Geocaching: State Park Treasure Hunts
The geocaching program at Minnesota State Parks invites you to discover hidden treasures.
Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunt, where participants use hand-held GPS (global positional system) devices to track down a stash hidden in a weatherproof, camouflaged box at a location designated by latitude and longitude.
Since this activity has grown so popular, Minnesota State Parks added geocaching to the many outdoor recreation activities available in the parks. The park geocache program is designed especially to appeal to kids and their families.
Previous challenges have included a Geocaching Wildlife Safari, with "critter caches" in all the parks featuring collectible cards with information on a mammal, insect, fish, reptile or amphibian that lives in the park or did in the past. A cache may occasionally include a "wild card," offering the finder a special reward.
All state parks are part of the Geocaching Wildlife Safari, but 24 of them across the state will be demonstration parks, where GPS units will be available to be checked out free of charge. These parks will also offer some "Geocaching 101" how-to programs to get people started in this activity.
Many of the parks will have multi-caches, where participants will find multiple boxes, the first ones offering quick quizzes or puzzles and the coordinates for the next cache on the route. All of the routes are fairly easy hikes, and are designed to lead people to interesting places in the parks.
For more details, including a list of demonstration parks, visit the Minnesota DNR website.