Geocaching aka treasure hunt with a handheld GPS.
A couple of days later we left on vacation (and took our Gecko with us).
We placed Christmas Reindeer, our very first travel bug, in a cache in Irvine, California.
Its mission was to visit every state in the U.S.
It traveled almost 50,000 km = 31,000 miles, pretty impressive!
It wasn't a time where people were online at all times. So when we finally did at a hotel's business center, my father proudly emailed and told us he'd found a couple caches using only a map, a compass and his good nose. However upon our return we may advise him on a Garmin.
If I remember correctly my parents picked us up at the airport and took as straight to a geocache we just had to find.
That's how the madness started.
As a person who looks for caches you need a nickname. Ours was TheTwoGerbers because, well… an Australian tour guide once called us TheTwoGerbers, and it kinda stuck. My parents are called mirpets. We also have friends who play, their name is blue liners, and yes, those are also our hockey friends ;-)
Anyway, as a sucker for those cute travel bugs I came across NBJ Poppa, the king of them one day, and when I was in Seattle on business I met with him and his friend jcar for coffee and travel bug swapping. Poppa was so nice and offered to introduce me to the guys at Groundspeak, the founders of this game, so to speak, and they gave me this geocoin:
On another visit later that year we met up with Poppa and jcar and their families to actually find a cache. There was a rubber chicken involved, that's all I'm gonna say.
Fast forward to 2015. TheTwoGerbers as you know have become TheThreeGerbers a long time ago, and we haven't actually logged a cache in three years, not for a lack of interest, more like life got busy.
My Dad however has been going strong and celebrated 10,000 found caches last night!
He invited a bunch of his cacher friends for a BBQ in the local vineyard hut, and it was very nice!
He got treated to a special wine bottle
A customized log book just for the event:
Plus this absolutely stunningly fabulous logo cake
Geocaching really has to offer something for everybody:
- Do you like the outdoors? Even if you don't, this is a good reason to get out occasionally
- Do you like to hike? There are caches for all kinds of terrains and levels depending what shape you're in. Some go as far and have you climb or swim or even dive… Others are just "drive in" ;-)
- Can you read a map? If not, are you into playing with gadgets? Alternatively, do you have a dog… ;-)
- How about getting to know new places and sights? Taking pictures?
- Any interest in statistics? You can totally do without, too!
- Are you talented in crafting creative boxes? Most caches are tupperware boxes, but there are very nice, different ones out there, too:
|The "Roach Motel Resort and Spa" cache in Pocatello, Idaho|
I guess, the social aspect is my personal favorite! Cheers!