STATE PARK TREASURE HUNTERS ON THE LOOSE
Geocache contest in fourth year; prizes include annual camping permit, 14-day camping permit, and annual vehicle permits; contest runs through Nov. 1
PRATT — Now in its fourth year, the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) geocaching contest will begin May 27 in Kansas state parks. From then until Nov. 1, the game is to find two hidden caches at each Kansas state park, as well as a few other locations. The coordinates of the one cache at each site and the official statewide KDWPT Geocaching Entry Form will be posted on the KDWPT website, www.kdwp.state.ks.us. (Click “Other Services/Outdoor Activities/Geocaching.”) at noon, May 27.
Participants use hand-held global positioning systems (GPS) to locate and open the first cache, where they will find the coordinates of the second. Upon finding the second cache, the participant signs a log sheet and takes a certificate. If they show the certificate to that park office, they receive a park-specific location ink pen. Cachers must retain each certificate to turn in with the downloadable entry form for point verification toward prizes.
Prizes will be awarded based first on how many points are earned. Every second geocache found at each participating location will be worth one point. Prizes will be awarded on a point and time system after the contest ends Nov. 1, though cachers may turn in their entry form whenever it is completed. One first place prize of an annual camping permit for 2012 will be awarded to the first participant to turn in all 31 second-cache certificates. The next two geocachers to earn all 31 points and submit their forms win 14-day camping permits for 2012. Other geocachers who earn all of the 31 points and who turn in their forms, including each second cache certificate, to the Pratt Operations Office by Nov. 1 will receive a 2012 annual vehicle permit.
This activity is a great way to introduce new patrons to state parks and other KDWP areas, as well as provide new activities for regular customers. Youngsters are usually adept at using electronic hand-held devices and find this activity doubly interesting when it gets them outdoors.