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How to Find a Geocache – The Family Friendly Outdoor Pursuit

official geocache - © gunnar3000 - Fotolia.comIf you are nostalgic for those treasure hunts your mom used to organize when you were a kid, then you might be interested in the latest 21st century outdoor family pursuit – Geocaching.  Geocaching manages to blend nature, fun, and technology and a great day out with your own kids.  But what exactly is it and how do you find a Geocache? Read on for an introduction to this new family outdoor pursuit to see if it’s something you and your children might want to do this weekend.

What is Geocaching?

Geocaching is a treasure hunt designed for the 21st century because is practiced with a handheld GPS in the wild or in urban areas.

How Does it Work?

Visit one of the official Geoaching websites such as Geocaching.com or OpenCaching.com and enter in your zip or postal code.  This will return a list of Geocaches near you that other families have hidden in the great outdoors.  You can then download the co-ordinates (to an accuracy of 20 meters) to your handheld GPS device and then get started.

What Do You Do?

You and your family can then head off to the general area, using your GPS, and using the clues download from those websites you can start looking for your first Geocache.  It will be hidden somewhere in the wild, and is usually a small plastic box with hidden treasure inside – never anything of great value, but the idea is that you add your own piece of treasure for the next person.  This could be something like a playing card or small toy car.

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When you do find a Geocache there will also be a notebook in there which you and the kids can sign and date so the next person knows that you found it!

Which Handheld GPS Should You Use?

The best GPS devices for Geocaching are designed by a company called Garmin.  Look for the eTrex and Montana models.  They have even now released a new GPS wrist watch which makes things even easier and means you don’t need to carry a handheld.  Click here for full details on the new Garmin Fenix GPS watch – it’s quite expensive but a GPS is essential if you want to take this past time seriously.

Why Geocaching is Good for Families

So many kids now spend their time indoors playing on computer games.  Geocaching gives the whole family the opportunity to do something fun together, and get some much needed fresh air outside.  You can be outside in nature discovering a new place you have never been to before and spend some quality time with your children.

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About the author

Diane Nassy

Diane is a New Jersey-based writer and blogger. She is a wife and the mom of a 9-year-old little boy. Through her blog, she wants to inspire moms to find Zen in their lives while offering practical tips and other valuable information to help families deal with everyday issues. Check out Diane's Google+ profile "