On Saturday the kick-off event for the Fighting Falcon Geotrail was a great headway into the weekend with about 80 people who attended to learn more about geocaching as well as experience the new trail laid out by Fairmont resident Mark Webb.
Webb, an East Fairmont High School junior, described geocaching as a 21st century high tech treasure hunt that uses GPS location to find hidden objects in the real world.
“Generally most people use their cell phone with apps and things used to navigate around and find the cache, sign the log book and put it back for someone else to find,” he said. “Sometimes there are items for people to trade like take something leave something and trade up, trade equal.”
Fairmont State was an ideal spot for his geotrail for several reasons, Webb said. While he’s done smaller trails before he wanted something with a more centralized theme.
“I wanted to do it at Fairmont State because it’s community driven, I’ve done a lot of things at Fairmont State,” he said. “I reached out in hopes that they’d give me permission and help me put the caches out and they did.”
Webb said the university has so much to offer in terms of location and history that it’s worth seeing.
“Most people in the area or even those who aren’t from the area, take the one room schoolhouse, wouldn’t think to go see that,” he said. “This is what people think about seeing when they are geocaching. I wanted to showcase everything that Fairmont State has.”
Angela Huesman of Prince Frederick, Maryland, came to the event to be able to do the trail laid out by Webb. She said they have worked together on some puzzles before and was happy to make the trip to see what this was all about.
“I do a lot of puzzle caches and Mark is my partner in a lot of those solving parts. That’s my niche for caching,” she said. “I know he’s put out a lot of different types of caches, gadget caches, he’s extremely creative and this is the first time I’ve actually been able to do some of his stuff and all that.”
Huesman said getting to see the eclectic nature of what Webb has put out on the trail is great.
Ally Wimmer, 10, said she came with her parents to do the geotrail. While they’ve only been collecting their caches through the app for the last year, they’ve been geocaching for longer than that.
“I just really enjoy it because we get to go to new places and see new things,” she said. “My favorite caches are the earth caches where you get to learn about the place where it is. We did a lot of those at the Grand Canyon."