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How to Find a Beautiful Location for a Cache


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I know that this is probably like asking a writer, "where do you get your ideas?" but I'm giving it a try anyway. I am absolutely in awe of some of the sites picked by some of the hiders in my area. They are so beautiful. However, I have no idea how they found them.

 

So for those of you who set caches in beautiful or interesting out of the way places how do you locate them? Do you pour over topo maps and then investigate likely areas? Do the sites simply pop out at you when you are doing other things? Is there a strategy you employ to structure your search? When you are scoping out possible hiding places do you spend a lot of time hiking off-trail?

 

My personal thinking is that I need topo maps for this area and then I need to spend time inching over the map, comparing it to existing caches, marking possible places for visits, then hiking those possibilities a few times over the course of the year to get a sense of how the terrain changes through the seasons (otherwise how does one assess the terrain rating). My beloved thinks that I am making it harder than it needs to be. I do admit that it sounds like a lengthy process the way I'm conceiving it.

 

How do you do it? How long does it take you?

 

Carolyn

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I know that this is probably like asking a writer, "where do you get your ideas?" but I'm giving it a try anyway. I am absolutely in awe of some of the sites picked by some of the hiders in my area. They are so beautiful. However, I have no idea how they found them.

 

So for those of you who set caches in beautiful or interesting out of the way places how do you locate them? Do you pour over topo maps and then investigate likely areas? Do the sites simply pop out at you when you are doing other things? Is there a strategy you employ to structure your search? When you are scoping out possible hiding places do you spend a lot of time hiking off-trail?

 

My personal thinking is that I need topo maps for this area and then I need to spend time inching over the map, comparing it to existing caches, marking possible places for visits, then hiking those possibilities a few times over the course of the year to get a sense of how the terrain changes through the seasons (otherwise how does one assess the terrain rating). My beloved thinks that I am making it harder than it needs to be. I do admit that it sounds like a lengthy process the way I'm conceiving it.

 

How do you do it? How long does it take you?

 

Carolyn

 

Though I haven't hidden one yet, I can tell you that I have one ready to hide in a special location.

Mine is a place I have visited off and on for the last 25 years. I imagine many of the gorgeous cache spots are found similar methods.

Have you ever been hiking and come upon a spot that spoke to you? Well, thats where you could place a cache.

 

Going over topo maps seems like a PIA to me. You can't see trees on a topo. Trees have a nasty habit of getting in the way of a gorgeous view.

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If you do a lot of walking/ hiking, you might find a good hiding spot that way. I know of several geocachers who always have a small cache and supplies with them, and if they see a good spot, hide a cache right there and then. This is how I hid my first cache; it's in a lovely overgrown area behind a busy shopping mall with lots of wild flowers, where I walk my dog, but is always quiet.

 

My second cache, I got the inspiration from the local newspaper, who did an article about the last piece of prairie land in our area, home to almost 200 native spiecies of plants. I looked on geocaching.com and saw there was no cache there, so I placed one.

 

My third one is a book cache (swag is books only), so I needed a place where I could hie a big cache. I kept an eye out for such a place as we were out and about, and found one on the way to the twin's playschool; it's some bushes in the middle of some fields, just by the highway. Not the most scenic spot, but nopt bad, and enough bushes to hide my 10 gallon rubbermaid container.

Edited by Penguin_ar
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I know that this is probably like asking a writer, "where do you get your ideas?" but I'm giving it a try anyway. I am absolutely in awe of some of the sites picked by some of the hiders in my area. They are so beautiful. However, I have no idea how they found them. ...

 

1) Remember the cool places you have been before.

2) Most landmarks and features noted on a topo map are memorable for some reason.

3) Pay attention as you go about your life. The world has a lot of nooks and crannies in it and as you go caching, walking, biking, fishing, camping, or just driving you will see these spots and say, "I should check that out". Then be sure to actually go do it. This works really well for me.

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It is called getting out there. If you are impressed with an area you are hiking - likely others will too. Start networking and telling people you are interested in hiking new and wonderful places and help will come forth. Hiking clubs are abundant and great to join, even if all you do is attend meeting and get ideas. Use the Internet to find hiking trail in your area or areas you plan to visit. Google - wild life management areas.

