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Hey Eveybody,

 

I'm fairly new to geocaching, I started about 2 months ago. I have to say it's very addicting. I'm just wondering about one thing though. Is getting the first to find as crazy everywhere as it is in the area I live in? I would like to get a FTF, at least one anyway, but I'm not gonna keep the website up all day long and hit the refresh button every 15 minutes like it seems some people do just to see if a new one will pop up. I'm also not gonna run out at 2, 3, 4 or whatever crazy hour in the morning just to be the first one, but people in this area do that also. The other big thing they do here is get up earlier and go after it before they go to work, that's not for me either. It is very humorous though, I think anyway, to see what people are doing to put up a FTF. I'm gonna keep trying and hope my day will come when I get a FTF. Thanks in advance for your responses.

 

Krazymtbr

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You gotta do what you gotta do. I have actually left work early and sped trough two counties to get my FTF. I havent been in this very long either, but just like every other aspect of my life I hit things head on and at full force.

Here in MI it seems if it is a fairly populated area theres vertually no chance of a FTF. However both of my caches set for three days before they got hit, Gladwin isnt exactly a meca for geocaching though. Good Luck!

ps stay up late on night and give it a go! :blink:

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When I first started I longed for an FTF but there were (and still are) some in this area who are almost rabid about getting htem so you had to be an avid FTF hound to get them.

 

I finally realized that though getting FTF's is cool, it's not why I play (find it 1st or 1001st its still getting out and finding it that's the fun part) and, frankly, I had other things to do and didn't have the time and flexibility to chase down FTF's.

 

So now I just wait for an opportunity to present itself when I happen to be out or in a position to go get one. So how many do I have? 1. I've come in 2nd several times, and that's just fine by me.

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I'm also not gonna run out at 2, 3, 4 or whatever crazy hour in the morning just to be the first one,

That may be what is required.

 

I kind of depends on were you are, before I moved two months ago there were a few cachers in my area that would go after FTFs. And I got most all of them , But I would check the web site every few hours for new caches and I would be ready to leave 24/7, as a result I got most of them. I also got to teach a locel law enforcement person about geocacing while I was crawling around in the rain and mud at 1AM last winter. :blink: He mentioned something about my sanity as he left :D

 

Were I live now there appears to a lot of cachers that go after FTF. I have gotten four in the past month one at 3:15AM and reading the post the others were right behind my by just a few minutes (When I get a FTF I tend to log the time in the cache also)

 

All my recent FTFs have been 1X1 micros which means you might have to get there in a matter of minutes of the posting time for the FTF around here.

 

I just checked before this posting and as of this minute there are no new caches in my area, so I guess I can make some coffee ;)

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I would like to get a FTF, at least one anyway, but I'm not gonna keep the website up all day long and hit the refresh button every 15 minutes like it seems some people do just to see if a new one will pop up.

 

Most of the time, the prolific FTF hunters have already found all the nearest caches, in their area. When a new cache is published, the listing is on the first page of their nearest unfound caches. I usually check for new caches before going to bed, and when I get ready for work in the morning.

 

I'm also not gonna run out at 2, 3, 4 or whatever crazy hour in the morning just to be the first one, but people in this area do that also.
Sometimes that is what you have to do to get FTF. I left my house at 0400 hours, during my vacation to hunt a new cache that had a Yellow Jeep TB (I had not logged yet). I have also missed FTF by two to five minutes on three separate occasions.

 

The other big thing they do here is get up earlier and go after it before they go to work, that's not for me either.

Since I leave for a work at 0540 hours, I log most of my FTFs on the way to work. On several occasions, I made it to work with minutes to spare. I have showed up to work covered in spiderwebs, dust, and even soaking wet shoes, all in the quest for FTF.

 

Was it worth it? No not really. Only on a few occasions have I ever found a nice FTF prize. Nowadays, I wont go out of my way to log FTF, unless there is a White or Yellow Jeep TB in it. The cost of gas, and family priorities, also limits my quest to hunt new caches.

