Friday, 22 March 2013

Top Caches in Any Area

Now that we've been bit by the geocaching bug, we of course want to "go caching" whenever we visit somewhere - whether it be a different country, province, state, or city than we call home, we want to check out the caches available.

Initially, we did this by simply puling up the Geocaching.com map, toggling the side panel, and typing in the name of the region we were planning to travel to in the "Search by Address or Coordinates" box. Then we'd manually inspect the caches nearby where we'd be staying, and try and see what is accessable, available, and interesting.  subsequent to that, we'd load them onto our GPSr one-by-one.This was a tedious process, and it wasn't always super effective... for the most part it's worked out, but it is very time consuming.

More recently, we've been learning how to take advantage of Pocket Queries to give us much more refined lists of the caches we should try and find while visiting.

Not only does creating pocket queries (reminder: this is a Geocaching.com functionality that may not be available on other geocaching related sites) allow enormous granularity and flexibility in the types of caches and containers, but other important criteria can be set including:
  • difficulty (greater than or equal to, equal to, or less than or equal to 1 - 5)
  • terrain (greater than or equal to, equal to, or less than or equal to 1 - 5)
  • date of placement
  • inclusion/exclusion of any of the geocache attributes

Once your pocket query is configured in the simple & effective interface, you can have it emailed or download it directly from the site in either gpx or loc format, for quick upload into your GPS or tools such as GSAK.

This has become a much better way for us to plan our caching trips to different destinations, including the ability to sort those caches by order of "most favourite" so that we can make sure we visit the "top caches in any area."

We've been able to use exactly that mechanism to identify the most "favourited" caches, so stay tuned to our YouTube channel for an upcoming series of videos on the top caches for some different geocaching destinations.

If you have tips or tricks for how to plan your geocaching away from home, please share them with us!

Thanks for stopping by, and remember:
Cache safely, and cache often!

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