MiTEP EarthCaches: Main Page 

MiTEP teachers have created over 30 high quality Michigan EarthCaches that can be used by other educators, students and the public to help translate Earth's processes into a local experience. These EarthCaches have been group into four categories based on their location: Midwestern National Parks, Southern Michigan, the Keweenaw Peninsula and the City of Houghton. Visit a MiTEP EarthCache for an exciting outdoor adventure that will teach you about how the Earth works!

Explore the MiTEP EarthCaches by Region

What is an EarthCache?

In Michigan alone, there are hundreds of geologic features that highlight the many Earth systems that shape our world. These places of geosignificance can be found just about anywhere from beaches to forests to parks and school yards, the local creek to your favorite vacation spot. While these places are familiar parts of our lives we are often unaware of the natural geological processes responsible for creating these resources or the methods scientists use to gather evidence and learn more about the Earth.

EarthCaching is a fun way to discover and share these amazing places while improving Earth literacy. The adventure begins by choosing an EarthCache. Each one comes with an easy-to-follow informational write-up that has been reviewed by experts from the Geological Society of America to ensure quality. A "cache" is then discovered by using maps and a handheld GPS to navigate to a precise location to explore a natural wonder. These activities build essential skills in map reading, geospatial understanding and scientific methodology while at the same time encouraging people to get outside to discover their world.

Once a visitor has located the EarthCache the real learning begins. EarthCaching, like Geocaching, is an activity in which everyone can participate. The difference with EarthCaching is that there is no physical container to be found. Instead, visitors participate in an educational task related to that place and its features. Visitors can later log their visit at the EarthCache website by submitting their answers to the questions about that site.

EarthCache can be a wonderful place-based educational tool for anyone teaching Earth Science in a formal or informal setting. Geology and Earth history are often left out of Earth Science and Environmental Education programs due to a lack of understanding. EarthCaching helps fill that gap by building a solid foundation in Michigan Earth Science literacy.

Visit an EarthCache today!

For more places of geologic interest in and around Houghton, Michigan, visit the Houghton walking or bike tours website.