View Full Version : How did geocaching start for YOU?



Waterski
07-08-2009, 02:35 PM
I have another hobby that has actually published a book regarding how people got started on this hobby. It may be interesting to start a thread on how we got hooked on the geocaching bug and who was responsible.
Here goes....I was was writing to my friend that is involved in my other hobby, and she mentioned that she was going to be away for a bit with her brother, geocaching. Of course, not having a clue what she was talking about, she had to give the the low down on what she did, and the fact that her brother ( Funnynose) has cached all over the world. So, thanks to my friend Circles from Bath, I hunted up an old GPS, called a friend, to hiked up and find our first cache on Beech Hill. Four of us went. We were so excited we could hardly stand it. So, thanks to Circles, I have met some of you great people and have seen places all over the state and out of the country that I never would have been to. Isn't that the best part of this hobby?? I then sent out my first cache Skiing with the chicks, and Mapachi found it, and said it was his first FTF. That was a bit ago...... Cache on...please continue your story....

masterson of the universe
07-08-2009, 02:54 PM
I blame DrWhoGrl for getting me started. She was temp working for the company I work for and as I was getting to know some of the people and expressed my interest for outdoors, she mentioned geocaching. I had heard of orienteering and thought it was kind of similar until I looked at the site. Well, after looking, I had to try it so I went out that week and bought an Etrex Legend as it was the lowest grade GPS I could find at the time. I went out by myself the first time as I had no idea what I was doing and wanted to kind of self teach and avoid embarassment if I didn't find the cache. My first was the Cascade Cache in Bangor and I was hooked from there. Since then, kids slowed me down but I am finding more and more time here and there to sneak away lately. Thanks Wendy for the introduction and a couple of fun trips.

brdad
07-08-2009, 02:55 PM
I was lucky when I started caching as I was already proficient with my GPS. I had bought the Yellow Etrex back when it first came out and soon was extracting coordinates from early 1900's maps and searching out the foundations of the buildings on those maps. I also was an avid ATV'er at the time and mapped out hundreds of miles of roads and trails off the Stud Mill Rd. and the Chick Hill/Clifton area. It was one day when I was searching for maps online that I discovered Geocaching. I read through nearly the entire gc.com forums before I even looked for any caches. At that time those forums weren't a lot bigger than ours here! I thought of a few spots that would be neat to hide one and a few days later someone hid one a mile from my house, and the rest is history. I still use the Yellow Etrex, by the way - it's like a Timex!

WhereRWe?
07-08-2009, 02:59 PM
In the summer of 2003, RULost2? and I were vacationing in northern Ontario, and heard an hour long broadcast on CBC Radio about geocaching. It sounded fascinating, so we checked it out after we got back. We've been hooked ever since! LOL!

ltlindian
07-08-2009, 03:00 PM
I had heard about geocaching awhile ago maybe from a new story? and thought to myself "that would be a fun thing to do", but then forgot about it for awhile. About a year and a half ago, my co-leader in Girl Scouts mentioned she was going geocaching and it reminded me that I wanted to try it. I was looking on the Girl Scout web site (for something else) and there was a link to an article about geocaching in western Maine. I clicked it and then a few clicks later I was on the geocaching.com site. I put in my zip code and WOW there were so many right near me. I went out that day and (unsuccessfully) searched for a cache. I had no idea how to use the GPS and didn't know how to plug in the coords so I was moving around slowly trying to get the coords to match with the posted coords. Nice huh? :rolleyes: We went back the next day with my husband who showed me how to plug in the coords and found the cache right off. I was hooked right away and have forced my hobby on my children who come with me without too much resistance. lol

My only problem now is that we've found the caches near our house and now we need to drive to get to ones we haven't found. I need more time off! lol

ltlindian
07-08-2009, 03:02 PM
sorry, I meant a NEWS story

firefighterjake
07-08-2009, 03:21 PM
I was out on the ATV on the Sunrise Trail (a rather large ATV trail of 600+ miles near the Airline) and despite the fact that I had a DeLorme map and there were some trail signs my buddy and I ended up getting hopelessly lost . . . although we were fortunate as we met up with some folks near Chick Hill who had sandwiches and snacks (we had none as we were hoping to eat at Nicatous Lodge) but no gas (of which we had plenty) . . . and so right then and there we shared some gas for food . . . and at that point I realized if you don't know where you are, even having a really good map is not very useful which prompted my search for a GPSr.