 

Thank you so much for taking your location seriously and wanting to provide a quality sight for your cache.

 

A great hike contains some of the following:

A pretty set of woods with little ground brush, briars, and PI.

Features such as Rocks, Historical ruins, Animals, Trees or other plants of interest.

A trail that is a loop rather than an out and back trail. Not a must, just nice.

A trail leads to many other trails in the area to return and explore.

Include some bushwacking (off trail, but not cutting) to get to the cache.

It is always nice if while retrieving the cache, the finder is out of sight from other muggles.

Veiws, of almost anything, are a reward for being out there.

Exercise is always a plus. Inform folks what kind they will get.

Anything interesting about the area whether it is nature or history or geological is a plus.

If anything is dangerous be sure it is obvious to the observer so no one gets hurt.

Consider PI, stingweed and briars while choosing a location and it's likely approach.

Always keep location in mind and your brain will do it by itself. All of us are likely to say - WOW this would be a great place to put a cache.

 

Think of it as an introduction to somewhere really neat.

 

Again thanks for being interested in having a great location - Many of us are starved for it.

Edited by GPS-Hermit
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I only carry cache containers with me when I am ready to place a cache in a particular area. I rarely hike around with ammo boxes "just in case." But often I see an area that seems to call out for a cache. As soon as I see it, I know a cache "has" to be placed there.

 

Sometimes, I will come across descriptions in trail guidebooks that make me want to visit a particular area -- and if it sounds interesting enough, I will bring a container with me.

 

Other times, I will come across an interesting article in a paper or book about a piece of public art or local history -- or have a particular theme in mind (labyrinths, local rock music history, pirates, a tribute to a local cacher, etc.). But I will generally visit the area first to try to figure out whether a cache could be placed there and what kind of container would be best.

 

In short, I prefer to find a source of inspiration rather than to place a cache in a parking lot just because I have a container with me.

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Topographical maps tend to have names for interesting features - If it is named, someone must have thought it needed a name :(

 

When planning a recent canoe trip (which unfortunately i missed out on) - I had 4 places marked for geocaches - 2 waterfalls (long falls, and high falls - pretty generic names for the area) , a place called "deadmans bend" and "White Cedar Gorge". Thankfully my group went without me, and placed a bunch, so i will get a find when i finally get to explore the area!

 

Just cruising through topo maps of the area, i have found many waterfalls and interesting places that didn't have caches. I didn't necessarily put one there, but they were great places to put one!

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1. Do a lot of exploring. Find public lands, get out of the car and just wander around.

2. Read newspapers and magazines looking for articles about interesting places, or for articles about lands recently purchased for open space.

3. Google Earth. use it to scan your region and see what looks interesting from the sky. I found an outstanding, trail less overlook this way. I saw what appeared to be rock outcrop and when I rotated Google Earth to the fly over view it proved to be on a ridge line. I waypointed it and bushwacked there to find a wonderful view and left a cache.

4. Read some books about local history, folklore or oddities.

5. Read local travel guides and tourism brochures.

6. Scan road maps for your area looking for green sections that might have no caches then see #1

7. Keep your eyes open when driving around. That rock outcrop you see in the distance from the road may have an outstanding view. If you see something interesting take note and when you get back home do a little research to see if it's public land.

8. Read local topo maps, new and old. I recently found a nice waterfall by looking at a stream on a topo map and following it to where the contours were close together. I also checked the area on Google Earth and saw something white through the trees (foam from a waterfall or rapids perhaps?). I waypointed the spot and headed out there and sure enough there was a waterfall cascading into a scenic pool. Left a cache.

 

I also look at old topo hiking maps from the 1930s - 1960's and look for places that might be interesting but might not show on newer maps, like mines, abandoned homesteads and the like.

