In case you haven’t heard of it before, geocaching is a craze that was first founded by Matt Stum in May 2000. Since then it has increasingly gained in popularity worldwide.
So, what is Geocaching? In a nutshell, it is a more sophisticated version of treasure hunting tailored for today’s technology savvy world. It is a virtual community of treasure hunters that share particular details of caches (the treasure) on various websites across the world. All a geocacher needs to do is choose a cache, navigate there, find it and then log it.
Caches come in all shapes and sizes, however, the most common is in the form of a small plastic box.
You can also get them in varying levels of difficulty, they span right from just a simple find on the GPS system, through to a multi-cache where you get a series of clues leading to the final destination, and then finally all the way to puzzle caches, where you will need to solve a puzzle to find out the coordinates.
You can search online to reveal all different kinds of geocaching websites, including regional, national and international kinds. The one that the professionals recommend is GeoCaching.com as it is the most comprehensive. All you have to do to be a part is sign up, log on and enter a place name or postcode to start a search.
Geocaching is a brilliant way of falling in love with the countryside you know so well again. It encourages you to look strongly into the wildlife, and has the added bonus of being relatively cheap, with no outlay if you use your smartphone.
This appeals to all ages, and is perfect for children as it will teach them about navigation and maps as well as getting them into the great outdoors.
You can easily combine geocaching with camping, as a fun dimension for a typically daytime activity. Why not take our Stamford 20L backpack with some snacks in, and our kids Dinosaur Wellingtons, for an authentic geocaching experience?
Here is a quick guide to getting started with geocaching:
- Log on to a geocaching website and either download a geocache to your GPS or write down the co-ordinates and clues
- Set up your GPS and off you go
- Find the location and use the clues to find the exact spot where the geocache is hidden
- Open the geocache and see what is inside. Fill in the logbook if there is one
- Put it back exactly where you find it, but do not let anyone who is not with you see what you are doing
- Log the details of your find online when you get home if you want to, and then do it all again!
Some Geocaching rules:
- If you take a ‘treasure’, replace it with something of equal value
- Always put the cache back exactly where you found it
- Report a missing or damaged cache as soon as you can
- Do not spoil the cache for others, and do not give away too many clues to other geocachers to ruin the hunt
- Always observe the countryside code and respect your surroundings, and do not cause any damage or alarm the general public.
And finally, some top tips:
- Have a practice run close to home so you can get a feel for it somewhere you know well
- Carry a pen to sign the log book – some caches are not big enough to store one, or they may not work
- Do not forget to log your find (or not) online when you get back
- If you are struggling to find a cache (even with the clues), step back and try to look at the area objectively. Where are good places to hide a cache? Where would you hide it?
- Make a day of it- take a picnic! We have a huge range of picnic attire including a range made out of rice husk!