I’ve been meaning to try geo caching for ages and every time I read Fun as a Gran‘s weekly 365 post I kick myself again for still not having tried it. We were meeting up with a monkey’s god mum and her a daughter a few weeks ago and the weather was good. It was time to get outside in the fresh air and enjoy our first geo cache experience.
God Mummy V lives very close to Stonehenge and they’d tried out part of a geo cache trail with the National Trust some months before so once we’d had lunch and had a quick explore around the Stonehenge visitor centre we were off. We parked close to Woodhenge and God Mummy V loaded up her geo cache app which showed us where we needed to head to.
The kids were off without a moment’s hesitation – it’s this way! Although a bit blustery it was a lovely day to be out in the Wiltshire countryside. Exploring, having fun.
We stopped every so often to check we were still heading in the right direction and then we’d arrived at the destination. Now to search for the treasure!
Luckily the cache we were looking for was in a large enough container that it wasn’t too difficult for the children to find. What would be inside?
We found some treasure – Monkey got some bubbles so he was very happy. The cache log was filled in and we left some treasure for the next adventurers. There was also a clue sheet so we could work out the coordinates for the next part of the trail. That’s where our plan all went wrong!
The app that God Mummy V was using wouldn’t let her input the next map coordinates. It wasn’t recognising this cache as a trail with a number of cache’s to be found. As soon as she logged that we had found the first one, it said it was completed.
So now what do we do? This is where advice would be appreciated as we had no idea. Cue two women on their mobiles trying to google how to add coordinates to a compass to get us where we needed to go. Clearly neither of us would make it these days in the a Girl Guides!
V used the compass on her phone to point us in the general direction and off we headed. Unfortunately neither of us could work where to find an app that would let us put the exact coordinates in as the geo cache app was no help. So we looked blindly and couldn’t find the next stash of treasure. So that would have been the end of the story but luckily they had done the rest of the trail before, so had a vague idea of where we needed to look for the next two cache’s.
So off we set again. Monkey was loving it and enjoying the adventure. Miss M would have preferred to be doing it properly (as would be really) but we made the best of the situation. It meant a lot of extra searching, a few giggles and a couple of conversations with the local sheep – who were no help!
But with a little luck we found both of the caches. Sadly one had been left with no treasure which didn’t go down well with Monkey but V put some extras inside so future explorers wouldn’t be disappointed.
We found an upended tree and Monkey was fascinated by the root structure. It made for a great camp.
Also great for a bit of music making!
It was time to turn around and head back to the car. We may not have completed the trail correctly, but we’d certainly had fun trying. We’d walked a few miles and the kids had had a good runaround in the fresh air.
Next time we will be better prepared! So advice – what app should be use when going on a geo cache trail? Should we invest in a proper GPS gadget rather than using the phone? What else should we know? I love the idea of geo caching. I’m lucky that monkey enjoys being outside and is a good walker, but the idea of finding treasure certainly kept him going and might persuade Daddy P to walk a little more often!