Edited by briansnat
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Definately use topo maps to locate possible waterfalls but don't be fooled by great topography on a map. You might plan to put a cache where there's only a trickle going down a overgrown rockface with no view. But you won't know until you go out and look. Look for any type of local hiking guides. I live in the adirondack area in upstate ny and we have hiking guides with topo maps of all the different regions. You can also look for places of interest on older maps. I type in "old maps new england" and I get maps from 1890's to the 1950's. Ask gramps where he went swimming and what mountains he climbed. Instead of taking just a single box up to place on a long hike why not take up some micro's. Place the box and set up a multi on the way out. Follow stone walls, look for your town/cities history and try to locate ruins and set up a historical cache. One cache I just got today required driving to those historic signs that you see here and there and using them to get the coords for the final. Another thing you can do to make a cache a little better is by creating an unusual container or just paint a mural of whatever scenic view is there on the side of the ammo can. Another suggestion is to look at all of those caches that you think are amazing and look at the owners profile. If they haven't logged on in several months then maybe they are on the way out of geocaching. Send them a nice email saying that you want to know if they're still caching and if not you'd like to adopt there cache. In the next couple weeks I'll be adopting a nice waterfall multi that the owner abandoned due to a lack of time to maintain it. I bought a mapping program that I've used for 10 years now and I love it. Its terrain navigator. It'll probably cost you around a $100 for it but it should have topos of the entire state. Look for lonely caches that are a considerable distance back in the woods and set up a cache or 2 or a multi in its direction and put a watch on the lonely cache and see what happens. Its almost as good as owning it yourself when you get to read all of the logs. Definately keep that thought process and try to stick to a higher quality of cache. Its the main reason I'm still caching. Good Luck and Happy Cachin' Swizzle

Edited by swizzle
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I use the internet a lot while researching cache placement and a lot of what briansnat said.

 

For local town/city parks, see if the town website has a "Parks and Recreation" page. There's often a map/matrix of the park and what facilities/activities each park offers.

 

For larger areas, like state parks/forests, I'll do the same thing, research on the web, looking at park maps with trails and park info.

 

I also like to look at the state "boaters guide" because it will highlight all the boat launches in the state. They're often in state parks or other scenic areas.

 

While driving around, I look for the telltale "yellow gate" and stop to see if it's a public area.

 

For "touristy" areas, check out a town or state website for "things to do in wherever." Some newspapers list upcoming events, which may highlight an area you didn't know about.

 

Editing to add the rails to trails sites are helpful to highlight rail beds that have been converted. Also, look for mountain biking sites. They often have reviews of trails in different parks and will give a good insight into the area. They're written from a mountain biking aspect, but you can gather a lot of info into the area by reading what people have said. If someone says it's flat and good for someone on training wheels, it'll most likely be easier terrain, whereas something with "killer ups and downs" is probably more hilly/rugged.

Edited by Skippermark
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I know that this is probably like asking a writer, "where do you get your ideas?" but I'm giving it a try anyway. I am absolutely in awe of some of the sites picked by some of the hiders in my area. They are so beautiful. However, I have no idea how they found them.

 

So for those of you who set caches in beautiful or interesting out of the way places how do you locate them? Do you pour over topo maps and then investigate likely areas? Do the sites simply pop out at you when you are doing other things? Is there a strategy you employ to structure your search? When you are scoping out possible hiding places do you spend a lot of time hiking off-trail?

 

My personal thinking is that I need topo maps for this area and then I need to spend time inching over the map, comparing it to existing caches, marking possible places for visits, then hiking those possibilities a few times over the course of the year to get a sense of how the terrain changes through the seasons (otherwise how does one assess the terrain rating). My beloved thinks that I am making it harder than it needs to be. I do admit that it sounds like a lengthy process the way I'm conceiving it.

 

How do you do it? How long does it take you?

 

Carolyn

 

Though I haven't hidden one yet, I can tell you that I have one ready to hide in a special location.

Mine is a place I have visited off and on for the last 25 years. I imagine many of the gorgeous cache spots are found similar methods.

Have you ever been hiking and come upon a spot that spoke to you? Well, thats where you could place a cache.

 

Going over topo maps seems like a PIA to me. You can't see trees on a topo. Trees have a nasty habit of getting in the way of a gorgeous view.

 

As the hobby/ sport has become more popoular I think most of the good spost have gone.

 

I have been lucky and found what I think is a realy good location for cache but it seems to be constintly being muggled which might ecplain why there isn't one there allready.

 

While you are out and about you will will develop "cachers eye" the ability to know where to hide one and to find a good location. I admit I have still to refin my "eye" with 184 finds (not all logged quite yet) I have a lot to go.

