Basic Hardware/Software

Posted: April 4, 2011 in Geocaching, Tutorials
Ill give you the short rundown of geocaching and what you want to do.

Granted you don’t need all of this stuff but it will tremendously add to your fun

I (currently) use the Magellan eXplorist GC as my GPSr and with that comes a program called VantagePoint detailed below. If you don’t use this hardware, there should be somthing similar to VantagePoint with the GPSr you purchase.

Priority: 9/10 (this is a must have)
Cost: $30/year

Make an account here… This is the central repository for everything geocaching. Groundspeak, the company that runs this whole thing not only maintains the site and keeps all the caches cataloged, but they they maintain a very strict set of rules that make it the most pleasant experience possible. There are a lot of caches that are premium only, but the main reason you want the premium membership ( is so you can make pocket queries, which is the core of what you want to do.


VantagePoint (Software)
Priority: 9/10 (this is a must have)
Cost: Free

This should have come with your Explorist GC but i included the link anyway. This is the software which imports GPX files (this is what pocket queries make in the premium membership) to your GPS. There is a bunch of other stuff with it that works nice on streets, but for hiking its pretty much worthless.

Priority: 6/10
Cost: $25 (lifetime upgrades)

If you are a geocacher and you whip this sucker out, then people will know you are serious. This is basically your ‘offline’ database that shows a TON of information. When I am going on the road, i put this on a laptop instead of having to log into the geocache website. I can show you this if you don’t want to front the cash immediately but it is a GREAT tool.

Geocaching Phone Software
Priority: 7/10
Website: (for android phones)
Website: (for iphones)
Cost: $9.95
Website: (android only)
Cost: Free

I always like to carry two GPS’s, one that is very accurate (the explorist) and one that actually shows maps, and can help me get home when i am lost. For the iPhone you only have one choice that I know of but there might be more. I just don’t know because I don’t have an iphone. For androids, there is an identical one (same as the iphone) which I bought, which seems very piggy on phone battery, so i switched to c:geo (the 3rd link). Both will let you directly to the geocaching website and read the descriptions, logs, clues etc but most importantly will give you satellite maps which will help you find landmarks like trees and big rocks.


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