saturday, September 17, 2016

The Eyes Have It - 9/17/16

Today's puzzle takes us to Pennsylvania.  It was a close call as to which one I would choose for today, but:

The Eyes Have It

Tomorrow we'll ...

Friday, September 16, 2016

Silicon Valley Puzzle Fight Club Finale - 9/16/16

We had a teaser for today's California puzzle a couple weeks ago, but now the final competition has arrived.  Take a look at these three fine contenders (in order by GC codes):

Three in Fifteen



and then you can vote for your favorite here:

Puzzle Fight Club Silicon Valley - The Final

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Star Trek: Roddenberry's Legacy - 9/15/16

Today's puzzle takes us to Indiana. I'm a week late, but wanted to be sure to make a mention of the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek, which was on 9/8/16.  The US Postal Service has even gotten in on the celebrations:

In the process of reading about these stamps, I discovered that A lot of other countries have put out Trek-related postage stamps in the past. (I bet there's the makings of a puzzle in there ... anybody want to take a shot?) In the course of reading about the anniversary, I also came across this attraction in Ticonderoga, NY that I may just have to visit.  Live long and prosper:

Tomorrow we'll ...

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Updated ACA Link - 9/14/16

I hear from The Rat that the American Cryptogram Association (ACA) website has had an overhaul, so the old links no longer work.  Here's a new entry point which has links to the specific ciphers and other information within the site.  I went and updated all of my puzzles that had the old link embedded, and thought I would share the new link with you all in case you come across a puzzle where it might be useful, for example:

ACA#3: Homophonic

Tomorrow we'll ...

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

My Big Fat Greek Wedding - 9/13/16

Today we travel back to another California puzzle I had fun testing recently.  It tells the story of the quite unusual reception following:

My Big Fat Greek Wedding

Tomorrow we'll ...

Monday, September 12, 2016

Bristol History - 9/12/16

There are 27 states in the United States that have a populated area named Bristol.  Today's puzzle takes us to one of them, in Rhode Island.  My old hometown of Bristol, TN has had quite a week.  As I've told you before, it's a double city, straddling the state-line and sharing many services with sister city Bristol, VA.  My high school was Tennessee High, and our annual homecoming game (complete with large corsages of mums decorated with ribbons and pipe-cleaner letters) was always the game against Virginia High, regardless of which side of town was hosting the game. At home or away, the "V-T" game was always a big deal, and last week was the 100th such game, played in my school's stadium, the historic "Stone Castle" built as a WPA project back in the 1930's.  Now, that alone would have made it a big week, but that event was dwarfed by the *other* Virginia vs. Tennessee football matchup that took place on Saturday at nearby Bristol Motor Speedway.  Just under 157,000 fans came out to see the game between the Virginia Tech Hokies and the University of Tennessee Volunteers (previous attendance record for any American football game (NCAA or NFL): just over 115,000 in Michigan in 2013 ... just for perspective, the combined population of both Bristol, TN and Bristol, VA is about 45,000.)  This project had been in the works for a long time (there was a count-down clock ticking away downtown for at least a couple of years) and it was a huge deal for the area.  Billed as the "Battle at Bristol," this event definitely is going down in:

Bristol History

Tomorrow we'll be in California.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Remembering - 9/11/16

Today's puzzle takes us to Kentucky and a special memorial tribute cache.  It's hard to believe it's now been 15 years since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  My daughter had just started kindergarten a few days before, and I well remember being the parent helper at my son's nursery school as we started hearing reports of what was going on.  Now the kids are both in college and have each visited the 9/11 Memorial Museum in New York City on school trips.  I haven't been yet.  They were so young when it happened that I think it feels like "history" to them, but it's different for me.  I do want to go some day, but I know if will be difficult.  But as hard as it is, it feels important:

Remembering 9-11-01

Tomorrow we'll ...  

