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Posts posted by Lasagna

  1. Here's what worked for me:


    Went to "Applications" on my iPhone in iTunes, changed to sync only selected apps and unchecked "Geocaching".




    Went to Applications in my Library and did the "update" to get all new updates which included the GC app.


    Went back to the applications tab in my iPhone window in iTunes


    Changed back to "sync all" applications and ran sync which installed GC application.




    All is well and it's working great! Glad to see my two most desired features made it into this release -- Members only caches now show up in the list and those caches which I've already found can now be excluded from the list.


    This app is now wonderful! Can't wait to see what enhancements come next -- like online logging (or at the very least "tagging" finds so you know which caches you've found on a run and the order in which you found them so that you can log them in the proper order later.



  2. When searching for GC codes ... are the ones which suspiciously don't work "members only" caches? The two most needed improvements to the Groundspeak app for the iPhone are the ability to filter out "found" caches and the ability for members to see "members only" caches.


    I've had some issues with the app crashing when I tap the saved items tab.


    As for the saved items crash, I uninstalled and re-installed the App. It seams to be working...for now. When I downloaded and installed it the 1st time it worked for awhile before it started to crash when I touched the saved items tab. So far so good this time...But can I trust and relie on it?


    I also had a trouble with searching by GC codes. It works and then doesn't.


    I hope the update will address these issues and some improvements I'd like to see filtering and manually enter coordinates for searches (for us Touch users), plus be able to return more than 20 results.


    I know this program works better and was built for the iphone 3G but I have to make do with the Touch, until July 14th 2009 when I can get a iPhone upgrade from ATT. Got my current phone on Feb. 14th this year

  3. I'll add my two cents that this app looks like a great start. My top two "you gotta fix this ASAP" issues (along with some of the reported bugs) are:


    1. You've got to allow showing of "members only" caches. Since I can't pull them up, even knowing the GC number, this is a severe handicap and makes it impossible to not have my other "paperless" source with me.


    2. You've got to filter out "found caches". Anyone with a substantial number of finds will find this impossible to use within their local area unless they go after specific GC numbers since the returned list of caches in most cases for a general query will largely have already been found.


    Others have mentioned logging from the field, etc. and I think those ideas are all pretty great too and look forward to seeing them in a future update. I'll add to the list of "nice to have" by saying I'd really like to see the app remember where I left off when I re-enter (such as when I navigate to the map application). My favorite nice to have however would be the logging from the field.



  4. Since I work for one of those kind of organizations I can vouch for the simple fact that it also only takes one person to say yes. The trick is to find the right person. They are far harder to find than the folks who can say no. When I need something done and I find the right champion the waters part and things happen. If I can't get that person to champion my cause I have to find the angle that makes them realize it's in their interest to work with me.


    That all said, there is another way. Since the NPS (and other groups) rely on volunteer organizations now cachers should start joining those organizations. Enouch cachers and magicly attitudes change about caching within the organization, and even within the organization relying on the volunteer services.


    Unfortunately that's like saying you should join PETA because you disagree with their philosophy on the acceptability of eating meat or wearing fur in hopes of changing their views from within.


    While I'm not going to argue the merits of PETA's views one way or the other, we all know that joining that organization with the goals stated in mind would be a fruitless effort given their well publicized statements on such issues. Unless or until the NPS stops relying on the misinformation being spread by certain individuals within the ATC who are bent on persuing a radical agenda and start listening to other individuals and organizations that present a more reasoned and fact based view, nothing will change. Environmental science is a complex area and some in the ATC would seem to have a habit of regularly presenting hypothesis as fact or casting complicated scenarios as black or white. The only way to counter misinformation and sow doubt into the reliability of the present information sources is for other individuals and organizations to make sure they are being heard directly.


    Groundspeak as an organization with resources needs to advocate on our behalf and get the NPS to outline a common set of objectives which defines a reasoned approach to geocaching. They did what they were asked (demanded) to do ... so the next question should be, so we're working "with you", now what are you going to do to show your working "with me"?


    We as individuals need to petition the NPS (and those that fund it) to properly act on our behalf to cooperate -- and as someone mentioned above, if we've got those on the "inside" who we know are positive forces in this respect, we need to leverage and support them to move this bureaucracy off it's center.


    And as for the ATC, well lets just say that I think people might have better uses for their money and time at this point. Maybe those who choose to stay involved can motivate changes to remove those from positions of power who are responsible for such radical views. Maybe Groundspeak or some other organization might start a "Geocaching in the National Parks" initiative. I'd be one of the first in line to give them a contribution and volunteer some time.

