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I am writing a newspaper article on caching and want to know why people cache, what are some of the challenges you have faced and are any grandparents caching?  Thanks, carolina7

In no particular order:


I like solving puzzles. Even if it isn't a "puzzle" cache, finding something that someone has hidden is fun. Remember playing "I Spy" or finding Easter Eggs?


I like hiking, but sometimes get into a rut, hiking the same areas over and over. With geocaching, this is not a problem. Other people do the research, I reap the benefits!


I like knowing things others don't. I drive to the store and think, "There's a cache behind that rock, and I bet hundreds of people are going to unknowingly drive right past it today." Then I giggle.


I like making puzzle caches. Coming up with different ways to tell people the coordinates of a cache, without coming right out and telling them is fun.


I like the cool things people place in their caches. I picked up a commemorative coin from the 1972 Munich Olympics from one cache.


I like trying to find an urban micro cache, sign the log, then replace it without being spotted by passers-by. It appeals to the part of me that wishes he were James Bond.


I like caching. :lol:

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I am a grandparent, and there's a few great-grandparents that cahce also. Based on the demographics of the folks on the forums, and those I cache with, the forums are much different than the general caching populus. As mentioned in other threads, this is the peanut gallery :D There is some good info here, but for the whole picture, see if you can find an event locally.


I cache for exersize, to keep my mind busy, to spend time with other folks. It's an addiction! :lol:

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My reasons are much less well-defined.


I just love looking at the little arrow saying .12 miles away. Then, when it changes to feet, the rest of the world disappears and nothing else matters except making those numbers go down from 528 feet to 520 feet to 325 feet, and finally to 12 feet.


Geocaching is a great motivator for me--and it has even made for more entertaining dreams. :D


Obsession, What obsession? :lol:

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I've only been caching for a little over a month, but I'm already hooked. For me there were a few reasons...


1) I like the whole mystery of it. Wondering when I drive past a new place if there's a cache hidden there, the surprise of finding out there's a cache hidden somewhere I pass every day, and knowing I'm one of few people who know about it.


2) I need more exercise, don't we all? But I get bored way to easy to be satisfied with walking the same trail everyday. This way I have been introduced to several parks and greenways I never would have knew even existed... and get a nice workout with every cache.


3) I had this Garmin eTrex Legend sitting around collecting dust and this is a way to let it feel needed again. The hubby and I bought it a couple years ago and had used it for routing when we were an OTR driving team.


4) The hubby still drives truck and I have alot of weekends home alone. Caching gets me out of the house and gives me something to do other than veg-out on the couch watching TV.


Fun, exercise, adventure, stealth, secrets.... what's not to love!

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I love being outdoors and geocaching is just another reason to get outdoors. Sometimes it even forces me out when I'm feeling a bit lazy.


It also allows us to discover new, interesting places - some of which are in my own backyard and I may never have found them if not for geocaching.

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MooseMaMa and I are grandparents and we cache for many reasons. Love of the outdoors, the thrill of the "hunt", because is fun to hold hands in the woods, friendly competition between us, because we never met a cacher we didn't like.


Life's a journey that contains goals...caching includes many journeys, with (hopefully) many attainable goals. Caching affords hundreds of different sights, sounds, and smells in nature. Then there's the thrill: the thrill of the physical hunt; the thrill of using WOW technology; and yes...the thrill of the find - opening that box to see what's inside - that satisfies the "kid" which still lives inside grandparents.




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I no longer watch any television at all. There are myriad little places that people know about , places of historic or cultural or natural significance and beauty that are infinitely more interesting than who is diddling who on the tube. It is also a good way to get a little exercise in.

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It also allows us to discover new, interesting places - some of which are in my own backyard and I may never have found them if not for geocaching.

This is so true.


I can't count the number of times I've been hunting for a cache and said to myself "I've been by here a million times and I never knew this place was here!".


And when I travel someplace, I get to explore areas that are so off the beaten tourist path that I really feel like I've been able to get a better feel for the true character of an area.


For me, the most important reason is that geocaching has given me an opportunity to spend time with my son doing something special that really interests us both. :lol:

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For me it is the thrill of the hunt. Niether myself or my husband are hunters, so geocaching works for us. It is like shopping, you just have to do it. Plus, I love being outdoors and my kids love to go out into the woods too, so it is the perfect family activity.

