When you ask geocachers why they love geocaching, they will usually say they love geocaching because it gets them outside or brings a sense of adventure to their daily lives or connects them with a wonderfully warm and inclusive community or even gives them an activity to share with friends and family. For Roger Collins (Username: Relativly Simlpe) and his son Joshua (Username: FlyingFawks), geocaching is more than all that. It’s just a way to spend a fun afternoon together. It is the way this father and son can stay connected even when they are oceans apart.
Roger lives in Oregon. Joshua lives in Florida, but his career takes him even further away from his dad. He serves in the U.S. Navy. He says, “My first deployment was in 2010, and I have been serving for over six years now. I have been given the opportunity to travel all over the world – Asia, Africa, Europe, North and South America.” Through the Navy, Joshua has also been able to geocache all over the world. Some of his favorite geocache finds have taken him tromping through Japan, Italy, and El Salvador. He adds, “I have had the privilege to be First to Find for three geocaches on two different continents.”
Through geocaching, Joshua’s father also gets to have adventures of his own. Roger describes his first ever geocaching experience, “It was a normal Oregon winter day, rainy and cold. I worked my way to the geocache, dove into a small cedar tree, and found the container. I was all wet with the smell of cedar on my coat. I sat on a we bench nearby, opened the container, and said, ‘AH MAN! Look at all this stuff!’ I was having the time of my life and I was hooked.”
Although they take place on opposite sides of the country, or even world, these experiences give Roger and Joshua endless opportunities to connect. Joshua says, “Geocaching gives us an extra excuse to talk to each other – as if being father and son wasn’t enough. When we come across a cool trackable or a geocache worth of a favorite point, we usually call or text the GC code so that the other can check it out.”
When Joshua is deployed, geocaching can even, at times, give Roger the comfort of knowing that his son is somewhere having a great adventure. He says, “We are geo-friends and I watch to see which geocaches he has logged, no matter where he may be.”
Whether your family lives in your house, down the street, or on the other side of the world, sharing your adventures can truly bring you closer together – one geocache at a time. Take it from Roger, “It’s important to share the experience. Whether geocaching together or apart, the stories that we share with each other are priceless.”