How do I get started?
First, you’ll need a GPS. This is your only major investment in the activity. If you have a newer auto GPS, check your users manual or the manufacturer’s website to see if you can manually enter your coordinates. If so, you’re set. Any GPS that will allow you to manually enter coordinates is fine to start with. When we first started, we used a Garmin nuvi 265w. This was great for the first couple of months while we learned more about the sport and got our feet wet. Eventually though, we upgraded to a handheld device. We use the Delorme Earthmate PN-30 which is AWESOME! The readings are much more accurate than the Garmin. I will say that we still use the Garmin to guide us to the general location of the cache, but the Delorme becomes the primary GPS as soon as we exit the vehicle.
Aside from a GPS, the only other thing you will need to get started is a membership at http://www.geocaching.com/. You can sign up for basic membership for free or become a premium member for $30 a year. Premium membership will allow you to organize geocache listings, create favorites, create custom searches, and receive email or mobile notifications re: newly published caches. You can also create a caches route for your next road trip with a premium membership.
Anything else I need to know?
Geocachers practice something called CITO which stands for Cache In, Trash Out. Basically, if you see trash in the area where you are geocaching, pick it up and throw it away.
Geocaching has many terms and acronyms. You can read more about these here.
Please post a comment and let me know how it goes! Also, check back for more posts including cool cache containers we've seen and a giveaway!