 

It is very humorous though, I think anyway, to see what people are doing to put up a FTF. I'm gonna keep trying and hope my day will come when I get a FTF. Thanks in advance for your responses.

 

We have a friendly competition going between myself and a few other cachers in my area. When my buddy QHCoyote beats me to FTF, he does a BTF (Beat the Fox) dance, and then he proceeds to razz me in his online logs. I do the BTC (Beat the Coyote) and BTF (Beat TheFisherman) dance.

 

Remember it's a game, have fun.

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Hey Eveybody,

 

I'm fairly new to geocaching, I started about 2 months ago. I have to say it's very addicting. I'm just wondering about one thing though. Is getting the first to find as crazy everywhere as it is in the area I live in? I would like to get a FTF, at least one anyway, but I'm not gonna keep the website up all day long and hit the refresh button every 15 minutes like it seems some people do just to see if a new one will pop up. I'm also not gonna run out at 2, 3, 4 or whatever crazy hour in the morning just to be the first one, but people in this area do that also. The other big thing they do here is get up earlier and go after it before they go to work, that's not for me either. It is very humorous though, I think anyway, to see what people are doing to put up a FTF. I'm gonna keep trying and hope my day will come when I get a FTF. Thanks in advance for your responses.

 

Krazymtbr

Yes, I'd say that from my personal observations and those reported in here and by my caching associates that yes the FTF hounds are running rampant in most areas of the country. There do seem to be rare exceptions to this but then there seems that there are exceptions in many areas of life these days. Me? I tend to ignore exceptions. However I do tend to challenge those who pose exceptions as the rule, never did like that practice. I agree with you though, those FTF maniacs out there make me chuckle. :blink:

Edited by Team Cotati
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We have yet to bag our first FTF. We have made two attempts; one went live on CG.com by accident with bad coordinates so we spent an hour hoofing around someone's hay field.

 

The other happened just the other day. I thought we had it for sure, but when we opened the cache, we found a printout of the cache page. Bad sign. We had been beaten by a couple of hours by this guy, apparently FTF is his forte!

 

I think we oughta try harder. :blink:

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In the areas of NY I cache in there's a lot of people who are both crazy about getting a FTF and those who have found everything, so they only have new caches to go to. From my experience, though, if a cache requires any serious amount of effort and is out of the way most FTF addicts wont go for it and it's sits unfound for a while. Those are the ones I enjoy being the first to find on.

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You may find the "lazy caches" are scoffed up within minutes of approval, but the ones that require a 3 or 4 mile walk will go days.  Focus on the tough ones.

That was how I got my one-and-only FTF.

 

This area is extremely competitive, as you can tell if you read my log/story from the experience. :blink:

 

The string of beads I traded are on my hat band now as a reminder. ;)

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You may find the "lazy caches" are scoffed up within minutes of approval, but the ones that require a 3 or 4 mile walk will go days.  Focus on the tough ones.

Oh really? I was the first to find one recently placed in a library, and that was a few days afterwards.

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We only have 2 caches in the entire state placed before this month that have yet to be logged as found. The trick to both of them is they require a boat to get to. One is only a few miles from my house and has been up for nearly a year, but I simply don't have the means to physically get to the cache.

 

That being said, most caches last several days before the FTF. There is a 1/1 within 50 miles of my house that was placed 3 weeks ago and it appears no one has even attempted it. I have 2 caches I placed a little over a week ago that have yet to be found - though I did get an email last night from someone checking coordinates on my Puzzle cache before they made a drive out to find it. So, I'd say for the most part, not many people rush for a FTF around here - but most caches are picked up over one of the first two weekends after they get placed.

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You gotta do what you gotta do. I have actually left work early and sped trough two counties to get my FTF. I havent been in this very long either, but just like every other aspect of my life I hit things head on and at full force.

