Most of the time we spend too many hours on the couch after work or on the weekends browsing through our phones. Time to try something new and exciting like geocaching.
Geocaching is a productive way to use our smartphone to stay active, get outside, and be adventurous! Geocaching is an enjoyable recreational activity that allows participants to use their smartphone’s GPS system to hide, as well as, search for hidden objects and containers (referred to as caches) around the world. It is kind of like high-tech treasure hunting! All a user would need to do is download one of over two dozen mobile and browser-based geocaching apps to begin.
What apps do I use?
There are several popular and great apps available to get you started including Geocaching, Navicache, Terracaching, and Earthcache. Many geocaching apps are free, but there are some apps that require a small fee which then allows broader access to more caches and better software. Most major mobile devices have the necessary platforms and applications to support live maps and will open street maps to aid users on their geocaching searches. With a broad selection, it’s up to you to choose where you want to get go, whether it’s local or distant caches. You can also decide what difficulty level of search you want to tackle and where you want to start your journey. Log your experience and finds in your geocaching app to look back on with a sense of accomplishment.
How does it work?
Each cache will have a set of coordinates that are trackable on your mobile device, giving you a general location as to where the cache can be found; a little exploration will be required. Caches are rated the apps by size and terrain difficulty and participants could be looking for objects as small as a thimble, or as large as a big old truck. Caches can be hidden indoors or outdoors, in a field, underwater, on a mountain, in the city, or out in the country. The possibilities for where one can hide and search for caches is quite vast and only limited to the imagination. Geocaching is a great way to get out and experience someplace new.
The real challenge is finding the exact location of the cache once arriving at your destination. A little scavenging is required, some caches are not located easily by their coordinates alone. There are already millions of caches hidden all around the world, in various places. Some caches, such as BIT cache and virtual caches, require participants to use their mobile device to scan QR codes, email the cache hider, and post pictures at the cache site to verify your find.
If you are looking for an adventurous and fun way to get outside, experience new places, travel to different locations and make friends, geocaching may be for you. Sometimes our smartphones are the culprit of a sedentary and closed off life, but they can also move us to be outgoing, adventurous, and active as well! Happy hunting!