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kathleene

Underwater Cache?

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Just wondering if anyone has ever tried an underwater cache. Since most caches are waterproof anyway (i.e. tupperware), I figure it would be fun to sink one in one of our many lakes and slow rivers. Of course, there are precautions regarding wildlife, and then making sure the cace is anchored at a height that someone else can reach it, but that boat motors, etc won't get tangled. Any comments?

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Tupperware may be somewhat weather resistant, but it's far from waterproof. If you submerge it, it will leak, especially if it's at any significant depth.

You'd be much better off with an ammo can, or even better, a pressure tight container like an otterbox.

 

I suspect that wildlife will be less of a problem underwater than on land. The biggest threat to a cache is usually rodents and other small mammals, and those are much less common in the water.

 

As you mentioned, anchoring a cache is critical if it's underwater. Even slow moving creeks can move an awful lot of material during a flood. A cache sitting on the bottom is at just as much risk of getting buried as it is of washing away.

 

You'll also need to weight a cache container to keep it from floating. A typical ammo can will need something like 10kg of weight just to make it sink. That's a cement building block or two.

The other thing to consider is water. If it's in deep water, it might well be opened underwater, or at least opened at the surface where water will get splashed in.

You might want to try designing a cache that's intended to be full of water at all times. Use a notepad that's designed for scuba use, and tell people not to leave anything that might get damaged by getting wet.

 

I wish you luck with the idea of an underwater cache. It's going to be challenging, both to place it, and to hunt for it. If it's anywhere in my area, I'd love to have a chance to hunt for it.

Edited by chris-mouse

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Here is an underwater cache that didn't make it.

 

Example of an underwater cache

 

When you place a cache underwater, you have to ensure that you use enough weight that it will not move with the current.

 

And like CM said, it has to be able to survive things like pressure and freezing.

 

Just my quick thoughts

 

BQ

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ust wondering if anyone has ever tried an underwater cache. Since most caches are waterproof anyway (i.e. tupperware), I figure it would be fun to sink one in one of our many lakes and slow rivers.

 

This sounds like a great idea. I must ask however that you do NOT model it after GCKTF2 !

 

I can't believe people are actually finding the cache. The logs seem to be getting worse!

 

Cheers!

Coupar Angus

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I too have pondered how to do an underwater cache. The problem I see with the underwater container is that the cache is only as waterproof as the last finder leaves it. If the last finder doesn't get the lid screwed on tightly or doesn't clamp down the lid tight enough, all your hard work is er.... down the drain. :D I was thinking about using a Nalgene bottle and weighting it down. I think it is possible to do, but the maintenance might become a pain. :D

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Liberty Bay Resort is one that I found, which required a kayak or other small boat to reach. This one had a container under water attached to a 5 pound lead ball, and a small string with a red/white bobber at the surface to mark the cache location. This one has held up reasonably well.

 

Another that I noticed recently is Rock Lobster which seems to have held up reasonably well.

 

Yet another that I found last year was a bison tube tied to an underwater snag An Afternoon at the Lake. Good design but the little pond was too full of muggles to keep it from getting swiped.

 

I think a lock & lock container would be a perfect underwater box.

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I think a lock & lock container would be a perfect underwater box.

They're water resistant ... but certainly not water-tight.

 

In terms of taking a beating, they'd do well in that regard.

 

Any underwater cache should assume that the container will leak (fill with water) in short order. As someone else suggested, a diver's notepad and a grease pencil (or whatever else diver's might use) would make serve suitably for a logbook.

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I think a lock & lock container would be a perfect underwater box.

They're water resistant ... but certainly not water-tight.

 

Have you actually tested one under water? I have, right outside my door in the river.... They are water-tight, unless someone is careless and doesn't lock the latches before submerging it.

 

I've also noticed that the seal is tight enough to develop a fairly impressive vacuum inside when they are taken on a plane or high altitude.

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Have you actually tested one under water?  I have, right outside my door in the river....  They are water-tight...

How long was this test? A couple of minutes? A few hours? Have you had one out there, submerged, for a month? And at what depth? The L&L people make the airtight claim, but they aren't certified. I wouldn't trust them to last for any extended period of time. Similar to how I wouldn't submerge my Garmin for longer than what it's certified for.

 

...unless someone is careless and doesn't lock the latches before submerging it.

 

And that will happen too.

 

I look forward to your first underwater cache (in BC, please.)

