Introduction to Geocaching by fjwuxn

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									 Introduction to
  Geocaching
       Doug Earl
(D of “ABCDMCachers”)
                  Agenda
   What
   When
   Where
   Who
   Why
   How
   Travel Bugs
   Resources
What
      Geocaching – What is it?
   An outdoor
    adventure game for
    GPS users of all ages
   GPS = Global
    Positioning System
         What – In a Nutshell
1.   Someone hides a weatherproof box
     in the woods.
2.   The latitude and longitude of the
     box is published on the Internet.
3.   Others go out and find the box
     using their portable GPSr.
4.   Finders sign the log, trade trinkets.
5.   When they get home, they log the
     find on the Internet.
What – Boiling it Down

 “I use multi-billion
 dollar military
 satellites to find
 Tupperware hidden
 in the woods.”
         What Is a Geocache?
   A weather-resistant
    container such as
    Tupperware,
    Rubbermaid, or
    surplus ammo box
           What Else Can it Be?
   Micro Caches
    • 35mm film canisters
    • Magnetic key holders
    • Or smaller! (Nano caches)
   Camouflaged
    •   Fake doggie doo
    •   Hide-a-key rocks
    •   Hollowed out rocks
    •   Pine cones
    •   Plastic spiders
What Else Can it Be? - 2
What Else Can it Be? - 3
       What’s in a Geocache?
   Logbook
   Trinkets to trade
   Examples: toys, books, coins, tools,
    games, etc.
   Information sheet that explains the
    container and has contact
    information.
When
                                Timeline

      May 1, 2000              May 3, 2000         Sept 2, 2000
      Selective Availability   “Stash” hidden in   Geocaching.com started
      Removed                  Oregon              with 75 caches



Accuracy before:      Accuracy after:
      100 meters           10 meters or better
Where
      Where are They Hidden?
   All over the world
    • 479,372 active caches in over 200
      countries (as of 11/1/2007)
   Well over 500 in the metro-
    Milwaukee area
The World
United States
Wisconsin
Milwaukee
      Where – Kinds of Places
   Places with natural beauty
   Parks – state, county, city
   Hiking and biking trails
   Areas with historical significance
   Urban areas
   Park and rides, waysides
   Interesting places you didn’t know
    existed even in your own backyard
           Where - Specifically
   Hollow trees and logs
   Handrails, fence
    posts
   Hanging in trees
   Usually under or
    behind something,
    but never buried
       Where Won’t They Be?
   National Parks
   Private property unless owner gives
    permission
   Under bridges
   Less than .1 mile from another cache
   Less than 150 feet from railroad
Who
           Who Participates?
   All ages, walks of life
    • Singles, Couples, Families, Retirees
   People who enjoy the outdoors
   People who like technology
           Who Hides Them?
   Anyone who has a geocaching.com
    account
   All caches must be approved
   Maybe you?
    • Get experience finding before hiding
      your own - find at least 20
Why
         Why Geocache? #1
   The journey to the cache – beautiful
    areas and interesting places
          Why Geocache? #2
   Family activity
          Why Geocache? #3
   The challenge of the find, the thrill of
    the hunt
         Why Geocache? #4
   The numbers
    game
         Why Geocache? #5
   Read about others’ adventures
         Why Geocache? #6
   Turn off the TV and enjoy the
    outdoors! Get some exercise while
    you’re at it.
Why Geocache - Different Ways to
           Enjoy
 Traditional Caches – Most common

 Like hikes? – Multi-caches

 Like puzzles? – Mystery caches

 Like socializing? – Event caches

 Like history? – Virtuals

 Like challenges? – Try higher difficulty

 Like traveling? – Try county or Delorme challenge
       Mystery/Puzzle Caches
   Before finding the cache, you need to
    solve a puzzle, sometimes on the
    cache webpage, sometimes at the
    cache site
Mystery/Puzzle Caches (2)
How
              First Steps
   Create a geocaching.com account
   Buy or borrow a GPS receiver
         Find Nearby Caches
   Search by zipcode or latitude/longitude
       Find Nearby Caches - 2
   Use Google Maps from
    geocaching.com or Google Earth
Find Nearby Caches - 3
Read About the Cache
            Cache type, name,
            Who placed it


     Size          Difficulty/Terrain         Unique
                                              Identifying
              Latitude, Longitude             code (AKA
              Distance from home              waypoint)
               Download Lat/Lon
               file (so don’t have
               to manually enter)

                 Attributes




                Hints!
                                     Travel Bugs /
                                     Geocoins
Enter the Coordinates into the
            GPSr

                 Waypoint Name
                  Waypoint Note
                   (Optional)

                  Latitude and Longitude
                       (Coordinates)
                Follow the Arrow
When the arrow points straight up, you are going in the right direction.



                                 How far you have to go


                                 Direction you are going
                                 (Typically only works while moving)


                                 Direction you SHOULD go
                                 (bear right)
              Look Around
   Look for anything unusual or out of
    place.
   Look in places that YOU think would
    be good to place a cache.
   No luck? Enlarge your search area
    • Heavy tree cover affects signal
    • Use a compass – only high-end GPSr’s
      have a built-in compass
           Woo Hoo! Found it!
   Sign the log book
   Trade items if you wish
    • Family-friendly, no food
    • Leave something of equal or greater value
      compared to what you take
   Re-hide the cache back in the same spot
   Log your experience on geocaching.com
    and “collect a smiley”
            Hiding Your Own
   Show off a favorite area
   Show how sneaky and creative you
    can be
   Get permission from land manager
    • DNR land - must fill out form
   Be mindful of environment
Travel Bugs
     Travel Bugs and Geocoins
   Travel from cache to cache (not
    collectible!)
   Usually have a goal, Examples:
    • Visit all baseball parks, all capitols
    • Have picture taken with <fill in the blank>
    • Final destination: Alaska, South Pole
   Journey is tracked on
    geocaching.com
             TB Examples
   TB Tag has a unique ID#
   Attached to a small item
            TB Examples - 2
   From the “you gotta be kidding me” file
TB web page
Travel Bug Map
Trackables Page
Resources
            Important Terms
   FTF: First To Find
   Muggle: Non-geocacher
   TNLNSL: Took Nothing, Left Nothing,
    Signed Log
   DNF: Did Not Find
   CITO: Cache In Trash Out
   1/1: Referring to difficulty and terrain
   TB: Travel Bug
Wisconsin Geocaching Association
   http://www.wi-geocaching.com




WGA Picnic Event
McKenzie Environmental Education Center, Poynette, WI
August 21, 2004
          Premium Membership
   $30/year
   Have “Pocket Queries” emailed to you
    • Up to 500 caches centered on a point
    • Easy to transfer to your GPSr
         GSAK
         EasyGPS
   Member-only caches
   Email notification of new caches
               Similar Sites
   Terracaching.com
    • Goal: higher quality caches
   Waymarking.com
    • Unique locations, but no cache to find
    • Misspelled signs, funny mailboxes,
      waterfalls, water towers, etc.
   Letterboxing.org
    • No GPSr required
        Thanks for Attending
   Questions?

								
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