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  1. I have a cute "getting permission" story to share. We wanted to do a simple light pole cache (a match stick cache we bought on geocache.com). The parking lot it was standing in was a quaint minimall. We asked one of the store owners who owned the parking lot and explained why. He knew about geocaching and was very helpful, gave us the name & number of the owner and also said he would talk to him. We called the owner, explained what geocaching was, and asked if we could leave a "cache" under his light post. It was fine with him and then asked us...who keeps the "cash" people leave behind. lol
  2. Moderators rarely start forum topics, but I hope the community can indulge me this soapbox to mark the occasion of my 20,000th forum post. Here is a collection of things I wanted to discuss. 20,000 Posts is quite a posting power trail. Why, and do you have a life? Those posts accumulated over 16 years. I've been a moderator since the very first day when the forums had volunteer moderators. Those posts are a combination of steering discussion participants towards following the forum guidelines, explaining the cache hiding guidelines and process, and helping people (especially newcomers) by answering questions about how geocaching works. I like that last part the most. I enjoy helping people and, like all who read this, I love reading and talking about geocaching. How are the forums now, versus 2003? When I first became a moderator, the forums were like the wild wild west. It was super busy and super chaotic, 24/7. New flame wars lit up every week. In part, that was because there were no moderators from 2000 to 2003. Jeremy Irish did a lot of the explaining and moderating. His style was blunt and direct, and that tended to stir up the beehive. Also, we didn't have the tools back then to moderate effectively, like permanently locking threads, efficiently stopping spammers, and suspending posting rights when appropriate. Finally, Geocaching HQ has improved greatly since then, with a supportive staff that helps head off problems in the community and to ensure consistency in application of the site terms of use, cache hiding guidelines, and forum guidelines. That wild west label applied in 2003 to site volunteers, too - myself included. My ego thought I owned this place. I didn't. Today, we can go for hours with few or no forum posts, and flame wars are pretty rare. One reason for the drop in traffic is the popularity of social media. Geocachers love to talk about geocaching, and now there are many ways to do that which didn't exist in 2003: Facebook, twitter, blogs, vlogs, etc. This is a good thing. So, how are the forums still relevant? Heading into 2020, in my opinion the two highest and best uses where the Geocaching Forums stand out are (1) helping newcomers and others with questions, and (2) announcing and explaining website features, changes and promotions. Newcomers often find the forums first, and they tend to receive more complete, accurate answers than in other channels. Site features are best discussed here and in other Geocaching HQ social media - announcements can't be posted to hundreds of local Facebook groups. I know that a lot of people read here, but don't post - they link to discussions and carry the news to their local community by posting elsewhere. If that's you, thank you for doing that, and please consider joining the discussions here. How can the forums be better? Be kind to others, especially newcomers. It may be the 132nd thread you've read, asking how it's possible to find hundreds of geocaches in a single day, but the person asking doesn't know that. Don't scare them off. Be nice to veterans, too - it is boring when everyone agrees with you, so keep an open mind when someone expresses an opinion which differs from yours. Finally, stay on topic and keep your posts relevant. Not every remark requires a reply. One of the best features of the forums is that there's an easily searchable, permanent database of answers about geocaching. Don't clog up the search results unnecessarily. Thank you for reading this, and for affording me the privilege of serving the geocaching community as a volunteer forum moderator. It's an honor and a pleasure.
  3. Old topic but it is coming around again. There is again talk of barring anyone that doesn't have a hunting license from hiking on PA Gamelands. Applies year round regardless of hunting seasons.
  4. The Geocaching Talk Net is alive and well, every Thursday evening at 6:30pm Pacific Time on IRLP Reflector node 9000. Find an IRLP node near you and connect it to the reflector and join in on the fun! --Marky, K6FTF (lately, it seems that I'm more "Fast To Fade" than "First To Find". )
  5. Perhaps I've in the minority but I often talk about the cache, especially when I find a clean, dry container with lots of room in the log sheet. I may simply mention that the cache in good shape because that provides a real time notification to the owner of the state of the cache. I would also talk about the cache if it's in poor shape and mention a very wet log or broken container as that is also useful information for a cache owner, more so than writing that it was 72 degrees, with clear skies and a light wind. Unless the weather was significantly bad or an exceptionally warm day in winter, I can't see the CO or other log readers caring about the weather when I found the cache.
