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Some good reading op here!

 

*Andy for Prez!*

 

Andy, I've done some things without asking ...

 

One of the (few) caches I have had a report of a snake inside the hide. I inspected the location and had the area cleaned up by two local women. Took them 2 days!

 

They saw the cache but could not work out what it was so I gave them an overview and let write the "find" in the logbook.

 

It then so happened that a deal was made - they would keep the area neat and tidy and also keep the cache "clean". In turn I will just drop a ZAR "thank you" in the cache every so often. I will log the deposit in the logbook and they must also log what they have removed.

 

The rule being that ONLY ZAR currency may be removed and logged.

 

At present there is a GBP coin and a Mauritius coin in the cache.

 

Dit beteken dat die skat sonder slange gaan bly, die terrein mooi netjies en skoon behoort te bly.

 

Wat vertel Andy my?

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Some good reading op here!

 

*Andy for Prez!*

 

Andy, I've done some things without asking ...

 

One of the (few) caches I have had a report of a snake inside the hide. I inspected the location and had the area cleaned up by two local women. Took them 2 days!

 

They saw the cache but could not work out what it was so I gave them an overview and let write the "find" in the logbook.

 

It then so happened that a deal was made - they would keep the area neat and tidy and also keep the cache "clean". In turn I will just drop a ZAR "thank you" in the cache every so often. I will log the deposit in the logbook and they must also log what they have removed.

 

The rule being that ONLY ZAR currency may be removed and logged.

 

At present there is a GBP coin and a Mauritius coin in the cache.

 

Dit beteken dat die skat sonder slange gaan bly, die terrein mooi netjies en skoon behoort te bly.

 

Wat vertel Andy my?

What an interesting and heart-warming story!! :D

 

The arrangement you have made with the ladies is fine, and sounds like an effective solution for the snake problem, and for keeping the area nice and tidy.

From a guidelines point of view, you can mention your "maintenance arrangement" in a log and/or on your cache page, but don't ask for others to leave money or hint at that either - that would be a violation of the solicitation guideline which says "Solicitations are off-limits. For example, caches perceived to be posted for religious, political, charitable or social agendas are not permitted. Geocaching is supposed to be a light, fun activity, not a platform for an agenda."

 

Should finders choose to leave something in the cache out of their own free will, then that's entirely up to them.

 

Feel free to contact me if you'd like an opinion about any wording change you want to make.

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Hi Andy

I kind of know the answer to this...

 

Sometimes one gets an idea for a cache and finds a a brilliant location, but because the cache is complex / needs a lot of research / need you to buy something specialized / find additional hiding places for stages of a multi (or whatever), it takes you time to prepare the cache. The next minute, as your months of prep are nearly finished, someone comes and plonks down a simple traditional in "your" cache location, and all your hard work is for naught! ....and potentially the caching world has lost out on something special.

 

I would love to be able to "reserve" a cache location (for a defined time) with the reviewer, giving an intent of the cache. This would help, I think to spur me on to getting around to place the cache, before me "reserved" time expires.

 

Now as I said, I know the answer....sorry, no can do!

Well that kind of forces the cacher to think of other ways to "reserve" the location. The only alternative is to plonk down the simple traditional yourself, finish your work for the planned cache, then archive the simple and publish the more complex cache.....which just feels a little unsatisfactory.

 

Whats your feeling?

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Hi Andy

I kind of know the answer to this...

 

Sometimes one gets an idea for a cache and finds a a brilliant location, but because the cache is complex / needs a lot of research / need you to buy something specialized / find additional hiding places for stages of a multi (or whatever), it takes you time to prepare the cache. The next minute, as your months of prep are nearly finished, someone comes and plonks down a simple traditional in "your" cache location, and all your hard work is for naught! ....and potentially the caching world has lost out on something special.

 

I would love to be able to "reserve" a cache location (for a defined time) with the reviewer, giving an intent of the cache. This would help, I think to spur me on to getting around to place the cache, before me "reserved" time expires.

 

Now as I said, I know the answer....sorry, no can do!

Well that kind of forces the cacher to think of other ways to "reserve" the location. The only alternative is to plonk down the simple traditional yourself, finish your work for the planned cache, then archive the simple and publish the more complex cache.....which just feels a little unsatisfactory.

 

Whats your feeling?

There is a way, and putting out a "temporary" cache is not the right way.

That would actually be a guidelines infringement because caches are expected to be placed with the intention of them being permanent, or at least to endure for a reasonable period of time.

