Geocaching Badge


The Bilgemunkee

Originally uploaded by nodigio

Step One: You take two steps to your left, one step forward and look around. There! Under the carpet juniper is a flash of white. You look closer and yes! It’s a Tupperware box. You pause for a deep breath and look at your GPS device. It’s right on the number. This is the treasure you’ve spent 2 weekends searching for. You reach under the juniper and pull out the box. You sit down and cradle it in your lap for just a moment before you pop the top off. The box is filled with small things but the most important thing is on top – a notebook and pencil. You left those out and flip through it, reading the entries. Some are funny, all are informative. Now you know who left the batman action figurine, or the pocket level, or the strawberry erasers you see on the top of all the small objects. You make your own entry in the logbook, and as you do so, you recognize names from other ‘Cachers, so you leave a note to pass along to them. Future finders of this treasure may post your comment in other logbooks and your friends may see it. What a fun and fulfilling day you’ve had!

Step Two: Geocaching may seem a frivolous sport, but you learn a lot from it: how to read a GPS device, how to read maps, how to conduct online research, and how to persevere to find the treasure. In the process, you will make friends, make new discoveries, and spend exciting times outdoors. It’s a sport you can play on the spur of the moment, and the most expensive thing about it woud be a GPS device – and the price of those has come down do far almost anyone who wants one can afford it.

Step Three: The best way to learn about geocaching is to go out with someone who already does it. Go to http://www.geocaching.com and see who’s in your area. There are discussion boards that may offer regional sections. Sometimes, you can find other geocachers through meet-up groups or posted on college bulletin boards or in sporting goods stores. When you fond a mentor, either on line or in person, ask them questions about the sport, their biggest challenges, greatest triumphs, and best times they had. Ask for tips and be sure to ask which GPS device they prefer. Ask what other equipment they wished they brought along the first time they went geocaching.

Step Four: Armed with the advice of your mentor and research you’ve conducted on line and elsewhere, go to a sporting goods store and ask about their GPS device offerings. You may choose to purchase from them or from an online source. The primary piece of equipment you will need is the GPS device so spend a little time finding and getting one you will like. Spend some more time getting familiar with your GPS device.

Step Five: Plan your first geocaching adventure, then go. Bring small items to put into the treasure box, and dress and pack for the trip.

Step Six: Find your first treasure and claim you badge!

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