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Geocaching is one of the most exciting implementations of the GPS
technology. This is in fact a recreation game that came about as a
result of the improving accuracy of electronic GPS devices. With
improved positional accuracy, the GPS provides the unskilled users
the ability to find geographic locations with precision and repeatability.
With this new ability, people can now place geocaches in interesting
places so that others can enjoy the challenge of finding them.
Geocaching is the word that communicates the act of placing an object
at a certain geographical location and recording its position numerically.
Geocache can be used as a noun or a verb. A geocache is an item or
group of items located at a recorded geographical position.
In the rapidly developing sport of recreational Geocaching, the Web is
used as a medium for the distribution of geocache locations. Websites
have now been set up to support this new activity. The Web allows
communication between the geocacher and those searching for the
geocache. Posted on the Internet along with the coordinates, are clues,
pictures and other information about the geocache. Currently most
geocaches consist of a small waterproof box or plastic bucket, placed
at an interesting location. The geocaches contain a logbook for visitors
to write in, and a variety of interesting treasures to trade. The simple
rules: Take something, Leave something, and Write in the book. These
are the basics of recreational geocaching.
The location of a geocache can be very entertaining indeed. The
location of a geocache demonstrates the geocacher's skills. A
geocache located on the side of a rocky cliff accessible only by rock
climbing equipment may be hard to find. An underwater geocache
may only be accessed by scuba. Other geocaches may require long
difficult hiking, orienteering, and special equipment to find.
Geocaches may be located in cities both above and below ground,
inside and outside buildings. The skillful placement of a small logbook
in an urban environment may be quite challenging to find even with the
accuracy of a GPS. That little logbook may have a hundred-dollar bill
in it or a map to greater treasure. It could even contain clues or riddles
to solve that may lead to other geocaches.
Recreational geocaching can take on many forms. Like a high-tech
Easter egg hunt, geocaching is a sport for all ages. Geocaching adds a
new dimension to travel and hiking because you are taking advantage
of the local knowledge of the geocacher and your own skill to find a
geocache. Since every set of geographical coordinates can be
approached from any direction, geocaching requires careful map
reading skills in order to find the best approach. Once found a
geocache can provide many rewards, from hidden treasure to
spectacular views, and even a great campsite. As the sport evolves,
we may see Geocache Racing where the object is to find geocaches
fast. We may even develop high reward adventure games around the
Geocaches are already located in many locations around the World.
It's just as challenging to create a good geocache as it is to find one.
If you find a good geocache and you enjoyed the adventure of the
journey to find it, be sure to thank the geocacher by writing your
comments in the logbook or sending them an email. Geocaching can
be a fun and rewarding new sport that welcomes us to the 21st century
with many new adventures.