Terms & Abbreviations

Acronyms and Abbreviations

Have you seen weird groups of letters in logs and listings ? They generally mean something so here is a list of some of the common ones, and some of the less common ones.


AGL At Ground Level

ALR – Additional Logging Requirement

BYOB – Bring your Own Battery (read the cache listing, you will need one to open the cache)

BYOP - Bring Your Own Pen/Pencil

CITO - Cache In Trash Out

CO - Cache Owner

DNF - Did Not Find

D/T - Difficulty / Terrain

FTF - First to Find - Less commonly will be seen STF and TTF (Second to Find and Third to Find)

GC – Geocoin. Geocoins work similarly to TravelBugs. They are coins with a unique code.

GGZ - is a Garmin file extension type used by some Garmin GPSrs

GZ - Ground Zero - refers to the cache's hiding spot

GPS - Global Positioning System

GPSr - Global Positioning System Receiver

GPX - GPS eXchange Format - a file type used by GPSrs

LN - Left Nothing

LOC - is a simple XML file - a file type used by GPSrs

NAGL – Not at Ground Level

PAF - Phone a Friend - when a cacher calls a friend to get a hint as to a cache hide

P&G - Park & Grab - refers to a cache that would be close to a parking spot that can be quickly found

PNG - Park & Grab - refers to a cache that would be close to a parking spot that can be quickly found

PQ - Pocket Query. A helpful tool available to Premium members of Geocaching.com

PT – Power Trail or Path Tag

ROT13 - a particular variant of the Caesar Cipher used for the Geocaching.com hint system

SL - Signed Log

SOOP - Something Out of Place - describes an oddity at GZ that hints to finding a cache

SPOR – Suspicious Pile of Rocks

SPOS - Suspicious pile of sticks

SWAG - Stuff We All Get

TB - Travel Bug. A trackable tag with a unique code that can be attached to an item

TFTC - Thanks for the Cache

TFTE - Thanks for the Event. Have you been to a West Oz Geocaching event yet?

TFTH - Thanks for the Hide

TFTFTF - Thanks for the First to Find.

TN - Took Nothing

TNLN - Took Nothing, Left Nothing

TNLNSL - Took Nothing, Left Nothing, Signed Log

TOTT - Tool of the Trade - Any tool used in the progress of acquiring a cache

UPS - Unusual Pile of Sticks - this would also be SOOP

UTM - Universal Transverse Mercator

WAGB – abbreviation for WA Goes Big Geocache Event

WPT - Waypoint




All these weird and wonderful ters can be confusing to many geocachers. Heres a few definitions to help understand some of the terms used.


81 Matrix – See D/T Matrix

81 Grid – See D/T Matrix

Ammo box or Ammo Can - Ammunition boxes or ammo cans are containers originally designed for safe transport and storage of ammunition. Ammo cans are popular containers for regular or large geocaches.

Camo – Something used to disguise the geocache container. Can be anything from ground cover, to fake rocks, to paint.


Cipher - A secret or disguised way of writing a code. There are lots of common ciphers used including those used during WWII such as the enigma code. 

D/T MatrixEach geocache is given a difficulty rating and a terrain rating from 1 to 5 in ½ increments. This in fact gives a possible 81 combinations for Difficulty/Terrain for a cache. A chart show each of these combinations and how many a cacher has found of each is often called the D/T Matrix

Extag – A trackable item often left in geocaches, or swapped with other cachers, that has a trackable code and is registered on the Extag website. Started as an alternative to the Firetack/s – A small reflective item often used in night time multi caches. They are generally placed on trees or buildings and can be spotted by using a torch to shine and reflecpopular path tags but are now also available in custom shapes.

GCxxxx – Abbreviation for a cache identifier used on geocaching.com. Also known as GC code.

GeoArt – A collection of geocaches placed to depict something in the form of art. Generally done with “Unknown or mystery” caches to allow the icon to be placed at a different location to the physical cache to allow the picture to form.

Geochecker – A tool on the geocache listing that allows you to check the co-ordinates you have calculated on a mystery/unknown or multi cache.

Geo streak – Consecutive days where a geocacher has found a cache

Geotrail – a worn path to/from a geocache

Spoiler – Generally a photo, or words, in a log or listing that gives away the actual location of a geocache.

Series – A set of caches placed with a common theme or title

Waypoint - A GPS point that is relevant to a cache. A waypoint may be a parking point, or may be information for a multi.  It is also often referred to as the final point for a multi or puzzle.

Podcast – An online broadcast covering topics related to, in this case, geocaching.

Offset Multi – A type of geocache where the geocache is not at the listed coordinates. Generally on arrival at the listed co-ordinates, some work will need to be done to compute the final location of the geocache. Either projecting a waypoint or calculating the actual final coordinates with the aid of some clues.

Souvenir - Souvenirs are virtual pieces of art that you can discover, or be awarded, and display in your profile.

TB Hotel - A Geocache large enough to place trackables (TBs) in.



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