T5 Klettersteig caching in Austria and of course the Seattle Sounders
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T5 Klettersteig caching in Austria

T5 Klettersteig caching in Austria and of course the Seattle Sounders
T5 Klettersteig caching in Austria and of course the Seattle Sounders

This blog post was written by geocaching superwoman and
Geocaching HQ employee, Annie Love.

Geocaching can vary around the world. It also varies for individual cachers. Sure, the concept is the same. Use coordinates to find a location, search until you make the find, open the container, sign the log, make trades, then replace the container. Repeat as often as the heart desires, or as often as the obsession requires.

I recently posted about finding a T5 geocache in my flip flops on my personal Facebook wall. Many of my geocaching friends around the world think I’m incredibly silly (or just plain stupid) for geocaching in my flip-flops, but I do it anyway. The T5 geocaches I’ve searched out this year in my flip flops were only accessible via boat/kayak, so my choice in caching footwear made perfect sense up to that point. But that recently changed.

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The Froggy GeoCoin when it was brand new
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3 countries + 2 geocachers + 1 geocoin = an incredible twist of fate

Gabi, Mary, and the My Froggy Friend geocoin
Gabi, Mary, and the My Froggy Friend geocoin

A German geocacher and a Canadian geocacher walked into a geocaching event… well, they actually met at an event, and through a twist of fate, discovered they had something amazing in common.

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Geocacher-Geheimnisse, damit Neujahrsvorsätze halten

Wir wünschen allen Geocachern ein frohes neues Jahr! Es ist wieder Zeit für Vorsätze für das neue Jahr. Egal ob Du fit werden willst oder etwas Gutes für andere tun magst, Geocaching kann Dir helfen Deine Ziele zu erreichen. Um 2017 zu feiern, sind hier die 17 bekanntesten Neujahrsvorsätze, und wie Geocaching Dir helfen kann sie einzuhalten.

Schau sie Dir an.

Die Moral der Geschichte: Wir halten Vorsätze am einfachsten ein, wenn es Spaß macht. Geocaching macht Spaß, also kann Dir Geocaching helfen, Deine Vorsätze einzuhalten. In 83% der Fälle funktioniert es – versprochen.

Was sind Deine Vorsätze für das neue Jahr? Erzähl es uns in den Kommentaren.

Neue Länder-Souvenirs erscheinen demnächst!

Hast Du Deinen Urlaub für 2017 schon geplant?

Eines der besten Dinge an Geocaching ist, dass es weltweit von vielen Menschen auf unterschiedliche Weise gespielt wird. Um dies zu feiern, veröffentlichen wir insgesamt fünf neue Länder-Souvenirs in den nächsten Wochen.

Solltest Du bereits einen Geocache in einem dieser Länder gefunden haben, erhältst Du automatisch das entsprechende Souvenir in Deinem Profil. Eine Übersicht der bislang erhältlichen Souvenirs befindet sich hier. Um zu sehen, welche Du bereits erhalten hast, wirf einen Blick in Dein Profil auf Geocaching.com.

Sei bereit für die Ankündigung der ersten neuen Länder-Souvenirs im nächsten wöchentlichen Geocaching Newsletter.

Horka Pumpenhaus — Geocache of the Week

Virtual Cache
GCNQ40
by Horka – Pumpenhaus
Difficulty:
5
Terrain:
5
Location:
Horka, Germany
N 51° 15.817 E 014° 14.897

Geocaching is an emotional game. There’s the elation of finding a cache after a prolonged search. The frustration of searching and searching for a cache that never turns up. The surprise of a cleverly disguised container, the anticipation of a highly-favorited gadget cache. The despair of losing a trackable…the guilt of losing a trackable. The pleasure of a good conservation with fellow cachers, the anticipation of hiding a new cache, the thrill of racing for the FTF, and of course, the terror and bewilderment of encountering a shark in the middle of a lake in Germany.

2016-11-23_8-15-14
Wait…what?

Yes, bewilderment and terror are commonly experienced emotions when searching for GCNQ40. This Virtual Cache is under murky waters in Horka Lake, which was once an old mining quarry. Now filled with water, the former quarry is a popular spot for scuba divers because of its unusually high visibility.

The old quarry that is now Horka Lake.
The old quarry that is now Horka Lake.
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If a tree falls in a forest, and the forest is underwater, will it make a sound?

In addition to the many natural elements that make for an interesting dive—the underwater forest, for example—the lake abounds with strange objects that were either placed there by divers over the years or are remnants of days when the lake bottom was a quarry bottom.

Someone took a long detour on their ride to work today...
Someone took a long detour on their ride to work today…
An old old pumphouse that was once party of the working quarry.
The old pump house that was once party of the working quarry.
An old wetsuit?
An old wetsuit?

Virtual Caches are a grandfathered cache type, which means no new Virtual Caches can be created anymore. A Virtual Cache is about discovering a location rather than a container. The requirements for logging a Virtual Cache vary—you may be required to answer a question about the location, take a picture, complete a task, etc.

In order to claim the find on Horka – Pumpenhaus, you’ll need to swim to the posted coordinates, then dive 30m down. At that location you’ll find a white object inside the old quarry pump house. Describe the object or take a location of the pump house to prove you were there.

Rocky1210 on the dive.
Rocky1210 on the dive.

When the Cache Owner, Laird McKai, first placed this cache in 2005, it was probably the first underwater cache in Germany. The CO was a Master Scuba Diver, for whom geocaching had a familiar appeal.

After every dive, you write a log and keep a record. Under water you have to find your way using a compass and sometimes you might try to find some sunken boats, such as the Coreolanus, which I dived to in Croatia. So diving is not to different to geocaching. Why not combine both?

The Cache Owner, Laird McKai, in an old diving helmet.
The Cache Owner, Laird McKai, in an old diving helmet.

So… what about those sharks from earlier? Fortunately for geocachers and divers, the sharks aren’t real (though they look realistic from afar). They were placed in the lake by the nearby dive school. The cache gallery abounds with diver/shark selfies.

Geocacher $miley is a bit too close for comfort.
Geocacher $miley is a bit too close for comfort.
Michao Team goes in for a close-up.
Michao Team goes in for a close-up examination of the shark’s dental situation.
Imagine seeing this from afar.
Imagine seeing this image from afar.

After eleven years, this Virtual Cache is still bringing joy (and fright!) to geocachers with the necessary scuba certifications and gear. And the Cache Owner is happy to still have it around. His advice for other cachers? “Enjoy your hobby, enjoy good quality caches and try to make others enjoy as well your cache you place by trying to make your caches special and memorable!”

Which begs the question, what’s the on-land equivalent of a full-size rubber shark?

Continue to explore some of the most amazing geocaches around the world.
Check out all of the Geocaches of the Week on the Geocaching blog. If you would like to nominate a Geocache of the Week, fill out this form.