November 2016: Ezio10
1. Tell us about your caching name.
Before I start with my current caching name, my first geoname was TaylorNG10 when I created my geocaching account in September 2011. “N” stands for my first name (Nick), “G” stands for my middle name (Graham), and 10 was my basketball jersey number when I played for the Larkspur-Salem rec team back when I was living in Virginia Beach. On February 2013, I switched “Taylor” and “NG” into NGTaylor10. A few months later, I got into a video game called “Assassin’s Creed 2” (not a game I would recommend for those under 17 years of age lol) and the playable character of the game is named Ezio. I like the Assassin’s Creed games so much that I changed my geocaching name to Ezio10, and for now on no more name changes.
2. How were you introduced to Geocaching and what was the first cache you found?
It was all thanks to my Sunday school/youth group friend, Ben (AllstarSS), an active geocacher from Virginia Beach. When he first mentioned geocaching in one of the Sunday school sessions, I kept wondering how the whole game works and just couldn’t quite figure it out for a while. He explained it to me one summer during Vacation Bible School at my former church, Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Virginia Beach, and I just got really hooked into it, but at the time I didn’t have a smartphone or a handheld GPS. One time during a church fundraiser (and this was shortly after I created my geocaching account), another Sunday school/youth group friend Justin (BrewKrue) took me to a cache called "Kempsville History" placed by episcodad (another active Hampton Roads geocacher who served as the rector of Emmanuel at the time I attended) located at the church graveyard behind my former church. Justin had already found it before, but it was the first time I ever set sight on a geocache. However, neither of us brought a pen lol (one tip that Ben gave me is to always have a pen in handy when locating a geocache), so I didn’t actually claim it until one month later on November 13th, 2011 with my new GPS and pen in hand just before my Sunday school class started.
3. Tell us about your receiver and any other “tools” (hardware and software) that help you cache.
My first GPS was a Garmin eTrex Venture HC, which I got on my birthday just a week before I found my first cache. Despite not having a paperless caching feature, the eTrex really cooperated a lot just everytime I went geocaching with it. Then I got my first iPhone a year later and I’ve been using my phone when I cache near home or when I stop somewhere to eat along the way during road trips. In 2013, I got my current handheld GPS, a Garmin Oregon 650t. I really like the features in it, but the battery life is very short.
4. What essential items do you always carry in your cache bag?
Whenever I carry my caching bag, I always have a first aid kit, a spare of pens, several logsheets, and a few caching containers.
5. Do you trade items in and out of caches?
I don’t often trade items nowadays because I don’t keep track of them very well, but I do like to discover TBs and geocoins because a lot of the ones I discover, either at events or caches, are very cool to look at and I much rather do that than take the risk of keeping track of them. Yes, it’s a good idea to trade, but sometimes when I find them inside a geocache, I discover them and let the next cacher take one.
6. Do you have any signature items or ones in the works?
None at the moment.
7. What is your favorite thing about caching?
My favorite thing about caching is discovering places I would not have visited if it weren’t for this game. Almost every area I’ve cached in, I always learn something about that particular area and it’s very interesting
8. Do you cache by yourself or with another person? How often do you go caching?
A lot of times I cache alone, by foot and by car, but my parents would tag along on a few caching missions.
9. What is your favorite type of cache (traditional, multi, puzzle, virtual etc.)?
Got to be multi-caches! I learn a lot from them, particularly the ones involving virtual stages (e.g. “The Silent City”). Virtual caches are fun, too, but with multi-caches, there’s more than just one site/stage that you learn about within a multi.
10. Tell us about your favorite cache.
I have so many favorites, but I do have one cache in mind that made me drop my jaw and my eyes wide open. It is “Evolution of the Rest Stop” by WVTim. While on a long trip to my grandfather’s from Cleveland, OH (where I spent the night prior to the trip), I decided to add some rest area caches on the list, including this one, to make my trip less boring lol. Looking at it after opening the birdhouse really made my day and couldn’t stop laughing until the end of the day.
11. Tell us about a memorable caching experience that you have had.
It was a puzzle cache that I did with a large group called “The Colonial Treasure” in Williamsburg. It included three super difficult puzzles and about 60 miles of driving. We all met at a Cracker Barrel in Williamsburg and we headed out to the first stage. Near stage 1, we encountered a “roadblock” due to an ongoing church service, but we found a new way to get to GZ and collected the clue to stage 2. Stage 2 is one of those puzzles that the more you overthink it, the more difficult it is. Stage 3 wasn’t too difficult and we set off for the final. The final was rough terrainwise, but we had one brave soul to get the final stage. It was a fun and an adventurous day and I highly recommend doing this with a group as the puzzles are very difficult to solve.
12. How many states and countries have you cached in?
So far I have cached in 23 states (plus DC) and Canada.
13. If you could take a vacation anywhere to cache, where would you go?
I would go to all New England states since I haven’t found any caches in that region. I also would travel to the U.K and Ireland, where my ancestors were from.
14. Tell us about your other interests or talents.
While I am a video-gamer, I am also a conservationist. I was a member of the Student Conservation Association for two years in high school. I was assigned to work at Rock Creek Park twice and Fort DuPont Park once. I am hoping to intern at a national park next summer as part of the National Park Service Academy.
15. Have you set any goals for yourself this year related to caching?
While I do have a lot of long-term goals in mind (Jasmer, D/T, VA Counties, Delorme, etc.), my primary goal is to reach #2000 before the year ends. In fact, I already have a cache in mind for my 2000th find, but I still have to get 100 caches before I can reach that goal.
16. What would you like NoVAGO to focus on in the future?
It’s doing a great job keeping people updated on their events, so keep it up, NoVaGO!
Great "Spotlight"...thank you. This forum topic continues to be my favorite.