If you’re anything like me, you’re always on the hunt for fun family activities. Especially in the summer, my family and I love being outdoors. We love hiking, biking, making visits to the area parks, etc. I think it’s just great to teach your kids early on the benefits of being in nature and outside. So we’re always looking for fun ways to bond, stay active, and encourage the love of nature.
One morning recently, my co-host on the morning show, Len Howser (knowing me so well), said, “I thought of something that I used to do with my girls that you and your family would love.” I was so excited — Len always has fun ideas. His idea for me and my family was… GEOCACHING! I had heard of it before but wasn’t super familiar. So I decided to do a little digging.
What is geocaching? According to geocaching.com: “geocaching is a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location.” Basically, it’s the world’s biggest treasure hunt. And you and your whole family are invited to play along! It’s so fun. Plus there are so many treasures waiting to be found… In just my town alone there are 1,920 caches.
I told my family I was going to take them on an adventure. They were intrigued and couldn’t wait to get started. I downloaded the app and we saw that a nearby park had some “treasure” hidden there, so we set off to find it! I’ll be honest, our first one was a little tricky to find but that’s what made it so fun at the same time. At one point, my youngest daughter looked up at me and said, “Mommy, this is so fun. Thanks so much for doing this.” After some searching and navigating we found it!
We had read up a little beforehand (which I suggest doing on geocaching.com), so we knew we should bring a few little knick knack treasures of our own if we wanted to swap for what was already in the case.
Once you find the box of treasures, there are rules:
- One you find the cache, sign the log inside the box.
- Put the cache back exactly where you found it.
- If there are treasures in the cache and you take one, put one of equal or greater value back in its place (small, inexpensive items are what you’ll usually find).
It was so much fun, we can’t wait to go again. Definitely bring your sense of adventure and be ready for a little challenge. We’re so glad someone told us about this fun outdoor activity — and we hope you and your family love it, too.
Here are a few tips to get started:
- Go to geocaching.com
- Enter your postal code to see how many caches are hidden near your “backyard”
- Download the Geocaching app to your smartphone with GPS
- Choose “Find Nearby Geocaches” — and you’re off!