We Came…We Saw…We Geocached

Looking for a fun, family-friendly activity? Well, I say…try Geocaching!

Ever heard of it?

I first got wind of it a few weeks ago on Barb’s blog, and thought it sounded pretty neat. M got wind of it somewhere too, and before you know it, we had made plans to go Geocaching for my birthday!

So what exactly is it? Well, according to the official website’s definition:

Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment.

To put it simply, people (anyone who wants to, really) hide little containers in various outdoor locations (parks, forests, etc.), and log the exact coordinates into the website along with perhaps a hint or two. Then whoever wants to find one goes to the website, enters their zip code to find a nearby geocache, and then heads off  to try and find it, using a hand held GPS.

Each Geocache contains some paper and maybe a pencil, along with perhaps a trinket or two to trade. Once you find the Geocache, you log that you found it on the piece of paper, trade a trinket (if you’d like), and then return the Geocache to it’s hiding spot for the next person to find.

Oh, and you are supposed to be rather stealth as you search. In fact, anyone unsuspecting bystanders are referred to as “Muggles”, which I think is totally awesome (which, I guess, you will only get if you are familiar with Harry Potter :)).

Ok, so, I know. It kinda reeks of nerdiness. But, come on…

…does this not sound super fun to anyone else?!?!?! 🙂

Anyway, we spent much of last Saturday up in Stillwater, trying our hand at it, followed by a bit of time in another suburb. We found 5 of the 7 we were looking for, and, seriously, it was a lot of fun. Here’s me & the first Geocache I found (and my nerdy hat). I was kind of excited:

M found the next one:

and look at the view from where we found it:

(one of the coolest things about this hobby is it gets you exploring outdoor locations you may not have known about otherwise)

Finally, here’s a picture of my favorite find. We literally spent 1/2 hour in the same spot looking for this stinking thing when, -gasp- I FOUND IT!

The craziest part is that there are geocaches everywhere. But you’d never know it until you try to find them!

So the next time you’re in a park and you see an ordinary looking stone retaining wall…

…look a little closer…

…you might just find…

…a GEOCACHE!

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