Past Meetup

Introduction to Geocaching at Wood Ranch in Simi Valley

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Have you ever wondered how those short side trails are made? Probably they end at geocaches! This hike is for anyone who is curious about the sport of geocaching and would like to try it out. We'll take the route described below, stopping every so often to search for hidden caches. We'll hike at a moderate pace, but the duration of the hike will be long for the distance because of the caching stops.

We'll start at the south end of Wood Canyon Parkway in Simi Valley, at Long Canyon Road. From there we'll hike a counterclockwise loop, with a few diversions, in the Wood Ranch open space area. Along the way we'll pass by 18 geocaches that we'll be looking for (a few of them are not very close to the trail so we may skip them, based on the terrain). And, for the first time on an Introduction to Geocaching hike, we'll be looking for a puzzle cache. There's always something new!

Statistics: The hike is about 4 miles with 700' of climbing. Because of the frequent stops to look for geocaches, the duration will be much longer than expected for a hike of this distance. I expect we'll be finished between noon and 1:00 pm.

Geocaching: We will pass about 18 geocaches (http://www.geocaching.com/) along the way. If you sign up at www.geocaching.com (http://www.geocaching.com/) beforehand (it's free) you can log the caches we find. If you have a GPS that you plan to bring along, email me and I'll send you the cache coordinates for you to load, but a GPS isn't required for this hike. And if you would like to trade some small items with those in the cache, bring them along. They shouldn't be any larger than about the size of a deck of cards, and not worth more than about a dollar.

Wear / Bring:

- sturdy hiking boots with lugs and good tread

- long pants and long sleeves recommended to guard against scratches

- water

- snacks to eat along the way

- camera

- GPS loaded with cache locations if you have one, small items to swap, pen or pencil to sign the log sheets

Directions: From the 118 Freeway in Simi Valley, exit at First Street and turn south. After 2.7 miles, the road turns into Long Canyon Rd. Continue 1.7 miles to Wood Ranch Parkway for a total distance from the 118 of 4.4 miles. The parking area will be on the left.

From the 101 Freeway in Thousand Oaks, turn north on the 23 Freeway. After 5.1 miles, exit at Olson Road and turn right (north-east) onto Olson. After about a mile, the road becomes Madera Rd. Continue 1.3 miles to Wood Ranch Parkway, then turn right. Drive 1.9 miles to Long Canyon Rd. Parking will be across the street, on the right.

Map: http://tinyurl.com/42tq6qd