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I use TOPO maps, Google Earth, and I spend time researching websites based on local area history. My local library has an entire section dedicated to the history of my valley. This is how I got the info to hide my "Llano Del Rio Socialist Colony" ruins series.

 

I'm fascinated by a combination of history, military aviation, and stranges spots found out in the middle of nowhere, in the desert. A newspaper article and a few clues helped me find an aircraft wreck site. F6F-5K Hellcat Drone Wrecksite

 

 

Other spots, were discovered during an evening drive with the family. Sunset Vista Point

 

th_sunset-valley.jpg

Edited by Kit Fox
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Wow! These are great suggestions and most of them I hadn't thought of. When I posted this question, I thought I might get one or two good ideas but instead you've all come up with dozens of ways we can take to approach this and most of them will work with our personalities and situation.

 

i shared the thread with my beloved and we're going to start taking some of your advice. I'm a map lover and he's a historian, so between the two of us we should be able to find something interesting.

 

Carolyn

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I use TOPO maps, Google Earth, and I spend time researching websites based on local area history. My local library has an entire section dedicated to the history of my valley. This is how I got the info to hide my "Llano Del Rio Socialist Colony" ruins series.

 

I'm fascinated by a combination of history, military aviation, and stranges spots found out in the middle of nowhere, in the desert. A newspaper article and a few clues helped me find an aircraft wreck site. F6F-5K Hellcat Drone Wrecksite

 

 

Other spots, were discovered during an evening drive with the family. Sunset Vista Point

 

th_sunset-valley.jpg

 

Thank you so much. I'd wondered how you found the places you had found. My beloved was especially impressed and interested in your caches with their combination of history and hiking. Since my beloved actually works with the local historians, perhaps he can tease out some ideas from them during a faculty meeting. A hunt for historic ruins will be fun, I think.

 

Carolyn

Edited by Steve&GeoCarolyn
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I use the geocache map page and toggle back and forth between the Satellite, Terrain and MyTopo tabs (upper right). Mostly the Terrain tab. I use the Geocache map page (rather than Google Maps, say) for two main it shows other caches in the area and MyTopo is pretty good about showing where the trails are.reasons

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Topo maps, in my experience, don't really tell you all that much. About the only useful thing they can tell you is where trails are, as trails tend to go to interesting places. Google earth is useful since you can view pictures that other people post without having to try to find all these places yourself. Other than that, I've found most of my cache locations just by wandering around (be it by car, bike, or foot).

I have 7 caches

2 were drive-by points of interest

2 are urban caches from my local area

2 were found while biking on the trans-canada trail

and the last was an event relic (it has a story)

Edited by aniyn
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Wow! These are great suggestions and most of them I hadn't thought of. When I posted this question, I thought I might get one or two good ideas but instead you've all come up with dozens of ways we can take to approach this and most of them will work with our personalities and situation.

 

i shared the thread with my beloved and we're going to start taking some of your advice. I'm a map lover and he's a historian, so between the two of us we should be able to find something interesting.

 

Carolyn

 

Sounds like you have a great combination for creating well researched cache hides. :)

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As the hobby/ sport has become more popoular I think most of the good spost have gone.

 

I have been lucky and found what I think is a realy good location for cache but it seems to be constintly being muggled which might ecplain why there isn't one there allready.

 

While you are out and about you will will develop "cachers eye" the ability to know where to hide one and to find a good location. I admit I have still to refin my "eye" with 184 finds (not all logged quite yet) I have a lot to go.

 

>.>

<.<

 

most the good spots have been taken eh?

The continental US is 3.79 MILLION Square miles. Assuming that it averages out to one "good" spot per 4 square miles, that equates to .95 million "good" spots in the US. That's more "Good" spots in the US, then there are active caches world wide. (.87 million)

 

You might have a leg to stand on if you said "I think most of the good spots in my area have gone."

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As the hobby/ sport has become more popoular I think most of the good spost have gone.

 

I have been lucky and found what I think is a realy good location for cache but it seems to be constintly being muggled which might ecplain why there isn't one there allready.

 

While you are out and about you will will develop "cachers eye" the ability to know where to hide one and to find a good location. I admit I have still to refin my "eye" with 184 finds (not all logged quite yet) I have a lot to go.