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Just throwing out a few of the reasons why I cache:


I have found many caches that give history lessons of the area. Whether that area be where I live or a place I am visiting with work. I often know more about an area that I'm visiting than the locals because of things I learn while caching and those locals ask me to take them to the places I reference.


It is a thrill to be a "modern day treasure hunter" and find the bounty.


The friendships with fellow cachers are very strong and lifelong.


Having talked with a family that home-schools their children I looked at caching in a whole new light. They got involved in it to educate their children. They use it for physical education, geography, history, and problem solving. The hobby / sport is so many things to each individual.

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I am writing a newspaper article on caching and want to know why people cache, what are some of the challenges you have faced and are any grandparents caching? Thanks, carolina7

You all are Great! Thanks for all the responses. This may be the healthiest thing happening in America. carolina7

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Because I can show and tell visitors some interesting historical facts about our local area, take them to some different places in the hills, show them some views that don't show up on any standard tour guide.


A way to show my kids the great outdoors and pass on some of my love for the off the main track places. A chance to show my kids how geography comes alive and is all around us. How clouds can tell us what the weather could be, and wheather we should head for shelter or stay and bask in the sun.


Because its so much fun to be active when you are losing your youth, and a way to stay youthful.

Edited by Tahosa and Sons
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My cardiologist had told me to exercise, and I chose walking as a reasonable way to accomplish that and also get out of the office. I soon got bored with just walking around the block. Then I heard about geocaching and decided to try it ... the rest is history. I enjoy the problem-solving and exploration aspects of geocaching and also learning more about local history. Geocaching has allowed me to see many scenic and interesting places, while getting my prescribed exercise.

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I cache for all of the above reasons and because I love the rush I get as the miles turn into tenths of miles, which turn into feet, which turn into 'Arriving at Destination'. I LOVE destinations!


Wish I could get my husband into it. He used to think I was nuts; now he just shakes his head, smirking. He's coming around, I can feel it! :lol:

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Besides all the great responses above, it's a family thing for us, too. I have an 8 year old son and a 5 year old daugther. Mom's busy with school these days, so caching is a great way for me and the kids to get out of the house and give her some quiet study time. There are so few activities that can please both kids at the same time, but caching certainly does! And even without participating, Mom has already started saying things like "Is there a cache in that park?"..."Did anyone find your caches this weekend?"..."Hey, can you use this for a trade item?" When this semester is over, she'll be hitting the trails with the rest of us!

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.....to boldly go where no man has gone before. Well maybe just a few fellow Geocachers!!


Seriously, the 6 top reasons I like to go geocaching are:

  • Spend quality time with my whole family while driving to, walking to and searching for a geocache.
  • Force myself to get out more often and enjoy the outdoors.
  • Discover new places that I have never been before.
  • The whole idea of "treasure hunting" - just the child in me coming out.
  • A good reason to put my semi-geeky skills to work (Internet, electronics, programming, GPS, etc)
  • Because I can.

And finally.... Scenes like this.... Look at this Picture

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I've been shocked at all the places I've gone to with geocaching just a few miles from home that I've never seen before, and never would have seen otherwise.


It's also something to do when vacationing, because those blasted geocaches are everywhere, and you'd be quite hard-pressed to vacation someplace where there are no geocaches.

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1: I found it's a good way to get my kids a little more active. If they think they are playing with technology rather than "hiking" they are more inclined to get outdoors.


2: It's something the whole family can do together. Not a lot of specific athletic requirements (unless heading for a 4+ terain) etc. Besides buying a GPSr there is not a lot of additional gear required if you already have shoes and a jacket. (this of course is discussable, but I had to add nothing else to my gear collection)


3: Seeing new locations while being a tourist. Geocaching is a great way to be a tourist. You rely on locals to get you to the REAL cool places, not the ones that the travel information booth knows about. This to me is a far more interesting way to visit new areas.


4: Practice for navigational skills. Geocaching can teach folks many valuable navigational skills which can be applied to other activities such as hiking,fishing,hunting,search & rescue....... etc.


5: It's fun.

