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Hide To Find Ratio


Bandit & Magna
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I never really thought about that aspect until today. My intentions have always been to place a few really good caches worth visiting instead of placing a million micros.

 

Today we got a notice that a player had archived his caches (they were good ones and we planned to visit them this coming summer on our bikes)

 

The reason given was that another player berated him for having a lot of finds and only a few hides.

 

The player who archived his caches said he did not have time to maintain more caches as he has to work.

 

Is it better to put out a bunch of caches you dont have time to maintain just to please the "number" fanatics? Or is it better to put out a few good caches that you have time to maintain?

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Much discussed from time-to-time. General rule of thumb is to place only the number of caches that you are able to reasonably maintain in places that most people would consider interesting. Make sure you can get to them with a few weeks if there is a problem. I have as much fun hiding as placing so I don't think ANY ratio means anything. I generally have a less than 4:1 but some have found thousands and never placed - just means they aren't willing/able to place/maintain them.

 

I wish everbody would have at least one hide so you can appreciate the hiders but it is not necessary.

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My find:hide ratio is about 3:1, with 42 hides. I think that the most important things in determining how many caches you hide is:

  • your willingness to keep track of them
  • a desire to share special places with other geocachers
  • having as much fun hiding as seeking geocaches

jamie

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I agree with StarBrand. Some people are just not geared toward coming up with great hides, and would rather not cause the quality of hides in their area to go down tyring to keep up with some arbitrary ratio number.

 

There are many other ways to "give back" to the community.

Such as?: Introducing others to the sport, going to caching and cito events, making great trades at caches or helping to maintain caches you visit by replacing ziplocs etc, cleaning up around caching areas, helping new cachers on the boards, writing interesting logs or online logs, etc....

 

Are you considering emailing the person who archived their caches and asking them to reconsider?

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In response to a similar thread on the Florida boards I did some number crunching and discovered that the average # of hides among cachers with 1000+ finds was 70. There are folks with as few as 2 hides and a couple with over 200 (one with over 400). Sure no set ratio, just a function of how much time and energy you may have to gvie to hiding. We also have a large winter caching population here, folks that find but never hide, as they're mobile. Most of them are good cachers. Trading up, writing nice logs and doing minor cache maintenance as needed.

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I don't have an answer for the OP; but it is a tough question. I am a student and I have moved often in the past years, will be moving soon, and often go long periods without having time for caching. In the future, when I place caches I want them to be something I can maintain well over many years, I am proud of, and not have to give up for adoption. Thus, I have decided to wait until I am settled before I place my first. Although, that might change if I can convice the Geo-parents to check in on a cache I place near them because I have some cool ideas.

 

I feel guilty about not hiding; but I feel it is better in my situation not to. So I try to contribute in other ways. I put my best effort into each log; I have come up with a Trading Card contest for local cachers, I CITO a lot; and I have done maintenance for fellow cachers and often inform of needed maintenance.

 

I wouldn't worry too much about it; if you can't do it, you can't do it. I also think it is pretty poor form for a cacher to have emailed someone about not having "enough" hides...usually there are reasons. Not only that, but his misguided effort just caused for the community to lose more caches. :signalviolin:

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The cache owner has emailed us and said to just let them know when we are headed their way and they will open them for us.

 

That is so sweet of them.

 

The sad thing is - A lot of nice geo cachers are going to miss out. They had some very good traditional caches in some interesting places.

 

I really hate to lose any more traditional caches. When we set ours - that is what they will be.

 

We are into travel bugs - it's hard to place them in a micro cache.

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It's best to play your own game. There are a lot of people who have their own game and want you to play their rules. Thats their game. Simetimes you have to take all that with a grain of salt.

 

Check out this log on my cache that just arrived while typing this post. The guy looks like he's never even cached in my state but he has an opinion on how I should deal with my virtual cache.

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Been caching casually for a little over two years. Have 45 finds and just recently hid my first. It took me a month between buying the ammo can and finally getting it into play because I wanted to make sure I stocked it well, hid it well and made it interesting and fun to find. It is very rewarding to see things in my logs like

 

"Found this well-hidden well-stocked cache fairly quickly"

"Cache in great shape!"

"thanks for giving me a reason to return"

"Thanks for the reason to revisit this trail"

"This was a very nice cache in a very nice area."

"Excellent cache on a beautiful autumn day."

"This is a beautiful park that we plan on visiting again. TFTC!"

 

And my personal favorite:

 

Someone dropped off our beloved Southward Bound TB here, so we had to get out to pick it up. I didn't expect such a great cache along the way! This is what geocaching should be about, IMHO. A great walk (not in a light pole just beside my car door) in a beautiful location (not near trash barrells) and well enough hidden (not a micro in the woods or plainly obvious).

Thanks for a super cache

 

To me, that is what it is all about, not how MANY.

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Seems to be a common theme here - "Do what you can and don't sweat the whiners". There are elitests in everything I've done - it never changes. I found my first cache at the beginning of this year, but didn't have a chance for many months to find others. I've made good progress the past two weeks and surpassed 20 finds this weekend, and just placed my first on saturday. For me it's about placing (or visiting) a really cool cache idea or location, rather than the mundane micro on the corner of 5th & main just to have big numbers.

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Is it better to put out a bunch of caches you dont have time to maintain just to please the "number" fanatics? Or is it better to put out a few good caches that you have time to maintain?

