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Getting to the Cache


mojedo
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Surely I'm not the only cacher who has run into problems getting to the cache. Often my GPS takes me to the closest point but I find private or unpassable property between me and the cache. I then have to start searching for an access point and that can be difficult when I'm not familiar with the area.

 

It's so much easier when the caches are posted with parking/access coords. Is there some reason that so many don't provide this help?

 

What do you think, would it be a good idea to make these coordinates mandatory? Or is that an impossibility? B)

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Surely I'm not the only cacher who has run into problems getting to the cache. Often my GPS takes me to the closest point but I find private or unpassable property between me and the cache. I then have to start searching for an access point and that can be difficult when I'm not familiar with the area.

 

It's so much easier when the caches are posted with parking/access coords. Is there some reason that so many don't provide this help?

 

What do you think, would it be a good idea to make these coordinates mandatory? Or is that an impossibility? B)

 

I will put coordinates in on any cache that isn't obvious. That being said sometimes part of the hunt is finding the parking place.

 

So mandatory, NO but encouraged YES.

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Some people like the challenge of finding the correct parking spot.

Me I'm with you, especialy if it is way out in the country.

 

If you have found a cache after having trouble finding access why not note your coordinates in you found log.

 

I'd wager the folks that enjoy looking for parking or a trail head are in the minority. It also leads to people getting "creative" in finding ways in. That is bad for caching if you ask me.

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Where there is a trespassing issue or it isn't obvious, I post parking or at least a hint. Mostly I don't.

 

Mind if I just default that mandatory field to my driveway at the house?? It is safe parking and you can walk from there.

 

To me, finding the right approach is all part of the fun of Geocaching. Takes a little planning or exploring. Some trial and error. All part of the experience. More to share in my logs.

 

I once went to a cache that had parking coordinates about .75 miles from the cache. On the way, I found a good parking spot with easy and legal access just .18 miles away. Which was the "correct" spot? Geocaching is what you make it to be. If you can't find a safe/legal access point, nobody says you have to find that cache....

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There is a cache which would be easily 1 1/2hours if not 2 hours drive from home. Has a good distance walk in alpine terrain to get to the cache. The last three people have said they had trouble finding the correct way to the cache. Two problems were mentioned, one was terrain and the other was a land owner who has put up No Trespassing signs. Not exactly a cache that is jumping up and down saying find me.

None of the finders (or hider) have given any hint as to the correct way to access it just the wrong way and even then I still wouldn't know how to avoid the same mistake they had made.

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To me, finding the right approach is all part of the fun of Geocaching. Takes a little planning or exploring. Some trial and error. All part of the experience. More to share in my logs.

 

 

To me finding the right approach involves a lot of yelling, blaming, frustration and insulting of all who happen to be in the car :) Once we find the cache it all gets laughed off, but we can be pretty brutal until we do :mad:

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I feel it's a delicate balance and that is why "good" hiders are so great for our hobby. You have to do the research. If the hider feels there are 2-3 ways into the cache after doing some scouting and sees that one of the obvious ways in is through private property then he should at the very least post a note:

 

"If you think the access involves going through private property, it DOES NOT. You are in the wrong spot and find another way in."

 

This still leaves some mystery. On the other hand if the hider wants to make a fun and easy cache with a great hike then he could post the best parking coords, some detail about the trail, etc. and of course include the warning about the private property access.

 

I think I lean towards the "don't tell policy". Example if a cache is placed in a public park and requires a 250' bushwack from the main entrance parking lot, yet could also be got to from parking on a side road leading up to the park (with only a 25' bushwack), I kind of like it that the hider doesn't say anything. Assumming that the second bushwack is on public park land, of course.

 

But again, this the hiders decision and if they want to post "Don't access from the park parking lot, instead park on road XYZ and bushwack in 20-30' then that's their perogative and it doesn't bother me a bit."

 

I have found several caches have horrible descriptions. A lot of hiders describe the cache as if it's for an all day marathon, "get as many caches as you can in a day type cachers."

 

An example:

Lake access cache, hidden in the typical manner.

 

This irks me. Why not some information on the lake, attractions nearby (like hiking or biking trails), etc. With a little research that above cache description could become:

 

Lake "XYZ" access. Research shows it's a decent bass fishing lake about 78 acres in size with a good public boat access. There is a small one mile hiking loop trail that goes mostly along the shore of the lake. There is a great ice cream shop about 2 miles NW of the public access. Parking lot is stroller accessable but the cache is not, however it's not that far from the parking lot. The trail is beat down enough that a jogging stroller would probably be doable. A wheel chair would be difficult or not doable on the trail.

 

I have nothing against "cache binges", my daughter and I are planning one for the near future. But adding the above info to a cache takes very little research and not much extra time at all. This way slow cachers like myself have a little more information.

Edited by Morning Dew
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While I agree that proving parking coordinates or access directions (or both!) in the description is a GOOD thing, it will never be mandatory. Are separate parking coordinates required for a park-n-grab? What about a cache 100-ft from the road? 200-ft? Who sets the arbitrary requirement that requires parking coordinates?

 

Sometimes you just have to do research:

- If you're caching in an urban area, stop at almost any convenience store and buy a city map ($5-$10).

