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Our family recently started a fun new thing called geocaching. I have been having lots of fun geocaching with my kids! If you have never tried geocaching, I thought I would explain it a little and share a few simple tips to help you get started. It is basically like a little modern-day treasure hunt! Cool, right? There are more than 2 million geocaches all around the world and about 6 mill ion registered people participating!! I have been hearing about it for years now and finally tried it out ~ We LOVE it!
To do geocaching you need to have a mobile device with a GPS (iPhone or other equivalent device). There are several different apps to download to use for geocaching. I found the free Official Geocaching one to use and loved it. You can use the free version or there is a paid one with more options. We did just fine with the free one.Once you download the app, you have to set up an account on the Geocaching website.
When you are logged in it uses your location and pulls up all of the caches nearby. You click on the one that you want to find and start the navigating. The app tells you the distance you have to travel and uses a compass to point out which direction you need to travel to get to it. Once you are within a certain distance it signals that you are close. It is only accurate within 30 feet. The rest you have to do on your own- sometimes that includes getting down and dirty!
This one was in a little pill bottle!
When you find it, you log it in on your app telling your experience. The caches are all different sizes and containers. People make them and hide them. Inside of a cache, there is a log to sign and sometimes there are little treasures to trade. If there are things inside that you would like to have, you just need to replace what you take with one of your own treasures. Others might have a “Trackable” which is an item that you can take and log in and travel with it to place into a new location. They have unique codes and some have been all around the world!
If you do not find it, you should log that in as well. You can mark in the app that it was not found- this helps them know whether a cache is no longer there. It is all quite easy, and so much fun! I was surprised how many there are within a few miles of my house. It is like a whole new world has opened up to us. Wherever we are we can open our app and see what is nearby. It can be a fun activity if you have just a few minutes or a few hours. There are even some in National Parks around the country!
Have you ever done this with your kids? It is a great way to have a quick outing as homeschoolers. It is a good educational activity, too. You learn distance and coordinates. You are also out getting active!