Action! Romance! Treasure!
North Dakota can sometimes be a tad bit boring. Surprising, I know. During the summer of 2012, my friends and I found ourselves twiddling our thumbs at college in Grand Forks. One of my friends mentioned geocaching, a hobby I had heard in passing, but didn’t have a GPS to begin. Luckily, Blackberry phones gave us the required tool, allowing us to start our first search, right outside our dorm! And search we did…After three attempts, we finally made the find. As a side note, car GPS’s do not quite work.
We all logged our find separately, creating our “secret” names on geocaching.com. Jangie was inspired by my (then) boyfriend’s name and my name: Jon + Angie = Jangie. A new hobby was born.
Geocaching gifted us a whole new perspective of Grand Forks, giving us a tour of beautiful scenery down by the river, exploring campus, hiding from muggles downtown, and forcing us to stretch our minds creatively. Traveling across the state on Highway 2, Jon and I were able to discover small towns in North Dakota, forgotten schools, old churches, and abandoned cemeteries. Our hometown, Williston, also transformed before our eyes, now becoming a treasure map full of rarely visited nooks and historic landmarks. And when we moved back home in 2014, after graduation, we continued to travel around the MonDak area and appreciate the flat prairie. We brought our younger siblings with us too, letting them practice their driving on the gravel roads and bonding over fountain Mountain Dews.
During the summer of 2014, Jon and I went to Minnesota, where he became my fiancé, and then husband the following summer. He proposed while we geocached in a park, incorporating the hobby that brought us together. When we went on our honeymoon to West
Glacier National Park, we made sure to geocache, of course. Every trip we take, we try to find at least one geocache, mainly because I’m addicted, he pretends to be, and we’ve found all the caches in our area.
As I’m writing this, Jon is holding our 7 week old daughter, hopefully a future geocacher. We plan to continue our hobby and make many more memories out in nature. I look forward to continuing this blog with explanations of this great activity, my thoughts on the subject, sharing specific MonDak area geocache knowledge, and writing about related items. Please join in my family’s adventure.
Feel free to share your own stories in the comments below! What inspired your geocaching name? How did you start geocaching? What great memories have you made?