Here in MI it seems if it is a fairly populated area theres vertually no chance of a FTF. However both of my caches set for three days before they got hit, Gladwin isnt exactly a meca for geocaching though. Good Luck!

ps stay up late on night and give it a go! :blink:

Yea MI has its share of FTF hounds...some have 350 FTF! But it will come...me I have only been at this since March and had a new one pop up less than a mile from me but ignored it because I felt driving at night after taking pain killers prolly wasnt worth the FTF ;) and of course...our local hound got it, but hey we are all hounds about something right?

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When a new cache is listed in my area, the owners generally include a guess as to who will be the FTF, and they generally only pick from 2 or 3 people who make it their life's work to get them. I didn't get my first FTF until I was in Pittsburgh and noticed one that had a high difficulty that had been placed 3 days previously, yet no one had bagged it. Because I didn't know the area and only had time for one cache that evening, I had to choose which one to do. I would be lying if I said that the opportunity for a FTF wasn't the determining factor, but had it been a lower terrain, or a micro, or had not had a TB, I probably would not have chosen it.

 

Having successfully gotten a FTF, all I can really say is meh. I don't trade swag, so there's really nothing in it for me.

 

Good luck to you, though.

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I'm just wondering about one thing though. Is getting the first to find as crazy everywhere as it is in the area I live in?

Not here in NJ. I've had caches that waited nearly a week for the FTF.

That is definitely going to change. :blink:

 

One of our local FTF hounds just moved to NJ.

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When I first started caching, the FTF mania around here was pretty baffling to me. But now I have to admit I do see the appeal. You're the first to have that experience of a new cache - the location, the hide, etc... There is something satisfying about it. And when there are numerous people in the area vying to be FTF, those people might find appeal in that sense of (mostly) friendly competition.

 

I currently have 99 finds and 3 FTFs. I wanted to be FTF for the first time on my 50th find to make it a little more special. Late at night I studied the newest caches still unfound for likely candidates. I got up fairly early the next morning and drove about 20 miles and snagged one. It was a nice memorable experience to have an early morning hike in the cool November air.

 

Sometimes it's all about timing regardless of how FTF crazy your area is. I found my second FTF on a cache that no-one had been able to find due to "loose" coords, but I was lucky enough to catch the cache page after new hints had been added. I found my 3rd because I came into work on Saturday and a new listing popped up that afternoon right down the road from where I work.

 

In general I don't go out of my way for them, but again, I'd like to get one for my 100th find. When I do get them I sign FTF in the log book, but I've never felt the need to fill my online log with "FTF! FTF! Woo Hoo! FTF! Hey everybody look at me, I'm the FTF!". But again, I think that's more for the folks who find the appeal of the friendly competition.

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The area where I live has a VERY competitive FTF environment. If I had the time, I'd be able to get a local map, and circle "turf zones" for of each of the FTF hounds. I can probably calculate odds and accept bets! :D

 

I've gotten one or two deliberately, and after figuring out the quickest method, the fervor sort of died for me. I do try occasionally, if the odds are in my favor.

 

I have a few FTFs which were unintentional/pure luck. I enjoyed those.

Edited by budd-rdc
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I thought we had it for sure, but when we opened the cache, we found a printout of the cache page. Bad sign. We had been beaten by a couple of hours by this guy, apparently FTF is his forte!

 

I think we oughta try harder.  :D

 

That is definitely going to change.

 

One of our local FTF hounds just moved to NJ.

 

That's my little brother. He's a little.... manic about FF's sometimes. I probably don't have much room to talk myself, but he kinda takes it overboard. Just ask the guys in San Diego.

 

On a brighter note, it looks like the New Cache Notification Tool is coming out of debug mode very soon (although it's a premium member benefit)

 

Instant Log Notification Feature

Edited by The Cow Spots
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I don't understand what the big deal is with FTFs. I mean what do you win? It's really silly to miss sleep, or drop what you are doing to run out and try to be the first. C'mon now.

