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Unique Caches


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I've found about all of the caches in my immediate area now. Most of them follow a very similar pattern:

  • Traditionals: 90% are easy micros. A few are larger, but nothing spectacular.
  • Multis: 90% of them being of the type "go to WP 1 , collect info , calculate WP 2 , go to WP 2, ... repeat until cache found". Nothing wrong with that, but it's a lot of the same.
  • Mysteries: 50% are puzzles without any clue - you have to figure out what coordinates to extract from, say, a given sequence of numbers. The other 50% are heavy mathematics caches.

There's few truely unique caches. So .. I'm looking to spice up the supply of quality caches here. For that, I could do with some inspiration.

 

Tell me - what are the three most unique cache concepts you have ever found? (try not to give away spoilers or clues of course).

 

Mine are:

  1. GC1AABF - A puzzle that represents a Giant Machine - turning the wheel sets wheels and other gear in motion that produces coordinates.
  2. GCZTW1 - A multi where you have to use a sextant to determine vertical angles to skyscrapers.
  3. GCxxxx - A multi where you find an electronical device at the end. Setting the right switches (using info found during the route) sets of an audio signal that points you to the cache.

Edited by BigFurryMonster
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GCQQPK - The Hunt for X Continues

A cool cache that offers some unique stages. None of the "collection info" or "find a container with coords in it" at the stages. Each stage requires you do do something unique to get the coords to the next stage.

 

GCV7NC - A View to a Cache

A most interesting cache. You need at least two adults to complete plus special equipment. Each stage is unique and found by doing things you don't normally do to get to the next stage. Spectacular views and a great hike. What more could you want?

 

Edit to say that a 3rd unique cache didn't come to mind quickly. Have to think about it for a bit as my memory is getting old. :laughing:

Edited by Skippermark
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Seems like your definition of "unique" is pretty much synonymous with "very challenging" (for example, I do not own, or know how to use, a sextant). Rappelling, spelunking, sextants, shortwave radios, and hazmat suits all are "unique" as far as cache finding prerequisites go, but they also have a limited audience. There's nothing wrong with those types of caches, mind you, but possibly one of the reasons why there are few truly unique caches is that people who hide things want to read logs, not count the months or even years since the cache's last visit. Note: Lest people take this post the wrong way, this is not a negative comment about unique and challenging caches, but rather a theory as to why there are not more of them. Of course, there ARE many unique, interesting, and challenging caches (Vinny's Psycho caches, for example) that seem to be QUITE popular, so maybe it's just that most people (myself included) lack sufficient imagination to conjure up truly unique experiences for others to enjoy!

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Well said, whistler. I've seen people rave about really unique caches and tell others the should find it, but sometimes the unique ones get very few finds. Maybe people are nervous that they won't be able to complete it and just skip it or something.

 

Like the 2 I mentioned, they are awesome caches but don't get found all that often. They're not "gimmes," but they're also not impossible for an average cacher to find, so I'm not sure why they don't get done more.

 

I've seen some puzzles that are very unique, but they're very complex and involved and have been found only a couple times in 3 or 4 years.

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Seems like your definition of "unique" is pretty much synonymous with "very challenging" (for example, I do not own, or know how to use, a sextant).

 

No, not necessarily. The sextant cache was just an example. And its working is explained on the cache page.

 

It seems the challenge here is to create unique caches that can and will be done my a large audience. Up until now, my caches are mostly 3-star-difficulty caches (I like a nice puzzle in the field) but I'm considering switching to caches that are (or at least appear) easier to complete.

 

A typical example is the creation of two of my caches last fall, around the same time. They are both in nice parks near the city center. There's one with a treasure map aimed at (older) children that has two stars. The other has four waypoints of which the coords are not given but you need to determine the location from pictures I took at those locations. The cache is at the intersection of circles with the waypoints as midpoints. This one is three stars.

 

The first one gets nearly two times as much finds as the second one. Both have been received really well.

 

Now ... I do have a few ideas around unique two-star caches. But first ... let's bring in some more inspiration!

