1. What is your real name?
Robyn (and son)
2. Where is your home location?
3. When did you start Geocaching?
We were doing a similar orienteering activity for Mountaineering and adventure trips in the late 1990s before Geocaching became a thing. We would place containers for the students or clients before backpacking class, rock climbing or canoeing trip, then give them a bearing and paces. First team to find the "final" would get a cool prize (I continue to use geocaching to teach students). Since I tried to steer clear of unreliable electronic technology for backcountry navigation back then, I geocached intermittently once the sport was more accessible, mostly when I had a device, adequate signal (I lived in the wilderness many years), or extra time between full time work and parenting. I never logged finds and opened the TeamCurvy account in 2010. After we recovered from a difficult childbirth, my son and I started caching together in 2012. We have placed caches in several states and found many caches around the world.
4. How did you learn about Geocaching?
I learned about orienteering and geocaching through my love for outdoor adventure, taking classes, reading books, exploring new caching areas, and my network of professionals in conservation and outdoor recreation. I first heard about it in Iowa during my undergraduate studies and work. I eventually finished a Ph.D. in Outdoor Recreation and Natural Resource Management, and taught geocaching to many students and clients. I remember as a kid traveling, reading maps, exploring parks, and playing navigation games with my family which set the stage. Since 1996 (first job working at West Lake Park), I used maps and compasses for work then eventually GPS units, GIS software, and similar containers like ammo cans in my outdoor professions like natural resource research / management and adventure guiding, so geocaching was a natural fit. We used ammo cans for keeping food and supplies dry on whitewater rafting trips, for example. In terms of "Muggles," well, I read the Harry Potter series back then and again this past month with my son, so...
5. What is your favorite part of Geocaching?
The ability to educate and instill a meaningfulness and love for natural resource conservation. Learning navigation, abstract and critical thinking skills. Exercising our brains and bodies to find (or not find) caches. We also really like placing cool caches and passing on the joy of caching to others. The variety and locations of geocaches are unbelievable and instill a sense of hope and awe of the geocaching community. Working with park managers to develop meaningful caches.
6. What types of caches do you enjoy most?
We enjoy them all. Depends on the situation... in a hurry? Park and grab. Looking for an excursion? Geoart. Need motivation to get out of the house and find something new? Pretty much any cache. My son prefers regular sized or larger caches placed in remote areas with gadgetry or treasures. I acquiesce his likes because it makes life more enjoyable, but I find caches in difficult terrain / remote nature areas fun and challenging.
7. What is the favorite cache you’ve found?
Bear Claw, Moab, Utah. The hike is incredible. The find is very adventurous. The experience is one of a kind.
8. Outside of Geocaching, what other hobbies/interests do you enjoy?
My son and I read a ridiculous amount of books and write when it's dark out or the weather is nasty. We have a super cool butterfly garden and yard with lots of flowers to support pollinators. When we are not geocaching, working or going to school, you can find us helping the community, playing instruments, doing art, telling jokes, playing toys/games, or goofing off on a bike, in the water, on the snow, or climbing up something in the middle of nowhere.