In cache remote areas like ours we don't care if visiting cachers place a ton of caches they can't maintain. An unmaintainable cache is better to me than no cache.

 

From our travels back and forth between No. CA and Washington through Oregon it seems to me that a majority of caches are not well maintained. But that doesn't bother me because I like "the hunt" and the break from driving. I don't mind soggy, dumpy caches with junk in them. I'll clean it up a bit if I can but basically I'm happy to have a cache just be there.

 

I would not like 80 percent fewer caches that are well maintained as opposed to the current cache placing madness we have been experiencing.

 

But that's just my opinion.

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H to F. Set rule? Nope. The two are very much independent of each other. Placing 25 caches is a very honorable thing to do whether you have 25 finds or 2500. No one needs to place expectations that anyone should need to place any caches or else they are less than human. There are plenty of caches now so who should care if someone places 1 or 100?

 

Good question though because too many times we hear about people giving others a hard time about not placing caches.

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I was wondering about this myself. I'm fairly new to caching and I've seen several comments from people that go both ways. Thanks to GSAK filters, I'm learning how very saturated my particular area is. There are 117 caches (most of them micros) within a 5-mile radius of my home. That's all suburban, too. Add the hills...and go to 15 mile radius? That goes up to 777 caches!

 

Why in the world should I, as a newbie, be expected to hide anything until I've found at least 100 of those...even 200-300? By that point I would have a good idea of what makes a decent cache, and how to make it one that would appeal to everyone....even the veteran geocachers.

 

One would need to be really creative in my area, or so I would think, to have a sucessful cache.

 

Therefore, I'm not even going to consider placing a cache until I have a good idea of what a creative, original cache would be. And then, it would have to be one that I am able to maintain...and the challenge where I am is finding a location that is truly unique...and not a lightpole or bush in a shopping center.

 

But, that's for my area...if someone whines at me for not having placed anything, I have an excellent reason for not doing so---the area is already heavily saturated.

 

If I lived in a more remote area (like in the desert where I grew up) I'd be more willing to get a cache out there because there just aren't too many. IN fact, there are only 5 caches within 20-mile radius of my mom's house. Big difference. NOw...I actually am considering placing one when we head out there for Thanksgiving, but my concern is being able to maintain it properly. I have plenty of options...but I would like to see more caches out that way because it is such a beautiful area...most people just drive through it and only stop for gas or food.

 

IN the meantime, I have chosen to focus on higher quality trade items for those that I can trade. The majority around here are urban micros.

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I never really thought about that aspect until today. My intentions have always been to place a few really good caches worth visiting instead of placing a million micros.

 

Today we got a notice that a player had archived his caches (they were good ones and we planned to visit them this coming summer on our bikes)

 

The reason given was that another player berated him for having a lot of finds and only a few hides.

 

The player who archived his caches said he did not have time to maintain more caches as he has to work.

 

Is it better to put out a bunch of caches you dont have time to maintain just to please the "number" fanatics? Or is it better to put out a few good caches that you have time to maintain?

Don't listen to those meaningless "number fanatics" you refer to.

 

They have no intentions of having a good time while caching, but just to up their meaningless find count to help cope with their overinflated egos. :signalviolin:

 

They harrass people a lot. My advice? Just cache how you want, place cache how you want, and don't mind them.

 

Don't let them ruin your good time.

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I don't place a lot of caches. But two out of the three that I placed had very good swag in them and still have good swag in them. I just choose to spend my money on few hides instead of spreading it out on many hides.

I only have one active cache. I also like to replenish the contents periodically. I know it's not a requirement, but I prefer to do it that way. I'm working on another cache, but I'll probably never have more than a few active at any given time so I can keep the swag fresh.

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Don't listen to those meaningless "number fanatics" you refer to.

 

They have no intentions of having a good time while caching, but just to up their meaningless find count to help cope with their overinflated egos. :signalviolin:

 

They harrass people a lot. My advice? Just cache how you want, place cache how you want, and don't mind them.

 

Don't let them ruin your good time.

Some things to keep in mind when posting:

 

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Is it better to put out a bunch of caches you dont have time to maintain just to please the "number" fanatics? Or is it better to put out a few good caches that you have time to maintain?

IMHO, it is better to hide a few quality caches.

 

As the number of geocachers and geocaches increases, the idea that each cacher should hide a certain ratio of caches found becomes unreasonable. Consider a geographic area, say the metro area of a city. If there are 100 geocachers in the city, and each hides one cache, then after a while searchers will find all one hundred caches. So maybe a 10/1 found/hide ratio would be better. That gives you 1000 caches when each cacher has found a hundred, but when each cacher finds 1000 it will produce 10,000 caches. If in the meantime the number of cachers has increased to 800, you may have 80,000 geocaches in the city, and will have run out of lamp posts. If a cacher feels he MUST hide and maintain 100 caches, they are not likely to be high quality.

 

Hide a few and make them good ones.

Edited by CharlieP
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Are there cachers that actually PREFER to hide rather than seek? I have just started with my family, and we have had a tough time with a few (DNFs all, but of course I just found out our GPSr were set to several wrong settings for caching, so i don't know how fixing it will affect us yet)... BUT, we have bought & outfitted several caches and can't wait to hide them. To me, the creativity of making and stocking a cache is every bit as appealing as finding one!

 

Happy Cachin'!

Lori V.

Team Villa5

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