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Finders, Keepers -- The Modern Way

Jaime Marks -- The time stamp on Dr. S's email was after 3 am. No surprise, since she is an EM doctor who works steady nights. What was more surprising was the content of her email. 

"Wear clothes you can get muddy in."

Was she warning me about the possibility of messy traumas? 

No, Dr. S was warning me about the difficult terrain of the cache we were tackling that day. We would find ourselves on a steep, muddy embankment, where one wrong move could send us falling into the river below. That day there were 4 of us on the hunt: Dr. S, nurse G (who works in the ER with Dr. S), my husband Brad, and myself. Together we tackled some of the most difficult caches in Dayton.

I mentioned geocaching in a previous blog and I absolutely love it. For those of you are not familiar with it, let me briefly explain. Geocaching is an adventure game that uses a Global Positioning System (GPS) unit. Individuals and organizations have hidden caches all over the world. A cache may be just a magnetic key holder under a light post in a Walmart parking lot, or it could mean a 10-mile hike up a mountain to find a 5 gallon container, and just about anything in between.

We have seen some amazing places and things that we would have not normally seen if we did not cache. For example, there are so many old cemeteries in Ohio that contain veterans' graves from every American war. Old abandoned train tunnels, covered bridges, houses carved out of rocks and trees, and beautiful parks are just a few of the attractions where people will hide a cache. Caches themselves can contain just about anything, but most will at least have some small toys, which makes the activity great for kids.

Caching can be as easy or as difficult as you want it to be. Difficulty and terrain ratings can vary from 1-5 stars, and some caches are even designated as handicap accessible.

First, you go to the website at http://www.geocaching.com to locate a cache in your area. The latitude/longitude coordinates of the cache are listed on the cache page so you can put them in your GPS. Some people just use aerial maps and go "GPS-less," but this is hard when you are starting out and do not know what you are looking for. Once you have the coordinates, go tackle your first cache!

Cache1 These are my brothers, Trevor, 12, and Clinton, 13, along with my husband Brad in the middle. This is just one of the many great places we have found while caching.

Cache2 Dr. S and Nurse G are a great team, in and out of the hospital. Here, Nurse G gives Dr. S a boost up to try to find a cache.

January 13, 2006 | Permalink


Looks like lots of fun, and a nice stress-breaker.

Posted by: | Jan 19, 2006 12:52:21 PM

You're not the only one in medicine with this interest -- check out Nick's Jan. 24 post, "Convergence," at http://blogborygmi.blogspot.com/.

Posted by: christine | Jan 31, 2006 10:25:16 AM

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