What is GEO
Caching? It's a treasure hunt using Global Position
Satellite readings and a handheld GPS devise.
have been away from geocaching for a couple years but have recently
ordered a new GPSr and will return
to the sport as soon as it arrives and I can get some caches loaded
start by getting a hand held GPS receiver then going to www.geocaching.com
to find caches hidden in your area. Type in your home
coordinates or simply your zip code and the caches will be
listed closes first with an arrow showing the direction, the
type of cache and the difficulty of the hide and terrain.
Plug the coordinates from the cache page into your GPS, get a
backpack with water, food, a camera and maybe a few toys or
other goodies (I'll discuss this later) and head out.
Caches come in all sizes.
From the small breath strip containers to 5 gallon
buckets. The type you like to hunt for is up to
The smallest are the Micro
caches. They are the more urban type and can be hidden just
about anywhere. Usually hidden in city parks, shopping centers
and the like. They can be frustrating to find since they are
so small and can be very cleverly hidden. As an example I once
found a breath strip container with a magnet glued to it and
painted the same color as the park bench it was stuck
Most are either in ammo cans
or Tupperware type containers. This is the type I prefer to
hunt. While they can be hidden in an urban setting (A big bush
in a parking lot) they are usually found in nature parks or
the hills outside and away from houses and the city. I like
the challenge of getting there more than the reward of finding
it so I seek out the ones that take a while to get to but are
not to difficult to find once you get there. They are also
large enough for trade items.
Scab Island named for the scabs
you will get hiking to the cache.
A standard Ammo can cache
you find a cache you sign the logbook. You can just sign it or
write a short story of your adventure getting there if
interesting. It is also neat to spend a few moments reading
others comments that have found the cache before you. It's
always special to be the first to find a cache. Some do a FTF
dance when they do so and write about it.
Next if it's large enough
you can trade items. Usually they are small trinkets or toys
for kids, a reward for finding the treasure, but can also
include specialty items such as Travel Bugs, Geo Tokens or
Where's George dollars.
make sure to replace a cache in the same place you found it.
Your GPS receiver might show that it should have been 50 feet
away but the next cacher might show it 50 feet in another
direction. do to differences in GPS receivers accuracy,
weather and other conditions the cache will not always be
exactly where you think it might be. If you find it way off
you can note it in the geocaching web site and if the owner
gets enough complaints they should go back and re-evaluate
their coordinates. Make sure you cover it up in the same
condition you found it in unless you can determine that the
last person to visit it left it in a condition that leave it
vulnerable to Muggle or non geocachers that may stumble on it
and take it or damage it.
A Travel Bug
A Group Event
|I like to take a
digital camera along to take pictures of the caches I find
along with anything interesting I spot along the way.
Wildflowers, an old barn or anything else that would make a
nice picture. Another good thing to bring is a few pens and
something to write on (log book) to keep track of your day.
After a day of caching you
return to the Geocaching website logon and post your finds for
the day. It will keep your statistics and help in contributing
to the fun of Geocaching.
is a little information to get you started. Warning this hobby
can be addictive. It can lead to better health from exercise,
meeting new people with similar interests and finding
interesting places close to home you might not have known
Bug: An object that has it's own serial numbered dog
tag. Some have goals like being dropped off in a cache when
the owner is visiting somewhere on the other side of the
country and wants to make it's way back to a cache in the
owners home town. Other Travel bugs have specific caches they
like to visit such as mountain tops only. Usually Travel Bug
owners prefer that you post a story of the Travel Bug's
travels and posting pictures is encouraged.
Pretty much since the United States was occupied territories
were marked off. For the last 100 years or more the USGS has
created benchmarks to establish boundaries. They can range
from a pile of rocks to a more modern round brass emblem with
the latitude, longitude and Number engraved into it.
George Dollar: This is not limited to Geocaching but
seems to fit right in. A website wheresgeorge
keeps statistics on dollar bills. They are tracked on their
location. When you enter a bill you can see where it's
75 foot waterfall found caching
GEO Token: A
small item like a coin that an individual Geocacher creates
to the fun of finding caches. There is no reward other than the one received
when it becomes popular to find.
A non Geocacher that may stumble on a cache. This can be good or
bad. They may wonder what you are doing and call the cops, go to the
cache after you and damage or steal it, but good Muggles sign the
log book, find it a fun hobby and become Geocachers
Geocachers unite for a day of caching, a meal, getting to know each
other, sharing stories and trading travel bugs.
Cache in Trash out. To help give Geocaching a good name and keep the
trails as enjoyable to future visitors CITO is a winner for
everyone. Throw a couple trash bags in your backpack and on your
return from finding your caches pickup the garbage thoughtless
others have left behind.