Jason Cooley of Prescott Valley, Arizona, is April's GeoStash winner. He has won a gift certificate from Eaton/Detroit Locker. Here is Jason's story:
My family and I (me, wife Cathy, son David, and daughter Kate) decided to take the trip from Prescott Valley, Arizona, up to Las Vegas when we found the coordinates in the magazine. I had been off-roading the day before on the Terminator trails near Black Canyon City, Arizona, and had a deep gash in the sidewall of my trail Jeep (XJ), so we couldn't drive it up. We took my daily-driver Cherokee instead. Once we got close, there were two roads I had mapped out and planned on using. The first one turned into a dead end, then the second one did also, meaning the map I was using must not have been accurate. There was one more road I could have tried, but since the first two weren't accurate on the map, I figured the last one might not be either, and the marker appeared to not be too far away. I decided to just hike in the rest of the way and bring it back out to the Jeep. I ended up hiking up and down mountains for probably 4 miles (oops, misjudged the distance) and finally arrived at the spot. I had a little trouble finding it at first and wondered if it had been hidden on top of a steep rock spire, but eventually I found it at the base hidden between some rocks with one corner sticking out. Once I knew the location, I started walking the road back and called my wife to let her know where to come and get me. I only walked out a couple miles before she picked me up at dusk. Lesson learned: Next time, stay in the Jeep and explore the roads more before hiking. We had a great time though!
If you are picking up this magazine for the first time, somewhere in the pages of 4 Wheel Drive & Sport Utility each month are hidden GPS coordinates. These coordinates pinpoint a location somewhere in the continental U.S. A stainless steel plate ("marker") laser-cut with the magazine's title and my phone number can be found there. The marker is about the size of a vehicle's license plate. When it is found and redeemed, the lucky enthusiast wins a very cool prize. These prizes will range from products donated by our advertisers and manufacturers to 4WD&SU magazine apparel and subscriptions.
The GPS coordinates in the magazine can be hidden just about anywhere. The coordinates will be divided in two parts - north and west - and hidden in the magazine's text or ghost-imaged somewhere on a photograph. The coordinates will not be hidden in or on any advertising. Finding the marker on the trail will require use of four-wheel drive and some hiking. We'll keep it safe, so don't worry - you won't have to rappel off the sides of any cliffs. The stainless steel marker may be placed behind trees, between rocks, or under something, but it will not be completely buried. If you have a GPS with WAAS (Wide Area Augmentation System) it should get you to within 3 to 9 feet of the marker.
The GeoStash marker will have my phone number listed on it. I must be called immediately when the marker is found. The marker must also be sent back to me for verification, but it will be returned to the person who found it. Each marker for any given month will have a unique identifying mark on it so it cannot be duplicated.
VERY IMPORTANT - do yourself a favor and check our website's GeoStash page to see if the marker has been found for any given month before you go out searching. Please keep in mind that the marker may have been found while you were en route to the coordinate's location. Once we have been notified, we will post where the marker has been found.
A disposable camera will be attached to the marker. Have a photo of yourself taken at the location (hopefully you won't be out alone) you found the marker and send the camera back with the marker when you mail it to me for verification. Though there will be a camera attached to the marker, we would prefer a digital image of the winner on the trail with the marker be e-mailed to us if you have the capability. If you do have a digital camera, please set it to the highest megapixel setting before snapping the photo. The GeoStash II webpage will highlight the enthusiast who found the prize, the product and its manufacturer, and the next month's prize to be given away.
GeoStash Coordinate Locations in the Magazine
Not yet found. Check www.4wdandsportutility.com for updates.
Page 46. 36 22.979N - In the photo at center right.
Page 88. 114 41.053W - Bottom right, in sources box.
Page 50. 111 13.781W - Located in the upper righthand corner of the page.
Page 52. 33 11.955N - Located in the center column under the first product.
Page 41. 33 16.335N - First column of photos, second photo down.
Page 71. 116 04.848W - Second photo from the top in the red area.
Page 66. 97 03.872W. - Inside the bellhousing in the third photo down.
Page 86. 32 48.909N. - Located in the upper righthand photo along the edge of the workbench.
Page 42. 44 06' 14.6 N. - Located within the caption for the upper righthand photo.
Page 66. 103 32' 58.7W. - In the upper righthand photo, on the right side.
Page 66. 122 10.003W. - In the third column of photos, second photo down, at the end of the caption.
Page 80. 48 22.345N. - In the second column, top photo, on the tire.
Page 56. 44 14.539N. - On the license plate of the first Jeep Liberty photo.
Page 70. 111 30.938W. - In the first column of photos, second photo down, at the end of the caption.
Page 25. N 36 24.958. - Second news item from the top, righthand corner of 4WD&SU's webpage.
Page 48. W 115 59.231. - Located in the last paragraph of the article.