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Impossible To Find? Good Or Bad

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I am fairly new to Geocaching, but I have been doing a lot of reading and research over the last couple of weeks. I have been doing some research regarding hiding a cache, and have come up with a couple of ideas that I think that I want to use. However, I have been looking at various websites, and ebay for containers for the cache. I have been seeing many, many “micro” and even “nano” cache containers. I have also seen items like hollowed out bolts, and fake sprinkler heads.


It seems to me, that if I wanted to hide something that could not be found, that I could probably accomplish this, much to the frustration of my fellow Geocachers. I thought that the idea was to make it interesting and adventuresome, not impossible. Or am I missing here?


Edited by PhntmArcher
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I agree.


You can always help people out after they have given it the old college try or add hints to the cache page later to make it easier. I know if I go out a few times and cannot find a cache I will email the owner for a hint.


I have placed a number of caches in the last few months. Some have been very easy and others have been harder. One is just evil. And more are on the way. I like having a mix. I also enjoy the ones that are just clever enough to make it challenging but not so impossible that you can't find it. This results, in my opinion in the best logs to read.


You also need to remember that the harder and more complicated you make it, teh fewer logs there will be. So if you want your cache to be found a lot make it easy and traditional. If you are OK with less activity go ahead and make it as challenging as you want.


So I guess in summary, I say GO FOR IT!!!!!



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I am trying to find the tenacity of the group.

Tenacity, is it? Well, tenacity we've got, and some to spare!


If I DNF a cache, it haunts me. I lie awake nights, envisioning the site, trying to see something I missed. It's worked, too. I remember my first eye-opener to how clever cachers could be. It was a bison tube hidden INSIDE a 4' tall, 4" diameter sawn-off tree. Approaching from different angles, I'd only been aware of a second saw-cut, a partial cut stopped (presumably) when the sawyer hit a knot. Only in the dark of night did I remember that I'd seen the saw cut from all four sides. YES! It went all the way through, and the top section swivelled on a peg.


Go ahead and make hard hides. I, for one, love them!

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Hey tabulator32, I like your attitude. I just don't want people to get frustrated, I really want to make it challenging. And being new to this, I guess that I am trying to find the tenacity of the group. Thanks for the responses.

You cannot judge from the responses you get here how your local area's cachers will react to your cache.


This forum is not comprised of local cachers and is not at all reflective of cachers in general, 90+% of whom have never even visited this forum.


This forum is made up of forum geeks and uber cachers and some newbies checking it out.


In my area most cachers seem to want easy caches. Those with any kind of terrain difficulty get passed by and those that do them make negative comments in the logs.


You would do better to look at the caches in your area and read the logs on those that are most similar to what you want to do to see if there is anyone who would appreciate the kind of cache you want to place.


I, personally, would avoid all caches placed by you if you didn't warn me on your cache page that I was going looking for a needle in a haystack. I don't mind a hike, but once I get to the area I want to find the thing. That is just me. If you indicated the hide was a needle in a haystack I would simply avoid it and all would be well.

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I personally get more satisfaction finding a cleverly hidden cache than an easy find. Caches do have a difficult ranking that will let seekers know if this cache is a particularly devious find. This recent post

explains the rating scale a bit more. A hollow bolt or similar container would have a difficulty of at least 3. Easy caches get visited and found more often. That doesn't mean that the geocachers in your area don't want a challenge from time to time.

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As a hider, there's not much challenge in doing mean-sprited "needle in a haystack" hides, like a micro in a dense bush or ivy, a fake rock along side bunch of real rocks, etc. I consider styles like these "impossible to find" and recommend against it. :)


Hiding in plain sight without muggles noticing it can be an art form. It's even better when Geocachers can't spot it without some imagination and out-of-the-box thinking. If you take the time to construct creative camouflages and inventive hide styles, you'll be rewarding both yourself and the finders who'll be frustrated at first, then become overjoyed when he finally figures it all out.


So try to make your hides creative and clever, not impossible.

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The old bison tube hanging in the prickly tree (some sort of evergreen) is what I would call a nasty hide. Plus, the shrubbery is going to become damaged very quickly. I've done a few of those. They were not pleasant. And I do not consider them challenging wither, just nasty.

There is anothr nearby, a bison tube hanging in a dense forest near a swamp. I haven't found it, and I probably will not go back looking again. It's just plain nasty. The needle in a haystack.

