Hack Your Hike With This Arduino Puzzle Geocache

For those who love to hike, no excuse is needed to hit the woods. Other folks, though, need a little coaxing to get into the great outdoors, which is where geocaching comes in: hide something in the woods, post clues to its location online, and they will come. The puzzle is the attraction, and doubly so for this geocache with an Arduino-powered game of Hangman that needs to be solved before the cache is unlocked.

The actual contents of a geocache are rarely the point — after all, it’s the journey, not the destination. But [cliptwings]’ destination is likely to be a real crowd pleaser. Like many geocaches, this one is built into a waterproof plastic ammo can. Inside the can is another door that can only be unlocked by correctly solving a classic game of Hangman. The game itself may look familiar to long-time Hackaday readers, since we featured it back in 2009. Correctly solving the puzzle opens the inner chamber to reveal the geocaching goodness within.

Cleverly, [cliptwings] mounted the volt battery for the Arduino on top of the inner door so that cachers can replace a dead battery and play the game; strangely, the cache entry on Geocaching.com (registration required) does not instruct players to bring a battery along.

It looks like the cache has already been found and solved once since being placed a few days ago in a park north of Tucson, Arizona. Other gadget caches we’ve featured include GPS-enabled reverse caches, and a puzzle cache that requires IR-vision to unlock.


Thanks to [Dan Wagoner], who built the game upon which this is based, for the tip.


12 thoughts on “Hack Your Hike With This Arduino Puzzle Geocache

  1. GC58TFX – “Booom!!” is another Microcontroller-Box featured Cache in the Region of Mannheim – Germany.
    I don’t want to spoiler, but the Box has a way more puzzles and features!
    If you have the chance to do that cache, try it!

  2. Only 9000Km from my home, seems like a easy pickup for m next afternoon hike.

    I recently started geocaching (60 found). There aren’t enough gadget caches here in the Netherlands.

    1. That rings a bell about a short SF story, in which 2 aliens with high tech come on Earth like planet to fight, in a jungle like the Amazon’s and after a while their weapons showed to be ineffective against other dude shields. At a point, a shower of poisoned arrows kills both of them (shields completely useless against unexpected slow moving projectiles) and the inhabitants of the jungle come out, having stone age like tech. The nice ending is that the stone age dudes start playing with a coded nuclear grenade dropped by one of the aliens as they were killed. Years after the incident, while keep pushing the buttons of the grenade, the correct code was entered and it went off destroying half of the jungle.
      Are you sure you want to press buttons randomly?
      Shall we play a game? ;)

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