How to hone your Geo-Senses

They say practice makes perfect, and this is especially true when it comes to geocaching. Have you ever been caching with an experienced cacher and they already have the cache in hand while you’re still reading the description?

Well, the reason experienced cachers are so effective is they’ve honed their Geo-Senses by finding hundreds, maybe even thousands of caches. They’ve become accustomed to seeing certain things that point them to the hiding spot. Keep reading to find out how you, too, can develop your Geo-Senses!

  1. Something that breaks a pattern. Very often, geocaches are hiding in plain sight, disguised as something that belongs there. You’ll need to train your eyes to see the thing that breaks a pattern that is already occurring in the place you’re searching. Look for a bolt that is a different color, a fencepost that is a little higher, or a rock that is just a little too perfect to occur in nature. These tiny details can be a surefire giveaway that you’re at ground zero.
  1. Something metal. Magnets are a great way to hide a geocache, especially a small or micro cache, in a way that ensures it’s less likely to get lost. Look for metal structures like signs, or components of guide rails to start your search. Chances are, you’ll find what you’re looking for there!
  1. Hollow spaces. Now, we know what you’re thinking, and you’re right: geocaches should NEVER be buried. But, there are lots of naturally occurring holes that are great places to hide a cache. We’re talking in the knots of trees, in a missing brick in a wall, or any other tiny crevice into which you can wedge your fingers. Not into reaching into the unknown? Consider investing in a handy grabber tool for some touchless geocaching. 
  1. Order where there should be chaos. Nature is beautiful, but not often well organized. A perfect pyramid of rocks, sticks arranged as if to make the most well-organized kindling fire, or strips of fallen bark lovingly wedged at the foot of a tree might just be the indication you’ve found the cache!
  1. A geotrail. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire, and where there’s a geotrail, there have been other geocachers. Especially if you know the cache you’re looking for has been found recently, you can look for signs that indicate other cachers have gone before you: footprints, broken branches, or out of place flora can all be good indicators of the path to the cache. Always make sure you’re doing your best to be mindful of nature, and check out our tips for finding a geocache in an environmentally friendly way

We hope you’ve learned some tips to enhance your Geo-Senses!

Experienced cachers, what are your best tips for seeing the signs of where a cache is hidden? Let your fellow cachers know in the comments!

Sarah is a French-speaking Marketing Coordinator at Geocaching HQ. She likes cats and musicals, but only separately. In her spare time you can find her knitting, snuggling her cat, and waiting impatiently for the next season of Cosmos.