Our Introduction to Geocaching
Last week P and I went to a special geocache program for his Boy Scout Pack. Scouts from another pack had prepared a geocaching scavenger hunt in a park and invited the boys to learn about it. The boys used GPS units and smartphones to enter the coordinates which led them to new coordinates which led them to more coordinates, etc. The younger scouts were rewarded with a bag full of Jelly Bellies when they found the cache at the end. P and I both liked it so much we thought we’d try it out on our own.
Why geocaching is a great field trip
I know we’re late to the geocaching party! It’s not a new trend and we missed out on the early days. It’s kind of cooler for us that way because there are a lot of established caches out there from which to choose and there are a bunch a of apps for phones they didn’t ave back in the early days. Regardless of the app or method you use to find the cache, geocaching is the perfect field trip!
Why geocaching makes a perfect field trip:
- All you need is a handheld GPS unit or a smart phone with an app. If you don’t have one, I’m betting someone you know has one and would loan it to you.
- It takes a little patience and …
- You can enjoy the journey while you close in on your cache’s location.
- More time spent together, working together.
- You get to use the word “Muggles”.
- It’s FREE.
Last night we took out first solo geocaching outing with my parents. We looked at a geocaching website to find a cache nearby. We found one not too far away, near a trail along the river. It took a little putzing around to get ourselves going in the right direction, but once we did it was great fun. P was delighted to keep an eye out for muggles (those who don’t know what geocaching is) and pretend to be doing anything but hunting for a cache. When he found the cache he could barely contain himself while grandpa opened the well-sealed container. P accidentally left the toy he chose to leave in the cache so we ended up walking all the way back to the car for it. He didn’t mind. He was too thrilled to be able to choose something of his own from inside the cache. Bonus: We enjoyed the walk along the river along the way nearly as much as finding the cache. We saw Egrets, Woolly Bear Caterpillars, grasshoppers and Red-winged Blackbirds, not to mention we had a great time together as a family. P is already planning our next geocache field trip for next weekend.
If you’re late to the geocaching party too, check out the official geocaching website www.geocaching.com for more information. The site provides basic information as well as cache locations.