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Do You Want To Go On A Treasure Hunt?

Wouldn’t it be cool if you could go on a treasure hunt whenever you liked? Are images of pirate maps and crates of gold filling your head? Well, it’s not quite like that but the thrill of finding the stash, or cache, is just as fun.

I’m talking about geocaching, from their website it is described as:

a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment.

Sounds kind of geeky, huh? The only thing about geocaching that screams geekdom is the GPS unit. It’s quite simple, you register on their website (for free) and then seek out a cache. You can put in your zip code and then pick the cache of your choice depending on area, terrain, degree of difficulty, or the cache itself. They give you the GPS coordinates and off you go on your own treasure hunt.

We're getting close!The husband and I were all set to give this a try and then my dad heard about it. He has a handheld GPS he uses for hunting. (Don’t worry, the last time he had a successful hunt was probably 30 years ago. The animals are safe.) We added my mom to the mix and the four of us were ready to go.

Equipped with dads handheld Garmin GPS and the husbands Garmin from the car, we went on our way. Other supplies included water and some items to put in the cache. Once you find a cache, you can either just look at it and sign the logbook or you can take something from it. Rules, yes there are rules, state you can only take something out of the cache if you add something of your own.

Our first cacheThe second cache.I picked relatively easy cache's based on terrain and degree of difficulty, since this was our first time. The first one took us over by Cranbrook. The GPS units only got us within about 15 feet of the cache. I was kind of expecting the GPS unit to play the warmer-colder game with me. Quick beeps to tell you that you were getting warmer or a slow, drawn out beep to tell you that you weren’t anywhere near. For whatever reason, that didn’t happen.

We found it, or I should say, I found it, after searching for a few minutes. I’m not going to give away too many details as I don't want to spoil it for other geocachers in the area. In the container, which was an ammo box, were books. I knew this from reading the description so I came armed with two books. We took from the cache Jonathan Rand’s Michigan Chillers: Mackinaw City Mummies. It looks to be a pre-teen book. We left the UK version of J.K. Rowlings’ The Tales of Beedle the Bard.

The second cache of the day was a bit trickier and the terrain was slightly harder. There were rocks and streams and bridges, it was very picturesque. Again, the GPS units only got us so close and then it was just time to look around. I found the second one too!

This is a great way to spend time with your family and we had a fabulous time. The thrill of the hunt is really the best part. You can also hide your own cache and wait to see who finds it.

I’m nicknaming this our Suburban Geocache, I hope to add an Urban and Rural one soon. Stay tuned.

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Reader Comments (6)

You geocache, too? I've been trying to get Tim back out to cache this year again (we've only managed one day so far this spring) as I have some travel bugs wishing to bust a move on. For the curious, we geocache under the name GroverZ
We've cached a bit on vacation--and it's always a fun way to find some off-the-beaten-track sites when traveling. A few of my blog posts mention geocaching ( ), including one that I'm using as I'm writing a new post about artist Alexander Calder :lol:
They do have regular Geocache meet-and-eats at a Southfield Panera, although we haven't gone in a while.
We've yet to hide a cache. The one place I found where I intended to hide a cache got snapped up as we got waylaid in the usual drama of life late last year.
Think we could talk the boys into a geocache expedition?

June 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDominique

OK Dom. Looks like it's time to download some mere cache data and get out and about next week.

June 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTim

Sounds like a great date idea! You find the coolest things!

June 2, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJamie Favreau

Dominique, This was our first geocache but we're totally going to do it again.Great tip on doing it while on vacation. I'll have to go look at your geocache posts on Midwest Guest. Ohh, possible geocache tweetup? Sounds good!

Tim, sounds like you need to go out geocaching soon!

Thanks Jamie, I'm glad you liked it. I think it would make a fabulous date. Getting to know some one always seems easier and more enlightening when you're actually involved in an activity. Hmm, possible new post idea is brewing.

June 2, 2009 | Registered CommenterBecks Davis

If you do any of these treasure hunts again, please let me know!

March 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDave Peckens

I'll be sure to let you know! I'm working on something, just need to do some research.

March 11, 2010 | Registered CommenterBecks Davis

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