Geocaching a breeze for 10-year-old

Published 8:14 am Thursday, January 13, 2011

Isaac Kubas, 10, with some help from his four-year-old sister Seanna was the first to find all five caches in the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center's first geocache project. Not even a full day after the caches were posted on the site did Isaac find his targets. - Eric Johnson/

Late last week, the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center established five treasures as part of an ongoing, year-long geocaching project.

It didn’t even take a full day for someone to find all five, thus earning the first $5 gift certificate. That person was 10-year old Isaac Kubas.

The project was launched last Thursday and before the day was out Friday Isaac, with the help of his family, had found the five objects.

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Isaac and his family started the search around 2:30 p.m. Friday and finished three hours later. The first took Isaac and younger sister, four-year-old Seanna Kubas about a half hour and after that it was up to Isaac and dad Steve Kubas.

“No. 2 I was having trouble finding,” Isaac said. “‘I hope I find this thing,’ was what I was thinking.”

Isaac is still fairly new to geocaching, but already finds it can take you to all new places.

“It takes you to places you’ve never been before,” he said. “It gets you outdoors.”

Though she didn’t take part in the hunt, mother Teresa Kubas can also see the entertainment value.

“It’s fun to see how adult guys get into it with him,” she said.

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The Nature Center’s cache

The project itself is in conjunction with the nature center’s 40th anniversary and was thought up by geocaching enthusiast and Friends of the Nature Center president Gary Zimmerman.

“I would like to get people out here,” he said. “ I want people to come out and find the nature center.”

The idea stemmed from Minnesota’s own geocaching program that requires the treasure hunters to visit all the state parks and find the caches located within. For Zimmerman, that meant logging between 5,000 and 7,000 when he took part.

“It’s an electrical treasure hunt,” Zimmerman said. “It’s something modern for people to get outside, using GPS.”

Being involved in geocaching is a relatively easy endeavor. According to Zimmerman a hunter has to first go to, sign up and download the coordinates. The site gives mile approximation — one miles, two miles, etc. — as to how close the subject is to each cache.

If a person wants to leave a cache then they have to get permission from the landowner on whose land they wish to leave the cache, and register again with who will verify the cache location.

For many taking part in geocaching it’s no so much finding the treasure, but in the hunt itself.

In regards to Kubas being the first to find the nature center’s five cache’s, Zimmerman expressed two different feelings.

“Surprised and pleased,” he said. “He’s not just sitting behind the computer. He’s active and outdoors.”

The hunt will continue throughout the year and at the end each person who finds the five caches will have their names entered into a $40 drawing.