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|05/21/2013 7:00 PM|
Natural Resources Commission
There are five Geo-Hunt caches to find. They are not presented in any specific order, and you do not need to hunt for them in any specific order.
1. REVOLUTIONARY TREE
Cache Coordinates: N 34 04.077' W 84 18.679'
These coordinates take you to the cache box. Go there to read and learn about the tree you are seeking. In the cache box you will find a second set of coordinates that will lead you right to it. This tree, and what it represents, is so special that in 2008 our Mayor set aside a day to honor it. We hope the tree grows strong and tall, and continues to be recognized as a symbol of our freedom.
By the way, the 'Stamp Act' had nothing to do with the Postal Service.
2. A TREE WORTH HUGGING
Cache Coordinates: N 34 03.171' W 84 17.221'
This cache was designed to bring you to a magnificent tree that you otherwise might not see, because of its somewhat obscure location. As you approach, and park, you will see an enormous tree in the open area. You are in the right place. This tree is a former Georgia State Champion White Oak. It is truly a tree worth hugging!
The cache itself is not right at the tree. You might get tired looking for it. Good luck!
Cache Coordinates: N 34 03.132' W 84 16.212'
The coordinates take you to a Privet grove. They are the shrubby plants with small green leaves and small purple berries. Birds eat these berries and deposit the seeds in their droppings. Privet grows throughout the South, but especially in moist flood plains and along rivers. It is not fussy, and will grow in sun or shade. Originating in China, it was brought into our country for landscaping purposes. But it is not a native plant, and in natural areas it now multiplies like crazy and competes with our native plants for nutrients, water and air. As you walk along the Greenway you will begin to notice this plant everywhere. It is an unwanted invader!
At times the Natural Resource Commission helps to sponsor “Privet pulls” where volunteers go into our parks and remove some of these noxious plants. Watch for opportunities listed on the City website, or on our Facebook page, to come help stop the invasion.
4. THE DAWN OF A NEW DAY
Cache Coordinates: N 34 04.323' W 84 18.174'
The coordinates lead you to the cache, but there will be a second set of coordinates in the cache box to help you find the actual trees.
These trees have a very long and interesting history. Found in ancient North American fossil records, this species was thought to be extinct. Then in the 1940's, they were found to still be growing in China. Seeds from those trees were shared and grown by botanical gardens all over the world, and now they have been bred and are available at nurseries to purchase and plant once again.
If you see these trees in summer they will look very different than in winter. They are what is known as a “deciduous conifer,” which means they are a cone-bearing tree that drops its leaves (needles) in winter. Stop by throughout the year to see what they look like in different seasons.
5. CACHE-IN, TRASH OUT!
Cache Coordinates: N 34 02.572' W 84 17.953'
This cache is as much about being a protector of our natural resources as it is learning about some very cool trees. The hunt will get you off the beaten track to an area that needs some serious help with trash pick-up. When you hunt for this cache, please take along a bag for trash, and if you have time, continue to walk and clean-up the debris along the way. Poor Mother Nature doesn't look good with all this man-made debris.
The trees at this site are magnificent....big old soldiers standing guard at the moat. Unfortunately they have suffered some damage and loss over the years, and although they are still growing, we wanted you to see them before they are gone. Note their botanical name listed in the cache box.
One thing you should notice is the bark on these trees. It's very lovely and smooth, and for some reason young lovers seem to think they should carve their names in the bark. Ouch! The lasting impression that they make in doing so is very hard on the trees, and we hate to see it happen.
Another interesting thing you should note is that these trees hold onto their leaves in winter longer than almost any other deciduous tree in our climate. As a result, when you walk through our woods in winter you will see lots of these trees with their graceful branches still bearing tan pointed leaves until late spring, when the new leaves push the old ones off. Once you have become aware of these trees the winter woodlands will never look the same to you again.
Although our Recreation & Parks Department does a great job keeping the parks clean, feel free to take a garbage bag with you anytime, and anywhere you walk or hike. Pick up what others have carelessly left behind, and dispose of it or recycle it responsibly. Mother Nature will say “thanks.”