Posted by: geonarcissa | October 25, 2010

Geocaching With Kids – Some Helpful Tips

I’ve been geocaching with my son since… before he was born! The first time I met model12, I was about 7 months pregnant and we bumped into each other at a cache.

Here’s the advice I have for others geocaching with small kids:

1. Be selective about the caches you do. Look for “stroller friendly” caches, caches close to parking, and when in doubt, go ahead and ask the owner about the terrain around a cache. Most cache owners are happy to help out. There are many “power trails” along pathways that you could do in small segments with a stroller.

2. On the other hand, don’t be afraid to test your limits here and there. Find a friend to come along, or look for a geocaching buddy on the local forum. You’d be amazed at where a stroller can go when you have two adults to wrangle with it.

3. After a lot of experience with both, I found that the umbrella stroller was much easier to handle in the woods because it’s lightweight, but a larger stroller is best for geocaches along paved or packed gravel pathways.

*The one piece of equipment I really regret not having, and that I will get in a heartbeat when I have a baby again, is one of those backpack carriers.

gag10

Geocaching during GAG10.

 

4. Get the kids involved. Little kids won’t be much help in the hunt (but you never know!), but the search can still be fun for them. Let them hold the container and look through the contents. Bring swag with you so you can make trades when they find something they don’t want to part with. Geocaching parents sometimes decry micros because they don’t have swag, but I’ve found that my little boy is still interested in looking at the container.

5. Most geocaching events are family-friendly, so go ahead and bring the little ones!

gag11

GAG11 at the Lone Star Ranch.

 

6. Don’t forget to bring snacks, drinks, toys, lots of spare diapers, baby wipes, etc. A little preparation can make the difference between a miserable slog and an unforgettable day of family fun.

7. Don’t rush. It’s just not possible to keep up with those 100-finds-a-day geocachers when you have little ones with you, so don’t try. Go at your own pace, let the kids have a romp when you run across a playground, eat regularly, and if the kids are just too tired, call it a day.

8. Save the really simple park-and-grabs for moments when the kids are asleep in the car and you really want a few more finds for the day.

9. As your kids get bigger, challenge them to be more independent on the trails.

10. Take lots of pictures! They don’t stay this small for long.

Narcissa and Little Boy with Terry Fox cache

Just this summer in Thunder Bay, Ontario.

 

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Responses

  1. Even though we don’t have kids, I thought your advice seemed very sound and I love the pictures you posted… tooooo cute!

  2. We just found out that we’re expecting our first baby. Of course we know that it means huge changes overall but our family laughed when we said how much its going to change our geocaching habits. Up until now we’ve been doing lots of full days of caching. Thanks for the tips. This will come in handy when the time comes.

  3. […] And speaking of hidden treasure, here’s a find: geonarcissa’s list of family-friendly caches in Ottawa. “The caches on this list are accessible to families with kids in strollers, or easy to grab while a little one snoozes in the carseat. I’ve done them all!”. I contacted her while preparing this post, to ask her advice on families starting out, and not only did she come up with a great list, she posted it to her blog: Geocaching With Kids – Some Helpful Tips. […]


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