  6. When I try to upload or download waypoints from GSAK to my GPSMAP 76CSx from GSAK, a "sending waypoints" or "receiving waypoints" dialog box comes up with a gas gauge that goes from empty to full over and over and over and over and over, ad infinitem. It seems like it isn't communicating with the GPSr at all. USB connection. I can upload and download fine with Mapsource. The only way to get GSAK to do anything is to end task in task manager. Help!
  7. I don't necessarily talk about the cache, but I might talk about my day or the way to the cache or something I found interesting about the area (especially if it involves social housing in any way...). But I never cut and paste and I'm not padding my logs deliberately. The same here. On the more memorable caches, the ones where my logs run close to or over the length limit, it's mostly the story of my adventure on the way to GZ and back, with the cache itself barely rating a mention if it's just a standard box, and if it's something special that's meant as a surprise for the finder, I won't say anything at all about it that might spoil the surprise. My logs do relate specifically to my journey to that cache, and if several caches were found on the trip, I'll split the narrative between caches rather than just repeat everything. The only time I've done any cutting and pasting was for a series of geoart caches associated with the recent mega here, and even then I tried to add a sentence or two specific to each cache if I could.
  8. I don't necessarily talk about the cache, but I might talk about my day or the way to the cache or something I found interesting about the area (especially if it involves social housing in any way...). But I never cut and paste and I'm not padding my logs deliberately.
  9. Speaking of cynical... No, I'm saying these are people that are always arguing over various ways to improve the game, so they're open to all manner of changes. If they object as a group to any given suggestion, it's because something like it has already been considered at length -- or tried -- so the downside is well understood and you should listen to what it is. Taking off means having a community. I think you're mistaking my use of the word "community" for something specific, like events. Every place is different. Every community develops in its own way. That's why a central solution isn't likely to work for your area, and why the community can only grow from people in the community. Unfortunately, I'm not sure every area can develop a healthy community, but I do think that the only way you can have a healthy community is by first recognizing the it is a community and not mistake it for nothing more than a tiny, indistinguishable part of "geocaching". I'm not sure if anything more could be done to make life more rewarding for cache owners, but I've observed two things. First, cache owners need to be motivated by their caches first, and I've found they usually are. If they aren't, the best any rewards GS hands out will produce is more low quality caches. Second, the more GS produces artificial rewards for ownership, the more minimized the owners that don't need artificial rewards feel. If makes them feel like large quantities of inferior caches are considered more important than the heartfelt caches self-motivated COs put out. Wait. "Inspire"? Yes, that's a great idea. Work to inspire cache owners, not to reward them. GS tries to do a lot of that, and god bless them for it. But it won't help if there aren't any COs in your area to inspire. People regularly talk about this in the forums. I don't read much of what GS puts out, but I seem to recall blogs about the joys of good logs. As you observe, upvoting is already being studied. I don't think it will help, but I'm not opposed to it. The reason I don't think it will help is much the same as why I don't think CO rewards work: while imagining you're rewarding logs of the type you describe, in the end you only reward logs that win the reward, and that often is something quite different. You call it manipulation, but if they do something other than what you wanted them to do, blame the reward. Anyway, I think upvoting will be harmless, so I'll be all for it if only because it will make you happy, so don't accuse me of being negative or obstructive. But I predict it will be soon forgotten and ignored. I'm not sure exactly what you're proposing here. You talk about aiming higher, but I don't understand how a owner-only souvenir would do that. But, no matter, I'm all for it, too. In this case, I suspect that it will just be completely ignored. I doubt many people give any serious thought to next year's rewards. So at the same time I doubt it will do much for your cause of more or improved ownership, I also don't think it will significantly increase the number of bad caches that should never have been placed. So, sure, give it a try. I would have no problem with this if GS wanted to give it a try, but I think they try very hard to make the challenges simple so that anyone can understand it without much thought, so I doubt they use it. But to give it your best shot, maybe start a new thread on this specific idea and start bouncing ideas around about exactly how to structure the points and explain it to everyone. As you seem to understand, the devil's in the details, but I don't see any evil at the end of the road if the details can actually be worked out, so have at it!
