Geocaching is the official website for the activity by the same name. The way Geocaching works is through the use of GPS devices. Anyone with a GPS device can participate. Users can obtain coordinates of the location of a Geocache from the Geocaching website. They can travel to the location and search for a container. When they find it, the container is the Geocache. Some contain objects, which the participants can take. However, anyone who takes things from the Geocache are asked to add something of equal or greater value so others can enjoy the hunt later on. The participants then re-hide the Geocache so the next party can find it.
Geocaching began when Dave Ulmer began the Great American GPS Stash Hunt, just one day after selective ability was listed to increase the accuracy of GPS devices. The hunt in itself was intended as a test. Ulmer hid a container in a the woods and asked an internet GPS user’s group to find it using their favorite devices. The idea thrived, and today, the Geocaching website is one of the most popular resources for this widespread GPS “game.”
It is safe to say there are really no activities quite like Geocaching. Users all over can participate, all they need is a GPS device and a willingness to search. The Geocaching website helps bring participants together. Users can obtain coordinates to get started and post their findings and the experience of the GPS hunt on the site after.
The Geocaching website has a very calm green color scheme, accented in grey. The site features very informative media, such as a short video, that helps newcomers learn about this exciting activity. A colorful logo helps accent the style of the site while a simple navigation menu makes it easy for anyone to find their way around the virtual home of Geocaching(even without a GPS device).
A new visitor can register for a Geocaching account by clicking the blue “Create a Membership” link just under the login area at the top right hand corner of the homepage. The user can scroll down the page to select from one of two membership types. After clicking the corresponding grey button, the new user is asked for a password, email address, username, first and last name and optional “referred by” information. After choosing a few more settings, or paying for their account if a premium membership is selected, the user can begin exploring the Geocaching website.
Users are given two account types to choose from. The first is the basic membership that is free for everyone. The basic membership includes location access (coordinate information) and the ability to share the user’s experiences with Geocaching on the site. A premium membership, which costs about $10 a month, with a $30 per year option, upgrades to include access to all Groundspeak websites, customer support, route search that allows the user to find Geocaches where they plan to travel, notifications, favorite features, and custom Geocaching searches.
The obvious answer to who would love Geocaching is anyone who enjoys the activity of the same name. The website is also ideal for anyone who has an interest in trying their hand at Geocaching, but has no idea how to get started. Users can find a lot of good information as well as helpful features that make Geocaching in general even more interesting.