The Magellan eXplorist GC is a new GPS handset designed to cache in on geocaching, a hobby for people who own their own waterproof trousers. It boasts a SiRFstarIII GPS chipset for 3-metre accuracy, and integrates with the Web to track down secret stashes hidden by fellow geocachers.
Geocaching is a 21st-century cross between orienteering and Anneka Rice running around the countryside. Geocachers search for GPS co-ordinates posted online and uncover secret stashes hidden in the real world. Each hidden container usually holds a log book in which you record the time you found the cache, and items you can swap out such as coins or toys.
Items that are moved from cache to cache are called 'hitchhikers'. Non-geocachers are
dorkily charmingly referred to as 'muggles'.
The GC integrates with geocaching.com, a leading site for intrepid Johnny and June Caches. You download cache instructions to the handset via USB so you don't have to print them out, then head off into the wilderness with them on the colour screen. It's also pre-loaded with popular geocaches. You can add waypoints and notes, and when you locate caches, the GC will record your accomplishments -- gotta cache 'em all.
Magellan claims two AA-batteries will give you 18 hours of running up hill and down dale. Seeing as most days we can't find our own keys, we'd probably need to pack some spares.
The Magellan eXplorist GC will be available in the US in April for $200 (£135), and includes a free 30-day membership to geocaching.com.