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geocaching without a gps


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Today was the first day we went looking. I was thinking that having a gps would take the fun out of hunting. We managed to find 14 without a gps. It was fun to try to remember the maps and where it was located. Plus it was great excercise to go out and look. Although there were a few we had to go back and look on the map again. So what are the advantages of having the gps? I would imagine going paperless alot better and you probably could find more caches. Is there alot that do this without gps? Anyways had a great time and plan on going back out again as soon as its nice out. Happy Hunting!

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Today was the first day we went looking. I was thinking that having a gps would take the fun out of hunting. We managed to find 14 without a gps. It was fun to try to remember the maps and where it was located. Plus it was great excercise to go out and look. Although there were a few we had to go back and look on the map again. So what are the advantages of having the gps? I would imagine going paperless alot better and you probably could find more caches. Is there alot that do this without gps? Anyways had a great time and plan on going back out again as soon as its nice out. Happy Hunting!

There is absolutely no need for you to use a GPS for finding caches, if that's what you enjoy. You are rare, but not alone. You will be required to use a GPS in case you decide to hide any caches, however.
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For caches around town or places in the woods where landmarks are obvious, caching without a GPS is certainly do able. But it gets much more difficult when there are no obvious landmarks. It's not impossible. If you are good with a map and compass it can be done, but many of the best caches are difficult to find without a GPS.

 

Easy without a GPS

 

1d932080-6f1d-47c2-a8fa-86a8fbcd57f8.jpg

 

 

Not so easy without a GPS

 

77e803e4-d630-4f5b-828f-26df6c3ac945.jpg

 

If you are happy with urban caching, then go for it, but if you'd like to use geocaching to discover some really cool places a GPS will be helpful (note the two sat photos above were taken only 10 miles from each other.)

Edited by briansnat
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I've done one without any GPS, and another with a Puck GPS on the laptop, that got me within 1/2 mile of the cache, and I hoofed in on the trail to the point where it was, Just by the description.

 

I had a friend find one, using a Metal Detector, not even trying to find a cache.. There was a cache in the Virgin Islands, called Captain Kid's Treasure, which the friend was doing some sand sifting, when he happened upon the cache. He looked-up the coordinates on a map, and jotted them down.. When he returned to the states, he asked me if I knew what he had found. I did a search in the location here, and sure enough there was the cache. He has since found a few, but not as active.

 

The one I found w/o the GPS, was a simple find. the description alone was plenty to go looking. (described the location to a "T".) the one with the Puck-GPS, (a USB dongled receiver) was showing one within proximity of where I was driving home from a parade I participated in.. As I got close, it was at the end of an old train track bed. I parked the car, and walked in.. Sure enough the description was of a rock pile, and it was found in under 5 minutes.

 

It's possible.. I imagine it'd be possible to knock it off armed with a compass, as long as you had exact waymarks to use as benchmarks.

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Not so easy without a GPS

 

77e803e4-d630-4f5b-828f-26df6c3ac945.jpg

 

If you are happy with urban caching, then go for it, but if you'd like to use geocaching to discover some really cool places a GPS will be helpful (note the two sat photos above were taken only 10 miles from each other.)

 

Here's another set of three caches that would not be so easy to find without a GPS

 

5456187507_cc383b6829.jpg

 

The three caches (two traditional and an earthcache) are all located near Volcan Poas (Poas Volcano) in Costa Rica. If you look at other areas in Costa Rica you'll find many large area where the terrain is completely obscured by clouds and even when it isn't the resolution is not often good enough to try and find geocaches using maps alone. Although I don't plan on visiting the Volcan Poas area I've got my GPS loaded with every cache in CR and the free OpenStreetMaps routeable maps for the trip I'm leaving on tomorrow morning.

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I think in time you'll answer your own question.

 

If you're having fun, keep caching the way you're caching. Fun is what it's all about.

 

In time you might find there are a lot of difficulties associated with doing it without a GPS. In time you may change your mind.

 

In a few months you might be able to write a thread here called, "Why I decided to get a GPS to go caching"

 

Look forward to reading it.

 

If not, let us know that too.

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In a few months you might be able to write a thread here called, "Why I decided to get a GPS to go caching"

 

There are a number of geocachers who find all kinds of caches sans GPS. EdScott, WaldenRun and Web-ling come to mind. Between them they've found thousands of caches without a GPS, ranging from urban caches to caches in the wilderness. It takes a great deal of know how and perseverance to do so.

 

For the rest of us, once we get away from caches that are placed at locations where there are distinct clues visible on sat photos and topo maps, finding caches can be very difficult without a GPS.

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In a few months you might be able to write a thread here called, "Why I decided to get a GPS to go caching"

 

There are a number of geocachers who find all kinds of caches sans GPS. EdScott, WaldenRun and Web-ling come to mind. Between them they've found thousands of caches without a GPS, ranging from urban caches to caches in the wilderness. It takes a great deal of know how and perseverance to do so.

