Although not required, many geocachers decide to leave behind signature items, such as personal Geocoins, pins, or craft items, to mark their presence at the cache location.Cachers who initially place a Travel Bug or Geocoins often assign specific goals for their trackable items.

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Caches can be grouped in three categories – with and without a paper log, and events. A BIT Cache is a laminated card with a QR code, similar to Munzee.

The BIT Cache also contains a URL and a password, for logging purposes. Virtual caches are coordinates for a location, which has some other described object.

Geocaches may also be complex, involving lengthy searches, significant travel, or use of specialist equipment such as SCUBA diving, kayaking, or abseiling.

Different geocaching websites list different variations per their own policies.

Geocachers are free to take objects (except the logbook, pencil, or stamp) from the cache in exchange for leaving something of similar or higher value.

Aside from the logbook, common cache contents are unusual coins or currency, small toys, ornamental buttons, CDs, or books.

This was changed shortly after the original hide when it was suggested in the gpsstash e Group that "stash" could have negative connotations and the term geocaching was adopted.

Over time, a variety of different hide-and-seek-type activities have been created or abandoned, so that "geocaching" now may refer to hiding and seeking containers, or locations or information without containers.

If a geocache has been vandalized or stolen, it is said to have been "muggled".