350 miles, all for a smiley. — Munich – Venice (GC1FPN1) — Geocache of the Week

We all love earning smileys. Seeing that bright yellow face on your Geocaching profile page smiling back at you is the reward you get for a job well done. But how far are you willing to go for it? Would you spend days on the hunt for just one geocache? Would you commit to a 350-mile journey? If the answer is yes, then this week’s Geocache of the Week, Munich – Venice (GC1FPN1),  is for you.

The trail.

The first step to finding this difficulty 2, terrain 4 geocache is to find a pair of comfortable, broken-in hiking boots. Step two is to get to the beginning stage of this multi-cache at Marienplatz in Munich. After you’re finished taking in the sights, it’s time to start putting one foot in front of the other. As you make your way through the 28 stages, you’ll have to answer questions in order to obtain the coordinates of the final stage. This may sound like a lot of work, but the stunning views along the way make the journey well worth it.

Yay for geocaching! Photo by geocacher wanderlust2000

While only 36 geocachers have made the journey from Munich to Venice and earned their smiley, their logs are sure to inspire more geocachers to attempt this multi-cache. Geocacher Benjo5 said, “What an awesome experience! …Thanks for the cache, I am really happy to turn this into a smiley icon, as it was quite exceptional and challenging. And at the end, I recommend this trek to everyone. It’s really worth it. Thanks, I will not forget.”

Another geocacher who earner a smiley for this epic journey is voduska, who said, “It is difficult to express all the feelings I had and have now, but to everybody who is thinking to do this trek, I would say don‘t hesitate and go. It is such a great experience. It is extremely demanding, but extremely rewarding. And when you finally reach the beach after nearly a month and you can put down the bag and take off that terribly heavy shoes and go for a swim in the sea, you feel like … actually you feel like you’ve just crossed the Alps.”

Typical Path before Olperer Hut. Photo by geocache owner DerPate
Typical Path before Olperer Hut. Photo by geocache owner DerPate

When asked about planning and placing this geocache, DerPate said that the real planning came after he initially completed the journey. From there it was organizing all the places he had been into a great multi-cache. In regards to all of the positive feedback, DerPate said, “Even more impressive for me is the feedback of the people having done the cache: There are find logs with a length of more than 40,000 characters (almost 3 log entries are needed in average of all finds) or even more than 150 pictures were uploaded for one log.” For all geocachers aiming to earn this smiley, DerPate had one piece of advice, “To all those cachers out there: Have fun on making your own memorable experiences on your personal interpretation of such a tour :-)”

So the question is: how far are you willing to go for a find? Would you complete a 350-mile trek through the mountains? Tell us in the comments.

Continue to explore some of the most engaging geocaches around the globe. Check out all the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog or view the Bookmark List on Geocaching.com.

If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, send an email with your name, comments, the name of the geocache, and the GC code to pr@geocaching.com.

Just one of the many scenic views you’ll get during the journey. Photo by geocacher Turbo9


Probably the most rewarding part of the journey: dipping your feet into the water on the beach in Venice.