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Geocaching

Discussion in 'The Breakroom' started by Crocodilo, Jan 13, 2009.

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Are you a Geocacher?

  1. Never heard of

    5 vote(s)
    4.8%
  2. Tried but did not follow up

    7 vote(s)
    6.7%
  3. Occasional cacher

    41 vote(s)
    39.4%
  4. Devoted fanatic

    12 vote(s)
    11.5%
  5. Have heard of it, but haven't tried it

    39 vote(s)
    37.5%
  1. lamepro

    lamepro Loaded Pockets

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    i would also like to see a list of good gps units to get.
     
  2. Corporal Punishment

    Corporal Punishment Empty Pockets

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    I totally concur with bigfoot... geo-caching is addictive. It feels strangely rewarding to find a well hidden cache and you start to feel compelled to bag as many caches as you can... LOL.

    Both REI.com and Amazon.com are very trustworthy merchants that stock the entire Garmin line at a fair price.
    Like I mentioned, the Garmin eTrex HCx series is a very good, reliable unit at a very reasonable price (about $200). Although they are just a bit pricier, I also just LOVE the old Garmin Map 60Csx (highly sensitive, simple user controls, intuitive menus, nice ergo design IMO), price as low as $275. There are newer "better" units with more bells, whistles and memory of course, but the price commeasurately jumps too, and frankly, I don't like some of the so-called improvements (like the awkward rolling-wheel controller, the fragile unrecessed touch screen, and most critically for me, their prodigious rate of power consumption). Unless you are certain that they have the SiRF II chip set, I would avoid getting any of the inexpensive units available at places like Target or Walmart, tempting though they may be.

    Sometime when I have more time, I'll try to do a comparative review of the various GPS units and my experience with them (I've owned or used about 10 of them, starting with the earliest military Magellans - which would lose satellite lock in the middle of the desert if you so much as sneezed :rolleyes: ).

    In the interests of full disclosure, I just wanted to mention that although the GPS units I have mentioned all come with a set of base maps which are sufficient for geo-caching, waypoint tracking, and general navigation, if you really want detailed maps (street maps, or topo maps), you will need to buy the software for it separately. Like if you want turn by turn directions, or a handy guide to local hotels, restaurants, and businesses, then you'd have to buy an additional software package. Cost? about $100.

    Good luck and good hunting!
     
  3. yoyosma

    yoyosma Loaded Pockets

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    My new 3G iPhone was the impetus to finding our first geocache 2 weeks ago, you know, with the GPS and geocaching app and all. We're hooked already! Have one we're hiking out tomorrow to find. Too cool!
     
  4. spyguy

    spyguy Loaded Pockets

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    do you need the etreks versions for geocaching? i have a Garmin nuvi 250 and recently found a book on geocaching in the library
    and thought it would be pretty neat to try but i am not sure if i have the right kind of gps unit would hate to start and find out i have the wrong unit and cannot complete the adventure
     
  5. cybe

    cybe Empty Pockets

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    I'm not very fond of Geocaching "geeks" driving as close as they can get to the geocache and then walk in to it.

    There are quite a few near here where I live at "special places" rarely visited before that are now being visited regularly by geocachers.

    The people living even closer to these caches and don't know about geocaching must be wondering why people keep showing up all of a sudden.
     
  6. InspektorGadget

    InspektorGadget Loaded Pockets

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    My family and I do it on occasion when looking for some outdoor family time. It's relaxing and fun (sometimes irritating) and gets you into the great outdoors. To me an added perk is that it has led me to places I didn't know of in my area. The remains of an old mansion, a way, out of the way walking path, a historic walking path self guided tour right near my house. I think that I have enjoyed finding new unknown (to me) places more than anything. Of course my kids bragging that they found found it before me is always funny.
     
  7. Geocaching is not only great fun but an excellent teaching/training aid. I spend many a happy hour searching around for caches and to those who may not have tried it this may seem a little sad.

    However, in doing so I have taught my 9 year old daughter geography, map reading, maths, environmental protection issues, what to EDC .......... the list goes on. Every trip out can be made into and adventure and advice and training has been passed on without her knowing that it is happening!! Fun and education al rolled into one.

    Have cached accross Europe and the UK and have Travel Bugs accross the World.

    Further, except for the initial outlay on the GPS the whole experience is FREE. Not many hobbies can claim that......

    Have now moved up to a Garmin OREGON 300 with UK maps and this doubles as in car satnav too.

    :roof:
     
  8. crossroads

    crossroads Empty Pockets

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    I've never heard of this, but it sounds freaking awesome. Gonna have to get myself a GPS sometime and haul in!
     
