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Rick

OutdoorMN News - New underwater-themed geocaching challenge begins on Earth Day

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Rick

A new geocaching challenge called the Aquatic Quest, which focuses on plants and animals that live in Minnesota’s lakes, rivers and ponds, is being offered by the Department of Natural Resources.

“Geocaching has been an effective way for us to connect people, especially kids, with the outdoors,” said Jennifer Conrad, interpretive services supervisor for the DNR’s Parks and Trails Division. “Not only will this new treasure hunt be fun, it will also help demonstrate that, beneath the surface, Minnesota’s waters are flowing with interconnected life forms.”

As part of the challenge, camouflaged containers (aka “geocaches,” or “caches” for short) have been hidden at 74 Minnesota state parks and recreation areas (at all of them except the St. Croix Islands State Recreation Area) and at eight state trails. Geocachers will have until Oct. 31, 2020, to find as many caches as they can. Finding the caches involves entering numeric coordinates into a GPS (Global Positioning System) device, which shows how far away and in which direction to go to get started on the treasure hunt.

The clues (aka “coordinates”) to finding the containers will be posted online at 8 a.m., Sunday, April 22, which is Earth Day.

People who don’t have their own GPS device can borrow one from one of the many Minnesota state parks designated as a geocaching checkpoint. The checkpoint parks will also offer Geocaching 101 programs to provide instructions for beginners.

Upcoming Geocaching 101 programs will be offered:

  • Saturday, April 21, from 1 to 2 p.m., Mille Lacs Kathio State Park, Onamia.
  • Saturday, May 19, from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Fort Snelling State Park, St. Paul.
  • Saturday, May 26, from 9 to 10 a.m., Afton State Park, Hastings.

Inside each cache is a logbook and a set of collectible cards featuring color photos of aquatic plants and critters. Cache finders are encouraged to sign the logbook and take one of the cards as a souvenir of their visit.

Geocachers can earn a special “habitat” card after finding 10, 20, 40, 60 and all of the cards. They also can pick up a limited-edition water recreation card (one each year) when they attend a geocaching or water-themed program at Minnesota state parks and trails.

The Aquatic Quest is the fifth in a series of geocaching adventures that have been offered at Minnesota state parks and trails. Previous adventures included the Call of the Wildflowers (2015-2017), the Avian Adventure (2012-2014), the Wildlife Safari (2009-2011), and the History Challenge presented by the retailer Best Buy (2008).

More than 11,000 people reported finding a Call of the Wildflowers geocache in 2017, Conrad said.

For more information, visit www.mndnr.gov/geocaching or contact the DNR Information Center at [email protected] or 888-646-6367 (8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays).

Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Boonie5
      We will be in there 2nd weekend & looking forward too it!     
    • Fish Head
      My cabin is very close to where your boat is in that pic.  It was 40 around there last weekend. Headed up again Thursday morning. 
    • bigeyes12
      Is anyone interested in pheasant hunting in SD in Mid or Late November?  I used to do more of it but kinda got busy with really young kids for a few years there and lost the dog around the same time. I basically gave it up for a while. I would like to start making a trip or two back out to SD and would really like to meeting some other guys who enjoy the sport.  It would be great to find a few new friends around the same age +/- 10 years and maybe some of the same interests in fishing and hunting. Live in the Twin Cities area so we could drive down if you are in the area or just meet out in SD sometime.  
    • creepworm
      I do not believe that is from Red. It shows sunny's under the smallest fish and according to the DNR, there are none in Red.
    • LakeofthewoodsMN
      On the main basin... As water temps approach mid 40's, walleye anglers reporting strong fall bite. Good fish caught despite a lot of precipitation this past week.  Clear weather in forecast.  Walleyes staging at various south shore locations in 20-29'.  Jig and frozen shiner the ticket. Anchor up and jig with gold, glow red, or gold/orange.  Fish are very active. On the Rainy River... Strong walleye activity continues.  Jig and frozen shiners continue to be go to method with some anglers also trolling crankbaits.  Shiner run has slowed for the moment but good numbers of walleyes in river.  Sturgeon have the feed bag on.  The sturgeon catch and release season goes though April 23, 2019.  The bite is on!     Up at the NW Angle... Fishing continues to be excellent.  Limits of walleyes being caught in 14 - 25'.  Jigging still producing.  Look for areas of current in neck down areas and outside of bays.  Fall crappie bite continues strong.  Big pike are making their presence felt, like it or not!  Muskie trollers boating and releasing good numbers of fish.  The best fall fishing is yet to come! 
    • leech~~
      Wow, it would be interesting to see if the big winners Cory, Justin and Dave all drove down from Canada together and where they hide the fish to get across the boarder?  🤔  😆
    • ozzie
      I am gonna go out on a limb here and say they did not catch a 15 pound walleye on Upper Red in MN.
    • bbfenatic
      Early ice I am always targeting big crappies not numbers and I always start shallower in the weeds that are still green and I use bigger profile spoons tipped with a minnow head or even a large plastic monnow profile. I find that the larger crappies will  move in for a short while and be feeding on the remaining minnows until they head back out. I fish in that 6-9" area with great results very early ice.
    • jgrimmz
      I'll be out second weekend in my traditional spot as well. Always see deer but I have yet to stick one. Hoping this is the year!
    • jgrimmz
      Wow, impressive! I was out in northern MN over the weekend and, while working on stands, flushed six. No shots as all were roosted high in the trees thanks to the rain, but made for some excitement at least.