Sunday, April 04, 2010

Geocaching fun

I've been aware of geocaching for a couple of years now. It's something I always thought would be fun but until now had never got around to trying. As the kids are currently on holidays, and seeing how much enjoyment they had finding the hidden chocolate Easter eggs this morning, I thought geocaching might be a fun activity to try.

First up I downloaded a couple of free geocaching apps for my iPhone. Of note was the Geocaching Intro app by Groundspeak Inc. The iPhone uses a combination of GPS, Wi-Fi positioning and cell towers to determine your approximate location. Groundspeak's iPhone application then queries the Geocaching.com database in real-time and provides a list of geocaches near you. Once you select a geocache, the application then shows you what direction and approximately how far away it is.

Geocaching looks like a fun family activity that combines the fun of treasure-hunting with getting out and about in the outdoors. Unfortunately my wife Deb was still not well with a cold, and Georgia was too little for extended walks, so that just left Maddie and me.

Maddie next to the location of one of the geocaches we found today, a hollow at the base of the tree...

I also registered at Geocaching.com because you can log each geocache find you make. This is another fun aspect to the 'game' of geocaching because it's sort of like collecting achievements for your successes.

After several hours of searching Maddie and I found a total of seven geocaches within a couple of kilometres of where we live. We did a great deal of walking, got a lot of fresh air and saw some places we'd never seen before. We even had a surprise or two...

A huntsmen spider who didn't take kindly to us disturbing his geocache!

It was certainly a lot of fun and something we'll definitely do again.

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