Monday, September 5, 2011

Caching Towards Galena, Illinois

Today was a perfect day weather-wise.  Temperatures in the 60's.  Wow, we haven't seen 60 degrees in months.  It felt wonderful!  We decided to get up early and head out by 7:00 am.   We drove out to Rockford, Illinois where we ate breakfast at one of my favorite places - The Golden Corral.  I think they have the best breakfast buffet EVER!  If you see a Golden Corral, do yourself a favor and stop and eat breakfast.  You'll be glad you did.

After breakfast we headed out towards Galena, Illinois.  We stopped along the way to do some geocaches.  Can you spot the cache in this picture?

This was the first one I've found like this and I thought it was pretty good.

The next one we stopped at was at the Blackhawk Battlefield Monument.  Blackhawk was a famous indian warrior in Illinois.  Here's a little history lesson taken from "The Blackhawk War of 1832" By James Lewis, Ph.D:

As the war chief of the band, it is hardly surprising that Black Hawk himself led attacks on two white forts in northwestern Illinois, nearly a hundred miles from his main encampment at Lake Koshkonong. On June 24, Black Hawk and roughly two hundred Sauk and Fox warriors attacked a small stockade on the Apple River near modern Elizabeth, Illinois. After besieging the fort for much of the afternoon, Black Hawk sent the warriors to gather badly needed foodstuffs, horses, livestock, and other supplies from the nearby settlers' cabins and farms. The next day, they reached the small fort at Kellogg's Grove, where a Kickapoo war party and Capt. Snyder's militia company had fought nine days earlier. Black Hawk's warriors tried to ambush a group of soldiers as they left the fort, but instead found themselves pursued by a militia force under Major John Dement. A series of clashes ensued in which the militia fought bravely. At least nine of Black Hawk's warriors died in the fighting, including two of the leaders of the band.Here is the monument....

This is the cabin that was on the property....

We searched all over for that cache but we couldn't come up with it.  I really hate to have a DNF, but we spent over half an hour looking for this one and that was long enough.  We had other places to go and caches to find, so we were soon on our way. 

The next stop was at the Apple River Fort.  This information was taken from the cache page:

Apple River Fort was hastily erected in 1832 during a period of skirmishes between settlers and Sac and Fox lead by Black Hawk. During early June 1832, a young Abraham Lincoln and his militia slept here on their way to Galena. On June 24, 1832, Black Hawk and 200 warriors attacked the fort. It is the only fort attacked by Black Hawk and his warriors.
The village of Elizabeth is named after three of the women who helped defend the fort.
The current reconstructed fort is next to the location of the original fort, which is defined by the split rail fence.

We really enjoyed doing this cache.  We quickly found the cache, where I dropped off 2 TB's and picked up one TB to move along.  But touring the fort was really the best part.  We got to climb all over everything which we really enjoyed.

Chickens and roosters were running around outside of the fort....

Louie and Chablis posed outside one of the old cabins....

Here is the fort entrance.  I am always surprised at how small these old forts really are.

The first building we explored was the blockhouse...

View from the 2nd floor....

The 2nd floor sleeping quarters.....

 Shhhh.....  who goes there??

Snoopy was thirsty and needed a drink of water...

The vegetable cellar and the tools were in another building....

Inside the cabin were 2 interperative actors.  They were actually cooking their lunch over the fire....

It was a beef stew with homemade noodles and dumplings.  It smelled really yummy!

We got to sample some pumpkin bread they had baked earlier in the day. 

The next stop was the CGW train and historical depot.  But you'll have to come back tomorrow to hear about that!


  1. Galena is beautiful. Looks like you guys had a good time.

    Have you been to the Blackhawk statue in Oregon? It's pretty cool, worth a stop if you're ever driving down route 2 to/from Rockford. It was built by my long lost relative Laredo Taft.

    I think I'm gonna have to check out this geocaching thing. Looks like something I might be able to get my wife into.

  2. I did see that statue in Oregon many years ago. There used to be a geocache hidden there but it's since been archived. If it was still there I probably would have made it a point to get back out there. :-) Interesting that it was built by a relative of yours. Check out the geocaching. Lots are hidden in the woods so it's good hiking exercise if you want it along with being fun.

  3. I went out with the wife and mother in law and found our first geocache! Awesome feeling when you write yourself down on the logbook. Thanks for the inspiration to check it out.

  4. Oh Mark, that is so cool. I'm really glad you tried it! We went out and did 2 ouselves tonight.


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