Have you ever heard of it? It's been mentioned occasionally in different television programs or newspaper write-ups, but depsite it's popularity, most folks don't know what it is. Basically it's a high-tech form of a scavenger hunt. All one needs to play is an internet connection, a GPS reciever, time to wander the countryside, and the gas money to do so. Someone will hide a container, often food storage like tupperware, in a hollow tree or at the base of a fence post or in a bush or under the cowling of a light pole, places like that, and post the coordinates of the hide on the website. Other folks will download those coordinates, go find the container, and then record their finds online. I have around 500 finds; there are actually people out there with over 10,000 finds. I can only suppose that they are a) retired, and b) independently wealthy.
|There's a cache hidden just off to the right of the path|
|This was the view waiting at the end of the path|
|A Catholic shrine visited for a virtual c|
Finding the containers is fun, but some of the best geocaches are "virtual" caches. These caches will take you to see something of historical interest, scenic views, building murals, or wild and wacky sorts of things. Usually these finds are claimed by taking a picture or answering a question about the site.
Some caches are accessible only by kayak, some by 4x4. Some are educational, where you have to measure the output of a flowing well, learn about cave formation, or study beach erosion; some you have to solve a puzzle to get the coordinates, and some are just magnetic key holders stuck to a guard rail by a bridge. The variety is almost endless and there's something for everyone.
It may all sound a little odd, which is what I thought when my friend introduced me to the hobby, but once I tried it, I was hooked.
|I'm almost standing on a cache at this point|
|A cemetery with wooden crosses in a national forest miles from any town|