 

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to take off and find a cache I just published. I'll berate you guys more when I return :D

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That's my little brother. He's a little.... manic about FF's sometimes. I probably don't have much room to talk myself, but he kinda takes it overboard. Just ask the guys in San Diego.

I have a couple of FTFs that I got the way your little brother got at least a few of his --> solve a puzzle that nobody else can solve.

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I've found the FTF race has become more of a friendly competition between cachers than a race for any kind of prize. FTF prizes seem to have become a dwindling commodity. But, I consider things like geocoins (and the now infamous WJTB) to be FTF prizes of sorts... they aren't meant to keep, but they are a "rare" item that makes the possibility of being FTF worth the trip.

 

You do have a better chance of being FTF on more difficult caches, or puzzle caches. They are less likely to have an initial wave of finders right after the listing. When I check the new caches in the state, and see one that's close, it becomes a weighing of variables: How close is it? How long has the listing been up (when did I last check?) Do I know any other cachers that live closer? Are they retired? What time is it?.... Sometimes I let them be, and other times I'm grabbing my (almost) always ready caching bag and hitting the road, thinking again about buying a radar detector. :D

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There are all sorts of folks out there. Some in my area have gone out in the dead of night in blizzarde conditions for FTF's. I'm not that committed myself, but eventually one will pop up and you'll get excited, and BAM you'll go running for it. Alittle an enthusiasm and some dumb luck go along way.

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FTFs are hit hard here. Unless you have a difficult puzzle or hard hide, it may only last hours. I've been lucky because I've been out of work and seen a few popup locally that I was able to get an FTF on. I've also read in the forums about an FTF program that works pretty cool. I think of it as an additional part of the adventure.

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Where I'm at in north-central Minnesota, we have about a half dozen cachers who are very into the FTF gig. I'm one of them (10 FTFs), but I work a lot and don't always have the dough for gas, so I'm often beaten by one of the 2 reigning champs up here (both retired). Sometimes I will get to a cache minutes after it is listed and find it logged a day or two before--still don't know how they get those inside tips. :D

 

One of the perks to getting FTF here is that most hiders include a dollar or some other prize for first finder, which helps offset the cost of leaving work and burning a gallon of gas for no really good reason.

 

Another perk of going for FTF is the opportunity to bump into local cachers doing the same thing. If you're in my area, your only real chance to meet another cacher is to hit the cache on the day it is listed.

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. . . Sometimes I will get to a cache minutes after it is listed and find it logged a day or two before--still don't know how they get those inside tips. :blink:

. . .

That happened to one of our FTF cachers, but since it couldn't have been logged legitimately until after the cache had been listed, he rightfully claimed the FTF.

 

Maybe these other people are helping the other person place the cache . . .

 

If they are, signing the log as FTF doesn't seem right . . . ;)

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I've given up on ever getting a FTF or at least until my kids are older. As a single parent there is no going out in the middle of the night or going to work early to get it on your way. So, I've made my peace with that. I cache when I can, either getting a baby sitter or taking the chilluns with me for easier ones. My cache count is lower then people who have started way after me. That's ok. I do it for my own personal enjoyment "when I can".

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There are 4 or 5 guys around here who are nuts to make a FTF,

the FUNNY thing is that they can only make FTF's on the easy ones.

 

If it takes several days or more for someone to make the FTF they

never get it. :blink:

 

If anything, it shows their minimal skill at the game.

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It's not too competitive here. Got one yesterday on the way home after work - am expecting another one in a few hours (both pretty hard puzzles). Maybe get some in City Park today, too. The caches appeared in a massive batch on Tuesday, and I guess most have been too busy to hunt them.

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I've given up on ever getting a FTF or at least until my kids are older. As a single parent there is no going out in the middle of the night or going to work early to get it on your way. So, I've made my peace with that. I cache when I can, either getting a baby sitter or taking the chilluns with me for easier ones. My cache count is lower then people who have started way after me. That's ok. I do it for my own personal enjoyment "when I can".