  9. Ken C.

    Ken C. Loaded Pockets

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    I have been geocaching since 2006. I go by Kalooch135 on the geocaching.com website. I love it, my kids love it, and it's great fun.
     
  10. rhazkhal

    rhazkhal Loaded Pockets

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    I think I've been in a cave for far too long, I've barely found out about Geocaching few months ago and now I'm getting my whole EDC set up ready to find some caches.
     
  11. yoyosma

    yoyosma Loaded Pockets

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    Yeah, you really need to get your EDC prepared before going out. I got a sideways glance when I slung my loaded jumbo over my shoulder when we set out but :censored: if we didn't use practically everything in there! Maps, tissues (!!), gloves, bananas, nuts, pen, knife, gps, notepad, etc. Even my kid has her own water bottle, snacks, FAK (that she thought of and packed herself), rolly-poly, whistle and flashlight.
     
  12. NinjaClerk

    NinjaClerk Loaded Pockets

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    The next poll should be "What type of GPSr do you use?" I have a GPSMap 60csx and I love it. I started with the eTrex Legend, and really like my upgrade.
     
  13. DSC

    DSC Banned

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    Speaking of that, I seem to have some sort of thing about collecting GPS receivers. I have two Trimble Trimpak (AN/PSN-10) military ones, a Magellan Trailblazer XL, a Magellan eXplorist XL, Magellan Crossover, and probably a couple more I can't think of offhand. I also have one in my vehicle for APRS. A friend has a Tom-Tom and it is great for vehicle nav.

    I'd still like to get a good Trimble Scout. Always wanted one of those, but the current ones are much better.

    I used the eXplorist XL mostly when I used to geocache...
     
  14. NinjaClerk

    NinjaClerk Loaded Pockets

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    Okay--I forgot about the Garmin Nuvi 250W that I have for the car. Prior to that I had the Micro$oft Streets & Trips with the GPS antenna. That was pretty cool when my wife and I first got it. We still use it occasionally. Having a giant laptop in the front seat with you does tend to keep you warm on cold winter drives...
     
  15. wenestvedt

    wenestvedt Loaded Pockets

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    I badly want to try geocaching, but I'm on a tight budget for a receiver. Also, I have a terrible problem where I get lost the first time I go somewhere new, and so I'd like a GPS unit that could help me get where I am going.

    It seems that most GPS receivers are either for hiking/geocaching *or* for use in a car with turn-by-turn directions. Are there any that do both?
     
  16. IPDSystems

    IPDSystems Empty Pockets

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    I love it.

    I have a Garmin 60CSX. I have done it in several countries while on vacation, as well as localy near home.

    This spring i plan on emplacing a couple of caches and registering them on geocaching.com
     
  17. DSC

    DSC Banned

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    The Magellan Crossover will do both, but not either one exceptionally well. I'd say it does each thing adequately. And it's water resistant, which may be useful.
     
  18. NTRotty

    NTRotty Loaded Pockets

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    Anyone into geocaching ? If so, what GPS do you prefer and your experience with geocaching. Looks like a great outdoor activity and could be the basis for purchasing lots of cool gear (backpack, compasses,electronic gear, etc.)

    Let me know what your experience is and how you got started.
     
  19. DB

    DB Kilted Moderator

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    There's a discussion going on here already discussing geocaching that you might be interested in.
     
  20. vipers

    vipers Loaded Pockets

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    It might be ood to start with learning basic navigation skills.  Here's a decent link based on FM21-26 Map Reading and Land Navigation.  Relying on the GPS just means you are well and truly lost when you no longer have the GPS.  Having used one of the on street turn by turn mapping GPS's it's really useful to have enough experience and knowledge to sanity check the answers it's giving you too.

    If money is tight you could even practice some of your new skills by geochaching without a GPS.  Find and print a decent map for a cache.  Mark the map with the coordinates and plan a route in.  Navigate to the general vicinity.  In my couple experiences with caching once the GPS says I am "there" it's still a matter of searching.  You margin of error may be bigger than with a GPS but with a few clues and a little diligence you can probably still find some caches.

    In fact that's largely how I geocached the couple times I have.  A marked map and terrain association to the vicinity. The GPS is mostly to narrow the error margin for my searching as I close in.  One of the caches I found had a posting from someone that just followed the GPS pointer.  Two stream crossings and brute forcing through heavy undergrowth got them to the cache.  The cache that was right by the trail that started just a little bit out of the way from where we both parked.  Guess which way I took?  :-X

    Navigation skills let you make the most of a GPS.  You also have them to fall back on at times when you aren't carrying the GPS or it fails you.  Your brain is the ultimate EDC.