  5. While I agree in theory, in practice telling the NPS to buzz off where they don't technically have control of the land may not be the best idea. If there are side trails from the AT to a cache (or, more correctly, if the NPS perceives that there are or will be side trails) then they're going to want that cache gone. If we're not willing to remove it ourselves, I'm pretty sure the NPS will either remove it themselves, or try to convince the landowner that it should be removed. In the case of state lands, chances are the NPS would get their way every time. The last thing I want to have is the NPS telling the Game Commission or other state land managers that caching is really bad and they should have some policy against it. You know the NPS isn't going to suggest they "control" caches, they're going to suggest they BAN caches. And it's probably easier for a land manager to simply say "banned" than it is to work with us to develop a policy and/or permit system that would require more time and effort to manage.


    Just because the law may fall on our side in some cases doesn't mean we should try to force our will on the NPS. I think working with them in a cooperative effort would probably be better for us in the long run. If that means that caches just off the AT that are technically legal have to go, then so be it. One of mine falls into that category, but I'm not arguing it. Better to lose one cache than to lose the ability to place caches on SGL or in State Forests or wherever.


    At the same time, I don't think rolling over and giving the NPS whatever they want on lands they don't control is good for us either. There has to be a balance, and yes, the NPS does have its limits, even if it may not like them. Sometimes they do need to be reminded of that.


    You are, of course, right ... but by the same account Groundspeak should not roll over either. There is a difference between a cache placed on A.T. / NPS lands and a cache not on land they control. The former clearly they can require go away under present policy. The latter, I think the burden of proof falls to the NPS to show that it is having an impact -- at the very least, I think requiring the NPS to seperate their complaints into these two categories and dealing with them seperately would be appropriate perhaps giving the cache owner the benefit of the doubt first before you go archiving their caches in the case of the latter.


    You know, I think if they had simply done that this time around and validated any which are suspiciously distant from the A.T. corridor or not on A.T. lands, they could have prevented a lot of heartburn. Sure, there would still have been complaints, but the arguments would have been different (relating to NPS policy disagreement vs the right to have a cache in the first place) -- and you know, I would have come down on the side of the NPS in that instance. I wouldn't have agreed with the NPS policy, but I would have defended their right to enforce it. The issue remains, I fear, that a few radical elements particularly within the ATC itself are intentionally feeding misinformation to the NPS. It's a shame really because most geocachers are of the same mindset as those seeking to preserve natural resources and by being atagonistic, they are alienating a substantial group of individuals who could otherwise bring the volunteer resources they need into the program.


    OK Groundspeak, so you say you want advocates? How about publishing some materials and talking points which would help Geocachers engage their local leaders, state agencies, etc. in understanding Geocaching and supporting it. I'm not a fan of permit processes, but you know, I've dealt with them and having information to give to agencies to help them understand what kinds of policies Groundspeak supports and what resources you have available to assist them (or better still what information they can provide you to assist reviewers in insuring proper placement on their lands) would, I think, go a long way towards shutting down those with a radical agenda who are about spreading fear and doubt over Geocaching as a way to achieve their goals. Helping those of us comfortable with petitioning and engaging local and state agencies to do so in a consistent and complete manner would go a long way. A good marketing campaign can do wonders.

  6. First, thanks to DocDitto for putting the effort into mapping out the cache archivals and placement in relation to the A.T. and for maintaining the bookmark list.


    Shame on Groundspeak for not keeping us informed of what was going on in the first place. As for not releasing names, I understand why. For those of you upset by that, it's not a difficult problem to overcome ... a little time spent on the NPS website will give you all the contact information you need and is clearly in the public forum.


    To address scubahhh's question ... I truly believe the "we don't deal with violators" kind of mentality and similar documented "big brother" abuse being heaved on adjacent landowners by the NPS is the result of a few overzealous individuals inside the NPS/ATC who's mentality lean toward trying to "protect us from ourselves". Unless or until their influence is removed or congress corrects the NPS's perception of how they should be behaving, we will continue to have this abuse of power. Again these individuals are lumping geocachers into the same category as land encroachment and we all know that is both inaccurate and inappropriate and nothing more than an attempt to forward a radical agenda.


    So, I have two interesting observations ...


