Geocaching For The Whole Family

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I first heard of geocaching a few years ago when my sister told me about it. If you’re not familiar with geocaching, I’ll give you a little explanation. A geocache is a little container hidden somewhere. It might be something as simple as a log book and a pencil or it might be a metal box full of trinkets and treasures. People hide these things and then log their locations on geocaching sites using longitude and latitude so that other people can find them.

Normally, the geocache is a Tupperware container or a metal box. Once you find the cache, you either sign the log book or take one of the trinkets and leave one of your own. Geocaches can be hidden almost anywhere – under a bench, attached to street signs, inside logs, behind bushes, or hanging from trees but they are never buried.

So now you know what it is… the next question is how do you find them? Geochaching is an outdoor GPS based treasure hunt so you need to use a geocaching GPS unit to find them. The unit searches for coordinates of existing caches and then helps you find them by telling you what distance and direction to go in.

When I first heard about geocaching, I was certain I wouldn’t be able to do it in my area. I live in rural Vermont so I doubted that there would really be much around to find. While I am sure there are lots more geocaches to find in the city, I was really surprised to find several in my area to locate all within a few miles of my house.

The Geomate.jr  is a very user friendly GPS unit that is ideal for kids or people who are new to geocaching.  It’s a handheld device that fits comfortably in your hand.  It comes with a neck strap so you can wear it around your heck when you need your hands free. Not being an overly technical person, I was a bit worried that this unit would be complicated to use.  I was thrilled to find out that isn’t the case.

You simply turn the unit on (it uses to AAA batteries) and let it find a GPS signal just like the GPS in your car does.  After it finds a signal, it tells you the distance to the closest geocache to where you are.  I was totally amazed to find one 1.6 miles from me! I have no clue who hid a geocache in the middle of nowhere but they did.

Now geocaching is something that’s done by a wide range of people.  There are beginners and experts so not all geocaches are the same difficulty level or the same size.  Obviously the tiny ones hid up the side of a mountain are harder to find than the Tupperware boxes placed behind a rock in the city park. That’s why there’s a handy difficulty level indicator and size indicator on the Geomate.jr screen.  If you’re just starting, aim for the geocaches rated easier and larger.  There is also an indicator for terrain so you can look for geocaches with easy terrain or difficult terrain depending on your level of expertise.  Some can be walked to, some you need to hike a bit and some require climbing or even swimming!

The Geomate.jr has a bunch of other neat features.  You can set a home position so that when you’re done finding your geocache, you can get back to where you started.  The unit will automatically show you the closest geocache to where you are but you can cycle through them to see the next if you’re not interested in finding that one.  Once you’ve found a geocache, you can mark it as found so you don’t accidentally find it again in the future.

I really love the Geomate.jr.  Being new to geocaching, I wanted the kids and I to be able to enjoy this without spending $300 on a geocaching GPS unit.  At about $50, this is an amazing product that lets us enjoy geocaching.  It’s like an adventure to kids and it gets them off the couch and outside as well as being educational.  There are websites that let you look up approximate locations of geocaches in your area so all you have to do is drive (or walk) to the approximate area and then use the Geomate.jr to find the geocache. Supposedly there is one about five miles from my home on a hiking trail.  We’re going to try to find that next weekend.

Connect with Geomate.jr on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with all the latest product news. You can buy Geomate.jr at Target and on Amazon.

 

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Comments

  1. Momma Teri says
    I would love love love to have one these for family fun with the kids. My husband is such a geek about things like this even he would join in. It is also amazing that the jr comes with about 250,000 preloaded geocaches to find!
  2. littleangel_mw says
    I learned : The Geomate.jr has a nifty little feature called ‘Home’. The GeoMateJr will navigate you ‘home’!

    littleangel_mw at yahoo dot com
  3. I learned that they are sold at REI!
  4. Lisa (Lisa's World of Books) says
    I learned where geocashe are hidden
  5. I have a friend who belongs to the local geocaching club and he's always trying to get me to bring the kids. I think they're finally old enough to try!

    I had assumed the geocaches were buried but the Geomate.jr site cleared that up for me...
  6. I am following your blog, publicly and I learned that the geocache jr comes pre-loaded with more than 250,000 geocache locations. That's unreal! I had know idea there would be so many.
  7. BeautyToLove says
    -I learned that the Geomate Jr. is now sold at Target.

