Your AAA Magazine

How to Find Your First Geocache

An expert provides six tips on how to get the most out of your GPS-inspired adventure.

Every cache contains a book. Write your name and the date in it, then record your discovery online.
Photo caption
Every cache contains a book. Write your name and the date in it, then record your discovery online.

Since 2000, 4 million people have joined the hunt for geocaches—hidden treasures that anyone with a GPS unit can find. To get started, take some tips from expert Elin Carlson of Northridge, Calif.

  • Buy a GPS device Carlson likes the slim Garmin Geko. “I found my first 10,000 caches with it,” she says.
  • Pick your target Search a geocaching website for a cache, then enter the coordinates into your GPS device.
  • Go on the hunt Sticks and rocks are often used to conceal containers.
  • Log your find Every cache contains a book. Write your name and the date in it, then record your discovery online.
  • Give and take If you take something, leave something behind. Small toys, pins, and coins are all popular.
  • Join a team “It’s a nice way to find people who like to have fun,” Carlson says.

Photography by Lasse Hendriks/Shutterstock

This article was first published in January 2013. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.