What do you get when you combine family fun, technology, orienteering, outdoors, scavenger hunts and free prizes? Geocaching!!
Geocaching is a global treasure hunt that uses GPS technology to help you hide and find a “geocache” (container). Basically, someone hides a container that can contain anything from a sign-in log to free trinkets for kids (to take something you must leave something) to specially made coins that can be tracked across the country as they move from geocache to geocache.
Here is a short video about Geocaching:
Once they hide it they note the GPS coordinates and enter them onto geocaching.com where other people can use the coordinates to find the geocache and log that they were there. Geocaches have different difficulty levels because of the size of the container and the terrain.
An easy level container would be an ammo box but a difficult one would look like this:
What you need to start Geocaching:
1. A free account from Geocaching.com
2. A GPS device of some kind. There are free and paid smart phone apps or you can use an actual GPS device and manually enter the coordinates.
3. A pen, some water and a sense of adventure
4. Friends and family that you want to have a blast with
Once you have the GPS coordinates of the geocache you are searching for your device will direct you towards it.
It will get you within 10 feet or so and the last 10 feet is all on you. You will need to use clues from the description of the geocache, your eyes and intuition to find the geocache. Once you find it you open the container, sign the log, take a free trinket for the kids (if you have something to replace it) then return the geocache exactly as you found it.
Geocaching is a great free activity for adults and kids that encourages fitness, orienteering, teamwork and problem solving. There are some free apps (C:geo is free on Google Play) or you can pay around $10 for the official Geocaching App. You can also upgrade your free Geocaching membership to a premium membership for around $30 per year. This allows you access to more geocaches and a few other perks. You will more than likely not need the premium membership unless you really get into geocaching.
Here are a few more videos:
Now get out there and have fun!