Being me I always tend to research things to the Nth degree and in doing so I concluded that clearly the Magellan was the better GPSr (well at least it was for me and my needs :) ;) ) and I learned about geocaching which seemed rather interesting . . . plus it gave me another excuse . . . I mean reason . . . to purchase a GPSr.

So, I ended up buying the Magellan originally for the ATV, but honestly I do a lot more geocaching than ATVing these days . . . although I do try to balance it out somewhat.

My first cache was The Cornfield Cache in Albion. It's archived now . . . I'm not even sure if the folks that hid it are still caching. I do know that it was pretty neat as it gave a description of the country fair that used to be held at that location . . . I also know I must have looked ridiculous as I didn't know about the "go to" feature and compass and so I was trying to line up the numbers of the cache description to the numbers shown on the GPSr which meant a whole lot of back and forth walking and side stepping.

As a side note, many years later I ran into some cachers out in Attroll's neck of the woods . . . I thought they looked familiar and they mentioned that I looked familiar -- later on we figured out why . . . they were the ATVers my buddy and I had met on the Sunrise Trail who had almost run out of gas.

benandtina
07-08-2009, 03:24 PM
We actually heard about geocaching several times before finally trying it out.

Last summer Ben and I went to Prince Edward Island for a long weekend of lighthouse hunting (we're obsessed with lighthouses). Our B&B hostess was the sweetest woman and she called me after I made my reservation to find out what we're interested in. When we got to her B&B she had a packet waiting for us - a map of the island, pamphlets for things I mentioned enjoying, pamphlets for things she thought we'd enjoy, etc. She sat us down at the kitchen table and went over the map with us... she gave us the important information like where to get the cheapest ice cream, best sea food, the best bars, etc. One of the things she thought we may enjoy was Geocaching. She described it briefly but we ended up having so much to do that weekend that we didn't have time to look in to it.

At about the same time a friend started a usergroup in Florida for something completely unrelated. I subscribed to the group's blog so I could keep up with what they are doing. One day he blogged about having gone geocaching with a guy in the group. He included pictures and it reminded me of our B&B hostess, so I looked it up. I skimmed the gc.com site but since Ben hadn't seemed too enthused when our B&B hostess told us about it I didn't think to mention trying it out.

Then in April Ben and I joined a bookclub. Everyone went around the group introducing themselves and someone mentioned geocaching as one of his hobbies. When we were driving home Ben was all excited and really wanted to try it out. I reminded him out of B&B hostess but he has absolutely no recollection... he insists that if he'd known about geocaching a year ago we'd have done it, lol. We went caching the following weekend and have cached most weekends since then :)

squirrelcache
07-08-2009, 05:40 PM
My DW had me watching an episode of CSI back in 03'. They showed a lady running through the woods w/a GPSr. She dug up a plastic box and left her signature item. So I looked up geocaching and loved the idea. I started w/two Rinos we used for outdoorsy stuff. I downloaded loc files for areas we'd travel to and the family didn't seem into it. I finally got them out on the UMA trails to find our first ones. I watched the months go by as they didn't seem all that interested. We went w/friends and took friends. Geocaching is something I'm passionate about. DW assists as she employs her passion to put all my memories into scrapbook form.

Ekidokai
07-08-2009, 05:54 PM
A beautiful woman in a very skimpy bikini asked me to help her find something.



We were at the beach and the woman I was going out with at the time and her daughter had looked for a cache and could not find it. The daughters friend had told her about it and the cache was close to were I lived. The next day we got together, looked at the website, read logs and descriptions and down the road we went. A lot of people were having trouble finding this one as it was very well hidden, but in plain sight.

After a few minutes I came up with the cache and was hooked.

Team V3
07-08-2009, 06:10 PM
I learned about it from some co-workers at an outdoors day working at L.L.Bean. Just last year we broke down and bought a Garmin (same one we use now). Ok....I more or less felt it would be a cool family hobby and also gets me out walking which I desperately need being diabetic. I am more or less the one that is the most into it of Team V3 but we all have fun doing it. Cole especially has fun with the toys he may find.

pm28570
07-08-2009, 08:20 PM
What a great thread and question!
The first half of my life were spent outdoors fishing, camping, hunting and generally being in the woods having grown up and living in Millinocket, in the shadow of Katahdin long before white water rafting and the Golden Road. As life goes on, priorties change as do responsibilities and activities. Then my life got to a point where I didn't have to work so much (although I am addicted to my Crackberry) and I wanted to return to the outdoors and the activites I so enjoyed, especially camping and hiking. After having talked to a co-worker who cached and then ordering a Garmin 60 for a friend in Russia, I decided to start caching. It's been absolutely great, not as often as I would like and not the "perfect" cache as wanted (nice little hike ending with an outstanding view and an ammo can), but I'll take anything, even those pesky nanos rated a 1 difficulty that I don't find the first time.

