Spring is here and it’s time to dust the family off and take them for a fun hike, bike, or stroll around the neighborhood. Having difficulty motivating the kids to join you? Turn your outing into an adventure by adding Geocaching to the mix!
Geocaching turns any outdoor activity into a treasure hunt. Simply point your browser to http://www.geocaching.com/, enter the zip code of the area where you’re going to be adventuring, and select one of the geocaches from the resulting list. Caches are described by type, proximity, and level (both Difficulty and Terrain). If you’re just starting out, try one of the easier traditional caches. If you’ve got a few hours, try three or four traditional caches or a multi-cache or a mystery cache or a Travel Bug. When you ultimately find a cache, don’t expect anything of significant value. You’ll find a small log book (or paper scroll) to sign along with some stickers and other fun stuff. Feel free to take something out of the cache as long as you replace it with something of equivalent, non-existent value.
Before you head out, make sure that you have a GPS device and bring a print out of the Cache Details for each cache that you’re likely to attempt. Not only do the Cache Details provide the requisite background info for your hunt, but they also provide additional hints in the (likely) case that you’re in the right location, but just can’t seem to find the cache.
In case you were wondering, Geocaching is free. It’s yet another example of an open source community effort. Once you get hooked on finding geocaches, you’ll likely be motivated to contribute your own cache mysteries and adventures back to the community.
Geocaching will take you to places that you’ve never seen before, even in your own backyard. Plus, when you’re on vacation, it will complement whatever activities you already had planned for the family. So, get outside and have some fun. With over 350,000 caches located in over 222 countries, you’ve got some searching ahead of you!