Geocaching is taking the world by storm! More and more people are joining in on the fun by playing this high-tech version of the old hide and seek game we all grew up playing. Like a treasure hunt geocaching involves hiding and seeking using a GPS receiver such as the Garmin GPSMap 76 Handheld GPS Navigator that participants use in order to hide and seek containers (called caches). These containers can be hidden anywhere in the world. The word geocache comes from combining geo for geography, and cache which is a space that is used by people who enjoy camping and hiking in which to store some kinds of provisions.
Although Geocaching shares certain aspects in common with other games of hide and seek, such as benchmarking, letterboxing and orienteering, it incorporates more technology. Usually the cache is a small, waterproof container in which a logbook is kept. The geocacher uses this in order to log the date that he discovered it. Sometimes larger containers such as an ammo box will contain objects that the geocacher needs to exchange. The object itself is not of any importance and could be something as insignificant as a toy or trinket and is not of any particular value outside of the game.
Geocaches are, at present, positioned in more than 100 countries all over the world and on every continent, counting Antarctica. There are more than 1.2 million geocaches actively published on different websites that are dedicated solely to this particular activity.
Each geocacher must possess a GPS unit in order to join this sporting activity. A GPS unit will help determine a fairly accurate location of the user and the cache (usually between six to twenty feet) anywhere on the planet. This device is used to navigate from one existing location to another. A Garmin GPSMap 76 Handheld GPS Navigator or the other latest GPS units may have fitted electronic devices and their own maps or voice navigation system, depending actually on how complex the device is. Just keep in mind that the GPS unit is a receiver and is not capable of broadcasting the user’s location. It receives signals from at least three out of the twenty-four GPS satellites circling around the planet and the more signal is received, the more accurate the location would be. The location is pinpointed by the process of trilateration.
Before buying any GPS unit for the geocaching expedition, one has to decide whether to limit his geocaching activity in the city or to go after caches hidden everywhere in the world and in various types of topography. Geocaching within city limits would require units that would continuously receive signal even if the geocacher is standing between two twenty-story buildings or walking down a very busy street.
If targeting caches hidden off-shore, a GPS receiver with marine capabilities is advisable for use. For those who prefer trekking to find caches in rivers, bushes and woods, a more durable and waterproof unit is recommended. Casual geocachers are relatively happy with an inexpensive but durable unit. However, hardcore geocachers are more comfortable using a more sophisticated GPS receiver like the Garmin GPSMap 76 Handheld GPS Navigator or other navigational system. But whatever the choice would be, there are still basic features that need to be considered if one joins a game of geocaching.
Besides being lightweight the GPS unit you select for your game needs to be well made and waterproof while also offering you reliability and durability. The screen should have a clear display, there needs to be a good signal and the device must offer the best battery life possible. It does not matter what type of geocacher you are as long as your GPS unit is reliable.