 

Cheers,

Edited by dogbreathcanada

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As long as you are prepared for the additional maintenance between people not closing it properly, freezing in the winter if it's too shallow, drifting from current if not secured then I wish you the best of luck.

 

But it is the rare or unique caches like this that get remembered or become legendary.

 

If you plan well, you can enjoy a successful underwater cache

 

BQ

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I've been considering doing one in a nearby river, my little sister suggested that it might be cool.... When I started thinking about it though what about when the water levels are up and the river is potentially dangerous... I don't know... Something I'm milling over at the moment....

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Excellent points! I've been pondering an underwater cache for about a year now -- and can't come up with any good reason how I managed to forget winter. Duh!! Of course there's going to be freezing! Why didn't I think of that?!

 

Normally, I'm not a big fan of the virtual cache - but could it be possible to pull off a good one underwater? If there's anyone out there 'round about Kelowna - I'm specifically thinking of Paul's Tomb at Knox Mountain with the Ogopogo replica sunk 8 m underwater. That would work - freezing, drifting and flooding isn't going to effect a tonne of concrete 8 m down.

 

I don't live near Kelowna - and I can't get down to that depth (snorkel - no SCUBA) so I can't do the cache. But if someone else wanted to do it, I think that would be a really fun underwater cache.

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Then again - why not abandon the watertight idea altogether and build and underwater cache that is INTENDED to get filled up with water - like a (non rusting!!) metal cage, or lobster-trap or some such?

 

It might even stop people from leaving freebie postcards and beanie babies in your cache. (Maybe. Some folks are pretty damned determined to pepper the world with beanie babies!).

 

You'd need to make sure that your cache container wouldn't trap any of the local fauna for sure. I don't know. Can you disable a lobster trap? If you put it in a place where there aren't any lobsters (BC lakes and such) is there anything else down there that might get trapped and killed?

 

I'm thinking that if you had a simple mesh-box or open-grid cage type container that anything that managed to swim in, should theoretically be able to swim out. But its not something I know much about.

 

Is this a bad idea, or could it work?

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Normally, I'm not a big fan of the virtual cache - but could it be possible to pull off a good one underwater?

That would be a cool spot for a virtual cache. The only problem is trying to get a virtual cache approved. A fellow cacher tried to get one approved here recently. They supplied all the historical info, explained why a cache container wouldn't work in the area....etc, but the virtual was still denied.

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The idea has merit, think the easiest would be a dual stage, the first which would be underwater, would be a piece of stainless or aluminum with the cordinates of the second stage, they could be put on by a friendly welder and fixed to driven post, culvert, rock etc by a chain or cable which would be covered by rocks or mud. I think I will try one.

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I used a large mouth soup thermos for my underwater cache. I used a small plastic anchor that we had purchased years ago to hold some underwater hoops in our swimming pool. I then calked the inside of the thermos and the bottom - so that everything except the external lid was water tight. Inside the thermos is the log book and pencil - double bagged. So far it has worked pretty good on the Johnie Cache Revenge. :rolleyes:

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I'm getting pretty pumped about setting up an underwater cache. Tomtec and I have the ideas flowing and have been awash with the valuable input of others. We're certainly looking forward to dropping something in place and hope our plans don’t become too diluted. And of course one hopes we don’t get soused when celebrating our placement of this watery cache! Thankfully, we won't have to liquidate any assets as the materials are all very affordable – and of course we’re both quite flush with ca(s/c)h(e). Although one will be able to use divining rods and dowse for the cache, I do think a GPS receiver will provide more fluid results. Some may think we're a little wet but I assure we’re of sound mind & body. Now I have to bail out of here but will say, like most caches the hardest part is coming up with the name. This one will be no exception as I don’t know any words that allude to water.

 

C-A

Edited by Couparangus

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The only problem is trying to get a virtual cache approved.  A fellow cacher tried to get one approved here recently.  They supplied all the historical info, explained why a cache container wouldn't work in the area....etc, but the virtual was still denied.

What you need is an underwater Earthcache. I've found the perfect one here:

The ‘submerged waterfall’. 5000 to 10 000 years ago, what lies underwater now between Manitoulin Island and the Bruce Peninsula was dry land cut by raging rivers and gigantic waterfalls. As glaciers continued to melt and the Great Lakes were formed, waterfalls were lost under the waves. The spillway south of Middle Island was probably larger in volume than Niagara Falls. Now located 30 - 35 metres beneath the surface, it falls 40 metres over the 800-metre length of rapids that have eroded 20 metres of the escarpment bedrock.