[/QUOTE=Waterski;54302]I have another hobby that has actually published a book regarding how people got started on this hobby. It may be interesting to start a thread on how we got hooked on the geocaching bug and who was responsible.
[/QUOTE]

NativeMainer
07-08-2009, 11:12 PM
I stumbled across geocaching when I was going through WheresGeorge.com. They had a section called "Geocaching Bills" (a section which is no longer functional, since the aims of geocaching and Where's George are different). I thought "Hmmm... What is this?" and I checked out the site. I told my wife about it, and a few months later, she gave me a Garmin eTrex (the blue one) for Valentine's Day. It still took me a couple of months before I went out and found some geocaches (the first one I found was in Fort Williams). It's been kind of slow going but steady progress ever since.

firefighterjake
07-09-2009, 06:47 AM
. . . Ben was all excited and really wanted to try it out. I reminded him out of B&B hostess but he has absolutely no recollection... he insists that if he'd known about geocaching a year ago we'd have done it, lol. . . .

Ah, that's just us being men . . . and our infamous memory . . . or lack thereof . . . I can never remember things as well as my wife . . . which often gets me into trouble. ;):D

firefighterjake
07-09-2009, 06:48 AM
A beautiful woman in a very skimpy bikini asked me to help her find something.
. . . .

I'm thinking that if this had happened to me I would have been geocaching a lot earlier than I started! ;):D:eek:

kayaking loon
07-09-2009, 07:59 AM
I read a newspaper article about geocaching a few years ago and really wanted to do it. But no family or friends wanted to go with me. We had spent our younger years taking our daughter camping, canoeing and mountain climbing so we're into outdoor hobbies. Fall of 2005 a cache goes missing from Eustis Ridge. The next spring it is found at Cathedral Pines Campground and the crew doesn't know what to do with it so they take it to the office and give it to my friend Mona who remembers that I had once talked about caching. She brings it home to me. So now I have an ammo can in my kitchen and no idea what to do next. But I get on my computer and eventually track it down (it had been archived). The owner doesn't want it anymore so I borrow a Garmin and head up to the Ridge, no idea what I'm doing but I place it and get it back up and running. Then I want to find one so I do Chain of Ponds (which I have since adopted). And then I just have to place one of my own so I do a 5 gallon bucket like the very first cache ever.... and then I'm hooked.

And now my friend Mona, who now lives in NH, has started caching and is also hooked.... the story goes on....

Waterski
07-09-2009, 12:26 PM
Thanks everyone for adding to this tread...it has been interesting for me and I hope others as well. The rest of the story...........

Waterski
07-09-2009, 12:28 PM
opps. i MEANT ADDING TO THE THREAD, not TREAD.......

pm28570
07-09-2009, 01:04 PM
Interesting story! Is the cache on the ridge still active? If so, do you have the GC.com ID? Thanks.....



Fall of 2005 a cache goes missing from Eustis Ridge. so I borrow a Garmin and head up to the Ridge, no idea what I'm doing but I place it and get it back up and running.

Haffy
07-09-2009, 01:17 PM
You can find it here: http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=ce39a6fa-d9b9-497d-b73f-1eb01d69d4e0

The thing that bums me out about the cache site is that the view is now disrupted by an ugly transformer on a telephone pole.

lexmano
07-09-2009, 01:43 PM
During 2004 and 2005 my law partner described it to my wife and I. As Christmas was approaching, my wife thought it sounded like a fun activity for our son-in-law to do with the youth groups he worked with at his church.

So we decided to buy him an e-trex legend for Christmas 2005. While ordering, I ordered one for us also. He never really got into it.

We solved a puzzle cache for our first and then made about 4 trips to look for it. All the extra trips related to input error on the GPS. The funniest one being when I entered the North coords as South. The GPS showed 6000 miles away, but I misread it to feet. Then we drove around and obviously, no matter where we went the arrow and distance did not move.

After finally getting it right, we grabbed number 1 on 12/31/05. Took a long hiatus in 2006 while our grandson was being born and started up seriously in 2007 and have not looked back yet. This has been a blast and we are enjoying it immensely.

pm28570
07-09-2009, 04:09 PM
Thanks Haffy.



