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Wherigo … My Blackberry Follows

Wherigos: Until recently I didn’t have an opinion on them. With none in my area all I had to go on was various bits on the web that suggested it was a dying breed of cache, particularly following the Garmin/Groundspeak falling out.

However, it does appear as if there is a fair amount of support for this particular breed of cache, as evidenced by the ‘Update Wherigo and make it usable’ suggestion on the Geocaching.com feedback forum. Ranked 3rd on the feedback forum with 2590 votes it seems there is in fact a LOT of support for the Wherigo.

But the race for geocaching listing site supremacy has placed a hold on the further development of the Wherigo, but only for the moment:

Status: planned
Our plan is to continue to support Wherigo, but unfortunately other projects have taken priority – especially the features for geocaching. We do not have plans to retire Wherigo and believe there is a future in the project.

JeremyJeremy Admin
A future in the project? There better be. After finding my first Wherigo cache today I’m a convert. I even added my vote to the feedback forum (so it’s now 2593 votes strong).

 

But how did I find a Wherigo cache when I only use a Blackberry Bold 9000 (with CacheSense) and a Garmin eTrex? Well, I took a chance on an experimental piece of software called OPENWIG, which aimed to “develop a j2me (java micro edition) mobile application (midlet) with same capabilities as Wherigo player.

 

The software hasn’t been updated since November 2010 and it would appear that the developer no longer has the time to put into the project, but the software is still there to download. Despite numerous comments online that presented bad experiences and buggy software I gave it a go. To my delight it seems to work perfectly.

 

Now, here is where I must confess. Last night I tried the software out on the Wherigo closest to home, GC2Z36E A Wherigo Cache (Otago), and I failed dismally. Not because of any particular software issue (though the number of steps flicking from one waypoint to the next is about four too many) but because the cache required you to follow a local school cross country route…in the same (or better) time as the average 10-year-old.

 

Clearly, I am not faster than a 10-year-old. (However, it was dark, I was running with a torch, the beach has eroded, there was a giant fence in the way and I’m sure someone nearby had kryptonite in their pocket).

 

However, today I ventured out and attempted GC2YAJB Bird Watching At Hoopers Inlet. And to my delight I successfully completed the cache. What was even better was the fun my kids had as we waited for the bird to appear at each viewing location and the debates we had over the answer (“It’s a duck” one child yelled. “Yes” I replied, “but is it a male or female duck?”. “It’s a duck!” was the answer).

 

And now I am hooked. And I have some evil evil ideas for Wherigos around Dunedin.

 

In my humble (?) opinion they are an evolution of the traditional geocache. AN evolution, not necessarily THE evolution. But still an evolution. Anyone who hasn’t given one a shot should pick one and hurry up. And take a chance on OPENWIG, maybe with enough support they will start it up again, or at least it might be a band aid until some talented, good looking, genius developer, like Bruce at CacheSense, builds it into their amazing geocaching software. 😉

7 comments

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  1. kjwx

    Are you sure it wasn’t a Moa Duck, Peter? Glad to see you finally cottoned on to what I already knew about the Wherigo wow factor, though.

  2. Peter Raymond Walker on Facebook

    And how many Wherigo’s have you logged eh!?! 😛

  3. Guwapo's Papa

    Experimental software……wouldn’t Mrs Cumbyrocks part with her iPhone?

    Glad to see you have embraced the Wherigo, they are great. I don’t see them as an evolution of the traditional, but an evolution of the multi, which was itself an evolution of the traditional.

    Oh, and keep the evilness to yourself!!

  4. bucketeer

    3 of those votes are mine!
    I’ve found 2 wherigos with a pocket PC and now have and android phone with WhereYouGo installed that seems to work Ok but I haven’t yet had achance to try it on a cache as the closest one to me is some 300 km away. But it looks good and seems easier to navigate than the original software for the pocket PC.
    i’d like to place some myself but the design software is too horible to use

  5. Chris Hattan

    Whereigo players are available on both Iphone and android platforms now.
    They work well.
    If I recall I preferred using the one on an iphone to the player I had on the Garmin 450

  6. kjwx

    One, brother dearest, putting us neck and neck – and there aren’t any Wherigos in at least a 200km radius from my home. Plus you’ve already told us you can’t keep up with a 10-year-old so now’s probably not the time to push it.
    You gotta try Whack-A-Lackey, though.
    As for Android’s WhereYouGo app, it never worked properly for me so I deleted it. Maybe I should try installing it again.

  7. Michael D. Belanger on Facebook

    Unfortunately, that’s one type of cache I can’t find because I don’t have any type of a smartphone.

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