Running my hands along the underpinnings of the bridge, I rummaged through last fall’s damp leaves for the geocache hidden there. I was certain I was in the exact spot where the small plastic box was located when…pop! A small mouse leapt from the dry foliage, its beady black eyes reflecting my own surprise. The box, as it turned out, lay three inches to the right of the mouse’s nest. I swapped the cache and its soggy contents for a fresher box and beat a hasty retreat, apologizing to the mouse along the way.
Maintaining Adkins Arboretum’s three geocaches is one of the many fun and exciting parts of my Arboretum job description. Geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunt using GPS devices. Caches contain an assortment of trinkets, a stamp, and a logbook. After entering their names and the date in the geocache logbook, geocachers stamp their own logbooks, take a trinket, and leave a trinket of their own for the next geocacher to find.
Adkins Arboretum’s geocache coordinates are listed at www.geocaching.com. A number of geocaches are also hidden in the surrounding Tuckahoe State Park. Have tech-crazy kids at home? Are you tech crazy? Geocaching is a great way to combine a love of electronics with the great outdoors. Take it from me: you’ll never know what you might find.
by Jenny Houghton
Youth Program Director