Geocaching is a great new way of having fun in the countryside. It involves hunting out carefully hidden caches using maps and satellite navigation devices called GPS (Global Positioning System) receivers. If you find a cache (and some are very hard to spot!) there are often trade items in them that you can swap and a log book for you to record your visit. Back home you can log your visit onto the internet.
To find out about caches within Dartmoor National Park log onto the international geocaching website - www.geocaching.com (external website, opens new window). Registration is free and then you are ready to start geocaching! You will first need to find out the co-ordinates and clues for your nearest caches, the quickest way is to enter a postcode. Choose which ones you want to bag and then download or enter the co-ordinates manually into your GPS receiver. Check out the best way to get to the site using an up-to-date Ordnance Survey map and then off you go!
Geocaching guidelines for Dartmoor:
- When seeking to place a geocache make sure there is a public right of access.
- Geocaches placed on common land within the National Park are permitted within SSSI areas without specific permission being required
- Caches placed on CROW access land may require landowner permission and you are advised to check with DNPA
- Ensure the cache container is clearly marked, stating that the content is harmless and giving the placer's email address or other contact method. Only items that would be deemed safe and acceptable for an unaccompanied child to find should be placed in the cache.
- No cache may be placed in such a way as to risk damage or disturbance to any Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) or Scheduled Monument. Make sure you help us protect our natural and cultural heritage at all times. If you are unsure about the designation of your cache site please contact us, we will be happy to advise.
- No items of food or drink of any kind should be placed in the cache.
- Caches must not be buried, and holes must not be dug in order to place a cache.
- Caches must not be hidden in animal holes or runs.
- Cache containers must not be placed inside a polythene bag. Grazing animals have been known to die after eating discarded polythene.
- Fences, walls and hedges should never be crossed (other than using a gate or stile) when placing or hunting for a cache.
- No caches should be of a commercial nature, either in location or content.
- Maintenance of the cache is the responsibility of the placer.
- When leaving the cache site after hiding a cache, there must be no visual sign of disturbance.
- Please do not bring geocaching into disrepute, never drive your car anywhere other than on public roads and always park legally.
- Always go properly equipped for the terrain and weather conditions, and follow normal practice for safety in the outdoors.
- Dartmoor National Park Authority cannot accept any legal liability for any loss or injury suffered whilst you are engaged in geocaching.