Wednesday Whatabouts: Geocaching

  • Whatabouts (noun): the matters which one is occupied with

So, the hubs and I went on our first Geocaching “adventure” during our one-year anniversary trip to Lake Tahoe in 2008.

What the heck is Geocaching – you might ask?!  Yeah, I know!  That’s what we said.  

The best way I can describe it is that it’s like a world-wide treasure hunt using a hand-held GPS (or your iPhone).  The idea was first suggested to the hubs by an intern he worked with.  He asked if we:

  1. Liked the outdoors – YES
  2. Liked adventure – YES
  3. Liked random surprises – YES
  4. Owned a handheld GPS – NO

Well, no matter, he let us borrow his, because it’s a cool way to get outdoors and venture out to places that you might not normally go to!

Living up to our spontaneous nature we didn’t even finish unpacking before we had pulled up the Geocaching site on the computer, printed out the local coordinates, and put on our hiking shoes for our first treasure hunt!  It appeared that this short trek would take us less than 5 miles away from our hotel, along the 72-mile scenic route, to a small walking path overlooking Lake Tahoe!  And you can bet we were right on it like hunting hounds with our noses to the ground!  (Yeah, we’re totally dorky like that!)

In the picture below, if you jump behind the stone wall, there is a lil’ dirt path that leads down to the tall pine tree in the bottom right hand corner.  At the base of that tree are a TON of rocks.  After 20 minutes of scouring the rocky incline, we found our first cache!  It was nothing more than a lil’ tupperware container full of odds and ends, and a log book to record your name and date…but it will still exciting!

Lake Tahoe!

Since we were visiting Tahoe in May – too late for skiing, too early for swimming – we decided to go on another Geocaching adventure by hiking the area trails!  We got some unplanned exercise, got to see a sunset we would have otherwise missed, spent some QT together, and shared a few good laughs over our hiking woes.  The first hiking trail was a Level 1 (Easy) and took us along a summer horse-riding dirt path about 1.5 miles away.  We landed ourselves in a rock quarry and acted like toddlers climbing up and over everything.  We ended up sitting on some long, smooth rocks in front of a hidden pond – and decided to chow down on some snacks when the hubs slipped into a rock crevice and…TA-DA…found the Geo Cache resting in a small, metal lunchbox. 

Geo Cache Found!

The afternoon treasure hunt we chose was a Level 3 and really took us on a hiking adventure! 

Hiked a few trails…

Crossed a few waterfalls...

Climbed a few rocks...

...then turned around for a spectacular view!

Anyway, the point is that you should check this thing out! It’s a pretty cool activity to do with your family or solo if you’re feeling in need of some get-some-fresh-air down time! Geocaching will get you moving and help you enjoy the outdoors! It’s a lil’ bit of exercise without feeling like exercise, which is always a good thing! And it’s a simple way to add a little variety and adventure into your day, which is great for the soul! Can’t get better than that!

TRY IT OUT!  Have a blast and please let me know what you think of it!

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