8 October 2007
GSA Release No. 07-48
International Earthcache Day Kicks Off Earth Science Week on Sunday, 14 October
Boulder, CO, USA - Geocachers around the globe are invited to fire up their GPS units on Sunday, 14 October, and celebrate the beginning of Earth Science Week. Instead of searching for buried trinkets at ordinary geocache sites, however, GPS enthusiasts are encouraged to set their coordinates for EarthCaches and discover Earth's natural treasures.
Sunday, 14 October, is International EarthCache Day. It marks the beginning of Earth Science Week, an annual educational event promoting awareness of the geosciences, which takes place 14-20 October.
"Every week thousands of people are out with GPS units hunting for loot in hidden geocache boxes," said Gary Lewis, Director of Education and Outreach for the Geological Society of America. "With EarthCaching, they're field geologists for a day. They have a great time exploring some of Earth's most beautiful features without disturbing the land." Lewis directs the Society's participation in EarthCache.org.
EarthCaching, Lewis explains, is an educational twist on the hugely successful game of geocaching. EarthCachers begin by registering and selecting a site to visit from www.earthcache.org. After arriving at the chosen location via GPS technology, they perform a task specified on the EarthCaching site, such as measuring the size of fossils or height of a waterfall. Participants often take photos of the site, themselves, or their companions and afterwards log their experience and photos on the geocaching web site.
The EarthCache program was established by the Geological Society of America in 2004 in partnership with Groundspeak Inc. of Seattle, WA. Sponsors and partners now include Subaru of America, National Geographic Educational Foundation, National Park Service, and Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics.
According to Lewis, four initial caches were established in Colorado and Australia. Since then, participants have developed an additional 1600 EarthCaches in 47 countries and more than 97,000 people have participated.
- For more information on EarthCaching or International EarthCache Day contact:
Director - Education and Outreach
Geological Society of America
- For more information on Earth Science Week contact:
- Geoffrey Camphire
American Geological Institute