 

-- BFM

 

Two-star: http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?wp=GC17PAZ

Three-star: http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?wp=GC17HVF

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I've found about all of the caches in my immediate area now. Most of them follow a very similar pattern:

  • Traditionals: 90% are easy micros. A few are larger, but nothing spectacular.
  • Multis: 90% of them being of the type "go to WP 1 , collect info , calculate WP 2 , go to WP 2, ... repeat until cache found". Nothing wrong with that, but it's a lot of the same.
  • Mysteries: 50% are puzzles without any clue - you have to figure out what coordinates to extract from, say, a given sequence of numbers. The other 50% are heavy mathematics caches.

There's few truely unique caches. So .. I'm looking to spice up the supply of quality caches here. For that, I could do with some inspiration.

 

Tell me - what are the three most unique cache concepts you have ever found? (try not to give away spoilers or clues of course).

 

Mine are:

  1. GC1AABF - A puzzle that represents a Giant Machine - turning the wheel sets wheels and other gear in motion that produces coordinates.
  2. GCZTW1 - A multi where you have to use a sextant to determine vertical angles to skyscrapers.
  3. GCxxxx - A multi where you find an electronical device at the end. Setting the right switches (using info found during the route) sets of an audio signal that points you to the cache.

 

Great topic!

 

As a few have pointed out already, the concept of "unique" is definitely in the eye of the beholder. Although I can't pin it down exactly, I know what you mean. A cache that you can tell your friends about finding, a cache that upon completion you feel you've been given a gift instead of coordinates to a piece of worn out tupperware.

 

I'm really glad to hear that you are willing to lead by example too. There's nothing more irritating for me to witness than a cacher that does not choose to "walk the talk" and concentrates all of their efforts into griping. This is an all too common scenario in the Groundspeak Forums if you ask me.

 

Your question is a little difficult to generically answer for me because many of the unique caches in Hawaii have to do some geographical feature. It is also a little challenging to give out a GC # because some of our local community reads this forum. I'll give it a whirl and try to describe a few that could be done anywhere.

 

A puzzle cache that leads you to the doors of Home Depot and somehow you figure out that you need to end up in the paint department. In most Home Depots there is an interactive touch screen machine installed by Behr that matches paint numbers with names like Rasberry Swirl or names of that nature. The cache page was put together like you needed to mix a cocktail. Very nicely done. Final was a very cool cammo job.

 

A "lottery cache" where you hike into a nice place in the woods. There.. secured to a tree is a 5 gallon water bottle. Something like this:

 

1e65379b-cb39-4228-9084-50e4696df109.jpg

 

What is not visible in the photo is a handle that you drive upwards and the ping pong balls all scatter in the container. On some of the balls are letters corresponding to numbers and you have to keep pumping the handle to move the balls. That leads you to another stage where you run into this:

 

55e04cf3-aa03-475f-8225-438a49b70069.jpg

 

The first three posts are filled with concrete. Fourth post is hollow and sitting on a sleeve. Coords are found inside and lead you to an ammo box. In the box, you find a flash light and a laminated sheet describing the history of the area that you are in. It is an old WWI military installation. On the flashlight are some coords to the final. The final is an underground gun magazine and the function of the rooms and remaining equipment is explain on the laminated sheet.

 

I will probably post a few more when I get time. Thanks again for walking the talk.

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A unique cache is a cache that is like no other.

In my area these are far and few between.

 

Most of the caches around here are simple matchsafes and bison tubes.

 

I have 2 unique hides, and the rest are LockNLocks in good locations.

The more I think, I don't call any of them park n grabs, but 1 might be such if you luck into it....

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Check out "gctce4" and read the logs keeping in mind that I can walk by the cache and see it without stopping or slowing down. No, it is not a stinking micro.

 

It looks like people like this cache but I am not sure going to this cache page answers the OPs question though. While I have my machine on, I can see there's a few things that might be an upgrade to the information given.

 

1. Surely there is another way of expressing there is bad reception in the area other than "coords suck" This could be a Philly thing though.

2. Making the seeker go to another page for a hint is really tough on the increasing number of people use paperless caching. It doesn't really add to the difficulty, but it probably prevents people from continuing their search or even looking for it.

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