Fall is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy nature – the changing leaves, the crisp air, fall festivals, hiking along a trail, you name it, its just a great time of year.
Engaging the family in fun Fall activities is fairly easy, but have you ever tried geocaching? If not, Montgomery County has a program that promotes nature and stormwater awareness called the Caching the Rain Geotrail. The CTR trail is a fun and interactive way to learn about local water resources and how you and your family can protect them.
Geocaching is an outdoor scavenger hunt in which participants use a GPS enabled device, such as a smartphone, to locate hidden containers or landmarks called “geocaches.” The Caching the Rain Geotrail is a series of 6 geocaches with interactive puzzles and riddles hidden near various stormwater maintenance facilities in the County.
Once an adventurer, or geocacher, has found all 6 geocaches along the trail, logged them, and solved the riddles they are eligible for a souvenir “Caching the Rain” geocoin (while supplies last). Due to the trail’s popularity, the County has ordered 300 new souvenir coins to reward participants.
There have been over 750 logged visits along the geotrail. That’s practically one visit every 2 days!
One of the goals of the CTR geotrail has been to change behavior when it comes to our environment. Well, our first question is, has it been effective? Here are some of the things we’ve observed over the past year. Of the 120 participants that have completed the trail:
Taking your family on the CTR geotrail could help instill an ethic for the environment and create future watershed stewards.
“I completed this geotrail today while waiting to meet some people for brunch. I enjoyed learning about storm water management best practices and exploring the varied hide locations. The entire trail deserves favorite points” – Geocache User Pfenix
“Excellent geotrail! Please do another one. Very well done with nice caches and creative hides. Highly educational. – Geocache User Zymantics
Want to get started? Visit our website to learn more about the program and download the Caching the Rain Geotrail Passport today!
Guest blog by DEP Watershed Outreach Planner Ryan Zerbe
Check out these additional photos from residents who completed the Caching the Rain Geotrail!