Only catch is that I don't have the coordinates, my GPSr doesn't work 100 feet underwater and last, but not least, it's in a National Park :o

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Even though it's in a National Park you could probably get an Earthcache approved. The National Parks are not banning virtual caches as they are physical caches. But it would still need to be approved at www.earthcache.org. From your description it sounds like it would qualify as an Earthcache but don't expect many visitors!

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There is an underwater cache in Kingston called Ambitious Snorkeller by Freefloat. THis is a scuba accessible cache only.

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The idea has merit, think the easiest would be a dual stage, the first which would be underwater, would be a piece of stainless or aluminum with the cordinates of the second stage, they could be put on by a friendly welder and fixed to driven post, culvert, rock etc by a chain or cable which would be covered by rocks or mud. I think I will try one.

I like this twist on the underwater theme, And since I work with stainless and can weld all I need is to find the perfect place. :laughing:

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Just wanted to let you know I put one underwater cache in Montreal. It is now under review (08-23-2005) but will be available shortly: look for 'Aquaforme'. I would love to seek for underwater caches in the neighborhood!!!

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The idea has merit, think the easiest would be a dual stage, the first which would be underwater, would be a piece of stainless or aluminum with the cordinates of the second stage, they could be put on by a friendly welder and fixed to driven post, culvert, rock etc by a chain or cable which would be covered by rocks or mud. I think I will try one.

I like this twist on the underwater theme, And since I work with stainless and can weld all I need is to find the perfect place. :D

I have place mine and am awaiting approval, wish you were close, I need another set of cordinates on stainless and some cable with loops through eye bolts or some sort of fastner. BTW, how do underwater divers light their torches?

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The Kiff and I are launching an underwater cache in British Columbia that he has researched and prepared for extensively.

 

We'll release it next week in the Alouette Lake area.

I'll keep whoever is interested posted!

 

Happy caching!

Edited by Spongebob_Cachepants

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In the Water... In the Air... by gordonparsons

N 52° 56.927 W 066° 56.281

A two stage Multi, first stage under water!!!!

Read the log.

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Heh Kathleene

 

Coming to the picnic this year - GHAGAFAP IV - May The Fours Be With You ?

 

Check out Scuba Cache:Innerkip Quarry (GCPRAC).

 

We are the only ones to find it so far.

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I am planning an underwater cache, scuba accessed (35 feet deep - so that it is accessable for even Junior Open Water divers - like my daughter). I figure that Okinawa has great coral, and the coral has got cracks, so a rock face climbing cam (or piton) should hold whatever container I decide to use on the bottom (just have to find a way to lock the cam so it can't be removed - easily). I plan to use a stainless steel combination lock to attach the cache to the cam, to prevent non-geocaching scuba divers from muggling the cache. The combo will be a significant year in Okinawan history...

 

I do have to be careful not to make the cache look like UXO - Unexpoded Ordinance from WWII or I can count on having the cache muggled by EOD Techs - Explosive Ordinance Disposal Technicians.

 

Does anyone know if the self-purging valve on a Pelican Container is a one way valve? I.e. lets air out but not back in? How deep will one survive? - just checked their website, they say will survive to 50 feet.

 

Naturally I have a bit of planning to do:

I have to find a dive site,

find a cache site on that dive site (where the bottom is 35 feet deep),

get the GPS coordinates at the surface directly above the site,

determine what container will survive
,

determine whether the lock will survive the saltwater,

determine how much I'm willing to spend on a cache, cams aren't cheap nor are Pelican Containers,

figure out how to lock the cam so it can't be removed from the bottom,

figure out how to prevent the cache from being opened underwater or on the surface, or

make the cache water-filled as someone mentioned,

figure out how to make the process easy enough so someone will put it back for others to enjoy,

find swag and FTF appropriate to Davy Jones' locker,

lastly emplace and post the cache!

 

***Disclaimer***

Of course, if any of this requires damaging the fragile underwater ecosystem, it's not worth the work. I will not destroy in order to create.

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I helped put out an underwater cache this spring. We took a lunch thermos with a wide mouth and attached it via a carabiner to a weighted board. The cache was placed in Lake Manitoba in about 3 feet of water. There were several finds and all the finders reported a dry cache.

