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Zeute
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Hi,

 

I started taking my son, Ben, caching with me before he turned 2 years old. He has come with me to about 10 caches, and loves trading items. I take him to easier caches so that we won't have to hike 5 miles in, climb rock faces, or hunt for the container for 45 minutes. He loves trading for little cars and dinosaur-stuff.

 

nfa-jamie

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Pay attention to the difficultity of the cache and the terrain that you're in. Various critters are lurking out there and it is not uncommon that geocachers in our area spot a Rattersnake or Cottonmouth on the treks. Be sure that the kids take a shower afterwards as ticks are alway about. Other than that they can be a real joy and double the fun of a find.

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At this point I hadn't planned to take them to any difficult treks. :grin: Especially since the nieces would have to be carried in baby slings. (They are only about 6 and 3 months old.) I even thought I might wait awhile before taking them as really it's more about being with them then them getting something out of it at their ages.

 

My nephew on the other hand LOVES being outside and he doesn't care about the weather. He's about 17 months old. I thought right now he would be the one who would get the most out of it.

 

I realize the need to be extra careful in choosing the spots, especially with young children. William is also the type of child who would chase after a snake instead of running from it and I'd rather avoid that type of situation!

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I have two sons, one is 4 y/o and the other is 2 y/o and they both go caching with me. The 2 y/o, sometimes I have to carry in the woods, since he isn't big enough to walk over some fallen trees. My 4 y/o does pretty well in the woods, except for jagger bushes, he typically gets stuck and I have to go and free him. They love the treasure hunt!

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You may want to take your nieces and nephew to a cache that you've already found, maybe even go out the day before to check on it.

You don't want the kids' first experience to be a bad one. Once you get them hooked, you can add DNF's and junk in caches to the experience.

This is a pretty good idea. My 4 year-old son and I had a DNF on our first cache and it kind of discouraged him. Since then, though, we've had days where we've found as many as three caches in a day. He loves to trade for McToys and Hot Wheels. (Go ahead, flame me now.) :grin:

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We're pretty new to GC as well, and we've taken our 4 and 5 y/olds on all of our adventures so far. They love it, and are just like us with the DNF's. They get discouraged, and want to go back to those areas.

 

It's another great way to get the family out, teach them lessons, enjoy life! I know cachers that have baby backpacks and take their very little ones. Teach 'em young! As long as you respect their limits and yours, you'll have a great time.

 

DC

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You can take ANYONE caching. You must adapt and "pay the price," whatever it is for that individual. Carrying diapers is not so bad, but 8 hours with a seat strapped to your back, fussing, etc.....may be more than you want to pay. I've had 2 and 3's along, and it's a fun experience, but they won't make the whole day. Make plans.

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We started caching when our daughter was 13 months old, and have done a number of whole-day caching trips in the five months since then. It definitely requires planning, though.

 

In our case, our days have generally started away from home, so she gets some napping done in the car to start, and then will also nap some more in the backpack carrier. We have to make time for snacks and diaper changes, and it helps to have two or more adults along in case it turns out that you need to leave the child(ren) behind if they're asleep in the car or it's otherwise not safe for them to get the final cache.

 

But she seems to enjoy the walks and she loves looking through the boxes when we find them. She snatched up a mini red devil duckie the other day (that yes, I traded for), and after her bath with it had to take it with her to sleep.

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Our daughter who is 7 loves to cache.....no matter how young or old they are bring lots for them to do for the driving time. We make sure we stock up on games and books to keep her occupied. When they get to be our daughter's age they want to join in the fun. She now has her own cache. Travel bugs are great to put out. She loves to find out where they've been and how far they have gone.

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5 months and already showing Mum what to do :grin:

http://www.riverland.net.au/~dicko/canon/aimeegps-sml.jpg

 

We actually need to get a decent 'backpack' to carry her in, as we want to do some caches (And place some) that just aren't gonna be accessable by pusher....

