Essential Geocaching Equipment – What’s in your Geocaching bag?

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Whether you’re new to Geocaching or you’re just getting started, you most likely have a bag of some type, which you carry with you when you’re on your geocaching adventures. If you don’t then I highly recommend getting one and and filling it with the items listed below.

This list is a compilation of what I carry in my own bag and what other Geocaching friends mentioned to me on Twitter (thanks guys and gals) that they consider to be essentials.

1. Pens & Pencils – Most micros and even some smalls, regulars and larges do not contain writing utensils. If you go caching without a pen there’s a good chance you won’t be able to sign half of the logs.

2. Batteries – It’s great fun to be out hunting for caches in the middle of nowhere, or in the middle of somewhere for that matter :) But it’s not so much fun when your GPSr dies and needs new batteries!

3. Swag (Trade Items) – Especially when caching with children, it’s always good to have some small it

 

ems to trade for other items inside caches.

4. Tweezers – Many micro containers contain logs that are very difficult to remove. Tweezers have “saved the day” for me on several occasions! In some rare occasions tweezers are even needed to retrieve the actual Geocache itself.

5. Flashlight – Whether you cache at night or doing all of your hunting during daylight hours a flashlight often comes in handy. At night it’s obvious, but even during the day some hiding spots are much easier to find when a flashlight!

6. Paper and/or log books – Mannnnnnny logs get wet. It’s always good to help out the cache owner by replacing wet or full logs, so 1. you can sign the log 2. those who find the cache after you can sign the log and 3. the cache owner doesn’t have to deal with it. It’s cheap and easy, so why not?

7. Camera – You never know when you’re going to find a neat place, creative container, rare animal etc. on your geocaching adventures. Always have a camera with you, so you don’t have another “Darn, I wish I had a camera” moment ;)

8. Cache Containers – I have a few extra nanos and bison tubes in my bag. You never know when you’re going to come across a great spot that needs a cache.

That’s what’s in my bag, what’s in yours?


photo credit: geishaboy500

  1. ErikaJean (@airrikajswan)
    ErikaJean (@airrikajswan)03-16-2009

    Nice post! I keep forgetting the tweezers in mine, I usually use a bobby pin out of my hair to get those nano logs out… but the tweezers are also good for picking out cactus needles here ;-)

    Here is what I have in mine: http://www.erikajean.com/2009/03/ive-upgraded.html

  2. Susan Scherr
    Susan Scherr04-28-2009

    Extra logs, bi-lingual stash notes, and duct tape for minor cache maintenance (always let someone know if you replaced a log or cleaned/repaired a cache.) Handi wipes, trash bags for CITO.

    I keep a tool box, spray paint, nanos and misc. size cache containers; a stash of camo materials for making containers in the field. Like you, we often run across a spot just begging for a hide!

    One other thing I keep is a folder with geocaching information for folks we meet in the field.

    Thanks for a great article! Here’s a link to my “field kit” http://geocachingidaho.wordpress.com/

  3. Geocaching Mania
    Geocaching Mania06-22-2009

    I also carry extra ziploc bags and an dry pair of socks. Cold wet feet are no fun!

  4. Fluffy & Friedrick
    Fluffy & Friedrick06-24-2009

    We take Invisibility Cloaks, aka orange vests. Recently, a muggle came to us and reported a downed road sign. I went with him to inspect the sign, while Friedrick found the cache. Friedrick is making us nonsense badges. We take a clipboard in high traffic areas.

  5. r00k1e
    r00k1e07-09-2009

    I also have wet-wipes/baby wipes, a first aid kit, and bug spray in my bag. You never know when you are going to need it!

  6. Simon - zaktarin
    Simon - zaktarin07-26-2009

    Fluffy & Friedrick – I like that idea! Difficult to pull off though if you have children with you though like we do!

  7. Fluffy
    Fluffy08-04-2009

    I’m imagining children dressed in hardhats and orange vests. Could you dress them like a Scout troop? Or, do you have some flyers with a bunny rabbit mugshot saying “Mr. Freckles is Missing.” I suppose it is wrong to teach children to act except onstage. Otherwise, perhaps they would be inclined to throw a Fit of Distraction when a muggle approaches. I think Fits of Distraction could be found in a Harry Potter book– its like a magic mood-changing charm. When kids are down on the ground having a tantrum they can look in the hard-to-see places for micros.

  8. Ellfie & Glenda
    Ellfie & Glenda11-23-2009

    We’ve joked about the clipboard thing before! Too funny. We also keep sunscreen in the pack.