 

My GPS Floats But My Cache Splashes

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i will be starting a under warter cache in calgary but i have thouth about this and think the best way would be to move it when you have lots of rain and before the water freezes over

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They sound like a great idea but almost every cache listed in this thread has been archived/diabled.

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Rather then trying to keep the Cache dry why not allow it to fill. This will solve the problem of the container wanting to float up... The log can be made out of a plastic slate used for scuba diving and if you store a pencil (tethered) in the cache the cacher can log their visit on site...

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Ive tried one of team magic's - it works fine so long as the seal stays. He also is trying various experiments with preforms that seem to be going well (including encapsulation in ice)

 

This guy is up near Thunder Bay: GCXFNY :

224788034_19c49ae309_d.jpg

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Rather then trying to keep the Cache dry why not allow it to fill. This will solve the problem of the container wanting to float up... The log can be made out of a plastic slate used for scuba diving and if you store a pencil (tethered) in the cache the cacher can log their visit on site...

 

Ive tried one of team magic's - it works fine so long as the seal stays. He also is trying various experiments with preforms that seem to be going well (including encapsulation in ice)

 

This guy is up near Thunder Bay: GCXFNY :

224788034_19c49ae309_d.jpg

 

I am also considering a U/W cache as well and these are both great ideas. I was thinking on making it like an earth cache where the finder either takes a photo of it or obtains a certain code to show proof of the find. Using a clear case such as in the photo would work great.

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Rather then trying to keep the Cache dry why not allow it to fill. This will solve the problem of the container wanting to float up... The log can be made out of a plastic slate used for scuba diving and if you store a pencil (tethered) in the cache the cacher can log their visit on site...

 

Ive tried one of team magic's - it works fine so long as the seal stays. He also is trying various experiments with preforms that seem to be going well (including encapsulation in ice)

 

This guy is up near Thunder Bay: GCXFNY :

224788034_19c49ae309_d.jpg

 

I am also considering a U/W cache as well and these are both great ideas. I was thinking on making it like an earth cache where the finder either takes a photo of it or obtains a certain code to show proof of the find. Using a clear case such as in the photo would work great.

 

Sorry, but Earthcaches don't have containers. Might want to check out their guidelines.

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My cache.

 

I can't say for sure how it would have held up as it was stolen almost immediately after being hidden. There's a pic of the container in the last log though, and with the dual containers I'm sure it would have weathered pretty well.

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I am also considering a U/W cache as well and these are both great ideas. I was thinking on making it like an earth cache where the finder either takes a photo of it or obtains a certain code to show proof of the find. Using a clear case such as in the photo would work great.

 

Sorry, but Earthcaches don't have containers. Might want to check out their guidelines.

 

 

good catch, only took a bit over 2 years <_<

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I am also considering a U/W cache as well and these are both great ideas. I was thinking on making it like an earth cache where the finder either takes a photo of it or obtains a certain code to show proof of the find. Using a clear case such as in the photo would work great.

 

Sorry, but Earthcaches don't have containers. Might want to check out their guidelines.

 

 

good catch, only took a bit over 2 years :P

 

That's wot happens when you don't look at the original posting date! <_<

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I've seen a couple of underwater caches that use a nalgene bottle attached to an anchor. If you get one of the bottles with the loop in the lid you anchor it and it floats upside down much like the box in the pictures above. I suspect there would be a bit less chance of getting water inside as the opening will be at the bottom and doesn't require a perfect seal all around it as a lnl or pelican case might.

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Living close to 2 awesome lakes I'd like to throw a few more underwater caches out there... I have a few ideas about a winter one too :) ice auger required! hehehe

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1 Word: OtterBox

 

They are a drybox which is waterproof down to 100ft and relatively inexpensive and also come in different sizes.

 

CWR-33250.png

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Living close to 2 awesome lakes I'd like to throw a few more underwater caches out there... I have a few ideas about a winter one too :) ice auger required! hehehe

 

One of those lake Lake Simcoe?

 

e3da88f4-db0a-4f97-8d0e-240c3fbf8d83.jpg

 

bdfafbab-66cf-4147-b15d-290b24e793fb.jpg

 

This container did not work very well by the way. It may be "waterproof", but not so much sitting at the bottom of a sub zero lake it seems. Pressure was too great, water got in through the seal and froze, I hauled up a metal container with an ice block inside..GC22EYF

Edited by Juicepig

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