    I Follow You Publicly via Google Friend Connect
    ***Google Friend Connect Name: Beauty To Love

    ***[PLEASE NOTE: I *DO* Follow you Publicly in GFC. GFC has been having problems and may not show My User Name in Your GFC List, even though I *DO* Follow You Publicly......and it shows that I do on my end. I'm working with Google to fix the issue.]

    aliaskys (at) yahoo . com
    THANK YOU! :)
  8. Griffin Gonzales says
    I would love love love to get into geocaching, but I don't have a GPS. Crossing my fingers on this one! Thanks for the contest and the blog!
  9. Over 250,000 preloaded geocache locations
  10. Jessica @FoundtheMarbles says
    My boys would LOVE this!!
  11. Raven In A Blue Room says
    Google Friends Connect - following you publicly as (Louis)

    Geomate.jr now available at Target.com!

    Thank you for hosting this giveaway

    Louis
    pumuckler {at} gmail {dot} com
  12. other people cannot track you
  13. Wow, I went to the website and saw that this would be such a great activity for my family to get into. I saw that it's pretty kid friendly and looks like a lot of treasure hunting fun!
  14. karenmed409 says
    Woot, I just learned out to Geocaching from our big guy on a scout campout, we had a blast. the boys were showing me how to read the compass.. I learned from the website Caches are never buried.. you will be surprised on how well they are hidden when you find them
    karenmed409 at comcast dot net
  15. I can buy mine at REI and my whole family will enjoy it!
  16. I learned that there over 250,000 pre-loaded cache locations covering all 50 U.S. states
  17. Carrie Phelps says
    I had no idea there are are hidden geocaches, this sounds like fun!
    carriedust@yahoo.com
  18. Shooting Stars Mag says
    i learned that you can buy these at target!

    lauren51990 at aol dot com
  19. I would love one of these this is something Ive been interested in trying for awhile now.Over on their site I learned that the Geomate.jr is preloaded with over 250,000 cache locations covering all 50 U.S. states that is so cool.
    flanagan@mebtel.net
  20. I would love to have a geomate Jr. I have heard wonderful things about Geocaching and like to take my kids for little adventures. Please pick me!
  21. I learned that to make sure that your first geocaching adventure is the best possible, Geomate Jr. has actually taken out geocaches that haven’t been found for awhile or are too difficult to find.

    slbastin at gmail dot com
  22. NW Homesteader says
    The batteries last for over 12 hours of continuous use!!!
  23. I learned that the Geomate jr is available at Target
  24. I learned that there are 250,000 pre-loaded cache locations! Sounds like a ton of fun for me and my kids!
  25. I didn't know this was so easy! The website explains everything - I am normally lost with this type of thing!

    e-mail: lucky02130 (at) gmail (dot) com
  26. GFC follower
    I learned that all Apisphere Geomate.jr products are warranted to be free from defects in materials or workmanship for one year from the date of purchase.
  27. Linda Meyers-Gabbard aka Ladyblueeyez1960 says
    you cannot use the Geomate.jr to track people and other people cannot track you. So your privacy is all yours!
  28. we love to geocache: learned how easy this would be for my son to use and have pre-loaded caches!!!! awesome.
    hoss311@aol.com
  29. hedgerhousehold says
    Has over 250,000 pre-loaded cache locations
    jenhedger at hotmail dot com
  30. I learned they have an update kit to show new caches around the world.
  31. This has been around for a while and I had never heard about it!
  32. I learned that all you have to do is turn it on & you are ready to go!
    My daughter loves to Geocache & this would be so mnice to have!
  33. I learned that if you hold both buttons down, you can store a position, so you can return easily.
    eagjolly at gmail dot com
  34. I'm a GFC follower, and I learned that geocaches aren't supposed to be buried.
    luckyjd2k at gmail dot com
  35. Stephanie-jean Life:SemiCrunchy says
    I learned that the GeoMate Jr is sold at Target
  36. I love to geocache!!! I can't wait to share this hobby with my daughter, who's 1 1/2 now. This would be perfect for her.

    Ok, I follow your blog AND I learned the GeoMate Jr. is available at Target!

    lindseygalvez at gmail dot com
  37. I learned that Geomate doesn't include geocaches that are difficult to find or haven't been found in a while (less frustration!)
    rlawrence110 at yahoo dot com

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