    First, the NPS seems to imply the cachers are on an intentional mission to break the law and place caches where they aren't permitted. It's interesting in the random sample of the list I just looked at to see that quite a few of these caches have been around for YEARS. This isn't new and it's hardly something which hasn't been well known by the NPS for quite some time. Given the recent acquistion of some of the adjacent land parcels by the NPS, it's entirely possible that some caches when placed were in fact totally legitmate on lands outside NPS jurisdiction. Additionally, as has been pointed out numerous times, quite a few people until recently were even unaware that the NPS had anything to do with the AT. Yes, I know ignorance of the law doesn't matter, but there is a big difference between willful and intentional infringement and a lack of understanding. To accuse all geocachers of the former when it's more likely the latter is just another example of specific individuals inside the ATC who are trying to pursue a radical agenda.


    My second observation ...


    Note that all of the following show the land owner as a state agency. Now, as I haven't looked at the specific caches and their proximity, I don't know about their relationship to the AT corridor as it passes thru that tract of land. What I do know however is the if the caches are OUTSIDE of the AT corridor, then it would seem to me that whoever in the NPS compiled the list is clearly outside of their jurisdiction. By their own record, they are NOT the managing agency for the land ....


    GCH20H, MA DCR-Beartown SF, Fee, NERO

    GC192E, MA DCR-October Mt. SF, Fee, NERO

    GCH2KO, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GC16720, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GC16721, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GCZ2KZ, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GCG3D8, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GC14M73, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GCE3E, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GCWNKV, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO

    GCRD86, MA DCR-Mt. Greylock SR, Fee, NERO


    GCZ3CW, VA WMA-Geo. Thom, Fee, AT Corridor/Seg. 418

    GCH0Q7, VA WMA-Geo. Thom, Fee, AT Corridor/Seg. 418

    GCH0M6, VA WMA-Geo. Thom, Fee, AT Corridor/Seg. 418

    GCGVQB, VA WMA-Geo. Thom, Fee, AT Corridor/Seg. 418


    On such caches, I think scrutiny is certainly warranted. It's moot as to if a particular agency permits geocaching or not. That's an issue between the cache owner and the landmanager -- neither of which is the NPS. If the NPS is not the land manager either directly or via an MOU for the corridor, then it's outside of their jurisdiction and they should focus their efforts on lands they control and leave these other issues to the land manager who has authority. Groundspeak should politely remind the NPS to restrict their list to lands they manage directly.


    And one last thing ... the "we don't talk to violators" is just code for "we don't ever plan to talk to you". You see, they will always find some excuse to say there is a violation and use it as an excuse to not enter a conversation ... individuals need to make sure that their interests are being represented properly (which clearly they aren't here) by making sure those who fund the NPS and are in a position to influence NPS policy (congress) are aware of the issue. Write your elected officials. It also doesn't hurt to go over the head of local agencies which may be acting out inappropriate agendas and complain at the highest levels within the NPS. Be polite, be factual, but be heard.


    Perhaps someone within Groundspeak (or not) would be willing to help draft some sample letters individuals could send which would show how to properly quantify our concerns and protest current policy and post links to them here.

  7. Abandoned Property? Which of you 'abandoned' your cache? You may have left it there, but you're maintaining it, aren't you? You plan to go get your cache now that it's been archived, don't you? I wouldn't say that's 'abandoned'.


    1 To withdraw one's support or help from, especially in spite of duty, allegiance, or responsibility; desert: abandon a friend in trouble.

    2 To give up by leaving or ceasing to operate or inhabit, especially as a result of danger or other impending threat: abandoned the ship.

    3 To surrender one's claim to, right to, or interest in; give up entirely. See Synonyms at relinquish.

    4 To cease trying to continue; desist from: abandoned the search for the missing hiker.


    American Psychological Association (APA):

    abandoned. (n.d.). The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Retrieved September 22, 2008, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/abandoned


    They have that particular nuance covered as well. Interestingly enough it's also what gives them the wiggle room to actually "allow" caching too. Read it for yourself, but at the end of the day, unless or until the park superintendent declares it permitted, it's not. Oh, and thanks DocDitto for filling in the part about the MOU's which establish the corridor across non-owned lands (as he said, that basically gives the NPS rights to enforce it's policy within the corridor and is agreed to by the landowner).


    Encroachment is a real issue for the trail and NPS lands (someone just cited something in this thread which demonstrates that). And protecting against those kinds of flagrant and obviously massive impacts is something which I would fully support the NPS doing ... but Geocaching hardly falls into that category and to insinuate that it does is irresponsible on the part of those pushing that agenda. (Perhaps if the ATC were out checking the trail more carefully instead of surfing the web looking for geocaches, they might actually have stopped some of what sounds like some major encroachments which were posted in this thread before they occurred?)


    At any rate, here's an excerpt of the particular section in the CFR Title 36:


    § 2.22 Property.


    (a) The following are prohibited:

    (1) Abandoning property.

