Binoculars. Photo by Bindiya Thomas.

Geocaching

Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game where the objective is to locate geocaches (caches), or hidden containers, outdoors with the help of a Global Positioning System (GPS)-enabled device using coordinates that are posted online. Players of all ages, levels of physical fitness, and tech savviness enjoy exploring the world around them this way and then sharing their experiences online.

See the Geocaching FAQ below for more specifics on how to enjoy this activity in our preserves. 

Geocaching Guidelines

Please read the District’s Geocaching Guidelines in its entirety before heading out on your geocaching adventure. These guidelines apply to both privately owned geocaches as well as those that are part of the District's Geocaching Program.

In addition, participants in the District’s Geocaching Program must read and accept the terms of the Geocaching Agreement and Release of Liability. Visitors are responsible for knowing and obeying these guidelines and agreements.

For questions or more information regarding Geocaching on District lands, please contact geocaching@openspace.org or our general line 650-691-1200.

Midpen's Geocaching Program

Use your GPS unit to locate geocaches hidden within a designated circuit of Midpen preserves.

  • Obtain a Preserve Circuit Passport.
    (Email us to have a pocket-size passport mailed to you, or print this letter-size version.)
  • Go to Geocaching.com, register for a free basic membership, and obtain the GPS coordinates for the Preserve Circuit geocaches ("caches"). Search by user name "MROSD." You can also get coordinates below (See Midpen Preserve Circuit Geocaches).
  • Start your search to locate the Preserve Circuit caches using your GPS-enabled device.
  • When you find a Preserve Circuit cache, sign the log book and stamp your passport with the stamp located inside the cache specific for that preserve (do NOT remove the game piece stamp).
  • Share your experiences online when you get home. Log into your Geocaching.com account and track all of the caches you found. Let us know in your log if you're a first time visitor to any of the preserves!

Earn Prizes

  • For children 16 years and younger, stamp any 12 of the Preserve Circuit cache locations in your passport to receive a limited custom Midpen cache tag.*
  • For geocachers of all ages, complete the entire Preserve Circuit Geo-Challenge (have every preserve cache location stamped) and receive a limited custom geocoin.*

*Prizes are available while supplies last. To claim prizes, mail in your qualifying passport (keep a copy for you records, Midpen is not responsible for lost mail) and receive it back along with your prize. Please include your complete mailing and contact information along with your full name and your geocaching username. You may also contact us and make arrangements to claim your prize in person.

Jennifer Williams – Geocaching Program
Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District
330 Distel Circle – Los Altos, CA 94022
650-691-1200

geocaching@openspace.org

Prize Counts (prizes remaining as January 2020)

  • 100+ Geocoins 
  • 50+ Cache Tags

Midpen Preserve Circuit Geocaches - GPS Coordinates

Following is a list of the 22 Open Space Preserves where you will discover the Preserve Circuit geocaches. Click on a preserve name below to be redirected to the corresponding cache listing on Geocaching.com where you will find the GPS coordinates and other important information about the cache at that preserve. You can also visit the Bookmark Listing page for this series on Geocaching.com that lists all of our Challenge caches in one place!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are my options for geocaching within the Preserves?

There are over 350 independently owned geocaches in the preserves. These caches, and their information on Geocaching.com, are owned by individuals within your community and are monitored by the District for adherence to current guidelines. In addition, the District also owns and operates a series of geocaches.

Where can I find information about caches within the Preserves?

To search for caches within a particular area, visit Geocaching.com and use the "Hide and Seek a Cache" feature from the menu (you must be a registered member and membership is free). 

Do I need a passport to visit the caches that are part of the District's Geocaching Program Challenge?

Absolutely not. All caches can be visited by any registered geocachers, but you must have a passport if you want to be eligible to earn prizes!

Where can I get a passport and the coordinates for the District's Geocaching Program?

Passports can be mailed to you or you can download an alternate (letter size) version of the Preserve Passport. You can find the coordinates for the Preserve Circuit caches at Geocaching.com or above on this page.

What do I need to get started with Geocaching?

As with any outdoor adventure, you need appropriate clothing and footwear, water (and food for longer trips), and directional materials such as maps. You will also need a GPS-enabled device. You can purchase a handheld unit or download an app to your smartphone. 

What are the District’s policies regarding Geocaching? Is a permit required to place or search for a cache?

A permit is not required to place or search for a cache*, however all geocachers placing caches on District lands must be registered users with Geocaching.com and must comply with the guidelines established by the District as well as those established by Geocaching.com. Anyone placing or searching for a cache must do so during normal preserve hours and must follow the procedures as outlined in the District’s Geocaching Guidelines. These guidelines were written to protect both the participant and the environment.

* Please note: Access to upper La Honda Creek and Bear Creek Redwoods Preserves require advance permits. There is no charge for the permits.

How does the District monitor Geocaching on District lands?

Members of the group Geocachers of the Bay Area work together with staff to ensure that Geocaching activities taking place on District lands are done so within the established guidelines.

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