 

The method is open for abuse, so I'm reluctant to share it online, but if you have a proper reason, like

finds a a brilliant location, but because the cache is complex / needs a lot of research / need you to buy something specialized / find additional hiding places for stages of a multi (or whatever), it takes you time to prepare the cache.
then contact me by email, and I'll guide you how to do it.

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Andy. Thanks, will send you the info and I would be very glad if you could lead the way.

 

On another matter.

 

Ek kry 'n e-pos van 'n skatjagter wat versoek dat ek die TDIX skat weer aktiveer omdat hy die leidraad daarbinne benodig.

 

Die hele TDIX houer is weg ...

 

Kan ek die Leidrade in my ander skat plaas en dit so op die TDIX bladsy aandui? 'n Tydelike verskuif van die leidrade en die TDIX logboek.

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Ek kry 'n e-pos van 'n skatjagter wat versoek dat ek die TDIX skat weer aktiveer omdat hy die leidraad daarbinne benodig.

 

Die hele TDIX houer is weg ...

 

Kan ek die Leidrade in my ander skat plaas en dit so op die TDIX bladsy aandui? 'n Tydelike verskuif van die leidrade en die TDIX logboek.

I see no problem with that plan - that's a TD-series issue rather than a guidelines issue.

The only restriction with clues for bonus caches is that you shouldn't ask a cacher to contact you for the clue - they should find it themselves - in the field, on the internet, etc....

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A question to the reviewer!

My cache Sannaspos museum has been muggled. The museum itself has been closed but the station building with the boer war bullet holes are still there.

 

I replaced the cache about 150 meters away from the original. As the museum is not there anymore I would like to rename the cache "Sannaspos Station." and publish the new coordinates. Must I archive the museum cache and start a new cache or can I change the particulars on the original cache?

 

I hope the question is clear!

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A question to the reviewer!

My cache Sannaspos museum has been muggled. The museum itself has been closed but the station building with the boer war bullet holes are still there.

 

I replaced the cache about 150 meters away from the original. As the museum is not there anymore I would like to rename the cache "Sannaspos Station." and publish the new coordinates. Must I archive the museum cache and start a new cache or can I change the particulars on the original cache?

 

I hope the question is clear!

If the cache location has only moved a small distance, and it's still essentially the same cache, then I recommend updating the original listing. If the cache has moved a substantial distance, and has a different focal point, then I recommend a new listing. Try to see it from previous finders' point of view - will the new location show them something different, or will it just be a case "been there, and done that already"? With this cache, it could go either way, so you decide what you'd like to do.

 

If you want to update the co-ords and listing, then you can change the name by editing your listing. If the co-ords change is less than 160m, you can do it yourself with a log entry. Remember to tick the little box which says "has a waypoint" then it'll allow you to enter the new co-ords. If more than 160m, I need to do it - just send me the GC-number and the new co-ords and I'll sort it out.

 

Hope this helps. :laughing:

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Hi Andy

Any way off pinning the "Hiding a cache in Africa" to the front of the forums? (Wanted to refer someone to it and battled to find it a bit because it is a GC profile)

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Hi Andy

Any way off pinning the "Hiding a cache in Africa" to the front of the forums? (Wanted to refer someone to it and battled to find it a bit because it is a GC profile)

Good idea!! :D

It goes a bit further than just that documentation....mmmm. There are another 2 in the pipeline.

Let me think a bit about what will work best in the long term.....

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I generally read the hint - but prefer those cryptic hints like "Go nuts looking for this one" - or "Barking up the wrong tree"

 

If I need a real spoiler - I prefer those caches with photos - then I only look at the spoiler pic if really stuck.

 

Helps having a Blackberry on site so that the frustration can be reduced after a 30min hunt.

 

Saves having to return (reduced Carbon footprint)

I remember a certain Fish Eagle been hot on my tail in an event at magobeskloof, and having a hint that said at the base of a pine tree under a rock covered with pine needles, this was a very discriptive hint, but concidering we were in a forest of over a 1000 pine trees with rocks everywhere and about 6 ft of pine needles on the ground, it dident help much :lol::ph34r:

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A new reviewer question.

 

Many's the timeI find a cache which lists one or more trackables that are no longer there. In some cases they went missing years ago.

 

Can a cache owner remove trackables that are physically missing? What happens to them - cause they could be found and logged at a later stage. Is this what a so called TB graveyard is?

 

What can we as players do when we find references to MIA trackables?

 

Thanks

 

Trev

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A new reviewer question.

 

Many's the timeI find a cache which lists one or more trackables that are no longer there. In some cases they went missing years ago.

 

Can a cache owner remove trackables that are physically missing? What happens to them - cause they could be found and logged at a later stage. Is this what a so called TB graveyard is?

 

What can we as players do when we find references to MIA trackables?