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Hi, if you're still writing your article about geocaching and grandkids, and if this helps:


Unlike some of the "lifers" here, I only recently stumbled into this game following the article in Parade magazine last fall. I take my grandkids hiking, and thought the geocaching would add an extra fun element of "treasure seeking" to our hikes, also giving me a chance to talk to them about satellites, technology, navigation, etc. They're very young, so as little as I know about these topics, I can still impress them with my smarts.


Since I still haven't made the time to get proficient at using my GPS, etc, I'm not so much a bonafide geocacher yet, more of a "poser" -- oh, geez, I'm not even a "real" geek, I'm just a "poser geek" -- how bad is that??


so, yeah, if you want to describe in your article the full gamut of folks in this game, then at the other end of the spectrum from the "extreme sport cachers" who scuba, or who rappel into ravines for that Level 5 prize, are folks like me who just do it in a low-level, noncompetitive, casual level of fun. But I did take the lead on organizing a local CITO event here in Iowa for Earth Day, and I'll be taking my grandkids with me there for more of that insidious "teaching by example".......


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I started because I saw article in a magazine about it and my dad had a gps sitting around cloecting dust. So me my gps and my camera set off for a little hike and when I got to the spot. It was this amazeing photo spot right in my back yard that I never knew about. Then it clicked hey I can get others to scout my photo locations for me. Then it became a addiction and when down hill from there.

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I'll give you a list off the top of my head:


Because I like having unexpectedly experienced and seen:


- a beautiful hidden lake only 5 minutes from where I work which features a beautiful sunset view. Also features a gaggle of geese who all have loud personalities like a bunch of New York cabbies spouting opinions together in a local bar... (very amusing)


- same neighborhood: a tree that fell down about 50 years ago, decided not to die, sent up 6 branches to become 6 trees all growing from a horizontal trunk


- same neighborhood again: a georgous waterfall that survived all the surburban developement that grew around it, and remains for all to enjoy


- going to the coast and exploring a hidden cave that even the locals didn't even know about


- same trip to the coast... follow a mysterious path that seemed to go nowhere, come out to an incredible view of the Pacific ocean from on high where you can watch waves crashing on where the cliff juts out into the water... as the rest of the coastline curves and fades into blue...


- Flying to another city, feeling hungry after arriving, and only knowing that you can eat at this geocaching site... then finding myself in a beautiful old building which was a combination restaurant and WW1/WW2 AIR MUSEUM with historical planes in the PARKING lot for pete's sake. And the polished wood walls are all covered with historical images and artifacts, and instead of music overhead, there are classic radio broadcasts from the time. Then I get to find out they have a full-on GOURMET SEAFOOD BUFFET for only 12 bucks on top of it. Took me 4 hours to FINALLY get around to finding THAT cache! Eventually! :mad:


- Showing my friend in that city some features in his own neighborhood he didn't know about, such as:


- a Japanese water garden built next to and by a local water treatment plant (a building which Paramount had used as the locale for Starfleet Academy - I think that's hysterical)


- a mysterious shut-down, beautiful college campus that was still being maintained, hedges trimmed, flowers planted, etc. but was DESERTED. I swear, that place just HAD to be haunted...


- A zilllion-dollar old 52-room mansion on several acres that was donated and now actually open to the general public as a city park...


- an intensely beautiful view from on top of a mountain to the amazing carpet of city lights below... and stars shining brightly above... can't normally see stars like that in the big city...


And for the vicarious geocaching experience:


Reading the insane logs you can find on the famed "Quantum Leap" geocache. That cache deserves it's own Indiana Jones-style film. ;)


Caching is like opening yourself to magic that you didn't even know existed in this world. It's more than finding the containers... it's opening your eyes to more than you ever know could be wonderful about being alive... to experience surprises you never knew that this plane of existence has to offer to you. :P

Edited by Sparrowhawk
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i love the surprise of never quite knowing where i'm going or what i'm going to see.


i love the challenge of the regular hunt, and of the FTF race. i race bicycles when i'm not caching, and a FTF hunt is kind of like a race, only you don't know where the start is, or where the finish is, or when the start time is, or who else is in the race, or even what equipment to bring.


since i started caching, my race times are faster, too.


thre is some reliable research that the acts of hunting and foraging trigger in us a mood elevating response, what i assume to be a throwback to the days when we HAD to hunt and forage. it would have been a good evolutionary trait to be made happy by these things.


i can see where geocaching can mimic these behaviors.


additionally, i like to trace the interwoven paths of people and objects to the same places at different times. it's hard to be completely, utterly alone even in some remote place when you have in your hand the signatures of dozens of people who have been in exactly that place handling the same objects.


please feel free to drop me a line if i can help you in any way.

