Paperless geocaching

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Paperless geocaching refers to the use of a Palm, Pocket PC, PDA or Mobilephone in the field to access the information from the cache pages instead of using pages printed from the web site.

To get the information into your PDA, you need to download the .gpx files which have not only the coordinates for the cache, but the information about the cache, including the description and the hint.

There are two main methods for paperless caching. The first method involves running a database program (such as CacheMate) on your PDA that imports your gpx file and allows you to view and edit data about the caches.

The second method involves converting your gpx file into an ebook and then viewing the ebook on your pda. Common ebook formats include HTML, PDF, and Mobipocket (.mobi).

If you take up Paperless caching, make sure you keep the information in your Palm or Pocket PC database updated. There is nothing quite so frustrating as looking fruitlessly for a cache that is in both your GPSr and your Palm and then finding out it went missing a few weeks earlier.

CacheMate is a great program for Palm & Windows Mobile based handhelds designed specifically for paperless geocaching

GeoShrine Is a free program for java enabled mobile phones and PDA's. If the device has a GPS it can make use of it, otherwise it can just be used as a cache reader.

Other software packages for the Windows Mobile platform include:

* GpxSonar 
* GPXView 
* Richesse-GPS
* GeoScout
* BeeLineGPS


On the Blackberry platform, a software package called Cacheberry allows for paperless caching. Alternatively, Blackberry users can create Mobipocket ebooks and use them to view cache information.

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