 

Thanks

 

Trev

Yes, it can be frustrating.

I clean them up when I spot them, but they should be marked as "missing" by the trackable owner, or the cache owner.

That moves them to an "unknown" location.

If they turn up at a later date, then the finders just "grab" them.

TB Graveyards are outlawed. The above procedure is the right way.

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So caches with an agenda are illegal... are TB's?

 

Actually, I guess I know the answer considering the Unite for Diabetes TB's. Guess it's a no?

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So caches with an agenda are illegal... are TB's?

 

Actually, I guess I know the answer considering the Unite for Diabetes TB's. Guess it's a no?

Interesting question.

 

As far as I know, there's nothing specific in any guidelines about TB's with agendas.

There's also nothing about cache content with an agenda.

So, as a reviewer I can't comment.

 

However, as a player, on both of those aspects, I'd take guidance from the following statement in the Cache Listing Guidelines which I believe demonstrates Groundspeak's sentiment.... (but that's just my opinion)

Geocaching is supposed to be a light, fun activity, not a platform for an agenda.

Groundspeak tries to control the game as little as possible, and the rules & guidelines that exist came about through issues and problems in the past. I would think that the absence of a guideline doesn't necessarily mean that it's 100% OK, rather that it hasn't become a big enough issue to have to do something about it.

 

On the other hand, you mentioned Unite for Diabetes TBs which have an agenda, and are fully supported by Groundspeak.

 

You decide - I think it's one of those areas that the community will apply pressure and exercise control if something pushes the bubble too far.

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Andy - a question about a puzzle cache I am thinking of.

 

I'd like the clues to the cache to be taken from a local newspaper's article on geocaching. They keep really good online archives and have articles going back over 3 years that are publically available.

 

Would this be OK? I was thinking of calling the the cache - "The National" - the name of the paper. Is this perhaps too close to an agenda or promoting a for profit company?

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Andy - a question about a puzzle cache I am thinking of.

 

I'd like the clues to the cache to be taken from a local newspaper's article on geocaching. They keep really good online archives and have articles going back over 3 years that are publically available.

 

Would this be OK? I was thinking of calling the the cache - "The National" - the name of the paper. Is this perhaps too close to an agenda or promoting a for profit company?

Thanks for your enquiry.

 

In principle it sounds OK, but I can't express a real opinion without specific information.

 

When getting close to agenda/commercial territory, a lot comes down to 3 things which are specific to the cache:

 

1. How the listing is worded - I could write a listing for a church cache that is informational and 100% non-agenda, but I could also write a listing for the same cache that is a serious agenda.

 

2. Imperative verbs tend to ring a reviewer's agenda-meter. Things like "you must", "you need to", "go to", "do that". If a marginal cache asks or directs the finder to do anything more than find the box and write a log, then it's suspect.

 

3. The puzzle solution would need to be found on the internet (I assume). The contents of the website could put it into commercial territory or it may be OK depending on the site. If finders need to create a login it's not likely to be allowed.

 

I assume this cache will be in the UAE, so I suggest that you contact Erik88L-R, give him as much info as possible including links, and ask his opinion.

 

Reviewers appreciate enquiries like this.

It's so much easier and more pleasant dealing with potential issues up front, than declining a cache once it's already hidden - thank you!! ;)

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Hi Everyone,

 

I'll be away from 10th Sept until 24th Sept.

We're going to explore the remote areas of Swaziland and I won't have an internet connection at all during that period. ;)

 

While I'm away, Erik88L-R will be reviewing Africa.

Should you have an enquiry or question that can't wait for my return, feel free to contact Erik directly.

 

Happy caching,

Andy

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Regarding post #68

 

Firstly: let me say that I don't know how our local reviewer manages to find time to do anything else but GS stuff. In the real world one would be able to get a degree for all the detail you have to know to be able to review caches and answer all the questions. And then with the number of caches that need reviewing every day - I think it is a huge job - and all that for the love of the game!

 

Regarding agendas as I understand it, caches may not have an agenda. Trackables and swag may have an agenda, but even then it undermines the "fun" spirit of the game. There was a recent topic on the agenda (in cache listings) issue

 

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php...=230674&hl=

 

I read through the whole topic at the time, so don't want to go through it again. In short the original poster wanted to put the following text in his cache and the reviewer did not accept it:

 

Post #1

 

This cache honors the life and ultimate sacrifice of Marine Staff Sergeant Richard Pummill, Taps 20 October 2005, Nasser Wa Salaam, Iraq. Please take a moment to reflect on SSG Pummill's sacrifice and the sacrifices of all our servicemen and women. A geocoin remembering SSG Pummill is making its inaugural run in this cache

 

The text was changed to this and the listing was accepted

 

see Post #73

 

This cache honors the life and ultimate sacrifice of Marine Staff Sergeant Richard Pummill, Taps 20 October 2005, Nasser Wa Salaam, Iraq. A geocoin remembering SSG Pummill is making its inaugural run in this cache.

