Geocaching Etiquette

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Geocaching Etiquette

There are so many ways technology is being used in our everyday lives. Even Global Positioning System or GPS is used in outdoor recreational activities today in what is called Geocaching, a derivation of Geotrekking. Geocaching is fairly new which can lead many people to ask what rules or etiquette must be followed for this activity. Knowing geocaching do’s and don’ts is important because it will ensure that all participants or scouts will enjoy the experience and dangers will be avoided.

Geocaching is a high-tech version of hide and seek using navigational devises. Mobile devices and other navigational tools may also be used for geocaching.  Geocaches, or containers, are hidden to be discovered by participants in places around the world. Aside from geocaching etiquette, new participants in this activity must also familiarize themselves with geocaching terminology. Some examples of these are “hitchhikers” and muggles, also known as travel bugs.  There is a large geocaching community in many parts of the world today. Those who are not yet familiar with geocaching must first try to learn acronyms commonly used in geocaching groups, and then learn geocaching do’s and don’ts.

The most important rule to follow in geocaching is to always keep safe. Geocaching participants should never place caches in dangerous places. Participants must also be aware of his or her surroundings to make sure that he does not get into unsafe situations. Novice and seasoned scouts may also use a buddy system to ensure that all geocaching participants are accounted for. Caching in places where a scout would need to cross by swimming or climbing is also not a good practice. Related to this, participants must also refrain from placing caches in high places. Six feet is an ideal height, anything higher is not deemed safe.

Geocaching etiquette requires that the environment must always be respected. This means that placing a container in sensitive ecosystems or in historical sites must be avoided. Scouts must also avoid disturbing every part of the environment he is playing in. Scouts must never leave trash behind. As much as possible, flora and fauna in the area should not be disturbed. Another important geocaching practice is as regards to private property. It is not only ethical but also safer if private property is not used to place caches if the owner’s permission was not previously secured. Areas near military bases and lower schools are also off limits.

These are only a few points on geocaching etiquette. In case of doubt, scouts must always remember the golden rule and always treat others the way they want to be treated. The most important rule in geocaching is simple: have fun!