Tonight we decided to try out luck at geocaching again. We always love the idea of geocaching, we just can't get our kids excited. They are being raised in a society of "right now" and looking for hidden boxes in overgrowth at parks doesn't strike them as interesting.
If you don't know what geocaching is, it is treasure hunting in the wild. But it is mapped out so you can find the caches on geocaching.com and then print the map or download the coordinates.
This homeschooling family is working on compass reading right now and thought that it would be fun. After a hearty meal we all packed into the van and headed to our favorite Wildlife Preserve with our dog. The sun was still high enough to see everything, but not high enough to need sunglasses, which is good.
We walked and the kids ran and the birds chirped and it was wonderful, until our GPS said to go into the overgrown brush of the wooded area. Could that be right? We had found this cache before but it was just barely April and there was no overgrowth! We decided that there had to be a batter way, so we walked around on the path. Sure enough, it was calling us into the brush.
The Family 5 headed into the tall weeds with prickers and poison ivy, with the dog trailing behind. She is just a wee thing, only 10 pounds and very timid. This clearly was not going to be her thing but in we all went, following what we believe to be deer trails. The first layer of brush gave us still plenty of light, but the GPS continued to call us into that icky darkness of full-on pine tree cover and dark dark darkness. Once in, it was eerie. We searched, and searched and searched. We found nothing. The thing with caches is sometimes they are moved or tampered with, so you might look and look and find nothing. That is what happened to us. We ended up leaving the brush covered in prickers (teeny tiny cocklburrs) and holding the dog who decided she wasn't about to budge through the tall grass, someone should carry her, which I did. The Girls, 9, 5, and 3 were troopers but clearly disappointed.
Why? Because there is kid-sized treasure in these caches! Pencils, gumball jewelry, playing cards, tablets, McDonald's toys! In the end, it was a nice adventure and we love the opportunity to seek and find! I, personally, love the time with our family all together, working hard for one common goal, but a little treasure would have been awesome too!