 

Salient points that came from this discussion were the following:

1. Fish Eagle quite rightly points out that the use of imperatives (in this case "please take a moment to reflect") is the difference between acceptable and not acceptable.

2. There is good reason why agendas should stay out of geocaching. The amount of passion and heat that evolved from the topic I mention here is abundant proof of that. There are few things that get the Americans more passionate and worked up than the military issue. I'm not taking sides here, but just notice that they have very opposing and passionate opinions about it.

3. It's not an all or nothing thing. Caches by definition have an agenda: they take you to a place that the cache owner wanted to show you be it a park, a church, a viewpoint etc. CITO is also acceptable, but surely an agenda. But those are all geocaching related. Politics and religion is a strict no-no however. It's not only geocaching that realizes these are dangerous topics: is it not an old wisdom that politics, religion and sex should stay out of polite conversation (I'm not sure if I've got that right).

 

Excuse my rambling and encroaching on our esteemed reviewers topic, but I was feeling verbose.

 

Getting online info from a local newspaper that is promoting geocaching does not sound like agenda stuff to me.

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Thsanks - my addition to your list in point 3 for geocaching would be Commercial. So I guess I just need to ensure that I do not promote the newspaper in the text - but merely reference it.

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Andy - another question.

 

One of my caches has been muggled (Ag Pleez Daddy). I had disabled it temporailry. But it seems that a new transformer (or perhaps cell tower) is going up and there will be construction for about 6 months.

 

Can I keep it disabled for that time period - or should I archive it and then unarchive it when replaced in a few months time?

 

Advice please.

 

Thanks

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Andy - another question.

 

One of my caches has been muggled (Ag Pleez Daddy). I had disabled it temporailry. But it seems that a new transformer (or perhaps cell tower) is going up and there will be construction for about 6 months.

 

Can I keep it disabled for that time period - or should I archive it and then unarchive it when replaced in a few months time?

 

Advice please.

 

Thanks

I have a similar problem:

A beautiful, big, fat Puff Adder has just taken up residence at GZ of one of my caches. At the moment the grass is very long and I feel it is unsafe for anyone to visit. It will take a few months for the grass to die back in summer. Is it OK to diable it for 3-4 months?

(Any other ideas how to manage the problem?)

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Andy - another question.

 

One of my caches has been muggled (Ag Pleez Daddy). I had disabled it temporailry. But it seems that a new transformer (or perhaps cell tower) is going up and there will be construction for about 6 months.

 

Can I keep it disabled for that time period - or should I archive it and then unarchive it when replaced in a few months time?

 

Advice please.

 

Thanks

I have a similar problem:

A beautiful, big, fat Puff Adder has just taken up residence at GZ of one of my caches. At the moment the grass is very long and I feel it is unsafe for anyone to visit. It will take a few months for the grass to die back in summer. Is it OK to diable it for 3-4 months?

(Any other ideas how to manage the problem?)

No sweat.

Normally, if a cache is disabled for 3 months, I'll start prodding about getting it sorted out or archived. But, if it's an active cacher with a specific issue with the cache, then no problem. Just periodically log a note on your cache page to say that it's not forgotten, and you'll avoid the evil scythe of the grim cache reaper....LOL!! :shocked:

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.....and you'll avoid the evil scythe of the grim cache reaper....LOL!! :shocked:

 

Sounds like that could perhaps be an interesting coin in the making.

Wonder what it would look like?

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Hi Andy how was the remote areas of Swaziland

Wondeful..!! :D

We had some really special experiences, and the further off the beaten track we went, the better it got.

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Hi Andy

A quick question, the guidlines say a event cache must be published 2 weeks before the date, is that a hard and fast rule or can the reviewer use his discression

Hi Bats,

 

I stick to it unless there are really special circumstances which warrent an exception. If you're planning something in your local area, then I suggest you contact your local reviewer. If in SA, and you feel you have special circumstances, then email me the details.

 

Regards,

Andy

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Hi Andy

 

Maybe not your department, but I am getting e-mails as the caches are published but my last Groundspeak Weekly Notification was dated 1 October - any idea about this? This might affect non-premier members if this is a general problem?

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Hi Andy

 

Maybe not your department, but I am getting e-mails as the caches are published but my last Groundspeak Weekly Notification was dated 1 October - any idea about this? This might affect non-premier members if this is a general problem?