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Light's Out - 9/10/16

My usual puzzling space is at the dining room table, where I have plenty of light, both from west-facing windows and a hanging fixture with 6 light bulbs.  I had the light installed after we moved in, and I like it a lot, but we have a heck of a time keeping up with the bulbs, which seem to go out with amazing frequency.  Recently I was trying (and failing) to solve a puzzle and my husband walked in and asked me how it was going.  I grumbled a reply and asked if he wouldn't mind flipping on the light switch for me.  Upon doing so, he looked above my head and said, "Looks like you're a couple bulbs short."  My reply:  "In more ways than one."  ;) 

Light's Out

Tomorrow we'll ...

Friday, September 9, 2016

Prime Location - 9/9/16

Today's Texas puzzle landed in my in-box recently, and I enjoyed looking at it.  I've got to say that anywhere that gives a prize for the "Most Mentally Challenging Cache" has got to be a: 

Prime Location

Tomorrow we'll be in ...

Thursday, September 8, 2016

What Three Words - 9/8/16

What's that, you say?  You've seen so many puzzles using a particular new method that you're starting to suffer withdrawal symptoms when you don't have one handy to solve?  Never fear.  The CO of today's California puzzle has you covered with his new series (up to at least 5 so far).  It all starts here ... just figure out:

What Three Words

Tomorrow we'll be in California for another day.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Field Schmield - 9/7/16

It sure would be nice if there were a dedicated icon for a solve-at-home puzzle cache.  You never know what you're going to get when you look at a "mystery cache" listing ... it might be a solve-at-home puzzle, but could just as easily be a field puzzle, challenge cache or even a night cache.  Field puzzles can vary ... as long as there isn't a mechanical puzzle hidden on site, there are often ways of sorting out what is required remotely.  Today's California puzzle is one that the CO describes as a field puzzle, but to that I say (with his blessing) "Field Shmield*".  Just:

Cache by Numbers

*For the background on this terminology click here.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Celebrity Dating - 9/6/16

Today I'm featuring another of the many puzzles I tested over the summer.  This one takes us to California, where they know quite a bit about:

Celebrity Dating

Tomorrow we'll be in California for another day.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Quilting Labors - 9/5/16

Even though we have a few more weeks until the "official" beginning of Fall, Labor Day has always been the "unofficial" beginning of Fall for me.  Time to put away the white shoes and start thinking about digging out the sweatshirts.  Following closely on the heels of Labor Day here in Ithaca is the Ellis Hollow Fair and the associated quilt raffle.  I was delighted that my friend chose to highlight these beautiful quilts in a puzzle:


Tomorrow we'll be in California.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Bambi - 9/4/16

If you've got a little time, check out today's puzzle from the Czech republic:

Bambi (2015)

and then you might find this an interesting read.

Tomorrow we'll ...

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Why or Y? - 9/3/16

Today's puzzle takes us to Arizona for another perspective on the curiosities of the English language.  Ask yourself:

Why or Y?

Tomorrow we'll ...

Friday, September 2, 2016

Words with Friends - 9/2/16

Not long after starting today's Illinois puzzle, I reached out to another puzzler to see if he would be interested on working on it with me, as I knew it was the type of thing he enjoyed and was good at. It was a fun evening of words with friends as we worked our way to the end of:

Words With Frenemies

Tomorrow we'll be in ...

Thursday, September 1, 2016

My Mission - 9/1/16

I always like it when Geocaching develops souvenirs specifically for finding puzzle caches, as it prompts some interest from folks who might not otherwise try one.  The only problem for real fans, though, is that we may have already found all of the puzzles within an easy drive (at least, all the ones that don't require tree climbing or other skills I lack).  So about a week in advance of the recent souvenir weekend I conspired with another local puzzler and made a plan for both of us to put out new caches and thus both be able to claim the souvenir.  Mostly I try to take a zen approach to cache publication these days, but waiting for these to publish consumed a lot more mental energy than was warranted.  I was pleased that several folks did come out and get their souvenirs in the strange case of:

Agent Bit By Her Hog

Tomorrow we'll be in Illinois.