If you like exploring, you’ll love geocaching, the global treasure hunt for the whole family. To take things up a level, you could join an orienteering adventure or improve your navigation and wilderness skills on a bushcraft and survival course, see details about orienteering, navigation and wilderness skills at the bottom of this blog.
Get into geocaching
Geocaching is a fun way to explore the Brecon Beacons. It will take you to great places which may have a brilliant view or some historical significance, for example, a WWII bomber crash site or the monument to Little Tommy Jones.
There are over 180 geocaches in interesting locations in the Brecon Beacons National Park, all waiting to be found. All you need to start your quest is a handheld GPS (Global Positioning System) decive and access to the geocaching website, www.geocaching.com. You can even have a go without a GPS, using an Ordnance Survey map and compass.
What is a geocache?
A geocache is a sort of treasure box, ranging in size from a small film canister to a larger plastic container or an old ammo box. The person who placed it recorded its location precisely as a grid reference and GPS waypoint and entered this information online at www.geocaching.com or one of the other geocaching websites.
Each geocache contains a log book, a pencil and a stash of treasure. Don’t expect gold doubloons! You may find a trackable geocoin or travelbug, but most geocaches contain geoswag, random objects of minimal value that previous players have placed there for others to find. It’s important that these are family-friendly and non-perishable (so, no sweets!)
Your aim is to place something in the cache in the hope that someone will later move it on somewhere else and log its journey. You can also take geoswag from the cache as long as you add something of equal or greater value (a geocoin doesn’t count).
What is a geocoin?
A geocoin is a special coin with a unique tracking number stamped on it. People buy them in order to send them on a journey that can be tracked online, from geocache to geocache or person to person, picking up stories along the way.
The idea is that if you find one, you post a log on the geocaching website, www.geocaching.com. Your post can include photos, thoughts or views.
How do you get started?
Search the geocaching website, www.geocaching.com, for geocaches in an area you’d like to explore.
Orienteering and navigation training
Another great way to explore the Brecon Beacons countryside is to join an orienteering challenge – finding your way around a course using just a map and compass. Several activity companies organise this. They can also provide training in basic or advanced map reading and navigation.
Bushcraft and wilderness survival training
If you’d like to test yourself to the limit and learn how to survive in the wild, you can join a bushcraft and wilderness survival course with one of our specialist activity companies. You’ll learn how to make your own comfortable natural shelter, forage for food and water, light and manage a fire for warmth and cooking and many other useful skills.
Find a list of relevant activity providers here