Adventuring into Geocaching as a beginner

Kassem Ossman

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Raising AJ
April 4, 2022

Kassem Ossman

Inside the container’s was a log of names dating back to 2019.

“Wait, over here!” I heard as a gust of chilly wind blew my way. After around five minutes following the tracker on my phone,looking over the hint that was provided and feeling stumped, we had finally found it: our first Geocache.

Now I had heard about Geocaching from my uncle years ago and the idea of it kind of weirded me out. The thought of little boxes littering my neighborhood for whoever to come looking for them; the experience seem like a murderer’s dream. But senioritis has officially set in, and I was looking for any way to procrastinate my homework.

So I hopped on my computer and decided to do a bit of research about Geocaching.

The game launched in the early 2000’s, starting with as little as 75 hidden caches now in 2022 the site has over 3 million caches hidden in the world.

Geocaching is an outdoor activity that consists of the official Geocache app and your best pair of gym shoes. Typical caches are small containers that, when found, will have a log book to date when you located the cache. Based on my experience, these caches typically don’t have writing utensils with them.

When found, you are supposed to put it exactly where you found it and then move on to the next cache.

Obviously I was hooked. The idea of so many people being in this community and sharing the love of looking for items in odd places made me want to join this little band.

As the seventh period bell rang, I grabbed my bag and a trusty driver to help me on this journey. Senior Sydney Richardson had heard about Geocaching but had never decided to go hunting for them. I opened the app and was greeted with around 50 caches in a three mile radius.

I had some options.

We hopped in her car and I loaded up the app to the geocache I wanted to head to first. It was named “Watching for Thor,” which seemed interesting. Under the name were a few buttons; navigate, found, hint, comments and more as well as a rating on the difficulty, area and the size of the Geocache.

The one we were heading to was a micro-sized cache. On the app it described some typical containers that it would be in, among them the pill bottle seemed to be the most common in my experience.

Sydney parked her car in a neighboring street and we got out. I pulled a pair of my shades out of my backpack and started to regret not stopping at the choir room to grab the coat as a huge gust of wind blew on our faces.

“So what are we looking for?” Sydney said to me as we crossed the street heading to Ned Bell Park.

I looked down at my phone and noticed as we were heading closer to the park that the tracker was going down significantly in feet, but I genuinely didn’t know what we were searching for. Sadly, the description of this cache didn’t say much, it stated three things: that we were looking for a 2×4 clear container, the park is usually not busy except for soccer practice and that the cache is not on the Thor-Guard device.

The location was a small park with nothing but a field, an old rusted green fence and a soccer goal. Next to the Thor- Guard pole was a small lap of water as well as a grate leading into the sewer. Very luxurious I know.

There was nothing too special about the location except for the large pole that I already ignored being a location for the device from the description.

The wind was picking up and Sydney and I went searching for it immediately. I checked the tracker and we were on top of it, around ten feet away but with no clear indication whatsoever. We searched in the everywhere, flipping over mud-ridden rocks and venturing down in the fields to look for this stupid container that was taunting us.

I checked the comments on this cache and none seemed to be too helpful until I checked the hint. Which simply stated: cap.

Thanks for the guidance.

I started looking for litter. Maybe this person was weird and put it in a piece of trash and it got picked up. I was on the edge of giving up, but I could tell Sydney had now found a new determination for this adventure.

“Wait, try to unscrew that thing on the fence!” Sydney said as she ran towards me.


As I took the cap off there lay a pill bottle with a piece of paper inside. The paper was rolled up in the bottle and as I unraveled it I saw names of a plethora of people. The first entry dated back to August 4, 2019.

“You did it!” I uttered to Sydney as I rolled it out and showed it to her. We had officially found our first Geocache. It took us around five minutes to get it, but once we thought critically about the hint, we were set.

Over the next few days I had been on multiple trips by myself or with my brother and none have been as tricky as the first one. Maybe it’s because my mind has been fully unlocked and now I see where every cache is, or maybe it’s simply because I haven’t been choosing the right ones to go for.

Either or, Geocaching has shown me to be present in the moment. Personally, I haven’t been able to do that with senior year coming to an end and new opportunities being thrown in my face as I grow up, but this simple task of finding a little note card to put your name in around your town has made me slow down.

I don’t know if I will continue to Geocache, but what I know is that the experience of being a little explorer in your own neighborhood is one that I would have loved to experience growing up.