    (2) Leaving property unattended for longer than 24 hours, except in locations where longer time periods have been designated or in accordance with conditions established by the superintendent.

    (3) Failing to turn in found property to the superintendent as soon as practicable.


    (:o Impoundment of property.

    (1) Property determined to be left unattended in excess of an allowed period of time may be impounded by the superintendent.

    (2) Unattended property that interferes with visitor safety, orderly management of the park area, or presents a threat to park resources may be impounded by the superintendent at anytime.

    (3) Found or impounded property shall be inventoried to determine ownership and safeguard personal property.

    (4) The owner of record is responsible and liable for charges to the person who has removed, stored, or otherwise disposed of property impounded pursuant to this section; or the superintendent may assess the owner reasonable fees for the impoundment and storage of property impounded pursuant to this section.

    © Disposition of property.

  8. ...I called a Mr. Todd Remaley and we talked for a half hour on this subject! It seems that the AT has experienced

    damage from illeagal caches on the AT. Mr. Remaley stated that Groundspeak wasn't cooperating with the NPS and that leagal action against Groundspeak might be the only course of action left....


    I've love to take a tour of damage found by the NPS. He's also wrong in tha caches are not illegal. That would take a law. One that doesn't exist. I'm not sure this person is fully informed (mushroom theory of organizations), understands caches, or the law.


    Just to clear something up ... actually there is a law although it doesn't specifically apply to geocaching. According to CFR Title 36, part 2, section 22a -- it is not permissible to "abandon" property in NPS lands. This is what the ranger sites when they say they prohibit geocaching. Section 22b is where the "fine" comes into play -- not really a fine, but a charge for the removal, storage, etc. of said property can be assessed by the NPS. There are also other sections which deal with intentional damage to NPS lands -- which is what the ranger cites when claiming side trails are an issue.


    The CFR is the Code of Federal Regulations and is what gives the NPS it's right to exist and enforce laws. There's also another section (forget where at the moment, but I tracked it down after the last encounter with the NPS folks) that give NPS rangers status as a "law enforcement" officer on NPS lands.


    The A.T. is NPS property ... and anything in it is subject to their regulations. They have you on that point and those of us who have been yelling here are not debating that. We're arguing about the heavy handed tactics which inappropriated archived caches outside NPS jurisdiction and the general inference by the NPS that all Geocachers are out to place illegal caches and damage park service lands -- which is patently false.


    Now, what they don't tell you, is that the NPS has granted each superintendent of a park the right to enact certain additional restrictions as are necessary to protect public safety or protect an endangered species. They have also given this same individual the rights to allow certain activities which could otherwise be interpreted as restricted. AND ... in a recent finding, the NPS specific provided guidance to those individuals that if they thought it appropriate, they could PERMIT geocaching in their park jurisdiction by simply exempting it from the abandoned property rule in the section I cited above. The issue however is that the NPS didn't provide for any way for these individuals to setup a "permitting" or "control" system to insure that caches were placed responsibility (like many state parks do now). So, many given that dilemma will choose not to deal with it (particularly when they get so called "save us from ourselves" types of individuals like some at the ATC whispering in their ear false rumors about the nature of this sport/hobby).

  9. I've been reading this thread from here, across The Pond, with interest. My only knowledge of the Appalachian Trail comes from reading Bill Bryson's very entertaining book "A walk in the woods", however, it's always sad to read of such a broad sweep of archiving in the World of Geocaching.


    To help me get some further perspective on this matter, could anyone give me a (rough) estimate of how many caches were archived, please?


    MrsB :o


    I've created a public bookmark list with all the ones I know of -- which is probably nowhere close to accurate since there's no easy way to view archived caches any longer. I have 43 caches on my list -- the majority of which are in Pennsylvania. If anyone knows of others not on my "NPS Hit List" bookmark, feel free to email me the waypoints and I'll add them. If Groundspeak would like to simply tell us the number as I'd asked in an earlier post, that would be fine too. :)


    Hmm ... any time someone hides or attempts to hide information, it can only mean that suspect purposes are at work. Come on Groundspeak ... open up and disclose the full nature of what's going on and let us be the judge as well as exercise our rights as citizens to tell this government agency that they are not acting on behalf of our interests despite what being told.


