Today, we decided to have a family day out Geocaching. If your not sure what Geocaching is, it is an outdoor recreational activity. Participants use a Global Positioning System receiver or mobile device to hide and seek containers, called “geocaches” or “caches”, at specific locations marked by coordinates all over the world. They include different things including small gifts and log books to sign, i was shocked with the amount of people who had signed the ones we found!
We love a cheap day out for the family and geocaching was recommended to me by Skintdad as a free family day out. The containers you can find vary, and have different difficulties and terrain so why not give Geocaching a go! You can learn more by visiting the official Geocaching website. This is how our first time geocaching went for us.
How to start Geocaching
First we downloaded the geocache app and registered an account with them. It was quick and easy to do. They also have a premium section which i have not tried myself yet.
The interface is simple to use and you can access your Geocache account on multiple devices. Register your account here.
Whats in a Geocache
I wondered whats in a geocache long before we actually went out and completed some caches. Every cache is different, some may include a log book to sign on its own. Others can include absolutely anything!
Some of the popular items you may find in a Geocache are:
- Toy Cars
- Log Book
- Pound Shop Items
But to be honest, who knows. Other geocache hunters place random items in the caches when they find them and the items get traded over time so every cache will vary widely!
Our first Geo Cache
I was shocked with the amount of caches in the area, No matter where we looked there where plenty, even in the housing estates! we chose to go to a local beach to hunt for our first Geo Cache though.
There where a series of caches hidden by the same person along the beachfront to celebrate the renovation of the area. They where strategically placed to see the great views.
We started at the closest Geocache, which took us to a band stand with the clue, ‘Whats on’. We had no idea what we where actually looking for though and we could not find it! 🙁 We gave up on this one and moved to the next.
The second one we hit the jackpot though! Near a vertical pier with the hit ‘OT’ i seen a mural on a wall with the letters OT engraved. After a while of sticking our hands into small crevices and almost giving up something moved in my hand!
It was an exciting moment! What is it? Whats inside the geocache? It was a small magnetised container probably the size of a finger nail. I unscrewed it in suspense. There was the smallest scroll of paper inside, with at least 20 signatures of other people who had found the geocache.
It may sound trivial, but it was a buzz finding this cache, with a sense of accomplishment and being part of a secret club in a way. All of the caches we found on our first trip where classed a ‘micro’ cache which to be honest were great as small as they were!
Can my family do any Geocache?
I did notice when browsing the different geocaches that they had unique difficulties, accessibility and terrain. Although i suspect you can enjoy most geocaching as a family you may want to check the accessibility before you attempt them.
Some may not be very accessible by someone who requires a wheelchair for instance or a pushchair or dog walking. All Geocaches are labelled with accessibility problems for you to figure out which you may or may not want to attempt.
Is Geocaching free
Yes Geocaching is totally free, They do have a premium membership for some premium benefits such as filtering the caches, meetups and premium Geocache hunts.
However there are 1000’s of Geocaches in your area which don’t require a penny! The only cost to you may be small trinkets or gifts you wish to place in any cache you find for the next hunter to find, but that is totally up to you!
Id recommend anyone who is looking for a cheap family day out to go Geocaching. Every area is covered and there are caches to suit anybody! You can even hide your own, i bet your kids would love doing either! learn more about Geocaching here. Good luck hunting and as ever, live more by spending less!