Saturday, 24 August 2013

Our First Geocaching Adventure

After reading Actually Mummy's post yesterday about finding THE whomping willow from the Harry Potter films, I was full of enthusiasm and determined to give geocaching a go.  I downloaded the app, and told my Other Half that when he got home from work we'd be going out for a little adventure.

On the app you can only see the three closest routes to where you actually are, so we drove up towards our local woods and then chose from the three suggested to us.  One of them was at a reservoir so deciding that it looked simple enough we parked up and set off.


I thought it would be a little bit more technical than just following a flashing blue dot along a red line, I think I expected there to be treasure hunt clues or something.  I was even more perplexed when we couldn't find anything, I was standing right on the dot!  It was perhaps a bit of a shame that the place the cache was meant to be hidden was right behind a man fishing so my Other Half felt silly rooting around in the bushes and abandoned me at the first attempt.  I'll admit, he did look at me like I'd lost the plot when I reached into the hedge to grab hold of the shiny plastic thing that had caught my eye and came out brandishing a Lucozade bottle!

After a few minutes it became obvious that the box wasn't there so we decided to just enjoy our walk around the rest of the reservoir, talking to the few people who were fishing.  Whilst walking round I decided to have just one more look at the app and saw that there was another cache hidden just behind the car park we had pulled up in, so I convinced my Other Half to give it one more go and have a look for that one.


Unfortunately, we didn't find anything the second time either!  Although there was a hint, which did help to focus our search it appeared to be somewhere on a busy country route and with cars racing past at 70mph we couldn't spend more than a few minutes looking for it.  Nor did I manage to take any photos of our hunt as we had to keep all eyes on Eli and make sure he didn't bolt for the road.  As it turns out (according to the website), due to the coverage of trees the dot showing where the box is, is actually incorrect and you need to go into some kind of field to get it, which would have been helpful to know at the time!

I think we need to research our routes a bit better before we tell the kids what we are looking for, or maybe scout them out beforehand.  Meg went home feeling really deflated that we hadn't found what we were looking for and my Other Half is now convinced it's all a big sham.  I will be working hard to make sure we don't give up!  I think next time, I might take some of our own 'treasure' so that the kids don't have to leave empty handed if we are unsuccessful again.

Despite the fact we didn't find what we were looking for, we still had a lovely walk in the fresh air, in a place we hadn't been to before, so I wouldn't consider the experience a total loss!


Have you ever been geocaching?  Have you got any tips to share with us newbies?

I am linking this post up with Coombe Mill's Country Kids linky.


Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

13 comments:

  1. Oh no - what a shame! I haven't tried geocaching, but I'd like to give it a go. It's really useful reading this as I will research any routes we take. What sort of things do you end up finding? I thought it was a bit like a treasure hunt too xx

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    1. I think you can find all sorts, little tupperware boxes with trinkets in that you can trade for other things x

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  2. We also gave geocaching a go recently after some tweets from ActuallyMummy. The nearest one to where we were staying on holiday was just a few hundred yards away so I thought it was going to be easy, but I didn't realise on the first attempt that this was did have a little treasure hunt. I had to find some information and then use that to calculate the coordinates. I then head off with the kids to find it, but was too paranoid about the nettles so went back a third time with husband. This time I think we found the location, but didn't find the cache as it was in the biggest patch of nettles. We did find another one though while we were on holiday.

    Having hunted for a couple I think I understand it better and hope for greater success in the future. Hope you have more success on your next attempt.

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    1. Blimey, your experience sounds even more complicated than ours!!

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  3. What app are you using? I've never heard of being given routes before!!! Ours just shows all the caches within a certain radius and we work out our own way there.
    We love geocaching, I'm really sorry you didn't find anything because once you do it gets addictive! Spend a while on the website first working out where you need to go, read previous logs as they can be really helpful, and use the satellite option on the map to help you work out landmarks so you know roughly where to search (the GPS/phone will say so many meters away but a radius can be quite a large distance!)
    Hope you have better luck next time! x

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    1. It's just called 'Geocaching' and they have a website where you can find more info. Turns out I had the intro app downloaded but I purchased the full version and we managed to find one today, yippee! Thanks for all the tips too, I've caught the bug now think.

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  4. I've never been but really keen to give it a try, I think it would be great family entertainment and forces the kids out on a walk with the dog! However, I can imagine lots of disappointment and frustrated grumpiness from my pre-teens if we didn't find anything, like you. Is this common do you know? Well done for giving it a go anyway. I'm sure I saw some instagram photos of you find one?? x

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    1. We did find one today! I managed to persuade everyone to give it another go and I'm glad we did. The kids absolutely loved it and asked when we're going again. We were walking for 2 hours and no one complained which is a miracle in this family!

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  5. i cant wait to get started on our geocaching adventure! i do hope your next adventure is more successful x

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  6. We've done some in our village, but they can be really hard to find, especially when trees and weeds are all overgrown. We also did it at Center Parcs and argued way too much!

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  7. What a shame you didn't locate any boxes, your'e not the first! Maybe the next geocaching adventure will be successful. At least you managed to get out and have a walk in beautiful surroundings, thanks for sharing with Country Kids.

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  8. I keep meaning to go geocaching! It is a shame it didn't work out for you, but I am pleased that at least it was a nice day out!

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  9. I know lots of people that do it, I'd like to try it one day but if we had issues like yours it would send L in to meltdown!

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