    As for the majority seemingly being in PA, that convinces me that I know the real person and the misguided beliefs and motives behind this. In fact, I bet I'd know the exact cache they would cite as "causing damage" if pressed (one that was indeed in the AT corridor and causing an issue -- placed well before anyone knew the NPS had anything to do with the AT -- and which was archived over two years ago PROMPTLY when the owner was made aware of the regulations -- in fact the owner was having a health issue at the time and some other local cachers actually met with the local NPS ranger to discuss the matter face to face, retrieve the cache container, and arranged to remove a second cache which would have had similar issues as well as get clarity on exactly what land the NPS owned around the AT and how to avoid encroachment issues). It would be interesting to revisit that site again and see just how much "permanent" damage was done ... I think I'm going to have to take little road trip with my camera.

  10. Does Mr. Todd Remaly realize that there ARE other listing sites, for both geocaches and letterboxes, besides this one? To immediately assume that all cache-like containers found on or near the AT are geocaches approved by Groundspeak may be erroneous.


    Also, what exactly does he mean by "illegal"? Many of the targeted caches are on state gamelands where caching is not prohibited. How can NPS jurisdicton extend to those parcels of land or the caches therein? by what criteria would the SGL caches be deemed "illegal"?


    That's what at the core of our frustration. Now, you see, it's possible that an illegally placed cache could be resulting in damage. It's also entirely possible -- and probably more likely with some of the "way out in the middle of no where" caches -- that the trails found have absolutely nothing to do with the cache. And, it's further possible that even for those more active caches that the "trail" found pre-existed the cache placement and the individual who hid their cache simply followed an existing side-trail.


    To blame geocachers for this -- well, let's just say it's unlikely that the burden of proof would be met if we were dealing with a court of law.


    I believe what truly is happening here is that Todd is unfortunately being played by some within the NPS and ATC that have motives which are questionable at best. So, he's being told Groundspeak is being uncooperative without talking to them himself ... and that there all these caches out there have large amounts of damage being done to the trail (but without any concrete evidence of such -- or someone is replaying a previously archived cache that was indeed improperly placed and has been gone a long time). Of course, the minute he notified someone about it at Groundspeak, they went overboard to try to be accomodating. Now of course, if someone showed up from the ATC and whined "the trail is mine, get all caches on it out" and didn't provide any information on what those caches were, what do think Groundspeak might have done? They probably said, give us a list of caches -- and the ATC person probably whined about being too busy. You see ... it just possible that neither party could act because tge ATC and NPS failed to provide a cache list or some way for Groundspeak to determine where the trail corridor runs. Is it just possible that he's getting bad information from some people who work for the ATC and perhaps have a "protect us from ourselves and ban everyone from the trail" mentality? You betcha.


    This is all very frustrating and unfortunately every time I hear from somebody new on this topic who has had direct contact with one of the individuals involved, it's amazing how the story seems to keep changing.

  11. Shauna,


    I know who you've been working with at the NPS as well as some of the individuals you've spoken with directly here in central PA regarding this matter. You see, over a year ago, we met directly with the NPS in response to some other caches a local cacher had placed which were in the A.T. corridor and needed to be removed. Based on comments made by a specific individual during those meetings, I can't say I'm surprised at the archival requests. In fact, I'm surprised they took this long to get around to it. However, I am surprised and disappointed in the way Groundspeak handled the list they received and the vetting process which was used in combination with the heavy-handed tactics. You failed at customer service for your customers -- you remember us don't you? Not so sure.


    Here are a few observations:

    “Here is a list of existing geocaches which need to be archived and removed as soon as possible. The majority of geocaches on this initial list are located on NPS managed AT Corridor lands as well as some which were identified as being on state managed lands that the A.T. passes through where geocaching is prohibited.

    Yep, I understand the issue with respect to caches on the A.T. and within the corridor. No one argues that point (disagrees with the policy perhaps, but doesn't dispute it).


    Of note here are four things ... First, that many people did not (and still do not) understand that the A.T. is part of the National Park System (obviously this fact eludes many reviewers as well since they approved caches in these lands despite a GC ban on National Park caches). Second, that the NPS either owns the land over which the trail runs or has been given a corridor (which varies in width) thru mostly public held lands -- very little if any of the trail now runs over privately held lands -- and that in the event of a conflict between NPS policy and local land manager policy, that of the local land manager prevails unless they specifically gave up those rights in their right-of-way agreement (usually as a result of a lease arrangement). Third, on the part of the NPS, that we do not control or coordinate the actions of other individuals associated with Geocaching -- a bad placement is bad judgement by a specific individual, not by "all geocachers". And lastly that despite statements to the contrary, the NPS does indeed have a policy exception and has provided park rangers/superintendents with guidelines on how to permit geocaching in their parks (they have to specifically exclude geocaching from the "abandoned property" regulation in Title 36 of the CFR -- which is the section they use to prevent you from leaving an "unattended container in the woods" under threat of a fine (the same applies to a forgotten picnic basket for that matter -- leave it behind and they could fine you -- of course most rangers aren't unreasonable, so they rarely enforce the fines and instead just remove and discard forgotten property).