- If in a rural area of the US buy a DeLorme map for the state ($20).

- Download and print or purchase USGS quad maps.

- Purchase BackCountryNavigator for your PPC ($30) and download maps of the area (this has helped me out countless times!). The desktop version ($20) can print quad maps.

- Check out the area using Google Earth or Google Map or any number of other online mapping programs before you leave your computer (free).

- Ask a local (phone-a-friend network, free).

 

And sometimes you just have to drive around the cache area looking for a place to park and start walking. Sometimes you have to spend more time looking for the entrance to that remote park than you do looking for the cache. This can really irk me if I have limited time, but usually it's just part of an overall pleasant experience.

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I can see why mandatory parking/access coordinates wouldn't work out, I have to agree it's the cache owners option. But, I do think it should be considered when posting a cache, especially now with the price of gas going sky high.

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I can see why mandatory parking/access coordinates wouldn't work out, I have to agree it's the cache owners option. But, I do think it should be considered when posting a cache, especially now with the price of gas going sky high.

I agree making parking mandatory won't work . . . :)

 

Some people in these forums will state that finding access on their own without help from the cache owner is "part of the game." However, I think giving parking coordinates is a courtesy. In fact, in several locations, I have even placed small caches at the parking spot so people find parking, and get a smilie. :mad:

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...It's so much easier when the caches are posted with parking/access coords. Is there some reason that so many don't provide this help?

 

What do you think, would it be a good idea to make these coordinates mandatory? Or is that an impossibility? :)

 

Because getting there is part of the challenge.

 

If you make parking coords mandatory I'll happily give coords for the local mall where there is ample parking. The walk would be 5 or 10 miles but would make for an envigorating day out and about.

 

On the rare occasion that I do provide parking coords it's a good idea to use them.

Edited by Renegade Knight
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For a cache in a large park with many parking areas, I don't mind if there are no coordinates. If it's a small park in the middle of a subdivision, please don't make me drive up and down every street looking for it. Gas is expensive, I've seen a subdivision before, and I geocache for the hiking, not the driving.

 

Not mandatory, but preferred.

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well, my partner and i seem to follow the trend of finding the hard way in to the cache, then seeing an easier way to get back out. happens with or without a set of coords for parking.

 

however, we have gone back to some of our earlier cache hides and added parking waypoints, usually as a result of logs indcating there was a dificulty finding parking. prime example being a couple of caches we hid on a *very* long trail (the Silver Comet Trail in georgia, for those familiar with it). we walked a 10 mile stretch of it one day and hid 4 caches along the way, not thinking that most folks were not gonna do the same trek to get to them that we did to hide them :) so we went back and found some parking waypoints for a couple that needed them.

 

i agree that it is usually more of a courtesy on the part of the owner, no need to make it mandatory.

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What do you think, would it be a good idea to make these coordinates mandatory?

 

I don't think having parking coordinates should be mandatory because they are not needed in many cases. I do appreciate it when owners take the time and put in parking coordinates especially if it is an obscure trailhead or if there are other approaches which involve private property, etc.

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Like Renegade Knight said. If he provides parking coordinates it is a good idea to follow them. We set a cache this last winter that only had one legal access. We provided parking and starting coordinates to make sure that searchers knew how to access the caching area legally. Normally we do not provide coordinates if access is not an issue.

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I can see why mandatory parking/access coordinates wouldn't work out, I have to agree it's the cache owners option. But, I do think it should be considered when posting a cache, especially now with the price of gas going sky high.

 

Hmm... Would you like me to hold your hand, and guide you to the cache too? I wouldn't want you to take the wrong trail.

Geocaching is an adventure. And a challenge.

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I can see why mandatory parking/access coordinates wouldn't work out, I have to agree it's the cache owners option. But, I do think it should be considered when posting a cache, especially now with the price of gas going sky high.

 

Hmm... Would you like me to hold your hand, and guide you to the cache too? I wouldn't want you to take the wrong trail.

Geocaching is an adventure. And a challenge.

Some people don't like having to solve a puzzle before finding a cache. Some people don't like having to find parking before finding a cache. Parking is neither an adventure nor a challenge in my opinion.

Edited by Dinoprophet
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Surely I'm not the only cacher who has run into problems getting to the cache. Often my GPS takes me to the closest point but I find private or unpassable property between me and the cache. I then have to start searching for an access point and that can be difficult when I'm not familiar with the area.

 

It's so much easier when the caches are posted with parking/access coords. Is there some reason that so many don't provide this help?

 

What do you think, would it be a good idea to make these coordinates mandatory? Or is that an impossibility? :)

If it's out in the boondocks I don't worry about finding a place to park, but I remember one cache I did in a larger city near me that could have been a safety issue. It was a small park off a six lane road with a speed limit of 55 mph and no shoulder to pull over. The entrance to the park looked like a private driveway and the sign for the park was covered by bushes. It was a little uncomfortable tooling along at 20 mph rubbernecking for a place to turn in while heavy traffic is whizzing around me. I did try and use the auto-routing GPS in the car to get me there but it wanted to take me down a dead-end street a couple of blocks over.

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