Winter Geocaching Tips and Motivation


It’s winter time in the U.S. and many other Countries on this side of the World. That means less geocaching for some, but for others it just means that they have slightly more of a challenge now.

My goal for this post is to provide some tips for cache owners and hunters during the Winter months . But I also want to provide some motivation and remind you that Geocaching is not only fun; it’s mentally and physically healthy! So don’t let the cold weather keep you indoors. Get out there and have some fun finding caches, while improving your health at the same time.

Winter Geocaching Tips and Reminders

1. Safety – Obviously the first reminder is the most boring, but most important too. Be SAFE! People have been tragically killed in accidents while caching and during the Winter months there are more hazards than ever! Never go geocaching alone! It doesn’t matter who you are or how fit you are. Anyone can slip, bust their head open, lose consciousness and freeze to death. I know that sounds bad, even morbid, but it’s a reality, so please keep it in mind.

2. Cache Maintenance – Probably the biggest issue with cache containers in the winter months, especially in areas with heavy snow, is wet logs. The most important thing is to use sturdy containers that are air-tight. But it’s also a good idea to keep moisture packs in your caches. Above all keep up your responsibility of checking on and maintaining your cache(s) more frequently during the winter. If you don’t maintain any caches, you can always help out your fellow cachers by bringing alog some small zip lock bags for those caches you find that need protection from the elements.

3. Watch your tracks – If you’re caching in the snow or mud think about your tracks. Lots of tracks are like a big arrow and muggles like following big arrows :)

4. Use Pencils – In freezing weather, pens will not work in many cases. Be sure to carry a few pencils along with you.


5. Don’t damage frozen containers – If you go geocaching in freezing weather you are almost guaranteed to come across multiple caches that are frozen shut. Don’t ruin the cache by hitting it against hard object in an attempt to open it. You couuld break the seal and ruin the fun for everyone. Take along some cheap, throw away hand warmers. Often times holding one or two hand warmers against the lid will melt away the ice enough to open it. Also your car heater will do wonders.

That’s all I have for now. Don’t let the cold keep you inside all winter. Geocaching is fun year round. It’s up to you whether or not you go out and collect on those fun times or not :-)

Happy Caching!

img credit: Ronan_C

  1. BigTunaDave

    In the winter time I tend to geocache in and around my home town. I don’t leave the confines of the city limits when bad weather is happening. Not that this old Eagle Scout can handle it, but my wife on the other hand isn’t too thrilled with the idea of me caching in the middle of a blizzard. I would too if it wouldn’t cause her to go insane. 😉

  2. emily preece
    emily preece01-06-2010

    Your article has some really good pointers.

    Tell folks to do their homework ahead of time when winter caching, and only go for those caches that have the attribute label that it is accessable during winter — (snowflake), or else they may be disappointed.

    Winter is a good excuse to take a vacation south to warmer climes (if possible) and make it a “caching vacation” :) If you have relatives that live somewhere warm, plan a family-reunion. Stay with them and introduce them to caching.. Could turn out to be a yearly tradition!

    Just my ideas……..

  3. ErikaJean

    Tip 6:
    Move to a warmer state, where geocaching season IS the winter 😉

    Good write up. Neat hand warmer Idea!

  4. HoppyFamily

    The reverse of your #3: Put caches you got a previously got a DNF on your watchlist. If someone gets a find or the owner does maintenance after a snowfall, you can go out and follow their tracks to get a smiley for yourself.

  5. slamoc

    Winter is the perfect time to grab those caches that are in mosquito infested areas.

  6. Edwinsp

    Some very nice pointers in there. Keep in mind the wind chill factor also, although it might not be very cold temperature wise, the wind can cause you to cool down very quickly

  7. Luke

    When you are looking at the description for the cache, pay attention to any hints or comments that indicate that the cache is off of the ground. I have found many caches hidden in signs, guardrails and things like that. Those are often just as easy to find in the winter as they are in the summer.

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