It seems there has been a little game of hide and seek going on around the country since May of 2000. Geocaching started in Portland, Oregon by Dave Ulmer who hid a container with small trinkets and a log sheet for those to sign who were fortunate enough to locate it (see history of Geocaching at http://geocaching.gpsgames.org/history/). Once the clues were posted and announced on a website, excited scavenger hunters trekked out and found it within the first day. Since then the hobby has grown by leaps and bounds world-wide. The whole gist of the game is to create a scavenger hunt by hiding a waterproof container of some sort with a log for participants to sign as a way to show that you were there and found the hidden cache. Sometimes the owner of the container will add trinkets of some sort that the finder can take as a token of finding the treasure. But as a good gesture you should always add a trinket of your own as a trade.
Even here in good old Wichita the trend is still going strong. Our family has never really paid much attention to it until one of the girls read a recent article on it and came across an iPhone app that showed hundreds of hidden caches around town some even in our own neighborhood. So we decided to turn Mother’s Day afternoon into a full-fledged scavenger hunt. We found 6 out of the 9 caches we went looking for hidden anywhere from the neighborhood park, a strip mall parking lot, Riverside park as well as strategically placed along Douglas in the downtown area. The oldest log out of the six we opened was from August of 2008.
So next time you feel like a good old-fashioned scavenger hunt grab the family and a few friends, a GPS unit or the app from iTunes and head out. You can set up a free account at Geocaching.com and get a list of cache sites with their GPS coordinates and descriptions and some with hints. Don’t forget to take along a few trinkets to trade if you take one. It’s a great way to get out and enjoy the town. For those of you keeping track, count this as number 3 on our 50/50 list of things to do.
Life’s an adventure. Live It!