This is Marko's new thang. Its treasure hunting with a GPS and its bloody brilliant fun. Our Ellie is mesmerised by it and its the new black in walking. It sure is...... uh huh!
Mark obtained a GPS some years ago. He never thought anything about it for ages until his mate mentioned had he tried geo caching? OK - Im a dumbstruck as you but hang on .... this is good stuff.
All over the world there are members of the Geo Caching who hide ammo boxes/hard wearing units to conceal little trinkets and a book to sign upon its discovery. Its all based on trust provided you can crack the clues using yor GPS system. the boxes are hidden in places where there is something pleasant about the area - such as a fantastic view or at the foot of a pretty valley or stream. Mark has discovered about 18 so far and there are 5 within a 5 mile radius of our house alone. AND there are hundreds in Lancashire so there are lots to discover for fun trips out.
You log onto the geo cache website, type in an area you are visiting and it will give you clues to how many caches are hidden. This is only for those with a GPS remember - these caches cannot be found with the human eye or simply by accident.
The other week he took my parents and Belle to find one and in it was a little plastic dog. Well Ellie thought it was real treasure and ever since she has been putting by little trinkets and toys in readiness for the swap in the next cache find. In place of the plastic dog, mark left a pen that my father had from his old work (HM Coastguard) and the trcik is to sign that you have discovered the cache and have swapped a "treasure" inside. Not all caches have "treasure". Some are virtual sites where you find a relic or stone (stonehenge is one - but its not obvious that its stonehenge until you crack the code). They are some in almost every country - isn't it all exciting or am I boring you? Sorry!!
Also there are things hidden inside called a "Travel Bug". Mark has just bought one. The trick with that is to place one in a box either in the UK or abroad. The next person who finds the box takes it with them and they will plant it in another box and so on. It could take years to get back but wherever it goes, the honest finder logs the travel bugs new location and we can keep a track of it online. Fancy starting Lancashire and finishing in Sri Lanka? It could happen!
The question is - Do I need to get out more?
NO! This is (almost) FREE fun. You need to invest in a GPS (£70) and they are great for days out. Lots of walking and fresh air with the quizzing and cracking of codes plus the thrill of discovery. We are about to make our own cache and hide it in an area we hold dear, we have to think of a name for it and fill it with someting for the next cache finder to keep. Am not thinking of Ki memories rub ons or Karen Foster papers !!!
Will keep you posted and tell me if you are a geo cacher!