Geocaching: the new way to walk a fussy baby

Walking down a fussy baby

With a new baby, the frequency of family walks continues to increase.

A change of scenery does everyone good. Often I find a fussy afternoon baby is telling me to get out and do something with our day. A potent sleep-inducer, walks have also become part of our family’s bedtime ritual and are (almost) guaranteed to calm a fussy evening baby.

But, if you are anything like we are, it is more fun and motivating to have a destination.

Hidden treasure

What could be more fun for your child and your inner child alike than to go hunting for treasure?

Geocaching is the next frontier of social media, offline. It is a gesture of community hidden around every corner.

Geocaching is like entry-level orienteering. Instead of following your compass coordinates, you go for a walk or a drive with your cell phone or GPS to find little treasures hidden all over by fellow geocachers. There are dozens of caches within walking distance of our house and hundreds within an hour’s drive away.

The cache closest to our home has coins from all over the world. Two we visited this weekend were a drive away down nearby roads with spectacular scenes we would have otherwise missed.

How to Geocache

First visit http://www.geocaching.com/or install a geocaching application on your Smartphone to look for caches near your home or an area that you want to visit. Best to choose one with easy terrain that is not to hard to find for your first one.

Next, follow the map on your Smartphone or GPS to a given location (the map usually gets you within 10 metres or so) and then search for a little box or a big tub filled with goodies. There are often hints as to where to find it. The best advice I have gotten is to think of where you would hide a cache in the area.

Make sure you bring a pen for the log book and a few trinkets in case you want to take something from the cache and leave something in return.

Have fun!

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