  10. I noticed that too. Requiring the event to last 2 hours implies that HQ feels these are elaborate, special events with a lot going on. This seems to conflict with the 20200 number, which implies the exact opposite (widespread, common events). While officially these events will be listed as being 2 hours or longer, the reality is that many will end up being shorter, especially after cachers have attended a dozen of them already. We'll thus have totally expected conflicts as follows: ...10 CC events are held in an area... The 11th CC event in the area is held, with a listed event length of 2 hours 30 minutes into the event, everyone realizes there really isn't much more to talk about since the CC event last month (and the organizer couldn't think up many activities that haven't already been done at the other 10 events). The attendees gradually leave until only the organizer remains. 1 hour into the event, the organizer gets tired of sitting there doing nothing, so they leave. 1.5 hours into the event, another cacher arrives. Not seeing anyone else there, they log that they attended and leave. The organizer, having not seen the above cacher at the event, deletes what they see as a bogus log. Drama ensues. Sure, that might not happen. I bet it does, though.
  11. For Thursday night 8-10-06 3 checkins from IRLP 5 checkins from echolink KI6CPB Tag net control hope more can start to checkin
  12. When we talk about ugly babies, I'm thinking of logs that talk about what a stupid place this is for a cache or imply that the CO is incompetent in some way. So "the container leaks and the log was a mess" is fine, but "only an idiot would use a container like this" is more of an ugly baby comment. I think a lot of people don't recognize the difference. If you do, then you can carry on without worrying about me. The point is that there are many factors a finder might not understand, so suggestions should be neutral and explanatory, not dictating and self righteous. Local standards are just a good example of one such unknown standard, but a particularly good one because people that believe they know the one true standard are often snotty about telling other people what to do. I admit, I don't really have any idea which is true, but my impression from posts in the forum is that more often than not, the person complaining wrote a log that wouldn't be easy to view as helpful. I'm glad you presented this hypothetical example because it allows me to ask you what I've said to make you think I'd object to this log. It looks perfectly good to me. Sounds like a lot of logs I've written, actually. The ugly baby version would be, "Hike was too long. Nothing interesting in this area. Terrible trail, and it's outrageous that I had to cross a creek on a fallen tree. Obviously should have been rated T4. The CO tried to kill me by planting thorns around the cache. Stinky container, obviously being ignored." My suspicion is that some people will actually write something more like this, yet believe their log is as polite as your is. And then come here and saying that COs shouldn't out caches (babies) if they can't take feedback ("your baby is ugly").
  13. Actually, yes they do. I was asked by the BLM to Archive 3 of my EC's due to concerns regarding foot traffic to geologically sensitive areas (I was allowed to keep three others in less sensitive areas). These were EC's I had permission to place by the previous Resource Ranger, but was subsequently revoked due to impact concerns. It's there land to manage, so I grudgingly complied (courteously of course). My original point is that the EC Reviewers were merely complying with stated polices that are readily available in links I provided. If you have a problem with the policy, talk with the Land Manager to change it. There's nothing in their public facing document that addresses EC's or Virtual caches, so I can't blame the local and EC Reviewers of taking the default position that regulates physical caches. In other words, I would not presume. But as barefootjeff stated, maybe I'm just misunderstanding the situation.
  14. OK, who has an opinion on handheld compass's to share. I'm looking for a good mapping compass primarily to use with 1:24K topos and aerial photos. So far I've been looking at the Brunton 8096 Eclipse GPS compass Brunton and the Suunto GPS-Plotter G compass. Suunto. What do you think about the quality of these manufacturers, features these offer, other options, or ??? I haven't seen a Silva with similar scaling features for my purposes, am I missing something? Thanks for your comments
  15. Just wondering, is there a talk around freq. for GW4. Is it better to go on the national simplex channel on 2m, or is there another channel, or a repeater that would be better.
  16. I've been geocaching for a little over a year now...not too religiously, but enough that when I travel, I take a quick look at what caches are in the zipcode I'm going to. It looks like the hot setup is to download all the specific cache info to a PDA and use the PDA in conjunction with your GPS. There's a lot of good and bad to every PDA I've researched. Anyone have a "most bang for the buck" story related to their PDA. BTW, I just "upgraded" from a Garmin 76CS to a 60CSx and LOVE IT, now I want to get the most out of it by throwing some cash into a reliable and functional PDA. Comments? Fire away!
  17. This is not an announcement of a fix. This is just about what I believe is the cause. In technical terms, Groundspeak discontinued their WCF service earlier this year, replacing it with a REST API. Developers had a year's advance notice to update their applications. In non-technical terms, Groundspeak updated the way applications talk to their services; the Wherigo application, which is not maintained directly by Groundspeak, was not updated. When using the app, I've always just downloaded cartridges via a browser instead of directly through the app. I can also download them from the WF site or through my NAS (think like Dropbox or Google Drive, but with about 36TB currently at my control and room to double it). Either spstanley will update the app or the entire Wherigo developer community will wait to see if Groundspeak wants us to do anything with Wherigo.