Hi Tom,

 

I've been away so I probably know as little or less than you do. It appears that there's a new HTML format newsletter, and it had some glitches. I assume that it's still being panelbeaten..?

 

I saw your post on the general forum. Here's a link to another thread about the newsletter.

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Thanks Andy - asked you and then only found the general forum - guess we will have to wait it out - at least I am getting your newly published caches :ph34r:

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A theoretical question.

 

Andy - would you publish a cache by a member of the SA Armed Forces in a restricted millitary area where only SA Soldiers are allowed?

 

I assume not - but just wanted to ask anyway.

 

Sorry - just to clarify why - there are a lot of restricted caches in US Millitary bases in the Middle East - off limits to all but US Armed Forces. I have no beef with these guys been allowed to cache - especially as most are not allowed off base for extended periods. But they do skew national stats...off a small base too.

 

Just more for interest than anything else.

Edited by Carbon Hunter

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I have had lengthly "debates" with TPTB on this very subject with no joy whatsoever. :huh: Suffice to say that anything to do with the US Military will be met with deaf ears - or more specifically you will have the "patriotism" card thrown at you that you are denying the poor mil pers what little relaxation and recreation that they have available to them. B)

 

That said, gc.com has special dispensations for other Armed Forces around the world and publish their restricted caches under a "special" areas. Good luck but you are on a hiding to nothing on this score. We in Qatar have tried challenging and have now given up. As the saying goes, if you can't beat them then join them. We have come up with other ways of getting the mil pers OFF base and encouraging them to hide caches where WE can also find them! :)

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Andy - would you publish a cache by a member of the SA Armed Forces in a restricted millitary area where only SA Soldiers are allowed?

 

An awkward question, which I'll try to answer as best as I can, but specifically in the African context.

I have no knowledge about American bases in the middle east, so I can't comment about that.

 

In Africa Yes and No.

 

No - I would not even consider such a cache is SA, Namibia or Egypt, which are countries with a reasonable number of local cachers, and some critical mass of geocaches. A cache on a military base which the general public can't access would be exclusionary with regard to most potential finders, and not publishable, same as any other cache that can't potentially be accessed by everyone. I say potentially, because that excludes tough terrain, specialist equipment or skills because those can be acquired/obtained.

 

Yes - I have published caches in military bases in other countries that do not have local geocachers, very few caches, and are not tourist destinations. Mainly French bases in north and west Africa. In those cases, I've asked myself who's potentially being excluded, and if the answer is few or none, then it's OK with me. However, I have a concern that those countries could change with time, and develop a local community and a reasonable number of caches/cachers. I would probably, at some stage, decide to stop publishing caches on bases, but consider the existing ones as grandfathered. I'll cross that bridge if and when it arises. Obviously, a cache on a military base requires specific permission, and a maintenance plan.

 

IMO, it's nothing to do military bases - if a cache anywhere excludes a substantial proportion of potential finders, it's a no-no.

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Thanks Andy - well answered.

 

I suppose that is fair. I would guess a cache on a restricted Oil installation in the Delta Region of Nigeria - open only to expat oil workers is far more prefferable than somewhere outside where kidnapping is a reality? And there are not many local cachers.

 

Practicality rules - and justification of the cache placer?

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FE, I have a question. How does the reviewer know of a problem on one of the caches? Do you get an e-mail from geocaching.com with the details, do you run a database query. Or do you manage it as a combination of both? Do you have a special database from geocaching.com or do you have special review access permission to their database?

 

I sometimes run a query called CacheCop written by Wayne on GSAK which shows all maintenance request, archived cache requests and DNF’s. If I go to a selected area I use this query to remove all the ones in questions and all of them who appears a problem. I found this is working for me and I am getting better finds by removing the bad ones. Ok, sometimes I select a cache with a problem just to visit the location and it did happen a couple of times that I actually find the cache after 3 DNF’s was recorded.

 

Every time I run this CacheCop query I have this question in my mind. Ok, I can see the reaper is also busy as the total number of the results is changing quickly. But I also note discrepancies in the result of the query run. If I find this discrepancy should I report them to you or should I just keep them off my list as I was not at the cache and are not at liberty to comment on the cache?

 

I included the second log below from one of the three cachers that recorded DNF's. Some of the DNF’s are quite funny. This one tickles me. There are three DNF’s on this specific one. First DNF recorded on 22 March 2009, second was 27 April 2009, third one was on 19 Jul 2009. I replaced some words with XXXX. There is one cache with 6 DNF's and a archived request but it is still alive since 4 October 2009. Ok, there is also a couple of archived requests for a log that is full, but these is not worth mentioning.

