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Silverback hunters should be familiar with the “pigpen” or masonic cipher,
which is a simple substitution cipher exchanging letters for symbols
based on a grid.
This cipher can be used to decrypt directions and secret codewords at FBZ geocaches!
Reputedly, a local resident surfer claims he overheard two drunken "biker dudes" at a neighborhood watering hole say they learned on good authority there is a Forbidden Zone (FBZ) stashed on the perimeter of a glen in Mission Trails Regional Park.
The bikers allege FBZ A.P.E. 53 contains evidence related to a little known legend about a group of primates who terrorized these canyons centuries ago. Read the mission brief below...
SUBJECT: FBZ A.P.E. 53 Brief [Mission #3]
TO: Silverback Operatives
Mission Gorge resides in an archeological preserve which was utilized for over 10,000 years by native peoples to camp and hunt wild game. In fact, there is a little-known legend passed down through the ages which purports this area as once inhabited by an aggressive primate species which coexisted with early Mesoamerican civilizations including the Olmecas and Mayas.*
According to SGTFs resident cryptozoologist, clans of human-like simian bipedals lived in existing canyons such as this one from the coastal regions of Southern California as far south as the Yucatán Peninsula. They garnered strength after being bestowed rings of power by extraterrestrial agents which gave them the ability to speak, write and unite against early indigenous cultures. The primates were eventually killed off in an epic battle between the species over 5,000 years ago.
SGTF has obtained (through dark channels) a relevant paleoanthropological specimen that may lend credence to this folklore and further support our developing theory that extraterrestrials are linked to primates over the course of our planets history. SGTF believes, based on this and related evidence at six other (6) FBZ cache locations, that alien beings might be targeting Southern California as ground zero to mobilize an Alternative Primate Evolution (A.P.E.) in a guerrilla campaign against mankind.
Here you have been provided an ammo can containing highly classified intelligence including the third (3rd) mission codeword for Operation Silverback. Use SGTF’s cipher to help decode the mission’s secret codeword. Please copy what you need but do not remove anything from the cache and return all correspondence before departing the A.P.E. 53 zone.
In all, there are seven (7) FBZ locations (i.e. missions) to Operation Silverback. Six FBZs contain “intelligence” report(s) and a corresponding secret codeword. Enter the six (6) codewords collectively at fbz.geocaches.org to discover the seventh and final FBZ location. Keep in mind that codewords can be gathered in any order so you DO NOT need to visit FBZs sequentially! The seventh and final FBZ TSG location is where the “truth shall be revealed” related to Operation Silverback!
Operatives who have successfully submitted the TOP SECRET codeword for this mission...
(Fri 31 Mar 2023 @ 19:07:22 BST; 1680286042 seconds since Unix Epoch (POSIX) 01 Jan 1970 00:00:00 UTC)
FBZ A.P.E. 53 contains an ammo can with Special Reconnaissance (SR) related to SGTF's Operation Silverback in the form of Planet of the Apes Memorabilia (POTAM) and scouted intelligence reports. As a clandestine special tactics unit, SGTF has been known to leave POTAM tracking bugs in their FBZs with special mission instructions related to active Project A.P.E. caches (e.g. Project A.P.E. Mission 9: Tunnel of Light).
FBZs are reserved for POTAM related to SGTF's Silverback operations. Visitors are encouraged to register their visit and leave ONLY items containing relevance to The Planet of the Apes or items that are traditional hitchhikers (e.g. geocoins, travel bugs, etc.). Only place and/or remove TRACKABLE items from this cache (read NO unrelated SWAG); Any POTAM found in this cache designated as NOT TRACKABLE is pertinent to operations for this FBZ and should REMAIN ASSIGNED TO THE CACHE. POTAM labeled PROVISIONAL FTF is considered remittance as reward for the FTF (First to Find) and can be removed freely without restriction or stipulation. PLEASE NOTE: As with any cache hidden in a wooden area, please be mindful when visiting this location and be sure to keep a watchful eye out for snakes, spiders, and ants. It would be wise to wear gloves and long sleeves when searching for this ammo container to protect yourself from the elements including poison oak and small forest critters!
*Disclaimer: Stories here and at FBZ caches are a combination of historical conjecture, anecdote and pure fiction. Any similarity to any event, group, or person living or dead is merely coincidental. Additionally, SGTF has utilized a variety of signs/stickers as props in the FBZ geocaching series. Labels or warnings (e.g. biohazard, radioactive, etc.) which are fictitious will display some form of the SGTF/Silverback moniker; all other warning signage encountered during this or any other FBZ adventure should be respected and observed as posted.
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SILVERBACK Prize Rings
Those who create an account on fbz.geocaches.org and enter mission codewords and POTAM tracking bug numbers receive points towards an Operative ranking. Operatives who achieve the rank of General (700 points) are eligible to receive an official silver Operation Silverback GC.com trackable ring from Oakcoins. Gold rings are available for those who reach the rank of Green Beret (or higher).