2/16/09

My World - Geocaching

We took up a new hobby this weekend - Geocaching. This involves finding hidden Caches with a standard GPS navigator, that other Geocachers have hidden. A Geocache is usually a fairly small container, with a logbook that you sign, sometimes trackable items that move between caches, and little items people want to swap or leave for others.

When we first went to the main website, we were amazed to find that even in our rural area there are 171 caches within 50 miles of us, and over 4,600 in Okieland alone!! They are often placed at sites of local interest or beauty, you can read about them at the website, and then download the ones you want to hunt direct to your GPS.

So this is exactly what we did on Sunday, which was a beautiful day to be outside. We downloaded a few to find and set off, GPS in hand to the closest one 2 miles away.

Well after getting to the first location and spending 45 minutes hunting, we gave up, not a great start! But we didn't give up and set off for another cache and this time I spotted it within minutes of arriving, our first find.

We signed the logbook and decided we weren't the worlds worst Geocachers after all! It was situated at a very neat old one room schoolhouse, so we had a wander round before leaving.

Next up was just a mile away and it seemed we were going to be beaten again. It was in the ruins of an old store but the Hubster suddenly spotted it and then we were getting hooked.

This was a hard 'spot', but taught us much about where they tend to be placed.

So off we headed across country close to the Texas border, me stopping to take photo's along the way.

We decided this is a very complimentary hobby for a keen landscape photographer!

We arrived in the third location and as I got excited about photo opportunities, the Hubster sped off and found the cache in an impressive time.

This was in a particularly beautiful spot and so as he had a good look at the contents, I was snapping away.

On our way home, we dropped back to the first cache hunt site again but still no joy. However today the Hubster returned there again, as it was driving him nuts, and I received an excited call at work to say he'd finally found it.

I think it's fair to say we're hooked, it's a great way to get out in the fresh air and challenge yourself. We are now planning to hide some Caches of our own locally. Just one thing though, once the Rattlesnakes are back, we won't be ploughing through long grass all over the country, like we were yesterday - no way Jose!!

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39 comments:

Kendris said...

That does sound like fun. GIS mapping is part of my job, I am a hobbyist photographer, as well, and the hubby and I enjoy exploring. We'll have to give it a try one of these weekends when we're out with the 5th wheel.

BTW, have you ever been to Woolaroc?

Brit' Gal Sarah said...

Kendris, you should defo give it a go, you sound just like us. The Hubster tells me Woolroc is in NE OKieland, so not yet.

pamokc said...

I have heard of this hobby. John would probably love it -- old boyscout that he is/was ... he always liked doing orienteering, as he calls it.

We've been to Woolaroc and it is a wonderful place and definitely worth a trip. Wonderful western artwork (LOADS OF IT), animals, the setting ... **SIGH**, I'd go back in a heart-beat. Plus there are a few herds of wild mustangs in the area that you pass by to get there....

Sassy Britches said...

The Texas pic with the sky that jumps out at you at a swift pace is fabulous! I have a friend who can't get enough of this hobby; I've never put it together with fresh air and scenery...hellooooo silly me! I'll have to call her up for an outing (or two or three or...)

Louise said...

Perfect post! Love the sky in your geocaching adventures!

chrome3d said...

That was a lot of fun. I can´t help wondering at those big skies.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Sounds like fun, Sarah... BUT George and I like to use our GPS units (both the one in the car and our hiking one) to search out new waterfalls. The most fun is when we go off-trail searching!!!! It's SO much fun!!!

Hope you have a great day tomorrow.
Hugs,
Betsy

Lover of Life said...

I have been wanting to do that forever! As soon as the snow is gone, I think we'll give it a go. Thanks for sharing!

Esther Garvi said...

Never heard of geocaching before, but I certainly that the hobby will work well for you! Enjoyed the last two pictures so much.

antigoni said...

You like adventure, don't you?
Great photos. I'm sure you had great time there.

Laura said...

You're an excellent, éxcellent hobby photographer!

Kay said...

Sarah, this is the wildest thing. As I was walking with my friend Dave during the Aloha Run today, he was just tellingme about this very thing! No kidding! He mentioned how he knew that there were supposed to be several right on the University of Hawaii campus where he works. Hmmm... This does sound like fun. Very intriguing indeed! You guys really did great.

Sarah D said...

Ooh we've done this a few times around Buckinghamshire... such fun! I love the ones that give clues in riddles, or the rearranging of letters or numbers on a gravestone, makes it more like a scavenger hunt :)

gnometree said...