  9. Fluffy & Friedrick
    Fluffy & Friedrick11-24-2009

    This week at work, someone needed a hair clippy, so while looking thru my gym bag (computer bag during the week, and geocaching bag on the weekend), I couldn’t find any clippies, but I did give her a penguin.

    (Which made no sense at all. But her little boy will really like it because Happy Feet is his fave movie.)

  10. geojones.pdx
    geojones.pdx12-30-2009

    I really like the orange vest and clipboard idea. I was trying for a cache today at lunch, and it would have been really handy. Maybe a hardhat too.

  11. rcm999
    rcm99910-04-2010

    I thought I was the only one who carried a hardhat and safety vest. Safety glasses/goggles are good too.

  12. Jeepers-gasfree
    Jeepers-gasfree01-17-2011

    These are all great suggestions. My question is…What essential items need to be in my bag to go Ge-Snow-Caching in the winter time?

    Any thoughts?

  13. Geo Josh
    Geo Josh02-21-2011

    Hmm, winter cache items? It’s getting warmer already here in Missouri, but…

    A good walking stick:
    Even slush can make a mild hill difficult to climb off trail. I take my favorite stick along on most of my caching hikes anyway.

    Good boots:
    If you didn’t check the tread on your shoes before you leave, you just might wish you had.

    Chemical Hand warmers:
    The colder it is, the bigger the gloves get, the harder it is to use your hands. It’s nice to warm them up quick if you have to take off the gloves. ALSO, if you have ever tried to use batteries in cold weather you know they just don’t work as well. You can squeeze a lot more juice out of a battery if you warm it up just a little before you use them. It’s ok to store batteries in the cold (they do last longer) but don’t draw energy from a cold battery if you can avoid it. It’s nice to have a close friend who’s willing to share warmth too, but that can be hard to find sometimes.

    WATER:
    I didn’t see anyone mention this, it’s so obvious it shouldn’t need to be mentioned, but I’ve forgotten/lost my water bottle before. No fun to go thirsty! I usually have a small bottle with me, and a jug in the car for refills.

    FOOD:
    Protein bars, granola bars, candy, anything that has calories/sugar. Even if you’re on diet, you burn more energy keeping yourself warm. It’s good to have a reserve.

    INK WILL FREEZE:
    Always have a good old fashion pencil on hand.

    Snow/Ice pick:
    Some kind of well built metal object that you can beat up on ice if the need arises. The stick can usually help, but sometimes you need heavier gear.

    Dry kindling/Candle/matches/lighter:
    If you’re in the woods in the winter you might need to take a break and build a fire. Even if you’re in a park that doesn’t allow it, it’s better to have the option than to freeze. I’ve found a good fat candle (and some patience) can get even wet wood to light. The wax can be poured on small sticks, and it’s a constant flame. Keep it in one spot long enough and you can get a lot of things to catch that would otherwise be difficult.

    Cell Phone/Radio
    Communication, this probably doesn’t need to be stressed for most people, but it should be on the checklist. Backup power can be handy too, I’m looking into getting a solar charger.

    String or cord:
    Don’t need a lot, but you can find yourself needing a bit of string from time to time. It’s just a good multi-use item.

    A GOOD BOOK!
    People read in weird places. If you pull out a book a lot of people will leave you alone.

    “Big Fish” Stories
    No matter if you run into another geocacher or a muggle, it’s nice to have a story to share. Tell them about that impossible to find cache or the most interesting container. Spread the knowledge! Just don’t let on where the one you’re looking for is ;-)

  14. Jei Thorpe
    Jei Thorpe11-27-2011

    My caching backpack contents: pens, pencil, paper, Wet-Naps, hand sanitizer, tri-fold paper towels ( for drying a wet cache or stopping bleeding from cuts), complete first-aid kit with water purification tablets, gloves, hat, extra-long surgical tweezers (not only for nano logs, but getting micro caches out of tight places), telescoping long-reach mirror (for areas hard to see into or around), telescoping magnetic pick-up, map in waterproof bag + compass (just in case), waterproof pouch for cell phone (which is also my GPS), flashlight, camera, extra batteries, a full swag bag, extra zip-locks, extra cache containers, duct tape, multi-tool, sharp fixed-blade knife, flare launcher and flares, telescoping walking stick, hand-warmers, granola bars, water, matches and lighter, extra jacket.
    And, it’s always good to take along your wits and your sense of humor!

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