Alabama Geocachers Association
Moss Rock Festival will utlize the 250 acre Moss Rock Preserve (nature preserve) for this fun GPS activity and hunt. Fun prizes are waiting to be found.
GPS Workshops & Hunts: 11:00am / 12:00pm / 1:00pm / 2:00pm
Visit Booth 347 at the top of the Orange Artist Row (northwest side of the Village Green).
What is geocaching?
Geocaching is the act of hiding and seeking caches of hidden items, known also as geocaches, using a GPS. Geocaching is a free, inclusive family-friendly activity available to anyone. Anyone who picks up a GPS and goes to hunt a geocache (sometimes shortened to cache) is a geocacher, no membership or joining required. In fact the majority of geocachers are not joiners and we have no idea who they are until we meet along a trail!
What is a geocache?
To qualify as a geocache it must be a container with a logbook. That can mean a nano-cache smaller than a pencil eraser, a micro-cache like a magnetic keyholder that may be large enough to contain a log sheet and small trade items (trinkets), or a traditional cache, a container anywhere from a plastic lock-n-lock food container to an ammo box and beyond that contains a log sheet and trade items.
Geocaching History 101
In the age of GPS geo-locating technology and online mapping and satellite imagery software like Google Earth, a new breed of outdoor enthusiasts have emerged that take part in hiding and finding geocaches. There are over 348,000 geocaches hidden all over the world and currently registered at a popular website, www.geocaching.com.
Anyone can participate in the fun. Whether it is introducing people to a beautiful view you want to share, some thing or place unique or historical, geocaching is all about sharing places and information. This new technology has brought people together from all backgrounds for the hunt…old and young, families and singles, from techies to hikers to business people.
How does geocaching work?
The game started in 2001 when the US Department of Defense degraded the accuracy of the signal sent by its military satellite system, opening it for use by civilians. This satellite system is a number of satellites parked in geosynchronous Earth orbit which send a timestamp signal continuously. At any given time at any given spot on Earth up to twelve of these satellites are in unobstructed view on our horizon.
A GPSr (usually referred to simply as GPS) is a combined clock, radio receiver, compass and computer that receives the available signals and performs a bit of triangulation, reading the signals and calculating what time each left its respectve satellite and at what time each signal reached the receiver. The farther a satellite is from you the longer its signal takes to get to you. Think of slicing a pie – where all the slice lines come together is the center of the pie (if you do it right!) and the same is true for triangulation – where all these timestamps come together is your location on Earth, within about 20 feet or so!
The Earth is divided by imaginary lines known as latitude and longitude. The place where a line of latitude and a line of longitude intersect is known as a coordinate. We identify precise locations on Earth by stating exact coordinates.
This technology is known as geolocation. Geocachers use this multi-billion-dollar technology to go find toys!
About the Alabama Geocachers Association
The purpose of the Alabama Geocachers Association (AGA) is to provide statewide association that represents all Alabama geocachers. The AGA is a group of individuals from all age groups and backgrounds that share the enjoyment of being outdoors and geocaching.
Geocaches in the Moss Rock Preserve
There are geocaches already hidden in the Moss Rock Preserve. A list will be provided on site for those who wish to hunt for any of these geocaches over the 2 day event.