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For all you Micro-Haters...


Rindalyn
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I am relatively new to Geocaching, and I have just started to place some of my own caches. My favorite caches are ones that take me somewhere I didn't know existed, or places that have a neat view or has a really creative container. I want the caches I place to have the same qualities as the cache-finds that I have enjoyed. Personally, I don't have a problem with Micro-caches. I don't ususally trade items anyway, so I don't mind the smaller containers, and I enjoy the challenge. I have a couple of micro-cache containers that I'd like to place, but I have noticed in the forums that there are quite a few of you that have strong negative feelings towards Micro-caches.

 

If I were to place my micro-caches, what would your recommendations be so that I can successfully place a high quality cache in a small container? Are there any Micro-finds that you enjoyed? Do I need to make it a puzzle cache, or surroud my micro with some other cool container?

 

Thanks for your suggestions!

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I am relatively new to Geocaching, and I have just started to place some of my own caches. My favorite caches are ones that take me somewhere I didn't know existed, or places that have a neat view or has a really creative container. I want the caches I place to have the same qualities as the cache-finds that I have enjoyed. Personally, I don't have a problem with Micro-caches. I don't ususally trade items anyway, so I don't mind the smaller containers, and I enjoy the challenge. I have a couple of micro-cache containers that I'd like to place, but I have noticed in the forums that there are quite a few of you that have strong negative feelings towards Micro-caches. ...

Hide caches that you would like to find and you'll be fine.

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There are two major reasons why people hate micros - both easily avoided by the hider.

 

1) The trick is hide micros where micros are appropriate - I.E. if the location can hold a larger cache, then there should be a larger cache there.

 

2) Avoid hiding Just Another Micro (I.E. in a shopping center parking lot).

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Agreed. I don't hate micros (I've looked at my finds, and about 28% of them are micros). I have lame caches that are put out simply because somebody thought to themselves "there's no cache here, so I can place one".

 

I've found a number of micros while traveling that were in great spots that I wouldn't have know about.

 

Unfortunately, it's easy to drop a film canister/Altoids tin/etc. anywhere without much thought or cost, so a lot of the lame caches tend to be micros. I think that's why you see the complaints generalizing about hating micros.

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Exactly. Everyone. A well-done micro is just as fun or interesting (sometimes moreso) as a well-done whatever-else-you-may-have-in-mind.

 

My absolute biggest beef is micros in places (especially in the woods) where a little effort and/or thought could have resulted in a regular or maybe even a large cache at or near that same location.

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There are two major reasons why people hate micros - both easily avoided by the hider.

 

1) The trick is hide micros where micros are appropriate - I.E. if the location can hold a larger cache, then there should be a larger cache there.

 

The real trick here is that a micro is ALWAYS appropriate if that is what you desire to hide. Just because it can hold a larger container is no reason to use one. A micro is just as happy in a tree in the middle of the woods as a park bench. They're very versatile.

 

2) Avoid hiding Just Another Micro (I.E. in a shopping center parking lot).

 

Again, if this is what floats your boat, some people like these. I'm not among them, but it's your hide.

 

The most important thing to remember is no matter what you hide or how you hide it, there may be some who complain, whine or just plain don't like it. Listen to the critism, consider it and the spirit it is given in and act accordingly.

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There are two major reasons why people hate micros - both easily avoided by the hider.

 

1) The trick is hide micros where micros are appropriate - I.E. if the location can hold a larger cache, then there should be a larger cache there.

 

The real trick here is that a micro is ALWAYS appropriate if that is what you desire to hide. Just because it can hold a larger container is no reason to use one. A micro is just as happy in a tree in the middle of the woods as a park bench. They're very versatile.

 

2) Avoid hiding Just Another Micro (I.E. in a shopping center parking lot).

 

Again, if this is what floats your boat, some people like these. I'm not among them, but it's your hide.

 

The most important thing to remember is no matter what you hide or how you hide it, there may be some who complain, whine or just plain don't like it. Listen to the criticism, consider it and the spirit it is given in and act accordingly.

 

Some of the more popular caches, as measured by find counts, are micros. The angst against them is more a forum thing then anything else.

Edited by baloo&bd
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I don't "hate" micros, but I do avoid them, even if I think they might be in very interesting areas. I'm almost always caching with my kids. They like the hunt, but they want the reward. Even if it's just a broken McToy, they still want to get treasure from the cache.

 

Micros, even nicely placed micros, don't give 'em the same reward. So, I avoid them.

 

That's not to say that Micros are bad, just not my cup 'o tea.

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Micros that can be found are fine...hides where the person intentionally doesn't provide clues and after an hour searching a 20 foot radius -- NOTHING -- those hides suck.