 

%#@*! Camped in XXXXX for the weekend and went up there 3 times w/o any success! Even after talking to XXXXX (thanks!) and they narrowed down the search area. We've covered every hole and crack with at least 7 pairs of eyes... So either we're blind or the cache has gone AWOL! :angry:

 

Gerhard

Edited by gerhardoosMPsa

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FE, I have a question. How does the reviewer know of a problem on one of the caches? Do you get an e-mail from geocaching.com with the details, do you run a database query. Or do you manage it as a combination of both? Do you have a special database from geocaching.com or do you have special review access permission to their database?

 

I sometimes run a query called CacheCop written by Wayne on GSAK which shows all maintenance request, archived cache requests and DNF’s. If I go to a selected area I use this query to remove all the ones in questions and all of them who appears a problem. I found this is working for me and I am getting better finds by removing the bad ones. Ok, sometimes I select a cache with a problem just to visit the location and it did happen a couple of times that I actually find the cache after 3 DNF’s was recorded.

 

Every time I run this CacheCop query I have this question in my mind. Ok, I can see the reaper is also busy as the total number of the results is changing quickly. But I also note discrepancies in the result of the query run. If I find this discrepancy should I report them to you or should I just keep them off my list as I was not at the cache and are not at liberty to comment on the cache?

 

I included a log below from one of the cachers. Some of the DNF’s are quite funny. This one tickles me. There are three DNF’s on this specific one. First DNF recorded on 22 March 2009, second was 27 April 2009, third one was on 19 Jul 2009. I replaced some words with XXXX.

 

%#@*! Camped in XXXXX for the weekend and went up there 3 times w/o any success! Even after talking to XXXXX (thanks!) and they narrowed down the search area. We've covered every hole and crack with at least 7 pairs of eyes... So either we're blind or the cache has gone AWOL! :angry:

 

Gerhard

I'm not at liberty to disclose info about my tools or methods, but I do to some extent rely on feedback from the community. The tools provided for that are the "Needs Maintenance" and the "Needs Archived" log types which are a better method than emailing me. I don't get automatically notified for "Needs Maintenance" logs, but I do get a notification for "Needs Archived" logs, which should be used carefully, and only in cases where reviewer intervention is deemed necessary and urgent.

 

Typically, I deal with maintenance as follows:

 

If there's an issue with permission, trespassing, or a guidelines violation, I'll normally step in immediately with quite a heavy-handed approach. This applies especially to instances where our sport can be brought into a bad light with land owners or the public.

 

If I think that a cache should be disabled due to DNFs, I'll give it 10 days for the cache owner to react. If he doesn't then I'll disable the cache. I use my experience and subjective judgement to make that call. Some caches with 10 DNFs are probably still there, and with others, I can see it's gone after 1 or 2 DNFs. And I do sometimes make wrong judgements......

 

If the cache owner has disabled a cache, I'll log a maintenance reminder after 3 months. If there's no reaction after another month, I'll archive the cache. Unless the cache owner logs progress reports to show that "die saak geniet aandag", then I'll give more time. Sometimes life gets in the way of caching, or one has to wait for construction in an area to be completed, etc, and if there's feedback, I'll leave a cache hanging in limbo for much longer if necessary.

 

If I've disabled the cache myself, then I don't give another reminder, and I'll archive the cache after 3 months if there's no cache owner reaction.

 

The timing and grace periods are not prescribed. They're what I'm applying for Africa, and seem to work adequately as a balance between what's necessary, and trying to not be heavy-handed. I'm open to discussion about the timing, and if anyone has an opinion, please voice it.

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Thanks FE for the answer. You must have hair on your teeth with a lot of patience. :D

I think you have enough on your plate. At present there are according to GSAk about 53 problem cases in the way I ran the query but in reality there are only about 5 problems. The rest is bogus, not a problem yet or that is found by newbies. To keep and eye on more than 3000 caches and to have only 5 real cases is extremely good. You are doing a great job and you have done a lot for the caching community with the strong and the weak hand. Keep it up. Gerhard

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For info - in May 2009 I commented as follows about power trails......

Have there ever been attempts in SA to form a power trail? I can't say I've seen anything that resembels an "obvious" power trail.

Nothing yet that I've seen in SA, but it's a frequent occurance in the cache-dense regions of Europe and the USA, especially where the local cachers are numbers-centric, and a lot of easy smileys are far more desirable than one multi. One of the reasons for the powertrail guideline is to avoid domination of a specific area by one cache hider. In a sense, we do have that in a small way in a few places in SA, but when there's little competition for cache locations, that's not a big issue. I think that powertrails go hand-in-glove with a high cache density, and a numbers-hungry culture - fortunately neither occurs in SA to any real extent. :o

The power trail guideline has been relaxed.

