Geocaching has been called the world’s largest treasure hunt. Join us as we learn more about geocaching and discover some geocaches around Huron County.
If you are an expert geocacher, please feel free to skip to the last section of this article. For those who’d like to learn more about geocaching, please continue reading below.
What is Geocaching?
Geocaching is an adventure you can take just about anywhere in the world, including in Huron County! Rather than following a map marked with an X, you use a gps receiver, a set of coordinates, and clues to search for a “cache” of goodies hidden above ground. “Caches” are hidden by fellow geocachers in various spots around the world, and are typically a collection of trinkets with a logbook. The treasures are inserted in a weatherproof container of some sort and hidden somewhere like under a rock or by a tree. Some caches are easy to find, while others are more difficult. Normally, you will find that most caches are rated by level of difficulty, size of the cache, and the terrain. Geocaching is free fun the whole family can enjoy and is a great way to exercise both your body and mind.
You can learn even more about geocaching, here.
How to Geocache
If you’re new to geocaching there will be a few things you need to know and do before heading out to search for your first geocache. Prior to setting out, you will want to log onto geocaching.com and register for a free basic membership. Then you can choose the geocache you'd like to find and get its coordinates. When you're ready to set out, you will need to enter those coordinates into a GPS device. You can use a standard GPS device, like a Garmin, or you can use your smartphone. If you choose to use a smartphone, click here to download the official geocaching app.
There are a few guidelines you must follow as you embark on your first adventure.
- Do not cross private property without permission to reach a geocache
- Maintain a “tread softly” and Leave No Trace philosophy
Be mindful of the area around you as you search for the cache. When you discover your first cache, childlike wonder may incline you to open the container right away to see what’s inside. However, it’s very important to pause and take a moment to observe the area where the cache was placed prior to opening it. When you leave you will need to place the cache back where and how you found it so others can find it there as well. You will also want to take into consideration the people around you. If you are alone or with your team you need not be discreet about your find. However, if you are in an area that’s populated, it is common courtesy to remove the cache and move away from its location prior to opening it so you don't reveal the exact location of the cache to a passerby.
Be sure to clean any water or dirt from the container before opening it so it doesn’t get inside. Once opened, you can marvel at its treasures. Oftentimes, there will be a logbook and pencil inside in addition to the goodies. Feel free to look through the logbook and write your own entry. Typically, you will want to include your geocaching alias, the current date and time you found the cache, and a few details about your adventure.
One of the guiding principles of geocaching is “take something, leave something.” Usually, when a cache is started the hider places a number of treasures inside. As people find it, they exchange goodies that catch their eye with items they brought to trade. To give you some ideas, the Michigan Geocaching Organization has a database of photos of some of these treasures on its website. Before returning the cache to the place you found it, you can add your treasure. Carefully secure the lid and place the cache back where you found it, being mindful of how it was hidden when you first found it. Once you’ve returned from your adventure you can log into your account on geocaching.com and indicate that you’ve found the cache.
Geocaches in Huron County
Huron County has hundreds of geocaches waiting for you to discover, and this number is continually increasing. So whether you are an expert geocacher traveling to the thumb of Michigan on vacation, or just a local resident getting started, there are many geocaches for you to choose from right here in Huron County.
There are approximately 150 geocaches in the Bad Axe area alone, and there are many others located a short distance from M-53 between Kinde and the Owendale area. This is convenient for travelers coming to and from the Thumb. There are approximately 75 geocaches within a 15-mile radius of Port Austin and more than 100 geocaches within a 15-mile radius of Caseville. This includes Port Crescent State Park, Sleeper State Park, the Huron County Nature Center, and other Huron County parks and beaches. For more geocaches near specific areas throughout Huron County, refer to the list of links below.
- Geocaches near Bad Axe, MI (approx. 150)
- Geocaches near Caseville, MI (over 100)
- Geocaches near Elkton, MI (approx. 100)
- Geocaches near Harbor Beach, MI (more than 40)
- Geocaches near Pigeon, MI (more than 80)
- Geocaches near Port Austin, MI (more than 75)
- Geocaches near Port Hope, MI (more than 40)
- Geocaches near Sebewaing, MI (approx. 175)
- Geocaches near Ubly, MI (more than 140)
- Geocaches in and near the Huron County Nature Center (approx. 50)
Good luck hunting for geocaches in Huron County!
Do you have a favorite geocache in Huron County? Feel free to add it to our comments section below!