Geocaching: The Lost Treasure of Mary Hyde

A couple of weeks ago Geocaching introduced a Pirate-themed Geocaching experience. Over the course of four weeks, every participant had to master a set of goals to get a piece of the treasure map. Once all four map pieces were found the treasure hunters were able to put the map together.

Everyone who received the four souvenirs (map pieces) also received a fifth souvenir for the completion of the treasure hunt. Overall the goals were pretty simple. You had to find a certain amount of “gold coins” every week. Each week the value of the different cache types were adjusted and some gave you more and other less gold coins per find.

The completed Treasure Map

Overall it was not hard to collect the required gold coins. I completed the treasure hunt by myself even tho you were encouraged to form a team.

Overall the idea was great but lacked a bit in practical execution. Basically, it didn’t matter how you were able to get the gold coins. I know it’s hard to pull off a global treasure hunt like this. You can’t expect to fly people around the world. Another idea would be an online approach, where you have to solve riddles and find clues in videos and web pages. On the other side, this forced me back outside to find some caches and I forgot how much fun geocaching is. I am super busy with work lately and barely have time for anything, but Mary Hyde forced me to get back on my feet and find more caches.

I prefer GeoTours and GeoTrails. What are GeoTours or GeoTrails? Well, first of all, both are basically the same but you can only name it GeoTour if you officially got the permission of Geocaching.com. However, you can build your own and post the details about the tour on your own website and publish the required caches on geocaching.com.

The best GeoTour/Trail I completed so far was the Visit Utah GeoTour. It required finding 3 caches in each of the 29 counties of Utah. Yeah, that involved a lot of driving. On the other side, most caches were easily accessible from the car.

Because there are so many unofficial GeoTrails out there, I started a section on my blog to list all this GeoTrails, combined with official once. So far I only added GeoTours/Trails which I personally know about. If anyone has knowledge about a good GeoTrail (one which is not listed on geocaching.com) please contact me with some details and I am happy to add it here. Visit my Geocaching Tour Index for the USA.

Overall the Mary Hyde theme was a great idea and hope I will see similar events in the future. Check the Geocaching.com Blog for more photos from events users held all over the world. Some of the photos are amazing.

[Header Image courtesy of Geocaching.com]

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