Adventist Youth Honors Answer Book/Recreation/Geocaching (North American Division)

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Geocaching (North American Division)
North American Division


Skill Level 1
Year of Introduction: 2005



1. Define Geocaching.

Geocaching is an entertaining outdoor adventure game for GPS users. Participating in a cache hunt is a good way to take advantage of the wonderful features and capability of a GPS unit. The basic idea is to have individuals and organizations set up caches all over the world and share the locations of these caches on the Internet. GPS users can then use the location coordinates to find the caches. Once found, a cache may provide the visitor with a wide variety of rewards. All the visitor is asked to do is if they get something they should try to leave something for the cache.

2. Identify the technological tools necessary for geocaching.

  • Geocache membership
  • A GPS device or a mobile phone
  • The geocaching app and access to the app
  • Other non-technological tools you may take, including:
    • Extra logbooks
    • Pen/Pencils
    • Torch/head torch
    • Spare batteries
    • Sunscreen
    • Hat
    • Rain poncho
    • Water
    • Multi-tool
    • Swag
    • Grabbing tool
    • Retractable mirror

3. Define or identify the following geocaching terms:

a. Container

The container is what contains the geocache. Your container should be waterproof to protect cache contents from rain, snow, ice, and condensation. If you place your cache in direct sunlight, choose a container that won’t degrade quickly from exposure. The lid and base should be made from the same material. If they are made from different materials, the seal will degrade faster.

b. Log book

c. Cache Owner (CO)

d. Coordinates

e. Muggle

f. Smilie/Find

g. Caching Name/geonic/username (Login)

h. Travel Bug/Travel Coin

4. Define and give examples of the different sizes of caches.

a. Extra Small/Micro/Nano

b. Small

c. Medium/regular

d. Large

e. Other

5. Define and identify on a caching map the following types of geocaches:

a. Traditional

This is the original cache type consisting, at a bare minimum, a container and a logbook. Normally you'll find a Tupperware container, ammo box, or bucket filled with goodies. The coordinates listed on the traditional cache page is the exact location for the cache. The general rule of thumb is, "If you take an item, leave an item of equal or greater value, and write in the logbook." Some caches are themed, so make sure to read the description before going on a hunt.

b. Multi-cache

This is a traditional cache in a tiny container holding usually nothing more than a small roll of paper and pencil on which to record your visit; and you may need to bring your own pencil

c. Mystery

d. Virtual

This is not a physical cache, but rather a place of usually historical or local interest; that is, a commemorative plaque, sign, object, or building. Virtual caches are grandfathered on New virtual caches are now accepted only on

e. Earthcache

f. Letterbox OR Whereigo

6. What items may be left in a geocache? Which items may not?

7. What is meant by Cache In, Trash Out (CITO)?

An activity held sacred by Pathfinders everywhere, Trash Out simply means to take along a plastic trash bag while hunting Geocaches and picking up trash on the way.

8. Demonstrate two ways of finding the location of a geocache in your area on a caching website or caching app.

Have the student look on the website, This is a family-friendly, kid-friendly website. Two methods of finding a location are:

  • From the Main Page at the top drop-down menu, click on "HIDE & SEEK A CACHE". Then enter a zip code in the "By Postal Code" box.
  • From the Main Page on the top drop-down menu, click on "Hide and Seek a Cache" then enter an address in the "Address" box.
  • From the Main Page at the top drop-down menu, click on "HIDE & SEEK A CACHE". Then choose a state in the "By State" box.

9. Use the following features (or their equivalent) on a GPS receiver and website or caching app:

a. Find by GC Code

b. Find by location

c. Filter locations (choose just those with a Difficulty rating of 3 or lower and Terrain of 3 or lower, for example)

d. Compass

e. Map Directions

f. Description

g. Previous logs

h. Hint

10. Find three geocaches in your area, at least one of which must be a regular (traditional) cache.

11. Read and discuss Matthew 6:19-21 and Jeremiah 29:13, and determine their relevance to geocaching.

Matthew 6:19-21 (NKJV)
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Sometimes geocaches succumb to the elements. The containers can get broken, or the cache could be found by someone who doesn't know what it is, and they throw it away or destroy it. Sometimes the log in the cache is too soaked to sign. When you find one of these, it would be good to think of this verse. We can depend on our treasure in heaven!

Jeremiah 29:13 (NKJV)
And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

It is possible to visit some caches several times before finally finding it. Sometimes the cache owner can be exceedingly clever and hide a cache in plain sight. It is possible to look right at it and not recognize it for what it is, even though it is the one thing you are searching for! But persistence pays off. When you have trouble finding a cache, think about this verse, and take comfort in knowing that when you seek the Lord, you will always be repaid.

12. Discuss safety concerns you should consider when geocaching. View the attributes of a nearby cache to identify caching hazards identified by cache owners.

Dangers include heights, falls, traffic, rough terrain, poisonous plants (like poison ivy or poison oak), snakes, spiders, wild animals, strangers, etc. Do not geocache alone or at night in a remote area. Wear sturdy shoes as for hiking and make sure to take plenty of water when hiking to a remote area or for any distance. Let someone know what you are doing, where you are going, and when you expect to be back.