There be treasure….

Last summer, while camping with a few friends, we decided to try geocaching.  If you’ve never heard of it, imagine a treasure hunt for all ages!  You can download an app to your phone that will list or highlight the location of any geocaches in your area (or, anywhere else for that matter – this is a world wide hobby)!   Using gps settings, you can then set out and attempt to locate them.  Anyone can hide and register a cache, and anyone can search for one.  Most of the time you will be looking for a small container of some kind, which will usually contain some sort of log book that you can sign to essentially say “I was here”.  Most geocaches will also contain a small collection of ‘knick-knacks’.  The premise is that you can take a treasure from the cache, but you must leave one of roughly equal or greater value in return.  Some good examples of things to leave would be pins, small toys, craft supplies, small tools, small travel games, etc.  Keep in mind that a lot of geocache containers are not very large, so plan accordingly.

I, myself, am rather new to the world of geocaching.  We live pretty remote and there are not many in our area.  My brother and his wife, apparently, are quite into it.  In fact, last year he secretly registered his own geocache.  It was a special kind where, once you find the first location, it gives you a clue as to where to find the next one, and so on until you reach the last location – taking the whole ‘treasure hunt’ feature up a notch!  Anyways, at the end of his geocache the final clue was a note asking his (now wife) to marry him, and he pulled out the ring.  Awe!  Little brother!!!

ring
Now, don’t expect to find any ‘treasures’ quite THIS amazing on your geocaching adventures……

Okay, so back to last summer.  We were one of 3 families still left at the campground after a larger group camping weekend.  Looking for something to do one afternoon, Dale suggested we take the kids to look for a geocache that was supposedly a short drive down the highway at the local Scouts/Girl Guide’s camp.  Most of the kids had never done anything like this before, so they were both a little excited and a little unsure of what we were really doing/looking for.  They were real troopers, though, as we hiked first down the gravel road and then down the tree root covered path.

geo1
Some kids ‘hiked’ in style…..
geo2
…..some pulled out the dance moves.  Or got distracted by the wild strawberries on the side of the road (yum!)

Once at/near the correct location our clue said to look up and slightly off the path.  The kids spread out a bit and sure enough, one of the girls found the canister sitting propped a few feet off the ground in a tree.  The kids were SO excited!  This particular geocache was filled with glow sticks and small toys, totally kid-friendly!

geo4.jpg
The prize of prizes was one small Shopkin (and if you’re unaware of what that is, you either have no small girls in your life, or you simply need to look it up – they’re everywhere!), awarded to the girl who had actually found the cache!

This all happened just days before our August ‘snowball’ of summer 2017 plans came to mind (see that post here).  It should be no surprise, then, that it’s in our minds/plans to try some geocaching along the way this summer.  I would like to keep a small container of treasures-to-trade on hand as we head out, and see where we end up!

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