748. Oregon City, Clackamas County (OR03)

The courthouse is not bad, an old remnant of the small town that the new hipster giant, Portland, has surrounded.  It was neither especially laudable nor detestable.  That’s enough, especially out here.  Normally, I care a bit more about the courthouse, but the cache was far more important in this case.  As mentioned, anyone who knows much about caching knows exactly why I’m here and where I’m going.  For those who don’t…

When the Global Positioning System (GPS) was originally developed, it was used purely for military purposes.  Once commercial GPS units became available to the public, the government began using selective availability, an intentional degradation of signal, to keep them from being too accurate.  During the Clinton administration, it was decided that selective availability was no longer needed, so on May 2, 2000, it was switched off (commemorated by geocachers as Big Blue Switch Day), changing commercial unit accuracy from ±150 feet to ±30 feet.  The next day, a guy named Dave Ullmer placed a five-gallon bucket on the side of a road about an hour outside of Portland and posted coordinates to an Internet GPS newsgroup, challenging people to find what he had hidden.  The next day, someone came out to the coordinates and found his bucket and the random items within (books, videotapes, a slingshot, the Original Can of Beans, etc.).  This was the first geocache (or “geostash,” as they were originally called).  The bucket was later destroyed by a road maintenance crew, but a plaque was placed at the site to commemorate its location.

Ladies and Gentlemen (or however you identify—I don’t mean to be gender assumptive), the Original Stash Plaque.  Welcome to the place where it all began. 

Of course, they’re nice enough to have a log to sign and even a Year 2000 cache to find close by. Thus did I complete the Trifecta.

I also ended up linking up with a local cacher, Legogrrl, and we (along with Buckandi and some other visiting cachers we just kept running into) went off to grab a couple of the other caches around the forest, specifically One in Fifty and Slider

A good time was had by all. But all good things must end. Goodbyes were said, and then it was back to the road. I ended up crossing the Columbia River again, this time at the Bridge of the Gods. Unfortunately, I was driving at the time. Otherwise, I would have taken pictures. Passing 140 feet over some of the most amazing scenery I have ever seen, I realized that their marketing team was dead on the money with that name. I am philosophically averse to tolls, but that may have been the best three dollars I have ever spent. More importantly, that crossing put me only a couple of miles outside of…

3 thoughts on “748. Oregon City, Clackamas County (OR03)

  1. Thank you I enjoyed your blog. Oh to see the place where the first stash was hidden 🥲
    And then a bridge that I not know existed!🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
    Thank you!


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