Geocaching

by admin on June 13, 2012

Aside from helping modern people liberate themselves from maps (or perhaps, ruining modern peoples’ ability to read maps), the Global Positioning System (GPS) has also created opportunities for new outdoor entertainment possibilities. One such activity is geocaching – a popular worldwide activity that thousands of people enjoy every day.

Geocaching is an increasingly popular outdoor activity that depends on the use of portable GPS positioning devices, or the use of a GPS enabled mobile phone. Participants in geocaching play a glorified game of “hide and seek”, whereby some geocachers hide “caches” – hidden containers – and others seek to find the caches. Usually, the caches are sturdy containers that contain a small logbook. Individuals that successfully find the cache leave their code name/alias on the log book, along with the date and time that they located the cache. The cache is then returned to its hiding spot. Some caches are very small, and very difficult to find (such as a 35-mm film canister), while others may be quite large. Geocachers often use larger caches to leave toys or trinkets, which are traded out for new ones by the next person that finds the cache.

Caches are usually logged on a variety of web sites, where geocachers can post approximate GPS coordinates for the caches they leave, or can find coordinates of others’ caches. Though GPS coordinates are sufficient to get close to a cache’s location, they do not reveal the exact location. As such, locating a cache can sometimes be quite difficult. Exposing the hidden location of a cache is generally considered to be quite rude, as it spoils the fun for other geocachers (who usually participate in the sport because of the challenge involved).

Caches can be located in any part of the world. Though public spaces like parks are very popular cache hiding spots, not all caches are located in such easily accessible locations. Some more extreme geocachers prefer to leave (and seek) caches that are located in extremely remote areas of public land or national parks. Others will attempt to hide geocaches in highly trafficked or highly maintained areas – whereby extra-evasive hiding tactics must be employed. Popular locations for this kind of cache include theme parks, stores or shopping malls, universities, and other locations that are easily accessible, and make hiding an object difficult. In some cases, a geocache will occasionally disappear. They might be stolen, mistaken for trash, or in some cases discovered by an irritated or confused property owner.

Geocachers often take pride in their collection of trinkets and items that they trade with other pseudo-anonymous geocachers. Cache items are usually not very expensive (and generally are very cheap), and most geocachers focus on trying to leave unique or interesting items as trades. In addition, some caches leave “Travel Bugs” or “Geocoins”, or attach them to the items they leave as a trade. Travel bugs and geocoins have unique serial numbers that allows their movements to be tracked on geocaching websites. This depends on a geocacher reporting the location of a travel bug or geocoin find.

http://geocaching.com

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Craziest Things Found During Geocaching

by admin on May 13, 2012

What Have You Found While Geocaching?

As a budding Geocaching enthusiast, I am just getting into the exciting adventures of hunting for little treasures that keep me in contact with my fellow hobbyists. However, I have often wondered if anyone has found anything crazy while they have been out geocaching. This is certainly an activity that can lead to mysterious and strange findings but for the most part are actually pretty benign.

One day, I was checking in with my mother (as she, my aunt and grandmother often geocache together) just to see what their haul was for the day. Typically, I get the usual “we found 10 or 20 items that we were looking for” or “we had a hard time today because some of the caches were in high spots we couldn’t get to” or whatever else the case may be. However, this day I actually got a strange response from my mother.

It seems that my Aunt was out geocaching one day near where I work and while it isn’t a bad part of town, the area she was in was a little on the rough side. As she tells it, she was near the back wall of an apartment complex that was adjacent to a car wash facility and a couple of fast food restaurants. She was searching and searching for a treasure that her GPS told her was in that area and instead what she found was a rather interesting surprise. She had stumbled upon a bag of marijuana.

Now, after I got over hilariously laughing and cracking all kinds of silly jokes about what she was really doing in that area I described, I asked my mom what she did with the bag. Like the good and upstanding citizen my aunt is, of course she took it to the police department. Now, I am not 100% sure what happened at the police department (mainly because I didn’t ask) I can only imagine the look of bewilderment and laughter that probably emanated from the officer that took the report and the “evidence” from my aunt. However, as you can imagine, geocaching is going to lead to some mysterious finds every now and then.

Is Geocaching Dangerous?

All that being stated, I wonder how often other fellow geocachers have stumbled upon illicit or dangerous items? I know for the most part that this is a hobby with a fairly tight knit group of folks who are just sharing little things they have around their house that can be easily hidden. However, I can only imagine stories other geocaching folks might actually have with the “interesting” things they may have stumbled upon.

I wonder, as this hobby grows larger and larger and the placement of caches grow larger and larger, will possibly unsolved crimes begin to get solved? After all, geocaching is about placing things that are not the easiest things to find (that is the point right? to work at finding a treasure?) and using your modern day compass (GPS) and locating a treasure and signing off that you found it and then leaving it for the next person to find. By nature, geocachers are investigators and most certainly pay attention to detail. I am wondering how many more interesting finds will come in the future as a result of this hobby.

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What Is Geocaching?

March 10, 2012

Get the Scoop on the Hottest Treasure Hunt There Is If you have never heard of the sport of Geocoaching, then today is your special day. Geocoaching is like a worldwide treasure hunt where you use modern GPS technology and other navigational techniques to go find treasures, called “caches” or sometimes “geocaches” that have been […]

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What Is Geocaching and How to Take Part

March 7, 2012

Geocaching sounds like it is some kind of new-age sport. In fact, though, it relies on many of the basic principles of play that individuals made use of when they were young. It can be though of as a giant game of hide and seek or treasure hunting, and it makes use of items that […]

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