Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Monsters come to Komoka

Remember the days when you used to follow treasure maps to find buried treasure? If you led a less exciting life as a child, you'll be happy to know that you and your students can both find treasure, and hide it through Geocaching.

Although I'd known about Geocaching for some time, it took an invitation from Jarrod Robinson for me to undertake a first hand exploration of this growing phenomenon. An overview of the Australian origins of this project is included in this brief audio podcast:

At the launch of the project, Mr. Robbo: The P.E. Geek, posted this video introduction to the monsters project:

On Saturday, we went treasure hunting!

Step 1: The monsters arrived via air mail from Australia. We unpacked the envelope and discovered a number of hand-drawn monsters, attached to a Travel Bug.

Step 2: After recording the tracking number of the Travel Bug, we documented the arrival of the attached monsters at Geocaching.com.

Step 3: We chose an existing cache at the Komoka Railway Museum, as the first hiding place for the monsters.

As much as it was fun to play hide & seek via geocaching, we discovered a number of additional, unanticipated treasures:
making treasure maps;
climbing on rail cars;
hearing stock car races echo in the valley;
hiking around the Kilworth pond,
confirming that beavers live in the neighbourhood.

We had a gorgeous day to explore, but I suspect this recreational hobby can be enjoyed year-round. If you're interested to learn what may be hiding in your neighbourhood, simply input your postal/zip code at Geocaching website, then take the next step, and seek out the hidden treasure!

For more photos of our hike, visit my Geocaching photos via Flickr.
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