    What I don't understand nor agree with is the second sentence of this statement.


    The NPS does NOT have jurisdiction over lands outside of it's control and boundaries. Those involved even conceded that point. The fact that a cache is placed on land which they "believe" is not legal, but which is outside of their control is perhaps noteworthy, but not actionable. They are not the authority, nor do they know the specifics which a particular cache owner may have arranged with the rightful land manager. They can of course work with the surrounding land manager if a specific cache is creating an impact on NPS property (some agreements they have with public agencies state that the agency will take action to minimize impacts if notified).


    GC should have politely told the NPS to limit their list now and in the future to those which are placed on NPS controlled lands. The caches which are at the heart of the most vocal of complaints from cache owners are those which were legitimately placed outside NPS lands -- and in several cases locally which I am aware of the specific details around -- were placed in a specific manner so as to avoid the creation of so called "social trails" (for example, one placement is accessible via the A.T. and then following a blazed side trail to well outside the A.T. corridor -- and involves two serious elevation changes of a couple hundred feet. Or ... the seeker could simply follow the nice LEVEL rail trail to the cache site across State Game Lands where Geocaching is not forbidden).

    After speaking with the parties involved, it is now our understanding that, according to the NPS:

    - Simply moving a geocache a few hundred feet from the AT does not change the fact that "bad things" can occur, like unacceptable social trails.

    - Geocaches placed on NPS managed property is against the law. It is a non-negotiable and potentially subject to fines and federal tickets.

    - Any geocache where a primary access point is needed along corridor lands should not be published. Again, the creation of social trails is a potential issue.

    - Regardless of resources offered, they do not believe in cultivating relationships with people that they perceive are knowingly breaking the law.

    Yep... keep hearing about those evil social trails and "bad things". Are you sure you're talking to the chief ranger for the A.T. and not someone who has a personal agenda? You see, moving a cache a few hundred feet from the AT DOES change things -- if it's the right few hundred feet. Again, we spoke previously with the chief ranger about this -- down a legitimate blazed side trail well clear of the A.T. boundary -- no NPS issue. Of course, just moving it a a few hundred feet doesn't always fix the problem ... it has to be in a manner which doesn't cause the side trails.


    Second items is flat out false as well. See my previous comments regarding NPS policy delegation to local rangers and park managers. Current A.T. policy does not permit "leaving an unattended container" behind. It doesn't and can't prohibit Geocaching across their marked trails -- Geocaching in that definition is nothing more than hiking with a GPSr. Stepping off the trail and creating a side trail within NPS corridor -- again, they do have a say there, but need to work with the surrounding land manager to mitigate the problem -- not "blame the geocacher" for a trail which many times has nothing to do with Geocaching.


    Third seems to conflict with specific statements made by the head ranger for the A.T. in a previous conversation. Virtual caches are allowed and any use of the land which is consistent with it's primary purpose (which is hiking) is totally legitimate. They just don't want situations where side trails form. So, if it encourages "bushwhacking" from the A.T., that's obviously a problem. If it clearly states ... follow the marked trail to the marked side trail, to a point specific point outside the A.T. corridor ... well, the last time we had a conversation on this, the ranger seemed to think that was a good way of insuring no one misunderstood how to avoid creating an issue.


    As for the last one, that's accusing someone of being guilty by association. I believe that's also a basis for infringing on an individual's rights ... and something which I believe the Federal government specifically frowns upon. I would encourage the chief ranger to reign in the individual making those broad assertions before they get themselves accused of some form of discrimination. OK ... I hear your "olive branch" argument ... so maybe you just exercise a little bit of extra caution and perhaps vet things with the head ranger directly before acting upon anything just to be sure someone isn't overstepping their authority in terms of NPS desires.

    - We were assured that the geocache list for archival had been researched and confirmed; the geocaches listed were recognized as significant legal issues. If these geocaches were not removed, geocachers could be subject to fines and Federal tickets.

    Bad info I'm afraid. Look at all the complaints you received. Your quality customer service metric for this month just took a steeper dive than the stock market did earlier this week.

    - Groundspeak acknowledges that mistakes happen and that the list provided by the NPS may be subject to error. It is also possible that the NPS made additional considerations for archival that were not disclosed to Groundspeak. Therefore, we will be sending a list of geocaches to the NPS that seem to be of no legal or environmental concern. If you have a known example, please email contact@geocaching.com with details you feel are appropriate, including specific contact information received for permission for placement of the particular geocache.