 

They don't "suck", they're just challenging. As your hide count starts to climb and you start to see the patterns, a nice challenge is desirable once in a while.

 

I keep thinking that some of these caches have to be real boring, micro and especially regulars, for the people with 2, 3 and 4K in finds.

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The real trick here is that a micro is ALWAYS appropriate if that is what you desire to hide. Just because it can hold a larger container is no reason to use one. A micro is just as happy in a tree in the middle of the woods as a park bench. They're very versatile.

 

Micros are NOT always appropriate. Because of their size they are harder to find than a regular cache. This often increases the time spent searching as well as the search area, which in turn increases the impact on the surroundings. While this isn't an issue in the Wal-mart lot, or in on a local playground, it is in the forest.

 

As geocachers it should our goal to minimize our impact on the environment, not increase it. Using a micro is certain areas is not conducive to this goal.

 

Again, if this is what floats your boat, some people like these. I'm not among them, but it's your hide.

 

Some people do like what many of us call lame caches, but until there is a foolproof method of filtering them out, I reserve the right to whine about them.

Edited by briansnat
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Micros are NOT always appropriate. Because of their size they are harder to find than a regular cache. This often increases the time spent searching as well as the search area, which in turn increases the impact on the surroundings. While this isn't an issue in the Wal-mart lot, or in on a local playground, it is in the forest.

 

As geocachers it should our goal to minimize our impact on the environment, not increase it. Using a micro is certain areas is not conducive to this goal.

 

We'll have to agree to disagree here. I can't think of any areas it would not be appropriate and definitely not one I would categorize as not conducive. Since I am a firm believer in LNT (certified to teach it in scouts) I would hope that hiders and finders adhere to it. Increasing the time of the find does not make a cache less desirable, just more challenging.

 

In addition, one of the problems with "ammo-spew" :laughing: is that there is no challenge to finding them and more often than not the surrounding area is disturbed trying to hide them (piling sticks, etc.). I realize my experience may be limited, however I have seen more damage done by some of the "regular" size finds then by any micros I have come across.

 

Some people do like what many of us call lame caches, but until there is a foolproof method of filtering them out, I reserve the right to whine about them.

 

And am confident you, I and others will. However I hunt anything that pops up, so I don't feel strongly enough to boycott them. Like I said, they are prolific and since people tend to hide what they like, they must be considered in the non-lame category by many.

 

To the OP, Leave no Trace should most definately be considered in placement no matter where you do it.

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I really like creative, well thought out micros. The best ones make you have to think outside the box.

 

While I wouldn't want to do a full day of lamp post micros, they do have their place. It's all in how you approach them. If I'm looking forward to a nice walk in the woods, they're lame. If I have to go out and buy a new toaster (or what have you), and I'm able to pick up a cache while doing it... then that same "lame" lamp post micro is wonderful! I was able to cache while running an errand!

It's all in how you look at the things! :laughing:

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Since I am a firm believer in LNT (certified to teach it in scouts) I would hope that hiders and finders adhere to it.

 

But there is too large a population of geocachers who will hunt a cache and be damned the consequences. I'm very surprised you haven't seen this as we have fewer finds than you and we've certainly seen it.

 

Brian is certainly correct in advising not setting up your cache so searchers could damage the surroundings. While the majority of geocachers are conscientious, too many are not. It's best to hide your challenging endgames on durable surfaces.

 

Thanks for your suggestions!

As many have already stated, and I've maintained all along, it's not that those caches are micros, it's that they are lame caches that happen to be micros. Lame caches come in all sizes. It's unfortunate that micros have gotten such a bad reputation that some have taken to simply ignoring them outright.

 

Also, be aware that some will ignore a micro simply because it will rarely have trade items. With higher populations of caches folks can ignore micros in their PQs and open 30 to 50% of the PQ space for smalls and larger. In some places there is a definite advantage to ignoring micros.

 

I've been told, and it's been mentioned here in the forums, ignoring micros are of no consequence to them because if one is worth finding they'll hear about it.

 

Just make sure your micro is worth being talked about and you'll be okay.

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If I have to go out and buy a new toaster (or what have you), and I'm able to pick up a cache while doing it... then that same "lame" lamp post micro is wonderful!

 

Some folks do like getting any cache they can. There's no doubt about it.

 

Some can approach that very same cache, even have it their hand, and simply put it back, never log it, and simply put it on their ignore list. To some, it's simply not worth it.

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Micros that can be found are fine...hides where the person intentionally doesn't provide clues and after an hour searching a 20 foot radius -- NOTHING -- those hides suck.

 

They don't "suck", they're just challenging. As your hide count starts to climb and you start to see the patterns, a nice challenge is desirable once in a while.

 

I keep thinking that some of these caches have to be real boring, micro and especially regulars, for the people with 2, 3 and 4K in finds.

