Posted by: Kate | April 30, 2014

Family Time in the Woods – Geocaching Style

When I was my son’s age, my family got involved in Orienteering. I ended up competing for a number of years and having a lot of fun with it. It was a great thing to do as a family, as it involves everyone (problem solving, map reading, exploring).

Geocaching is in some ways the modern version of orienteering (not exactly, but there are enough similarities I’ll go with it). It involved a treasure hunt, tracking, and modern technology, all outdoors. For a 14 year old, who isn’t so easily convinced to go for a family walk (gone are the days when the enticement of finding a perfect stick would suffice), geocaching is a great draw.

Last weekend we headed out on foot and bike to some local trails, which start just a 10 minute walk from our house.

geocache apr261

A trail map would have helped on this day, but we got it figured out. The GPS was very accurate, which was a relief. Once you get to the spot though, there is the searching for the cache. That can take a while.

geocache apr263

 

We did four caches, and were successful in finding each one. Even better, we all found at least one each.

geocache apr264 geocache apr265

The dog likes to come along as well, and keeps himself happily entertained when we reach a cache site and are all pre-occupied searching. Perhaps we should pay a little more attention to what he’s doing…

geocache apr262

A great family day, and hopefully one which will be repeated a number of times. If you haven’t tried geocaching, you no longer need a GPS unit for it even – apparently there is now a geocaching app for smart phones. Caches are downloaded from the http://www.geocaching.com website. They say there are over 2 million caches world-wide! I highly recommend geocaching for anyone, as there are caches hidden right in city centres, in suburbs and in parks and wilderness areas – making it suitable for everyone.

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Responses

  1. It sounds like fun! What’s in the caches?

    • There’s always a little logbook to record that you were there – date and name. Usually there are little trinkets. If it is a new cache then there might be a scratch ticket or some nicer treat for the first finder. We have a little bag of goodies we carry to add things in to the caches.

  2. My husband and I (and our two schnauzers) started geocaching last year – it’s definitely a lot of fun and takes us for nice walks in the woods. I prefer the caches hid in the woods over the ones in an urban setting (they need to much stealth for novices like us). Happy geocaching!

    • I never thought about the need for stealth in urban settings – good point! We got some odd looks this day as most of these caches were pretty close to the main trails.
      Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Awesome! That sounds like alot of fun! I haven’t done geocaching yet, have heard a bit about it. I love Chico’s face in last pic!

    • He was a happy puppy!

  4. oh my goodness!! muddy chika has completely distracted me from whatever this post was supposed to be about :)
    what a happy *gorgeous* muddy pup!!

  5. This all looks like great fun, even for doggy companions! Made even better when everyone is successful! Ros

    • Yes, all of us finding a cache definitely made it more fun.


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