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Everyone likes to achieve something and likes to be acknowledged for that achievement. You find the cache and you post that find.....

And don't underestimate the hiding aspect of the game either. That is very satisfying also. ('specially when a good log entry is placed)

Don't analyze it too much 'though - just try it, you'll buy it.

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Why do I cache? I asked myself that just last night while struggling through mud and briars in the dark during a futile attempt to find a small box of worthless crap.


Caching is something that I can do with my 7-year-old granddaughter. Like me, she loves nature, maps, gadgets, and finding "treasure". Unlike me, she likes trading small polished stones, foreign coins, and McToys. Also unlike me, she is able to crawl around on her hands and knees and investigate hollow logs, etc. So we make a good team.


As a result of spending so much time caching, my granddaughter can read a topo map as well as most adults, can use a compass and a GPS, and can identify many plants, trees, and animal tracks. She has found snakes, frogs, toads, and even a hibernating skunk while caching--has seen deer, fox, and a bald eagle--has waded across a swamp, and learned to paddle a canoe (sort of).


But I often go caching by myself, too. I don't know why. It's fun. I love to walk in the woods, and need to do it frequently. That is one of the few things that the voices in my head agree on. :o

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Its something my wife and I can do together.


We get to see interesting places that we woudl otherwise not even know exist.


Gives us something to do on the weekend - maybe take a tour around some of the nearby towns, and pick up a few cahces along the way.


Exercise my body.


Exercise my brain.


The thrill of finding it - like going hunting, but without having to kill anything.

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There are two main reasons I'm hooked:


1) Something fun and healthful to do with the family - in particular my six-year-old son, who is my primary caching partner. We've discovered many cool hiking places near our home that we never would have come across otherwise.


2) Something to do when I'm out of town on business, besides sitting in hotel rooms, watching TV. I've discovered some really cool places that aren't in the guide books, because a fellow cacher wanted to share his or her special place. I've traipsed along the beach in California and Massachussetts, slogged through bogs in Ireland, and even sauntered through community parks in Evansville, Indiana, all the while looking for an ammo can or a piece of Tupperware just barely hidden from view.


Every hunt is a different adventure, and you can always find something to match your mood and the time available.

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Geocaching is a great way to get out of the house and off the couch! My 3 children and I have faced a few challenges of hard to find caches and it has taught them to try harder, to not give up so fast, and that sometimes success is just in the hunt itself. We get to spend one on on time together if I take them out individually. This gives them a chance to open up without their siblings around. It gives me a chance to listen. Geocaching has also helped them learn to work as a team, gives them a chance to use their individual talents and strengths to help us find the final "prize", and has taught them that there may be an easier way to do something than the way that is right in front of them. We have used geocaching as exercise, to discover new places right in our own city (most of which we haven't seen before, or have gotten to enjoy in new ways), to even learn navigation and problem solving. I think it's great when we charge up a hill without stopping to rest or feel as if our muscles will give out before we reach the top. It is a kick to realize we are getting in shape AND having fun. I personally love being out in nature so the trail hikes are my 'thing'. The kids don't mind that and are beginning to enjoy simply listening to the world around us, opening our eyes to the things we don't often notice. I know the kids prefer finding caches around town, spending a few hours driving and walking around trying to find as many as we can for the day. We have really enjoyed geocaching and look forward to doing it more often as summer approaches. I feel in little ways it is teaching my kids skills that they can apply to other things in their lives. I would never admit this to them lest I ruin the fun :D


Lori :D

Fairly Odd Family in San Diego CA


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Well, our youngest sone introduced it to us before he had any kids, and we enjoyed it a lot. Then, we started taking our oldest son's kids with us. It's a lot of fun to spend the time with the grandkids, and, they have younger eyes which helps when looking for the cache. :D

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