 

For the rest of us, once we get away from caches that are placed at locations where there are distinct clues visible on sat photos and topo maps, finding caches can be very difficult without a GPS.

 

ED SCOTT is the man! Not only does he find caches without a GPS, he is a stud at trekking through the woods in briars, PI, ticks, etc.

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So what are the advantages of having the gps? I would imagine going paperless alot better and you probably could find more caches. Is there alot that do this without gps?

 

We don't have a GPS yet. We do plan to get one, we just haven't yet. We've found 20 odd caches, and failed on a few more. I think having a GPS would definitely make it easier (and quicker), but around Auckland the satellite maps on Google Maps have plenty of detail so traditional cahces can be found.

 

However, multi-caches and puzzle caches require a lot of to-and-froing to your computer. It can be done for cahces not too far from home, but to do a variety of caches while you're travelling I'm guessing you'll need to get a GPS.

 

I'm thinking of getting a GPS capable phone (since I need a new phone anyway), as this seems the most cost effective may to get a GPS. The Android operating system seems to have freeware geocaching apps available.

 

Cheers,

Brent.

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You know from what I see this is the great thing about Geocaching, you can approach it any way you choose and get out of it as much as you want. The rules of finding a cache is pretty much open to whatever method you desire. No one method is better than the next as each method feeds each person's personal taste.

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However, multi-caches and puzzle caches require a lot of to-and-froing to your computer. It can be done for cahces not too far from home, but to do a variety of caches while you're travelling I'm guessing you'll need to get a GPS.
I've found hundreds of caches without a GPSr, and initially I approached multi-caches that way: I'd collect information the first trip, and search for the cache on a later trip. But after a while, I figured out how to determine the distance and direction from one stage to the next, and then pace out the distance during the same trip. For short offset caches, it isn't hard at all. I've even been able to find stages that were hundreds of feet from the previous stage, so it can be done without returning to your computer.

 

But yeah, it's a lot more convenient with a GPSr or a GPS-enabled phone.

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Just a little to add to the two posts by Brian. The photo of woodland is a typical example of what is about a difficulty 4.5 GPS-less hide. Only thing I'd try to do is to figure out the tree species of the two shades of green or hope to get lucky by navigating to one of the brown holes in the canopy. Sometimes using the contour layer in conjunction with the photo is a huge help. Back when all the photos were black and whites taken in leaf off seasons it was a lot easier. Navigating from fallen tree to fallen tree was often a simple exercise. Zooming the photo out a bit might bring in an attack point that is solid enough for a positive ID and then just use the compass in from there. I also slide GZ to the lower left of the page so my screen shot includes a meter scale. It might also be noted that the three GPS-Less cachers mentioned in the other post all came into geocaching after several years of competitive Orienteering. Attempting to learn Caching skills and precise navigation skills at the same time could be an extremely frustrating experience. Those thinking of GPS-Less caching must be willing to fail a few times. My DNF rate is about 12%.

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OK- so- I knew we would have to get a gps. It only took a week not months. Lol- I have sat this comp for hours writing it down. I tried my moms gps last weekend. (tomtom)Its not exactly what I am looking for but it may have to due for the time being. I have looked at many caches around and knew we couldnt do them. It is fun to have to look a little harder. The first day we started, we did the caches close to home. We had to come back and review a few times. We did find a ftf on our 1st day and 1 again on our 3rd. It would be great to go paperless but a little out of my price range. If any of you have suggestions. That would be appreciated.

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Here's another set of three caches that would not be so easy to find without a GPS

 

5456187507_cc383b6829.jpg

 

The three caches (two traditional and an earthcache) are all located near Volcan Poas (Poas Volcano) in Costa Rica. If you look at other areas in Costa Rica you'll find many large area where the terrain is completely obscured by clouds and even when it isn't the resolution is not often good enough to try and find geocaches using maps alone. Although I don't plan on visiting the Volcan Poas area I've got my GPS loaded with every cache in CR and the free OpenStreetMaps routeable maps for the trip I'm leaving on tomorrow morning.

 

I haven't found any of the caches shown in the photo above, but I found another one a couple of days ago that has a similar aerial photo called "On the road to Arenal" and as I look out the window of my hotel I can see steam coming out of the top of Arenal volcano. It's pretty spectacular here.

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We did 60 some caches before getting a gps. When we decided to get one, which one to get was much more of a challenge than deciding to do it. I really didn't want to spend the money for something with only one use to me. I can read a map and I only use the gps for caching. But I do use it and on a dollar per smile basis, it was worth it.

 

Today was the first day we went looking. I was thinking that having a gps would take the fun out of hunting. We managed to find 14 without a gps. It was fun to try to remember the maps and where it was located. Plus it was great excercise to go out and look. Although there were a few we had to go back and look on the map again. So what are the advantages of having the gps? I would imagine going paperless alot better and you probably could find more caches. Is there alot that do this without gps? Anyways had a great time and plan on going back out again as soon as its nice out. Happy Hunting!

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