# 1,851,000,000+ Active Geocaches!

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- Geocaches can't be less than 500' apart.

- The Earth's land area is about 1603176820000000 square feet.

- Optimal coverage is a hexagonal honeycomb mesh.

- The area of each hexagon is about 866025 sqare feet.

If caches were places as densely as possible without breaking the 500' requirement, then we would have about 1,851,000,000 active Geocaches!

However, by the time you found a decent portion of these caches we'd have started placing them on the moon and other planets!!

How many of those would be micros?

www.monster.com / www.hotjobs.com

www.monster.com / www.hotjobs.com

HAHAHA!!! I gonna go get something to clean my monitor now. ( leaves whistling "Too much time on my hands.)

528 feet apart.

How many of those would be micros?

78.2% of them.

Underestimate. OP forgot that any given 1/6 of each hexagon is adjacent to three caches, and so underestimated the possibilities by about 2/3.

Land area of Earth = 148,940,000 square kilometers according to the Wikipedia article on Earth.

That's 57,506,056 square miles according to the Google calculator. Round to 57,506,000 for roughly the precision of the pre-conversion number.

Each cache in the hexagonal honeycomb blocks 0.01 square mile non-overlapping.

So you could have about 5,750,600,000 caches ... what the heck, call it 5-3/4 billion.

Add a few for coastline caches. Subtract a few for multis and puzzles with multiple blocking locations.

At one cache per minute, 24 hours per day, that's about 11,000 years.

Doable!!!

But currently the cache world is underpopulated by a factor of about 8300. Just think what the future will bring!

Edward

At one cache per minute, 24 hours per day, that's about 11,000 years.

That thought is actually really comforting.

This density ignores all rules/laws/practicality for cache placement.

How many of those "possible" locations are in the middle of a road? Encased the stairs of a government building? On an artillery practice range?

Too many numbers too early in the morning.

I'll be back later.

If caches were places as densely as possible without breaking the 500' requirement, then we would have about 1,851,000,000 active Geocaches!

Make that 1,851,000,001.

I just placed a cache within 160 meters from another one (with permission).

Make that 1,851,000,001.

I just placed a cache within 160 meters from another one (with permission).

Unless they're all regular caches then that number would be a lot lower. A five part multi with parts more then 528' apart would take up 5 cache locations. A puzzle cache would take up at least two. I'd say you'd be more reasonable around 900,000,000.... you could do those in around 5,500 years as long as you don't get stuck on puzzle caches like GC1GMA0 or GC1GMK9 I've used up at least 36,000 cache find's worth of time on these!
How many of those "possible" locations are in the middle of a road? Encased the stairs of a government building? On an artillery practice range?

That just ups the D/T rating.

Make that 1,851,000,001.

I just placed a cache within 160 meters from another one (with permission).

Unless they're all regular caches then that number would be a lot lower. A five part multi with parts more then 528' apart would take up 5 cache locations. A puzzle cache would take up at least two. I'd say you'd be more reasonable around 900,000,000.... you could do those in around 5,500 years as long as you don't get stuck on puzzle caches like GC1GMA0 or GC1GMK9 I've used up at least 36,000 cache find's worth of time on these!

Bogus puzzle cache cord's I think don't block someone putting a cache near them. You can be closer than the 528 foot rule to "bogus" puzzle cords. But yes you have to stay 528 feet away from any "physcial" part of a multi or puzzle cache.

Someone can correct me if I'm wrong but this is what I was told. And if I'm wrong please do, I would like to know for sure.

A five part multi with parts more then 528' apart would take up 5 cache locations. A puzzle cache would take up at least two. I'd say you'd be more reasonable around 900,000,000....

Remember that the correctly calculated number (ignoring multis, others including ALRs as well as puzzles, shorelines, off-limits areas, and non-optimal placement) is about 5-3/4 billion.

Puzzles don't have to occupy extra space at all. I've done four, and none used extra space. One was just an ALR, one an offset, one the final for a series, and one a puzzle to pre-solve (which doesn't really even need to be solved).

Multis only occupy extra space for physical stages, not if the stages are simply reference points. I checked an area I'm familiar with by counting traditionals as far out as I could go and stay under 500, then couting multis in the same area. I got 31 multis. I haven't analyzed them, but I would guess that multis on the whole decrease the number possible by well under 5%. I've done eight multis, which use six additional locations in all.

Probably this thread should be titled "angels dancing on the head of a pin".

Edward

Puzzles don't have to occupy extra space at all.

Sure they do. Not with their fake starting point, but any physical stage, including the cache, does.

(and, of course, puzzles take up space in your head preventing you from hunting other caches)

Puzzles don't have to occupy extra space at all.

Sure they do. Not with their fake starting point, but any physical stage, including the cache, does.

I think the discussion was whether a puzzle cache takes up more space than a Traditional (answer: not usuually).

If these numbers are right, does anyone else think it's cool that the maximum number of caches is within 10% or so of the world's population?

I think the discussion was whether a puzzle cache takes up more space than a Traditional (answer: not usuually).
Agreed, the discussion was if a puzzle cahe takes up "extra" space. Hmmm, that brings up a bit of curiosity... what if you placed several puzzle caches and the starting point was the same on all of them? Since a GPS has trouble when waypoints overlay each other, that would play h3ll on people's searching.

"When I say go to the next geocache, it says it's 2-feet away but I can't find it on my map!!!"

If these numbers are right, does anyone else think it's cool that the maximum number of caches is within 10% or so of the world's population?
For some reason I don't see the challenge in :

"Okay, signed the log, what cache do you want to do next?"

"Well, we have six to choose from and they're all 528-feet away"

Even better, do a series of puzzles where the starting point of each is near the final of the previous .... but the seeker doesn't know this in advance.

Hey, I find it enough of a challenge to decide which of two earby caches to seek next. Six sounds like a serious challenge to me.

Edward

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