You can find it here: http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=ce39a6fa-d9b9-497d-b73f-1eb01d69d4e0

The thing that bums me out about the cache site is that the view is now disrupted by an ugly transformer on a telephone pole.

pjpreb
07-09-2009, 05:51 PM
From a similar thread in June 2004 (and a great one to revive!):

Hi! We're pjpreb We're a hubby & wife team who, on a hot tip from msteelee, purchased a GPSr & found our first cache on a 5 minute walk from our camp in Norway, ME. We've been enjoying caching ever since and have seen some amazing sights & places that the average joe wouldn't know about. We really like that this hobby is so portable! Just about any place we go has caches hidden nearby! I don't know if caching makes people nice or if nice people cache. It's been great meeting fellow geocachers and hope to meet more of you soon!

kayaking loon
07-10-2009, 08:11 AM
Interesting story! Is the cache on the ridge still active? If so, do you have the GC.com ID? Thanks.....

Still active, GCWEW5. Check out the photo gallery, especially the two posted by the Francis Family. The transformer is a very small part of the view, in my opinion.

Also you would probably like GC16RBH. Short walk which you can make longer depending on where you park, ammo can, great views... And there are many other caches around here that I think you would like a lot! Pickle Hill. How's This for a View? Stratton Brook Pond. Cranberry Peak Road. The list goes on....

pm28570
07-10-2009, 08:29 AM
Thanks! My only problem is do I wait for the event in September or do these before. Seems work and chores are starting to interfere with caching.......



Still active, GCWEW5. Check out the photo gallery, especially the two posted by the Francis Family. The transformer is a very small part of the view, in my opinion.

Also you would probably like GC16RBH. Short walk which you can make longer depending on where you park, ammo can, great views... And there are many other caches around here that I think you would like a lot! Pickle Hill. How's This for a View? Stratton Brook Pond. Cranberry Peak Road. The list goes on....

kayaking loon
07-10-2009, 03:08 PM
Thanks! My only problem is do I wait for the event in September or do these before. Seems work and chores are starting to interfere with caching.......

I don't think you could do all the caches here in one weekend. Come on a really beautiful day and get the most scenic caches. If you have a boat, do the Flagstaff Lake Cache Challenge. If you do half of what's around you'll do well. And by the time of the event (and on the day of the event).... there will be more!

hollora
07-10-2009, 07:02 PM
I don't think you could do all the caches here in one weekend. Come on a really beautiful day and get the most scenic caches. If you have a boat, do the Flagstaff Lake Cache Challenge. If you do half of what's around you'll do well. And by the time of the event (and on the day of the event).... there will be more!

Oh - Amen as we did a bunch last year but no where near were able to do them all. :eek: Caching with a just over 1 year old makes a difference but there are loads of caches to do up in the area. :D A bunch you can do cutting cross country to pick up maps for the DeLorme Challenge, too. ;)

Last year's event was my second time in the area and I just enjoyed the experience totally - to be here in this awesome country side again. :) Can't wait to see what might be released for new ones this year. ;):):D;)

If you are checking out the area - check the cache logs for folks who attended last year. :)

pm28570
07-10-2009, 09:28 PM
Got the reservations for the campground on the water (next to a beer-drinking dog I'm told), so looking forward to it and will try to get there to cache sometime end of this month. Gonna be tight for me as I will be returning from Russia on business travel mid-week just before the event.



Oh - Amen as we did a bunch last year but no where near were able to do them all. :eek: Caching with a just over 1 year old makes a difference but there are loads of caches to do up in the area. :D A bunch you can do cutting cross country to pick up maps for the DeLorme Challenge, too. ;)

Last year's event was my second time in the area and I just enjoyed the experience totally - to be here in this awesome country side again. :) Can't wait to see what might be released for new ones this year. ;):):D;)

If you are checking out the area - check the cache logs for folks who attended last year. :)

pm28570
07-10-2009, 09:33 PM
Seems I hijacked what is a great thread, sorry 'bout that.:o

Mainiac1957
07-11-2009, 06:10 AM
there is A View of the Lake (A Rescue Rangers Cache) (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=183879a8-76ee-425e-aa05-382f81c53657) (GC149W5) by mainiac1957 (http://www.geocaching.com/profile/?id=139598) (1.5/4) It hasn't been visited since fall of 2007. If the weather is good, then there is no better view of Flagstaff Lake, with a cache.

dubord207
07-11-2009, 06:16 AM
On opening day of deer hunting in the fall of 2007, I lucked out and bagged a nice buck. I had purchased a 60csx years ago and used it hunting, snowmobilikng and on my ATV.

