Does the thrill of the hunt and unknown get you excited? Were you aware that there are literally tons of secret hidden treasures lying all around Breckenridge unbeknownst to the average passerby? For those who love a good scavenger hunt or are just looking for a great way to spice up a hike around town, adding geocaching to your life might just bring you the excitement you crave.

Do you know where this trail is located in Breck? There is a geocache site hidden nearby. Photo by Austin Kriete

Do you know where this trail is located? There is a geocache site hidden nearby. Photo by Austin Kriete

Step 1: Sign up

Sign up on the Geocaching website. Create a unique username, enter your name, email address and password, and you are set to go. Make sure to enter that “BreckMom” referred you.

Step 2: Do your homework

When signed into Geocaching, under the “Learn” tab, check out the “Geocaching 101” helpful tips, terms and all that you ever wanted to know about using a GPS. The Selecting Your First Geocache YouTube video is a great introduction to this sport. And, once you are ready to head out on your first hunt, watch Finding Your First Geocache.

Step 3: Set out and conquer!

Helping me with my first cache search was longtime Breckenridge local, Melinda Cope and her son, Connor.

Both are highly experienced geocachers and quickly showed me and my 4-year-old son how to hunt like a pro. First rule: be discreet.

Searching is part of the fun, but there is nothing like finally discovering. Photo by Austin Kriete

Searching is part of the fun, but there is nothing like finally discovering. Photo by Austin Kriete

Geocachers do not want outside “muggles” or non-geocachers to know what they are really doing. Typically, “geomuggles are mostly harmless,” so smile as you pass our fellow Breckonites. One day, they may also be on the hunt for the same illusive treasure.

Rule two: There appears to be no rules as for where exactly the cache might be hidden. Once you’ve followed your GPS trail, look high, low, under and through things to find the treasure. You might be surprised at what your hand ends up grabbing in that dark hole under the bridge. Once you’ve successfully found the cache, open it up and enter your username and the date on the logbook. How cool it is to read the names of those that have come before you?

Lastly, place the cache and logbook exactly back in the location where you found it. Feel free to leave a “signature item” or item that is unique to you as a geocacher behind with the cache to show that you were once there. And definitely make sure to not be a “spoiler” and give away too many of the cache site specifics and ruin the surprise for someone finding it themselves.

Recognize the back of this sign? I'm looking straight at a cache site.

Recognize the back of this sign? I’m looking straight at a cache site.

Chances are you will never really look at the world the same way once you’ve become a geocacher. Could there be something hidden in that bush? Is there a random box behind that sign? The world of mystery is right outside your front door. Grab your kids, your friends, your dog or a date and take them on an adventure in Breckenridge!

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