Mystery Mondays: The Great Muggle Conversion

Happy Labor Day!

I hope you’re having a fun-filled holiday weekend.

This weekend, I got the honor of converting a geocaching “muggle” into a brand-new cacher. If you’re not familiar with the term muggle (outside of the Harry Potter books) it means a non-geocacher and someone who knows nothing about the game of geocaching.

Here are some links to help you out:

A couple of weeks ago, I “introduced” Greg, the former-muggle to kayaking. Since he’s hooked, I thought I would also try my hand at making a true cacher out of him.

He's hooked on kayaking. I'll get him hooked on geocaching too!

For our first outing, I was sure to pull out all the stops in my geocaching bag of tricks. Since we were going kayaking at Goldwater Lake, I figured that it would be easier to just put the kayaks back in the truck and head out directly to go geocaching.

Here are a few tips when you’re heading out caching, ESPECIALLY with a newbie:

  • Load MORE caches to your GPS than you know you can find. That way, you can pick and choose depending on if the newbie needs easy or hard to find, wants to hike or is more of a park-n-grab.
  • PRINT the logs sheets. Even if you usually cache without them, having a print out that a newbie can hang on to really can make a difference. I let Greg read up on the caches as we were heading out so he knew what size container he was looking for and could refer back to the tip often.
  • Bring SWAG to trade. Geocaching was new and exciting. Part of the thrill when you’re fist getting into caching is the swag. How cool is it when you find a container you might have passed every day and not only do you find it, you can trade for trinkets.
  • Let them really LOOK for the cache. Yes, your geosense will just light up and tell you: “It’s got to be right behind that rock” but let the other person have the thrill of discovery.
  • Set them up on ACCOUNT on geocaching.com. That way, as soon as you get home, you can show them the other side of caching: the digital component. As a new cacher, I would too often forget to log the cache online. Greg’s login on geocaching.com is CodeWolf.

The first find.

When Greg and I went out, I broke my cardinal rule of caching (find bigger caches with new people) and when after a micro. But, I know the hiders’ style pretty well so I wasn’t too worried. I think it was a good choice because not only did Greg find it right away, he was also introduced to a travel bug on his very first cache. Very cool!

All in all, we found 3 caches and 1 did not find. I thought it was a very successful first-outing.

Oh, and later that day, Greg turned to me and said “Next time I come visit, can we go kayaking AND geocaching?”

Experiencing the thrill of the find.

I think he’s hooked! Welcome to geocaching!

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