The following wording has been removed from the guidelines:

Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. If you want to create a series of caches (sometimes called a "Power Trail"), the reviewer may require you to create a multi-cache, if the waypoints are close together. A series of caches that are generally intended to be found as a group are good candidates for submission as a single multicache.

And replaced with:

Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. The ultimate goals of the saturation guideline are to encourage you to seek out new places to hide caches rather than putting them in areas where caches already exist and to limit the number of caches hidden in a particular area, especially by the same hider. Groundspeak may further restrict cache listings in areas where cache saturation becomes a concern.

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I hope that you take a tougher line with power trails. I love caching down in the Cape because most of the caches are to do with "hidden gems". IMHO power trails are are a degradation to a numbers game.

 

I have huge admiration for those who have really high numbers in South Africa....because of the fabulous places they must have seen! (Not because of their "number found"). I have seen a book called " 1001 Things To Do In South Africa Before You Die"....iPajero must surely have done nearly all of them....and so much more!

 

Please, please keep the quality of our caches high!

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FE, I have one more question. I am busy preparing a cache that I need to publish soon. This cache could be frustrating and I would like to be present when this cache is searched for by the first cacher. It will give me an indication and feedback of how tough it is or not. I would like to act as observer at the first hunt and I will have the cokes ready for the cacher and his family while getting the feedback after the find.

 

Here in Gauteng the cachers move quickly and I know that there is a good chance for a cacher to find it on the same date of publishing. Due to the possible frustration level and the effort needed I am planning to use a quality coin as a FTF price. I am waiting for this coin at present. In the beginning of the January we will release the cache.

 

My question:

Do you think the reviewer will be kind enough to release this new cache on a certain date and time such as 01h30 – oops I mean 08h00 on a Saturday morning? That will give me time to be at the location for the day. FishEagle, you know the reviewer better than me so maybe you can twist his arm. :o

 

Gerhard

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FE, I have one more question. I am busy preparing a cache that I need to publish soon. This cache could be frustrating and I would like to be present when this cache is searched for by the first cacher. It will give me an indication and feedback of how tough it is or not. I would like to act as observer at the first hunt and I will have the cokes ready for the cacher and his family while getting the feedback after the find.

 

Here in Gauteng the cachers move quickly and I know that there is a good chance for a cacher to find it on the same date of publishing. Due to the possible frustration level and the effort needed I am planning to use a quality coin as a FTF price. I am waiting for this coin at present. In the beginning of the January we will release the cache.

 

My question:

Do you think the reviewer will be kind enough to release this new cache on a certain date and time such as 01h30 – oops I mean 08h00 on a Saturday morning? That will give me time to be at the location for the day. FishEagle, you know the reviewer better than me so maybe you can twist his arm. :o

 

Gerhard

Two aspects here -

 

1. Publish at a specific time - umm, yes in this case, but.....

I don't have tools to do that so it relies on me remembering, and pushing the button at roughly the right time. I'll gladly try do it if there's a specific reason such as publishing caches for an event, or a birthday, or for your unusual cache, but obviously I don't want to open a floodgate because it could become very onerus. I would have preferred to answer a specific request like this off-line, so I'm being guarded about what I say online..... :angry:

 

Please submit the listing for pre-review ahead of time in case there are any issues that need to be worked through, with a reviewer note to say when it's to be published so I don't push the button by mistake. I'll then let you know what to do for the timed release.

 

2. If you want to hide behind the bushes and watch the first hunter/s at work (LOL), that's up to you, but please don't put anything in your listing about that because it wouldn't be appropriate. It's fairly common in cache-dense areas for the cache owner to watch the initial action on the cache, just don't say it on the cache page.....

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I hope that you take a tougher line with power trails. I love caching down in the Cape because most of the caches are to do with "hidden gems". IMHO power trails are are a degradation to a numbers game.

 

I have huge admiration for those who have really high numbers in South Africa....because of the fabulous places they must have seen! (Not because of their "number found"). I have seen a book called " 1001 Things To Do In South Africa Before You Die"....iPajero must surely have done nearly all of them....and so much more!

 

Please, please keep the quality of our caches high!

To some extent (as a player), I share your concern. However, it's horses for courses, and easy smileys are loved by many cachers across the world, and that's what they desire to see. That need not degrade one's pleasure in hunting the more difficult and adventurous caches at all.