    - Although incidences like these can be frustrating, please understand that it is in everyone’s best interest to react in positive ways that will improve the perception of the activity and of the worldwide geocaching community.

    Well at least you're trying to make amends with frustrated cache owners who have legitimately placed caches. You should have sought a less heavy-handed approach to resolving the issue with the NPS instead of mass archivals, one which engaged the cache owners directly particularly for those outside NPS jurisdiction..


    And lastly, I would still like you to return my call. There are issues at work here of which I am certain you are not aware and which should impact how (and who) you work with in the NPS. Not everyone is looking to encourage more utilization of the trail system nor necessarily acting in good faith I believe.

  12. After reading this (link below), I figure it's a response to side trails. That would explain why some caches that are quite a ways away were axed. If the easiest way to get to a cache on a State Gamelands is by first hiking along the AT then cutting off for the last .15, of course that's how people will go there, and that will create a discernible trail.


    Here's the rather interesting report:

    AT MEGA Transect


    In the case of the 3 caches Klatch mentioned above (one of them is mine) they are ALL located along blazed, legit trails other than the AT. All of them are accessible without ever even touching the AT. Yes, unblazed side trails off the AT are a concern for the NPS, but none of these fit into that category. I think the NPS simply made a mistake... and I'd bet these aren't the only mistakes they made.


    I contacted Groundspeak and requested the my cache archival be reviewed. The list of caches to be archived was provided to Groundspeak by the NPS, and Groundspeak acted on all of them accordingly, based on the word of the NPS alone. Obviously mistakes were made and will need corrected, but that will probably take some time.


    I've not yet decided whether to contact the NPS to request that they remove my cache from the hit list, but I'm considering doing so. Might be better to just let Groundspeak deal with this rather than us individually.

    Or maybe not... ?

    I think the right answer is to make as much noise about this as possible.


    Each and every cache owner with a legitimate placement should file a complaint with Groundspeak informing them of the error and requesting unarchival. Further they should recommend that Groundspeak perhaps exercise a bit more due-diligence in the future with respect to validating the legitimacy of a claim.


    Premium members should express their frustration and concern with these "napalm" tactics. Make it abundently clear that your ready to speak with your feet on this matter and not renew your membership if necessary.


    Call the local AT NPS office. Call the national AT NPS office. Call the NPS office. Complain and complain loudly. These people, while they often forget it, work for YOU, the American taxpayer. A complaint about how to NPS is representing your interests to your senator and congressman probably wouldn't hurt either (probably won't help either, but hey, they're not doing anything else in Washington D.C. these days, so maybe we'll get lucky).


    If you obtained permission from a state agency to place a cache which was targeted. Complain to them about the NPS infringing on your rights and their jurisdiction over their lands.

  13. I wonder what precipated this sudden move? Some of those caches have been around for several years.


    (Edited for bad spelling.)

    I bet I know the exact individual responsible ... she calls herself a "geocacher", but hasn't found anything in years and in reality she uses her ID as a cover for nothing more than lauching a personal and petty vendetta.

  14. We had several here in Central PA get archived ... two of which I specifically know are NOT on NPS property, are not in the AT corridor, are not accessed via the AT (you'd have to be pretty stupid to approach them from such a direction), and are seemingly selected at random for proximity to some kind of route.


    I'm not arguing about NPS lands ... I'm disappointed in Groundspeak's reaction to these archival requests without even challenging them for validity.


    I know of one archived here on a rail trail ... the AT is over 1/2 mile away at the top of the mountain. The cache is located on State Game Lands and is placed well outside the easement corridor. The only approach to the cache is via the nice LEVEL rail trail unless you count the marked (blazed) side trail that comes down the mountain from the AT to the rail trail (including at several hundred foot drop in elevation). Hardly a circumstance where the "side trail" argument holds any merit.


    This is nothing more than a government agency abusing it's power and attempting to bully it citizenry. Everyone should write their congressman and complain.

  15. I run into this every time I restructure my queries as well ... you must have already run some queries today -- unchecked/deleted them -- and are now trying to schedule new ones with the intention that they run starting next week.


    As far as the system is concerned, the count of the number of queries for a day is equal to the number of queries which have already run today plus the number of check boxes of queries which have not yet run.


    I wish the system would let you schedule 5 checkboxes per day without concern for the number of queries which have already run on that day and just not run those which exceed the 5 max for the day.


    I usually just make a mental note and return the following day to complete the reconfiguration of queries once the 24-hour period has elapsed.

