There are 2 geocaching groups in Bloomington: the IU Geocaching Club and the Bloomington Geocachers. Both of these groups host geocaching outings and do several events together. So if you're not a student at IU, the Bloomington Geocachers is for you and students are very welcome at Bloomington Geocachers' events!
In the last spring and early fall, we lead weekly Caching After Class adventures that introduce new people to geocaching by visiting a few geocaches on campus. We also hold 1-2 events per month. In the past some of these have included a pirate-themed geocaching canoe trip to the islands of Lake Monroe, winter hikes in the snow, a "Nearly Naked Nightcaching" hunt following the "Nearly Naked Mile" IU homecoming event, and a cookie mob (cookie exchange flash mob). We also had two teams compete in the Spring Mill State Park Geocaching Challenge where we placed first and second amongst teams from several different states.
What is Geocaching?
Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Some geocaches have prizes that can be traded. Once found, a visitor can trade something of equal or greater value. Geocaches are located in every state and country with over 1.3 million geocaches hidden around the world being searched for by over 5 million geocachers. A quick visit to http://www.geocaching.com/map/ will reveal that your hometown probably has at least a dozen geocaches in the area, which could be hidden near your hometown library, park, or grocery store without you ever realizing that it was there.Why Geocache?
Many geocaches bring you to a place in your community that you never would have explored if there hadn't been a geocache there such as a hidden park, public art piece, or incredible view. It's also a great way to get outside and see nature in a different way. Many people use geocaching to get exercise.What's Special About Geocaching in Bloomington and at IU?
There are a wide variety of geocaches in the area. There are 40 geocaches on campus and 450 within 10 miles of Bloomington, which is a hotspot for geocaching. We have many creative containers as well as having so many that are within walking distance of each other. We have people from Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois and all over Indiana visit Bloomington to find our cleverly hidden geocaches.
There's really something for everyone as there are creative containers such as a fake rocks, tree bark or snakes; physical and mental challenges and puzzles; and some that involve hiking, climbing, and scuba-diving for the outdoor adventure seekers. If you want to find something easy, there are geocaches in parking lots, bushes, trees, and next to buildings that you pass by every day.Who Geocaches?
We are a fun-seeking group of students that loves adventures. The club has an interesting mix of members from all majors and about an even mix between graduate and undergraduate students. We have about 30 active members and always have someone new joining us at each event. But you don't have to come to our events to be a geocacher. The club takes pride in having introduced 300+ new people to geocaching in the past 2 years. There are at least 400 geocachers in the Bloomington area. IU Geocaching Club co-hosts many geocaching events with the Bloomington Geocachers which is a great way to meet people in the community beyond campus.
- Find a GPS device to use. The Geocaching Club at IU has some that can be checked out at the Wells Library by IU students, staff, and faculty. More information is available on our GPS Devices page. Most smartphones such as iPhone, Blackberry, Android, and Windows 7 phones have geocaching applications that can be used.
- Bring a friend. It's more fun than caching solo. You can meet new friends that want to geocache through the Geocaching Club at IU or Bloomington Geocachers. You can also come to one of our geocaching events. All are open to the public and free! We love sharing our hobby and GPS devices with those interested in trying it.
- Select a cache you want to find. Many are available through geocaching.com. Just type your location in the search box. There are more than 250 in Bloomington. This video will show you how to select your first geocache.
- Go find it!
- Log your caches at geocaching.com to let other people know what you have found or not found. If you're having problems with finding a geocache, others are usually willing to give you a hint.
- Find more details on geocaching.com's Getting Started page.
- Still need some more help getting started? Send us an e-mail or stop by a geocaching event! Geocachers love to help new geocachers and are really friendly.