Geocaching

Evening All!

Just toying with the idea of introducing Geocaching as a more ‘tech savy’ form of orienteering.

Has anyone had any success or failures trying to run this during an evening or weekend?

Looking forward to your opinions as always

Also probably because my phone spies on me and knew I googled Geocaching it also suggested this app called Munzee

VZ

Yeap. Successfully run it a few times over the years. Getting it through in a covid secure way maybe a challenge, but once things have calmed down a bit I’ll be bringing it back.

I used the standard Geocaching App, cadets plotted a route, cross matching the app locations to OS mapping so they could collect as many caches as possible in a set time, then went and did.

Some cadets used their own phone and data, others happily borrowed my spare.

We did try it a few years back using GPS receivers but the cadets seem more engaged with the phone versions. Can’t think why.

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Get to get out under DofE as well, plan routes based on caches

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Munzee now installed. Not a huge number in our local area, but I’ve been inspired enough to give it a fiddle. Definitely looks to have potential and is covid friendly. But does seem to eat data… We’ll see tomorrow!!

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@Batfink - seems you may actually get around to trying Munzee before I get a chance to.

I found this blogspot link about creating QR codes for it instead of buying them.

Let me know if you manage to figure it out before I do

Munzee Stickers

Ok… so lets say I want to do geocaching on my Sqn.

What’s required.

What do I need, paperwork, staff qual, admin, kit, to make this happen.

As detailed as possible please!

Big mega thanks! :+1:

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I would have thought geocaching would be easy to start and plan.

Quals needed would/should only be BEL/LLA because it is a navigation exercise in a local area. What ever you do for a NavEx or DofE should suffice.

Geocaching.com is a good start, there’s even an app; you don’t need the premium account. Easy to download on a mobile phone.

You can download locations to GPS devices or use the ‘hints’ and descriptions against each location for the cache to be found.

You could go one stage further by printing maps with pins to locations with a separate sheet for description and hints. Oh, isn’t that a DofE expedition route :man_shrugging:t2:

Is it not classed as orienteering? I seem to remember a previous discussion about this where it proved more difficult to run than expected

Rather depends how you are running it as an exercise. Are you letting the cadets loose in groups/pairs, or are they being led directly by staff members? If the former, then it is more like an orienteering exercise; the question would be how are you going to bound the area or supervise the groups? If the latter, then it’s just a standard day walk really.

This is often the problem with ‘orienteering’ style exercises in terms of sign off - it’s rarely described well how the exercise is going to be controlled.

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Admin order.
Map either with a prepopulated route which the group has planned or, a series of potential route options within an area to give the cadets options on the day.
Risk assessment.
Supervision plan if cadets are operating remotely.
AT ticket relative to area + first aid (I’d stick to doing it in BEL/LLA terrain)
Kit wise, a standard day of lowland leader kit for the troops. A mobile phone or two with Geocaching app installed (although in the post-covid world of “not sharing”, you’ll need more!). Some maps. You can do it via GPS receiver instead instead. Oh. And some data signal!

Personally I’ve never done it remotely supervised. I’ve always worked with small groups of 4-6, directly supervised, got them to plan a journey around a known Geocache rich area which is both full of interest and nav features. Ideally away from major roads etc and muggles (non Geocaching people).

Ideally you would have recently done a recce. Checked the caches are there. That they are safe and not in high risk locations or ones where cadets will have to do something unsafe to get them. That they are current and active. That they do not contain any “unsafe” contents or in an area where which could be risky (a recent cache I found is known as “junkie alley”).

Under the covid stuff there’s a definite lean towards “lead activity” rather than nav training. There’s also the covid issues around handling unknown stuff with unknown origins. Historically we mitigated this with a liberal application of HandSan - but I would feel uncomfortable with it at present - hence Munzee may prove a better option.

For me, it just brings another dimension to a day walk or nav exercise. It can be used to reinforce navigation training similar to orienteering. I also use to to relate features from Google Maps (which what the geocaching app uses), Satellite images (from Google earth) and OS 1:25, 1:50 or Harvey maps.

Even on day walks I’ve previously done with sqns I’ve often managed to show the cadets a Geocache or two along the way for interest (and to up my own logbook).

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Thanks for that info.
:+1::+1:

I can confirm, after multiple unsuccessful attempts, Munzees do exist!!! Looking at some of the dates they were hidden was a long time ago… And nobody has found them since!!

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I was able to purchase my ‘free’ starter pack only paid $1.75 for the delivery.

Let’s see what the score is when they arrive