 

No, searching for an hour in a 20 foot radius without finding a trace of a cache does SUCK. :laughing:

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The real trick here is that a micro is ALWAYS appropriate if that is what you desire to hide. Just because it can hold a larger container is no reason to use one. A micro is just as happy in a tree in the middle of the woods as a park bench. They're very versatile.

 

Micros are NOT always appropriate. Because of their size they are harder to find than a regular cache. This often increases the time spent searching as well as the search area, which in turn increases the impact on the surroundings. While this isn't an issue in the Wal-mart lot, or in on a local playground, it is in the forest.

 

As geocachers it should our goal to minimize our impact on the environment, not increase it. Using a micro is certain areas is not conducive to this goal.

I don't know what it's like in the forest of northern New Jersey, but in the chapparel and desert of southern California most often an ammo can will be hidden in a bush. I find myself lifting and bending branches looking for these things. There area is covered by bushes and bushwhacking is literally what you have to do to find an ammo can. If I know I'm looking for a micro will generally look around to see where I would hide a cache. Even if it's a micro hanging in a bush, I can usually spot it by looking carefully from the outside or carefully moving only the topmost branches. I like looking for micros because it reminds me to use my brains when searching for a cache.

 

Micros that can be found are fine...hides where the person intentionally doesn't provide clues and after an hour searching a 20 foot radius -- NOTHING -- those hides suck.

In a remote area having a reasonable hint is important. If the cache is missing, I might do what briansnat is worried about and start tearing up bushes or bushwhack where it's not necessary. A hint will usually confirm that I've looked in the right place and there is no need to continue further. In an urban setting, no hint or a useless hint adds to the challenge. Early on I had trouble with two urban micros and after not finding them with several tries each, I posted that I was going to ignore urban micros that didn't have hints. I got some encouragement from each of the hiders to keep looking and in one case a small hint that didn't give too much away. When I found these caches I had a great feeling of satisfaction and consider that the day I was no longer a newbie.

Edited by tozainamboku
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We have quite a few micros, all hidden in a highly urbanized area in north-central Florida. The ones that are most fun are containers that any geocacher can recognize from about 50 feet away, but muggles never notice. We did a series of these using those colored tubes that mini M&M candy comes in. We have a bright red one, for example, attached to the post of the 'enter' sign to the parking lot of a local hamburger place. It sits there right in plain view, not disguised, looking like an M&M container, but since it was placed (about 8 months ago) it has never been muggled but has been found about 40 times. THese exemplify a feature I aim for in urban caches -- making them relatively easy to spot so that the only challenge is figuring out how to grab and sign without being noticed. Nothing worse than having to do a difficult hunt with many muggles around (though some like that too). To each his own. Hope this idea is interesting.

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How are ammo can hides not lame? They're all the same, varying only by regional topography. In a bush, a palmetto plant, under a pile of sticks, under a pile of rocks, covered up by leaves. If all the ammo cans were within 500 feet of parking, then everyone would hate ammo can hides. It's not the hide that's fun with larger caches -- it's the adventure getting to the hide. Usually a hike deep into the woods, swamp or desert. The key to enjoying micros is to stop driving, jumping out, grabbing, driving on to the next one, repeat. If you make getting between micros part of the adventure, even Walmart parking lots become fun.

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Some of my favorite finds so far have been micros. (Although I'm a newbie!)

The ones that I am thinking of were in inspired locations with some local history on the site page.

 

This on is an offset multi with great historical info:

http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_detai...e7-e9913052e99b

 

This one is part of a series on Andrew Jackson (in Jackson, MS)

http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_detai...9d-5b28d5dba384

Edited by ic3scrap3r
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Micros in high-traffic urban locations aren't my favorite caches, although they do provide entertainment while running around with friends.

 

However, one of my favorite caches is a micro - in a film cannister, about 10 feet from where you park your car. The cache itself isn't spectacular, but the view... well... see for yourself:

 

7a61fc2e-fed6-4d54-bc69-1ecba39f9599.jpg

Edited by DocDiTTo
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When we first started caching, I liked micros and my wife hated them. She figured that if there wasn't anything to trade then there was no point. Lately, though, I have to admit I'm starting to get sick of them, and I've seen some very clever ones, too. Some micros have even gotten me to places I never knew about. Even so, if there's nothing hidden in the cache, then I felt like I haven't really found anything. It takes more effort to find a micro and more effort to hide a large. Somewhere in the middle there's a balance. These days I find that the smaller the cache is, the less time I'm willing to spend looking for it, but because smaller caches are usually harder to find that means I frequently fail to turn up the micros successfully. Micros are never very exciting to me, but they are something to find, which is still better than nothing.

muggles :laughing:

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