In Ontario, deep in the Haliburton Highlands a string of seven hamlets in the Municipality of Highlands East and at the South Gate of Algonquin Park is the Geocaching Capital of Canada. The communities of Irondale, Gooderham, Tory Hill, Wilberforce, Harcourt, Highland Grove and Cardiff invite you to explore the natural beauty of the area and enjoy treasure hunting at its best.
Geocaching is a fun way for families of all ages to get exercise and spend time outdoors while using their brains. It’s essentially a modern-day treasure hunt. A GPS receiver or smart phone, a set of coordinates and clues lead you to the treasures. It may involve problem-solving skills. If everything works out, you will be led to a cache of goodies hidden somewhere outdoors. Learn more about Geocaching
What is a Cache? – Caches are typically a weatherproof box/container full of fun trinkets such as small toys hidden under a rock, in a tree or some other location.
How to Play – It usually involves navigating to the cache by way of coordinates stored in your smart phone or GPS receiver. GPS receivers have different ways of bringing up previously stored waypoints or changing waypoint coordinates. You may have to check the owner’s manual to find out how it works.
How to Find a Cache – The geographical coordinates for caches are usually posted on one of the geocaching websites. The most popular site is geocaching.com. In addition to geocaches in your area, it provides information about geocaching, photos from fellow geocachers, and information about difficulty levels and the terrain.
What to Bring – A GPS receiver or a smart phone with the geocaching app installed is a must. You may also want to bring a flashlight, water, cell phone, first-aid kit, insect repellent, sunscreen, extra batteries for your electronic devices, a camera, outerwear, a notebook and pen to keep a running log of your caches and cache treasures to trade.
Geocaching Rules – There are some general guidelines for geocaching: Don’t put caches on private land without permission or in national parks or wilderness areas. If coordinates to a cache lead to private property, ask permission before you cross into the area. Do not put offensive or inflammatory items in a cache. Hide the cache in the same place you found it. If you take something out of the box, replace it with something else.
If you are new to geocaching and would like help learning about it you might like to try an experience hosted by Yours Outdoors called Introduction to Geocaching for a half day introduction to geocaching. Their exceptional experience leaders will provide you with the basics, help you discover some incredible geocaches and get you hooked on this global treasure hunt.