  16. i work in an emergency room...this would not surprise me in the least. People have come in and told me crazy stories, and I have to sit there and smile and nod like I believe them- for the 3rd time this month!!!


    So- although I think it is probably the store's over-reaction to a Darwin nominee, people really do need to police themselves.


    also- HIPPA does not have to do with the store- prev.poster correct.


    It probably was a wally employee.


    We have a cute little cache at our wally in the lot- felt naughty finding it, but it was one of our very first finds...still is. We're new!! Has been there a couple years- fun to find.


    Going to find some nuclear coffee now, or use preparation H orally. Ooh, I am short on time, maybe I dry my hair while soaking in the tub??


    ... and don't forget while soaking that the shampoo next to you is "for external use only".

  17. Launchpad idea wouldn't work either ... the cache needs to remain in a fixed location. The ISS is not in a geosync orbit, so it would result in the cache constantly changing coordinates.


    Now ... a travel bug ... you could certainly turn the ISS into a travel bug by suitably affixing an appropriate "tag" to it if you happened to have the necessary connections.

  18. Sounds like an excellent suggestion for a feature ... perhaps you should join up and pay a membership fee so that you can support Groundspeak so that they can pay their development staff to add the"non-PM finders only" feature to their software ...


    Oh wait ... guess that would then make you a premium member ...



  19. Thanks for the speedy reply. Can I use the same name for a new cache or should I change the name as well?


    I've seen several caches that have been archived but later revived, in a sense, in a different location. They are "new" listings (not the same GC number) and use the same name but usually add something like "redux" or a number to the end of the name to indicate that it is indeed a new hide.


    This is not required, of course, but is a nice hint for those who may have sought the earlier incarnation that there is something different about this listing so that they don't inadvertently assume that somehow their previous log had gotten deleted.


    It's really your call however.

  20. I know them as a type of fishing lure, but it might help to better answer your question if you give us the context in which term is being used. Did you perhaps read it in a cache writeup or log somewhere? If so, which one?

  21. And anything that's liquid will eventually leak during the heat of summer or freeze during winter. I had the entire contents of a cache destroyed by a bottle of bubble solution.


    Yep ... that happened to me too. Someone put a little bottle of bubbles (like they give out at weddings nowadays) into my cache and a local critter sniffed it out and chewed open the container (a decon) to get at them.

  22. An "archived" cache that hasn't been removed by it's owner can be considered trash in my book, so you'd literally just be doing a little CITO.


    I would however, just as a courtesy to the owner, post a note on the cache that indicates that you're willing to pick up the cache AFTER it's been archived and see to it's removal and give the owner the opportunity to say "thanks, but no thanks" to your offer. If you hear nothing, I'd say go for it and then post a folowup note afterwards indicating you have it and offering to return it to the owner if they desire.


    If, as you indicate, the owner has left the game, you'lll probably never hear anything and you'll have done the environment a favor by removing what otherwise would have just become trash.

  23. Oooo ... gotta read all the intervening threads on these notes. I had this one marked as a Geopher thread and I see it's since had a new entry called Geode added to the mix. Just viewed the video ... looks to be right on the money. When can we have it? (standing here with my money in hand).

  24. OK, I've finally found an application in the iTunes store that might make the iphone a bit more usable for geocaching. Yes, I've been following the geopher application, but being as crippled as it is and still reliant on an online connection, I'm not ready to buy into it yet. I don't need the compass pointer capability -- that's what my GPSr handheld does best -- what I really needed was a Cachemate or Plucker replacement for offline GPX file viewing.


    Well, I didn't get quite that far, but I've found a workable combination that I thought I'd share ...


    The program in the itunes store is called Datacase. This is basically a file library application for the iphone which lets you transfer files (via FTP) from your PC to the handheld. This includes the ability to view HTML files and following local link references.


    So, I loaded this application on my iphone, exported an HTML extract from GSAK, started up the application on the iphone (it uses the Wifi network for transfer, not a cable, so you need to have your local wifi network available), and then pointed my browser at the URL indicated by the datacase application (you can then follow the on screen instructions for opening the view in the more useful windows explorer screen so you can do file transfers).


    I copied over the GSAK HTML extract directory and then went to the file library on the iphone and started up the index.htm file.


    Voila! A navigatable offline database complete with links to the online Geocaching page -- so if I am in range of a cell tower with data service, I can pull up the online page in real time.


    Let me know if anyone else is doing this or has tried it.


    Full disclosure ... I don't have any relationship to the folks who wrote Datacase ... and be aware that this is NOT a free app from the Itunes store ... it costs about $7.

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