When geocaching goes wronggeotrache

For the past couple of years I’ve paddled past what appeared to be a geocache secreted along a high bank of the Mohican River. It looked to be a canister taped to a tree along Township Road 368 in Coshocton County.

Although “secreted” might be to strong a word. It’s attached to the tree with bright yellow tape, which would be highly visible from the road. (By the way, the road parallels the former Walhonding Canal, AKA “The Canal to Nowhere.” This was one of the least successful projects of the canal era, draining gobs of public funds for the benefit of a few “enterprising” individuals. In other words, business as usual.)

On a recent canoe trip, curiosity got the better of me and I stopped to investigate.

Scaling the 15-20 foot bank was not unlike rock climbing — with poison ivy and stinging nettles thrown in to make it more interesting. When I got to the top, I found that the tree also was wrapped in poison ivy. And the geocache turned out to be an aerosol can.

As near as I can figure, it had been attached to the tree by one of the rocket scientists at the campground across the river — presumably as a target to be exploded by gunfire. If that’s the case, he either was a poor marksman or came to his senses before firing rounds directly at a public roadway.

Or maybe it was placed by a ghost from the Walhonding Canal.