Yep, in the same boat, and I currently can't afford to own a car [british fuel tax being the highest in the world] so I doubt I'll be able to get to a FTF unless its sheer fluke or luck. At the moment we go on public transport to caches.

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If they are, signing the log as FTF doesn't seem right . . . :blink:

I've hidden a couple caches with my father, so obviously he's going to log it then and there and not waste gas on a second trip. He does always say he's not the real first finder in his log, though. No one in my neck of the woods has ever been bothered by this. If they're claiming they were first, well, they're just making themselves look stupid. ;)

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Our area (south central PA) is rather competitive, but not overly so. I had over 100 finds before I got a FTF, and I think I've only gotten about 10 FTFs in the 10 months I've been caching. I try for them when I can, but with 2 young kids I can't just drop everything and rush for the FTF at a moments notice. Usually I head out late at night, or when the wife gives me permission. :blink: We did have one local guy who was a subsittute teacher who used to grab all the FTFs, I think he had like 50 or so before he dropped out of caching. Since he didn't have to work every day he had ample time to score the new hides while the rest of us were at work. Was really tough to beat him then. Not quite so much competition now though.. although I do enjoy the "race" to be first, when I have at least a fighting chance. Of course, if there are any coord problems or other issues with a new cache, the FTF is usually the one to find them too.

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I have 2 FTFs (woohoo)! One of them I just happened to get online right after it was approved, so I was out there and bam, spent 45 minutes looking for it. It was in a screw that was hallowed out and put into a bridge. The other, I happened to look at the website at 6 in the morning (what was I doing?) and saw a cache with no finds that was only a 5 minute bike ride from my house. I went down there without hesitation, and ended up breaking the chain off my bike, but I got a FTF.

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Well as one of the rabid cachers in my area, I go for FTFs. But I don't go for all of them. I also do the hard ones too. The longest was a 5 1/2 hr hike in a linear park, 6 miles in and 6 miles back out to get the FTF. I put 300 miles on my vehicle to get a couple FTFs in an area that the local cachers weren't successful with their hunting. It really doesn't matter if they are easy or hard if I can get there 1st. And I get beat for the FTF many times. Here is a little tidbit to help you get the FTFs. You don't have to be on the computer all the time. :rolleyes: The trick is to figure out when your area approver is okaying caches and check at that time of day. :laughing: Good luck.

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RREngineer is indeed rabid :rolleyes: I don't believe his claim about not going for all of them, he doesn't GET all of them, but that's another story. .. :laughing: (RREngineer hides great caches, and lots of 'em - a fine fine trait in a geocacher, even if he does beat the rest of us to the occasional MEFF).

Edited by Isonzo Karst
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I have a couple of FTFs, but I have one advantage in that regard. I work nights and get off work at 4:00 AM. I just log on before I go home (I also enjoy a T1 connection at work), check for new caches before I leave and if there are any close by or on my way home, I'll have a look. The downside, I've had to get pretty adept at looking for caches in the dark. :laughing:

 

R_C

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If they are, signing the log as FTF doesn't seem right . . . :rolleyes:

I've hidden a couple caches with my father, so obviously he's going to log it then and there and not waste gas on a second trip. He does always say he's not the real first finder in his log, though. No one in my neck of the woods has ever been bothered by this. If they're claiming they were first, well, they're just making themselves look stupid. ;)

I agree, that does really make them look stupid doesn't it. Some people, eh? :P

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I agree. I helped a friend place a cache and she was with me when I placed a cache on the same trail. Neither of us logged the other's cache.

 

However, while she placed a cache recently, I stayed in the vehicle. After she hid it, she gave me the coordinates. It took me a while to find it because it is well-cammoed.

 

I signed the log on the fourth line and won't log it until several other cachers have found it.

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