Sunday, 1 March 2009

PostHeaderIcon Hidden Treasure

Being such a lovely sunny day today we went for a walk up Caerphilly Mountain and not one to ever miss an opportunity to geek things up a bit I decided we should combine the walk with a bit of geocaching, which is something I hadn't done before. For those who don't know, geocaching is a worldwide game of hiding and seeking treasure. A geocacher can place a geocache anywhere in the world, pinpoint its location using GPS technology and then share the geocache's existence and location online. Anyone with a GPS unit can then try to locate the geocache. (www.geocaching.com) There are currently around 750,000 active geocaches around the world so no matter where you are you are probably not very far away from one. The geocaches themselves tend to be waterproofed tupperware containers that contain a log book to record your visit and a number of other little trinkets, the idea being you can take something from it and leave something else behind. Some of these trinkets have serial numbers and are known as travel bugs, you take a travel bug out of one geocache and then place it in another and record it's new location online so it's movements can be tracked. Some have been known to travel tens of thousands of miles a few times around the world.

So off we set with a pack lunch and my iPhone with which I'd already pin-pointed the location of the geocache in its Google Maps application and it navigated us there perfectly. The geocache itself was quite easy to find hidden behind some rocks in the hollow at the base of a large tree though if you hadn't known it was there you really wouldn't have been any the wiser. It was quite exciting finding and opening it to see what was inside, it contained a log book, other peoples calling cards and a number of other little knick-knacks. We didn't take or leave anything, being geocaching virgins we weren't really prepared and had nothing to leave, so we repacked it all and hid it again.

It all sounds a bit anorakish but I enjoyed it nevertheless.

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