Being the first to bag a deer in the group I hunt with, my buddies were a bit over enthusiastic about having me be their "dog" and while I don't mind walking through the woods I decided to try geocaching. I'd heard about it from a friend who doesn't cache but told me "This sounds like something you'd like" so I went on the site, downloaded KK's Great Place to Launch cache and "launched" another new hobby! 20 months and over 2300 caches later I guess it's hard to deny my enthusiasm for the game. I'm fortunate to be my own boss and I have two great secretaries who have both been with me for over 30 years so I enjoy the luxury of sneaking off when the urge hits.

And Di loves caching as well, a very important factor. As I type this, she's making the sandwiches and other picnic stuff and wants to do the last of the 50 State series AND Sears Island today. We'll see! What a journey this continues to be!

pm28570
07-11-2009, 08:16 AM
Thanks, Brad, it does look great. I especially like Darterkitfox's log entry.



there is A View of the Lake (A Rescue Rangers Cache) (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=183879a8-76ee-425e-aa05-382f81c53657) (GC149W5) by mainiac1957 (http://www.geocaching.com/profile/?id=139598) (1.5/4) It hasn't been visited since fall of 2007. If the weather is good, then there is no better view of Flagstaff Lake, with a cache.

al'Thor
07-11-2009, 01:14 PM
I am a Deputy Sheriff with Washington County. Our Lt. always emails us all kinds of different intell from around the state. He fowarded us an email that he received from an officer in Southern Maine. The officer wrote that he had been patroling in a town park when he noticed a couple with what he thought was a pipe bomb. Needless to say it was a tense moment. After some investigating he found it to be a Geocache. He send the email to help other officers who might incounter the same thing.

After reading the email I searched geocaching and found the website and was amazed to see some caches right in my back yard. That afternoon I ordered a GPS and have been finding and hiding ever since. By far the best hobby I've ever had.:D

shuman road searchers
07-11-2009, 09:17 PM
I had heard of geocaching during baseball practice. Christmas that year I was given a GPSr and went on line and checked it out. I only did 5 caches in the first six months of that year because I was coaching little league and never remembered to bring the GPS. After the baseball season and allstars I started in finding a few caches and then the bug set in and I have not looked back! I have met some really nice people who have become great friends!

EMSDanel
07-12-2009, 12:07 AM
As Paul Harvey would say "And now, the rest of the story." A couple of my co-workers had heard of geocaching and had mentioned it to me but I thought nothing about it. Then one of them came in to work with a TB and said "Look what I found." So I went online to see what this was all about and saw that there were quite a few geocaches in and around where I live in the Orrington/Bangor area (ya think?). And I recall thinking "I drive right by these things every day and had no idea they were there? No way." So I looked at a cache that Hollora had put out, just up the road from me, and clicked on the View Map. Seeing where it was I said "no way" and headed up. Well, I found it quickly hanging in an evergreen tree and thought to myself I'd better get a GPS and see if I can find more of these! A trip to Walmart in Ellsworth and I purchased (for $89) a Garmin GPS that was their display model, had one button missing, and no box or instruction booklet to go with it. I put batteries in it and used that GPS and a compass for my first 1,200 finds. And NOW I learn that there is an arow that points you to where you want to go, the distance to the cache, etc. What an eye opener!
Anyway, my first year was complete bliss......find #1,000 was called Billy Bowlegs (down in Florida) and find #1,023 (the last find of my first year) was a mountaintop Groleau cache and a FTF....a super way to end 1 year of geocaching. Since then the time I can spend caching has been greatly curtailed. But I still go out every now and then. I've made some outstanding friends along the way and have had some of the best times of my life out on the trail. Today I'm fortunate to be alive and can thank geocaching for many great memories. This thread is about how we started in geocaching...and each and every one of these stories ends with how glad we are that we started. Now you know the rest of the story....

fins2right
07-12-2009, 07:24 PM
My brother-n-law (Macmo) talked about it a lot and my wife and I decided to try it in April of '07. He took us to Delorme, showed us how to use the Gps (he's much better at gadgets than I am) and took us to our first cache in Yarmouth. My niece then showed us how to use geo-senses. That really set the hook and the more I cache, the more I get into it. :)