Creativity is far more interesting and challenging.

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Obviously you have never done a Fren-Z cache in S.E. PA. His hides are diabolical and evil! You can hold it in your hand and swear you do not have it. It is an extreme honor to be the FTF and many put hours in and go home empty handed. As time progresses the hints start to show up but not before the difficulty goes to 5 stars. Usually he is close by watching the activity and laughing his butt off. ImpalaBob

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There are all types of geocaches for all types of cachers. Some prefer an easier find after a tough hike to a scenic area, some just want the test of finding a nasty container without the physical effort, some want it easy on both ends. (some cachers like them all) The important thing to remember is to use to appropriate container for the location. There is a lot of variety on the menu at the geocafe! B) Just when you think you have seen them all, someone creative adds another flavor of hiding technique.


PhntmArcher, go and hide what you think you would like to look for, after you have some more experience, your tastes may change. After a few finds, you may want a little more challenge then spotting an odd pile of parallel stick from 100' away, or knowing you are looking for a magnetic keyholder, and there is only one metal bench in the area. :)


PS not all tenacious cachers use the scorched earth method, some use their eyes and brains more, and even roll the rock back over. B)

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I'm a relative newbie (haven't logged our finds from our vacation last/this week, so our numbers are wrong, but we still only have about a dozen finds) but wanted to comment anyway ...


The "hardest" one we found so far was a 2/1.5 Micro that was extremely well camoflaged. We spent a little while hunting for it, stopped for a picnic, and went back to it. (L really enjoyed it -- she found it while I was poking around in the wrong spot!) We've also done some 2/1.5 "Regular" caches. Somewhat of a challenge, but we liked those as well. Have not attempted any 3's, 4's, or 5's yet. (Want to get a few more under our belt before we try that ...)


I can't speak for those in your area, but I personally enjoy the hunt, and don't mind scratching my head a bit, retracing my steps, and spending some time looking for it, but I do eventually like to be rewarded with actually finding the cache (even if it takes a second try.) I prefer the, "DOH! That's where it was! How could I have missed that?!" reaction to the "If the hider was here I would absolutely strangle him/her!" Of course, I would almost expect the latter reaction from a difficulty 5 cache (which is why I haven't tried one ...)


The point, ultimately, is to both find the cache and to enjoy the hunt. I personally would not enjoy spending an hour hunting for a micro cache in a pile of rocks or hunting for an insanely difficult stash somewhere. (I just get frustrated too easily!) However, I know several that thrive on that sort of thing. As long as your cache is appropriately marked (difficulty/terrain, and maybe some comments in the description), I say "go for it!"


By the way -- we only have 2 DNF's so far, and both of those were 1/1 caches! Talk about frustrating! Both were out of town, and we haven't had a chance to go re-visit them and try them a second time, but we will. And we are determined to find them this time! (That's about as tenacious as I get, though ... :))

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This forum is not comprised of local cachers and is not at all reflective of cachers in general, 90+% of whom have never even visited this forum.


This forum is made up of forum geeks and uber cachers and some newbies checking it out.

Hmmmmmmm, wonder which one I am??


I'll choose the "Uber Cacher" label. Or I could be a forum geek. Not a newbie... at least I don't think I am.


What was the topic again?

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This seems to be quite a good forum ...


One thing comes through ... people get their kicks out of different kinds of caches. We are puzzle-solvers. Others are "extreme" cachers (the 4 and 5 terrain types), fitness types looking for interesting exercise, collectors (of pins or signature items), or simply like to go out with their grandkids to trade a beanie baby at a 1/1 ammo box.


All are valid reasons to cache, but the thread that emphasized accurate descriptions and carefully chosen D/T ratings nailed it. If you do your homework and use the search engine carefully you'll have tailor-made adventures that suit your own needs and personality.


We'd like to see a forum topic (or even a blog) centering on off-the-wall, out-of-the-box caches ... solvable but difficult puzzles in one-of-a-kind containers. Cachers are very clever people and it's REALLY hard to come up with something that no one has ever seen before.


We think the benefits of this kind of creative endeavor extend beyond geocaching ... like promoting whirled peas and stuff like that.


OK. Confession time. I placed two "hollow bolt" caches today (actually they were nuts with ersatz bolts).


Ciao, Minerals44

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