Geocaching is great isn't it! I get most of my best photos out geocaching. Congratulations on your first find. You can read my geocaching blog at http://thismechanican.wordpress.com . Welcome to this wonderful sport!

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

I am so glad that you and Hubby enjoyed it geocaching. It is my obsession. We have been to a lot of places we would not have otherwise. The furthest west in Oklahoma I've been geocaching is Roman Nose Sate Park but I would like to take a swing out toward Woodward and down to Lake Foss later this Spring.
I have seen lots and lots of snakes doing this. The main hazard though is ticks and ant bites.

Kendris said...

I featured Woolaroc in my blog today; check it out. It's definitely a place that any Okie needs to see :)

fishing guy said...

Sarah: Well you did get some interesting photos while having fun.

Sherri said...

Wow Sarah I had never heard of geocaching! Looks like you and your hubby had a great time and you are hooked! Great photos too. What a great way to combine hobbies-tracking, photos and fresh air!!

Indrani said...

Geocaching is a new concept! Great to know you had fun and loads of pics.

VictorianCobweb said...

Perfect "treasure hunting" fun! I've read about Geocaching but never thought there would be so many spots around here in Okieland! Think we'll have to give it a try some sunny Sunday afternoon. Thanks for the idea Sarah.

Daryl said...

I had my first experience with a GPS yesterday and now I wish I owned a car because its so cool

And this Geocaching is another cool thing ... I wonder if there are some here in NYC ...

Silverback said...

Never thought of rattlers being 'seasonal' though ! I'd sure not be going into long grass at ANY time of year....there might be a seasonally challenged biter in there somewhere.

Of course your GPS would tell you that...hehe.

Chris said...

Great pics of a great geocaching adventure. Geocaching is addicting! Cache on!

April said...

Thanks for stopping by today...made my day!

Mojo said...

I've heard of this... kind of a high-tech letterboxing. If I had the time for it, I'd probably love it. I do enjoy me a good puzzle after all.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

This sounds a little like orienteering, or am I on the wrong track?

CJ xx

Karen (KayKay) said...

This is one of our hobbies as well. It's a great way to get outside and find some wonderful views and cool places that you would never discover otherwise.

Glad you guys had fun!

Mmm said...

I've done geocaching before. it's fun!

allhorsestuff said...

That looks very fun and a wonderful way to go to and see out of the way places!
I read recently that there is an "Equi-cach" I a so into that!
KK

Carver said...

That sounds like fun and you definitely got some great photographs from the adventure. I love the one room schoolhouse. What a neat building. There is something about red building that I love.

nadia said...

I've heard about geocaching just a few days ago and thought it was pretty cool, and your pictures are proof of how fun this hobby can be!

Thanks for sharing the gorgeous photographs :)

Reader Wil said...

I am afraid that I don't know what a cache is. So I missed half of this exiting story. The word cache is in my dictionary, which is an up -to- date one, but it says it's a hidden thing. Geocaching is not in my dictionary, however.

Snippety Gibbet said...

I've always thought that looked like a fun hobby. jan

Titania said...

So much fun, interest and a great opportunity to let the artistic lens rove. The countryside is beautiful.

Denise said...

What a fascinating post. Never heard of it before and sounds like a load of fun. Lovely photos.

Amanda said...

I have looked into doing that before too. It looked fun, but thought that the 3 and 2 year old might not appreciate it. maybe when they are a little older we can do it as a family

Rob Inukshuk said...

I love the pics you took and the whole idea. What a wonderful way to get out see the world around us. Thanks for the idea.

mannanan said...

I've always fancied taking this up but with working shifts and my voluntary work with the RNLI I never seem to find the time. At least if I did I wouldn't have to worry about rattle snakes....Urghhh I'd be terrified even if I saw one at 100 paces. Great pictures as normal.Thank you for sharing your world with us.

Stacy at Exceedingly Mundane said...

We took up geocaching several years ago and had a really good time with it. We did a lot locally, and worked in some day trips, and also did some geocaching on a vacation out of state. It's a lot harder when you don't know the roads! We haven't been in a while, because we have moved on to other hobbies, but it is fun. We saw more "out of the way" places with geocaching. Places we had no idea we were there, markers to historical sites, cool places tucked away off side roads, etc. It was fun, and as you said, great for the photographer. I was about to warn you about snakes, but I see at the end you are well informed. I loved geocaching in the winter here, but come spring, when the snakes come out, I was always ready to stop. And the mosquitoes are killer here in the summer, not sure about there in OK.

Have fun!! Be sure to sign up at the website and log all your caches!