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Cache hints


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We have found some hard to find caches. Seems like after we tackle a hard one we get emails from cachers who had a DNF and they are asking us for hints. We will not give hints to cachers unless we have permission from the cache owner to do so. (We know the cache owner personally or the cache owner is part of our phone a friend network)

Has anyone had this happen to them, and what would you do? Give hints or send back an email nicely explaining why you don't give hints?

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This has been discussed many times and it all depends on the person, some give hints some don't. Ultimately, is effects the caching experience of the asker not the hint provider. If a cache owner does not want hints given out then they should put that statement on the cache page so that it is clear to everyone.

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In some ways it all depends upon what you classify as a 'hint'.

 

If I had found a cache that was relatively difficult to locate and a subsequent hunter told me that they had looked in some certain place and if that was even close to the correct location, I'd tell them yes or no. That's about the limit of what I would do.

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..... part of our phone a friend network......

 

Are you not giving or receiving hints every time you are on the "phone a friend network"?

 

email = no hints

phone = hints OK

 

It doesn't seem right.

 

When you join our phone a friend network you give permission for anyone who is also a member to give hints to other members who ask for a hint. This means you have owner consent to give hints. I won't give hints over the phone or in email to anyone who asks for hints unless they are my caches or I have consent from other cache owners to give hints. Does that spell it out for you better?

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I recently had a few cachers come through the area and send me an email for 4 of my caches they could not find - each asking for the exact location as they could not find it and wanted to "check on things". I declined to help.

 

A few days later, I got "find" logs on all four of them from the same cachers. Seems they contacted me and each of the last 4 finders for hints. Somebody told them.

 

I laughed at how sad that was.

 

Then it happened again on another of my caches.

 

Seems some folks will stop at nothing to claim a smilie.

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Some of us feel that caches should only be hidden well enough to stop them being muggled, not give cache hunters a frustrating headache. The hobby is about using GPS to find the cache, not using GPS to find a general area and THEN start looking for a needle in a haystack.

 

Puzzles and really difficult hides are like a sub-hobby within the hobby, IMHO

 

Matter of opinion, perhaps :)

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I give as much information as the questioner asks for. The extra information affects the experience of the questioner, not the supplier of information, so it should really have no effect on the supplier. The object of the game is fun and enjoyment - if someone wants to phone for extra information that is a sure indication that they are comfortable with it and I am not going to decide for them whether it is OK or not.

 

If I ask for help I tend to acknowledge that in the logs.

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I've been "contacted through geocaching.com" at least 12 times for this cache A mystery Cache. I've declined every request.

 

Wow. That's an insane looking puzzle. Apparently you are the ONLY one who can solve it though since the cache was published on 3/6/07 and it's now 8/1/07 with no finds. The only log on the page is you stating that you solved the puzzle and had the result verified by the cache owner. Seems as if he made it too hard for the folks in his area to solve. I certainly don't have a clue how to do it..........

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Some of us feel that caches should only be hidden well enough to stop them being muggled, not give cache hunters a frustrating headache. The hobby is about using GPS to find the cache, not using GPS to find a general area and THEN start looking for a needle in a haystack.

 

Puzzles and really difficult hides are like a sub-hobby within the hobby, IMHO

 

Matter of opinion, perhaps :)

 

I have to admit I think along these lines too. I get very frustrated by caches that are too difficult. Especially if they are difficult and still rated a 1 or a 2. In my opinion, if it's rated a 1 or a 2 then you shouldn't be having difficulty finding it. If you are having difficulty finding it, then the (depending on the situation) hints should be available. Some difficulty can be attributed to the hunter though. For example if they arent using ther GPSr correctly ( :) ME!), or they aren't using environmental clues.

 

I recently contacted a cache owner because I couldn't find his cache. His shallow answer did nothing to help me and only made me angry. I've decided not to find his caches. Since I am generous about leaving things in a cache, I figure its his loss. He ranked this multi-stage cache as a 2, but I wasn't the only one who couldn't find it. He thrives on arrogance.

 

Anyway...I agree with you. I also agree with other posters though. DNF journalers should contact cache owners first. If the cache owner isn't helpful then, then I think it would be okay to contact other cachers who have found the cache. If the cache owner doesn't want people to help a newbie, novice or unskilled hunter, then maybe the cache page should indicate that.

 

Then again...if you are only wanting expert hunters to find your cache...shouldn't you state that in your cache page too?

 

Nice topic by the way. Being a newbie, this really aggravates me. I know I shouldn't be annoyed by it. I just am.

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This has been discussed many times and it all depends on the person, some give hints some don't. Ultimately, is effects the caching experience of the asker not the hint provider. If a cache owner does not want hints given out then they should put that statement on the cache page so that it is clear to everyone.

 

Shouldn't it be the other way around? Common sense tells me that i shouldn't give hints for someone elses cache unless i know for a fact that they are ok with it. :)

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With me being relatively new to caching this is an interesting conversation. I have had unsolicited hints e-mailed to me twice after I logged DNFs (they didn't give me the exact location, just an additional hint). I appreciated the hints. In one case I went back and was able to solve the puzzle in the multi. In the other I haven't yet gone back, but will soon.

 

Some in this conversation feel that caches are meant to be earned, and that assistance should not be used or offered. But if one applies that philosophy to team hunts, isn't just being on a team the same as receiving/giving assistance in locating a cache? Someone in a group will first spot a cache and everyone else signs the log. That seems like a LOT more help was used than when one is given an e-mailed hint.

 

It may not be the same thing, but I'm just writing my thoughts.

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