Geocaching on Coldham's Common

Explore the hidden local history of Coldham’s Common by finding geocache boxes on the Common! Discover the history of pterosaurs flying over the Common, the discovery of coprolite (dinosaur/pterosaur poo), the “commoners” petitioning to keep their land and the old rifle range on “chalk hill”.  We've launched a *new* geocaching trail which takes in Stourbridge Common, the Ditton Meadows, the Cambridge Museum of Technology on Riverside, and the places nearby connected to the history of Stourbridge Fair in Cambridge, so that the trail offers an exploration of local history and geography, and may take you inside a treetrunk and up a tree for those who like to have adventures in the beautiful outdoors with friends and family!  Find our FREE trail map & introduction to geocaching here to help you get started: 


What are Geocaches?

Geocaching is a real-world, outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location.

What do I need to go geocaching?

The only necessities are a GPS device or a GPS-enabled mobile phone so that you can navigate to the cache, and a free Geocaching.com Membership. You can find out more about geocaching at www.geocaching.com

 How do I find the cache and what should I do once I've found it?

There are many things to know about searching for a cache. For instance, did you know that there is a slight "error" to every GPS device due to technological limitations? Your device can get you close to the cache, but there are a number of things to consider as you get closer to the cache location.

 When you find the cache, sign the logbook and return it to the cache. You can take an item from the cache if you like - just make sure to leave something of equal or greater value in its place. When you are finished, put the cache back exactly as you found it, even if you think you see a better spot for it. Finally, visit the geocache website to log your find and share your experience.

 What does a geocache look like? 

Geocaches vary greatly in size and appearance. In the field you will see everything from large, clear plastic containers to film canisters to a fake rock with a secret compartment. So, how do you find the cache?

The first step is to get a general idea of the cache's size. The size is shown on each cache page. A general overview of the cache size graphic is found below. Please note that these are just examples; sizes can vary.

 Micro - Less than 100ml. Examples: a 35 mm film canister or a tiny storage box typically containing only a logbook or a logsheet. A nano cache is a common sub-type of a micro cache that is less than 10ml and can only hold a small logsheet.
 Small - 100ml or larger, but less than 1L. Example: A sandwich-sized plastic container or similar.
 Regular - 1L or larger, but less than 20L. Examples: a plastic container or ammo can about the size of a shoebox.
 Large - 20L or larger. Example: A large bucket.
 Other - See the cache description for information.

Information taken from geocaching.com


Geocaching introduction for Coldham's Common

We have hidden 3 geocaches on Coldham's Common to teach people about the weird and wonderful hitory of the common. See map below pinpointing the locations.

 Geocache DescriptionsColdham's Juction Geocache Page https://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC6PMHQ_coldhams-junction

Common Fly Over Geocache Page https://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC6RAYD_common-fly-over

Coldham's Common Rifle Butts Page https://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC6R99W_coldhams-common-rifle-butts 

Caches placed by Mario Satchwell with kind permission from Cambridge Council WIldlife Officer Vic Smith.

I hope you enjoy finding these geocacheds and catch the bug to go find others all over the world

ENJOY!

 


The Basics

Geocaching is an outdoor activity that operates using the Global Position System or GPS for the navigation element.  This means that a smartphone, tablet or even a specialist GPS tracking gadget is needed for the game and it is taking place around the world.

The game is a modern, high tech version of a game known as letterboxing.  Going back over a century, this game used landmarks and clues hidden in stories to send gamers around a location.  The idea of making it modern and tech-based came when GPS was no longer just selectively available back in 2000.  The new, improved system could accurately locate a small box and the first one was created by Dave Ulmer of Oregon.  The original bucket contained software, videos, books, food, money and even a slingshot and has been logged as discovered twice.


Geocaching for Children

If you and your kids love a good treasure hunt, then there you will also likely love geocaching.  Described as high tech treasure hunting, this is a great activity that takes everyone outdoors, gets them active and can be done as a family or with a group of friends.  So what is geocaching and where are the top spots to enjoy it?


Top UK geocaching locations

So if this has inspired you to go and try out the activity with the kids in their next holidays or at the weekend, then where are the top spots around the UK to try out geocaching?

Wicken Fen is in Cambridgeshire that has twelve secrets to discover.  They are spread over three trails of varying length from the basic three mile trail to the bigger ones that can be undertaken by bike.

Clent Hills in Birmingham has four caches to be discovered and some beautiful scenery to enjoy while looking for them.  The activities are firmly centred around kids and the contents of the caches are regularly changed.  You can bring a GPS device with you or download an app to a smartphone to play the game.

Clumber Park is near Worksop, Nottinghamshire and is a major geocaching location with some 20 different caches to find.  As well as the fun of locating the caches, there are also swaps with the contents while buying geocoins allow you to see where in the world the treasure you leave behind ends up. Clumber Park

Llanerchaeron in Caeredigion (a Site of Special Scientific Interest in the Aeron Valley) offers the combination of six different caches to be found along with beautiful flora and fauna.  The area is known for its daffodils, bluebells and wood anemone while there is a Georgian villa and farm on the property that has a number of traditional Welsh breeds of animals being raised there.

Lytes Cary Manor is in Somerset and is a great place to try geocaching for the first time.  There are five geocaches to find and all are placed near the routes running through the site so it is ideal for younger kids to join in.  No devices are available on the site so bring along a smartphone or tablet to play the game.

Newark Park in Gloucestershire offers a number of kids activities in addition to geocaching so is ideal for a day out.  There are nine caches in total hidden around the park while there is also a spotters trail to follow that details the history of the house at the centre of the park.

Polesdon Estate is in Surrey and offers geocaching amongst other activities. There is a leaflet available on site so bring your own smartphone and afterwards, enjoy one of the four walks across the estate, including ones especially designed for the kids.  There are also woodland walks further afield.

Roseberry Topping is in North Yorkshire and is a puzzle geocaching location that offers a number of hidden caches that require puzzles to find and to gain the prizes.  The caches include lots of information about the site so it is educational as well as great fun.  There are also logbooks to sign to leave a note for future hunters to read.

Tyntesfield in Bristol was the first geocaching location organised by the National Trust around the UK and offers six boxes spread across the woodland site.  While finding them, kids can look out for the resident wildlife and learn about the history of the location as well as the work going into protecting it for future generations.

Geocaching on Coldham's Common

 

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