 

South Africa is betwixt and between at the moment - we still have a relatively low cache density, but enough caches that most of us can be selective about what we hunt, and what we choose to skip. I judge that we are sort of between the need to find everything in our local area/province/country and having too many caches to even consider that, and always selecting which caches we want to hunt or not.

 

The perceived downside of the relaxation of powertrail guideline is a proliferation of inane caches. Sure, I've got private opinions about that, and I might try to advise hiders about quality over quantity, but the bottom line is that they're now publishable. I think it's easy to judge the quality of a cache - a quick glance at the logs shows that. If they're "one-liners" saying "Thanks, cool cache. TNLNSL" then don't expect much. But, if the finders have made the effort to write logs with some meat in them, then that's a 100% indication of a quality cache. However, everyone's perception of "quality" differs too.... :o

 

Player hat on.....

On Saturday, I found about 10 caches by the same owner along one trail of about 6kms on a mountain and enjoyed it thoroughly. They involved some effort, both to get there and to find them, several were mystery caches, one a multi, and they were great fun. Under the old guideline, those might not have been publishable. Even with my conservative views, I'm totally supportive of the relaxation because it permits fun like this (in the way I personally enjoy as a player). But, had they been 10 urban caches placed 200m apart, well I'd probably have given them a miss, and found a mountain to climb..... I've got an ignore list, and I use it. Others might love an easy urban powertrail, but that's a personal choice.

 

I don't know who originally said this, but I got it from GlobalRat a few years ago -

If you've got more finds than fond memories, then you're playing the game backwards.....

So, I guess it all comes down to what gives us "fond memories", and we're allowed to think differently... :angry:

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Hi, I'm (very) new to all GC'ing, but I am loving it. My other half and I have a few ideas for places to hide traditional caches but I have two questions.

 

I have read the guidelines relating to hiding caches in South Africa, specifically the areas relating to protected areas and National Parks. We want to hide four caches in the Great Fish River Reserve, an area run by Eastern Cape Parks, which, as far as I know, does not fall under the SANParks umbrella. The GFR Reserve straddles a district dirt road and anyone is able to access almost all areas of it (certain roads are clearly marked no-entry). There are no gates or booms to sign in. I know of one cache (GCYH7D) which has already been hidden; but on the other side of the river to where we would place our caches. My questions therefore are:

 

1. Do you forsee any problems with placing caches in this park? Without giving too much away, three of the caches would be in areas where people walk around anyway (i.e. allowed to exit the vehicle).

 

2. The fourth cache would be a little further off the beaten track. It is not a trail per se, but it is a known route that the dedicated could take (I myself have walked it as part of a university outing).

 

Would I need to obtain specific permission for any of these caches? Do you have any guidelines or suggestions for me? I think these areas really need a cache, but I want to do it right!

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Andy - Firstly all the best for 2010 and the coming decade. I see EarthCaches have been about to be incorporated into the mainstream GC.com for hiding.

 

Are you going to be involved as a reviewer for Africa - or will this still be done independently of traditional reviewers?

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Hi, I'm (very) new to all GC'ing, but I am loving it. My other half and I have a few ideas for places to hide traditional caches but I have two questions.

 

I have read the guidelines relating to hiding caches in South Africa, specifically the areas relating to protected areas and National Parks. We want to hide four caches in the Great Fish River Reserve, an area run by Eastern Cape Parks, which, as far as I know, does not fall under the SANParks umbrella. The GFR Reserve straddles a district dirt road and anyone is able to access almost all areas of it (certain roads are clearly marked no-entry). There are no gates or booms to sign in. I know of one cache (GCYH7D) which has already been hidden; but on the other side of the river to where we would place our caches. My questions therefore are:

 

1. Do you forsee any problems with placing caches in this park? Without giving too much away, three of the caches would be in areas where people walk around anyway (i.e. allowed to exit the vehicle).

 

2. The fourth cache would be a little further off the beaten track. It is not a trail per se, but it is a known route that the dedicated could take (I myself have walked it as part of a university outing).

 

Would I need to obtain specific permission for any of these caches? Do you have any guidelines or suggestions for me? I think these areas really need a cache, but I want to do it right!

Welcome and thanks for your enquiry.

Specifics like this is better dealt with offline, and I'll need some more info before I can advise you.

I'll email you shortly.

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Andy - Firstly all the best for 2010 and the coming decade. I see EarthCaches have been about to be incorporated into the mainstream GC.com for hiding.

 

Are you going to be involved as a reviewer for Africa - or will this still be done independently of traditional reviewers?

Thanks for your kind wishes, and all of the best for 2010 for you and your family too. :)

No, I won't be reviewing earthcaches.

Africa will still be handled by Geoaware.

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