  18. Clan X-Man

    Google Talk

    I notice the card option on the forums. Could we get a google talk line in there?
  19. Another thing to consider, winter sun in snowy areas has almost twice the UV as snow reflects almost 95% (talk to some mountaineer's that have gotten sunburn on the roof of the mouth from panting on a snow/glacier climb or up the nostrils).
  20. My ladyfriend and I went caching today at a spot just off the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina. After we had located the cache and hiked back to the parking lot, I unlocked the car and laid my brand new GPSr (A Lowrance Expedition C) on top of my old Taurus wagon because I needed to put my backpack in the back seat. As soon as I had done that, we hopped in the car and headed home. After eating dinner, I went in the den and reached over to pick up my GPS carrying case and thought to myself, "this thing feels awfully light." Then I felt a sick feeling beginning to well up inside because I didn't remember getting my GPSr back off the roof of my car. Thinking that I may have just laid it in the back seat, I raced outside and there sitting on the top of my Taurus wagon was the Lowrance, just where I left it. I picked it up and stared at it in disbelief. I had just driven about 30-35 miles on an extremely curvy road at speeds of up to 50 mph and the thing hadn't moved. The only thing I can figure out was that the Expedition has some tiny rubber feet on the back of it that must have kept it from sliding around. Man, what a lucky break!!!
  21. Yesterday evening about 7 pm we found a cache near a local business. We had to walk about 10 feet through knee high grass to find the cache. No problem, signed log, traded TB's and were on our way. Had a good evening and went to bed about 11. At midnight I was woken up by something crawling near my leg. I tried to shake it off and go back to sleep. I felt it again, and jumped out of bed and turned on the light, expecting to find a spider. When I threw back the (luckily yellow) sheets, my husband saw a tick walking around. IN MY BED!!! So, I let it crawl on a piece a paper and fed it to the Venus Flytrap in the kitchen and then TRIED to go back to sleep. I laid there for an hour and a half waiting... I knew if there was one, there may be others. And where in the heck was that thing hiding for the last five hours? No bites on anyone, but ugghh! I finally fell asleep and dreamed about ticks all night. Today the sheets get a wash in hot water. Here is my question. Are the ticks worse this year? Or is it that we are new to geocaching? We've walked through the woods with the girl scouts, boy scouts and just the family before, and never had a problem. Now we walk 10 feet through grass by a business and gets ticks in the bed. This is our fourth tick encounter this spring, even using DEET sometimes. Are there superticks in Sacramento? Do I have to put off geocaching until it's cold? Help! Signed, Sleepless in Sacramento
  22. Are they travel bugs or collectibles or both? How can a coin from finland start here (calif). Can anyone purchase foriegn geo coins. They are interesting and i picked one up BUt I do not quite get it...Thanks a newbie who is getting rolling
  23. That's a definite "maybe"! Anyway, if it's a general question about possibilities, I can tell you that I tried setting the Waze and Geocaching Apps in split screen on my Samsung tablet, and it looks about right! I don't know which modern "tablets" have split screen. This is a Samsung Galaxy Tab S2. It actually is more promising than I expected. I first set up Waze as the default navigation App. Next, with both Apps running, I used Geocaching to select Navigate by car to a cache, and Waze picked up the route in its own screen! So the Apps talk to each other and get along. There's a funky landscape view going on, but I'm guessing I can get them both in portrait side-by-side by holding the tablet just right and starting the Apps with care. But I didn't fully test this setup. I don't have a great spot to mount a tablet in my car for navigation. I barely have a spot for a phone. And I don't mess with "Apps" while I'm driving, so having two Apps to mess with while I'm driving is out of the question. With someone else navigating, "split screen" would be overkill because people can switch between running Apps. So there's a very particular niche where this could even apply. I didn't test how well both Apps get along with using the compass simultaneously. It's a whole new ballgame. But initial tests seem... OK!
  24. Just a place to talk about cache problems and other random cache stuff please feel free to post anything cache related!! Such as Problems you have had in the past with your caches and the odd stuff you have found in them and make it so this is a non judgmental place to talk no bashing other players about what they think speak your mind!!! and have fun!!
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