 

We've also got a 3 and a half year old who comes along, and loves to rummage through and pick something ("No, just ONE thi.. NO, ONE, Put that back, you can have this, or this.. NO, not that!") from each cache we visit. It's a fun family activity as far as we're concerned.

Edited by ThePup
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I started when my son was 3 and he enjoyed it, but didn't have too much patience. We found a whopping grand total of 5 caches and life unfortunately intervened with some things that brought our short caching career to a screeching halt (as well as just about anything else that we enjoyed doing). I didn't even turn my GPSr on for a year and a half. That's all behind us now. Now he's 5 and we just took another shot at it. He LOVED it, and so did I. Plus, in the last couple years, there are about 10 million new caches :hyperbole:

 

I see a long career of searching for treasure with him in our future!

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My son was 8 months old on his first cache! :cry: OK he did not know what we did, but he went with and I have a picture of us B) . Since then I opened an account for him, and mom logs his finds (only the ones he actually accompanied me on, with photo's for future reference!).

 

Since he can't write, I made him a stamp with his avatar and handle - he just loves stamping the logbook and the outing in general. He picks his own trade items....of course with the help of dad! He has his own bag, trinkets, logbook and even 2 TB's :cry:

 

Hopefully the early introduction by his fanatical geocaching dad will pay off with some really quality Father-Son time until his teens, and maybe even later.

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I don't think any age is too young, as long as you review the caches to ensure the terrain is appropriate!

 

My daughter started at 22 months, and loved it from her first cache. I would have started her earlier, but I had an extended vacation in an "exotic" location, so that was the earliest I could start her.

 

My wife is baking a new geocacher, and is due any day now. I won't say much, but she did mention it would at least be 6 or 7 months before I was allowed to take him caching. B)

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nannyogg caches with a whole pack of little ones. some are old enough to have their own accounts, and one needs to be carried in a sling.

 

they don't all go every time, and she says it's amazing how much of a home school curriculum can be covered through geocaching.

 

if there's a particularly tough challenge, those who missed it sometimes beg to be taken there.

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I have two boys ages 5 and one. The caches they accompany me and DH on are ones that I know are drive bys, virtuals or in parks where a playground is. I of cource prefer the park ones to the others but save others for days I really need a cache fix and the weather (or kids) are cooperating. They love going to the playgrounds and the 5YO loves "looking for treasure." We haven't attempted anything we would need a backpack for with them yet and bc the little one is a big one already, I don't see where we would beneift from one at this point.

 

HTH and have fun!

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Our daughters ages 4 and 2 routinely accompanied my wife and me on geocaching searches. They love to "treasure hunt" and trade items and have found caches in Alaska and in New York. The New York caches were particularly rewarding because their grandparents were involved in a number of the searches which led to lots of intergenerational reminiscing about what happened when in the various parks we found caches in.

 

Interesting thing is that my youngest daughter has shown more interest in following the arrow on the GPSr than my oldest daughter. However, my oldest daughter likes looking at the maps with me and talking through where we are going next, which is really helping her develop her understanding of the world around her. Both girls have enjoyed seeing wild animals, picking berries, looking at small animal skeletons, canoeing and doing all sorts of other outdoor things associated with travel to and from the caches.

 

The girls also have their own Ladybug Travelbugs out in the field and enjoy gathering ladybug-related trade goods.

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I have three young cachers ages 2, 8, and 10.

 

I set up a geocaching accounts for the two oldest, palindrome and cmilk. (Both have accounts under my control and tied to my email address.)

 

My daughter cmilk (8) (cmilk because of her love for chocolate milk) is as hardcore as I am. She just doesn't get people leaving spare change for trade items (as quoted in a recent Geocachers Today issue).

 

I'm thinking about an account for my youngest. He works for his finds, so while he may not 'get' logging, he deserves to claim caches. And yes, he signs the log too.

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