 

>.>

<.<

 

most the good spots have been taken eh?

The continental US is 3.79 MILLION Square miles. Assuming that it averages out to one "good" spot per 4 square miles, that equates to .95 million "good" spots in the US. That's more "Good" spots in the US, then there are active caches world wide. (.87 million)

 

You might have a leg to stand on if you said "I think most of the good spots in my area have gone."

 

Sorry,

 

Most of my ideal spots in this part of the UK, is what I ment in perticuler. I just thought that with the growing intrest in the hobby/ sport the there might be a simmiler thing elsewhere.

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As the hobby/ sport has become more popoular I think most of the good spost have gone.

 

I have been lucky and found what I think is a realy good location for cache but it seems to be constintly being muggled which might ecplain why there isn't one there allready.

 

While you are out and about you will will develop "cachers eye" the ability to know where to hide one and to find a good location. I admit I have still to refin my "eye" with 184 finds (not all logged quite yet) I have a lot to go.

 

>.>

<.<

 

most the good spots have been taken eh?

The continental US is 3.79 MILLION Square miles. Assuming that it averages out to one "good" spot per 4 square miles, that equates to .95 million "good" spots in the US. That's more "Good" spots in the US, then there are active caches world wide. (.87 million)

 

You might have a leg to stand on if you said "I think most of the good spots in my area have gone."

 

Sorry,

 

Most of my ideal spots in this part of the UK, is what I ment in perticuler. I just thought that with the growing intrest in the hobby/ sport the there might be a simmiler thing elsewhere.

 

Yes, those of us playing the game here in U.K. have a rather smaller game board than those in U.S.A. ;)

However the guidelines about holiday caches apply wherever you live so, realistically, here most cachers have a circle of about 60 miles radius in which to look for "nice spot" locations. (I wonder if USA Reviewers accept a larger radius as "OK for maintenance" before asking if the cache owner has a plan? :) )

 

I actually feel a bit sorry for the newer geocachers joining the game in U.K. in the last few years because I agree with Hampshire Hogs that "most of the good spots" have been taken in the early years of caching over here (i.e. roughly between 2001 and 2005).

 

For this reason I like to see caches get archived* when the owners move away or leave the game, rather than have them adopted. I like to think that this gives newer cachers an opportunity to place a new cache in a good spot to refresh the game for everyone.

 

*With a very few exceptions :D

 

MrsB

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I think adoption should still be an option. The cache that I'll be adopting is one that I haven't done yet. After reading the logs and seeing some of the pics I know that this is a very good looking spot. I think if you just ask the owner to archive it you might get an angry response after all the work they put into it. If you like the set up that they have then consider keeping it. The cache I'm adopting is a multi. I might do a run of it and think that each stage would be better off with a seperate type of cache. If that's what I want then I can archive the listing myself. If you're waiting for a listing to get archived then someone else just might adopt that spot right under your nose before you even have a shot at it. Don't overlook muggle areas either. These spots could be in need of some C.I.T.O. attention. The more trash that is in a otherwise beautiful spot the more likely someone is going to add to it. The last time I was up to our one local marsh it was an obvious party spot for teenage renegades. Beer bottle busted, food bags and just a mix of trash was starting to add up. A C.I.T.O. cache was placed and I walked out with a shopping back full of trash and the trail looks good. When placing the cache look for spots that aren't going to cause a geotrail. Sometimes its unavoidable. In those cases make your own geotrails and make lots of them. Make a few in the wrong direction on the other side of the trail. One of the best ways to find new spots is to get off the trail. Take extra batteries with you for your GPS, mark the car and where you left the trail and wander. Sometimes walking a 100 feet along side of a trail will lead you to places that were just out of site before. Swizzle

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Google Earth can also be helpful in locating interesting places.

I have 8 caches located at a series of tree planting plots in the forest. They are not visible from any roads nearby and all are off trail a few hundred feet. The perfectly aligned rows of trees and the buffer zone around the plots is very visible on satellite maps. It's kind of neat to get to one of them and see all the trees aligned out in the middle of nowhere in the forest. I believe the plots were all placed in the 1960s so some of the trees are getting rather good sized now. I spent most of a weekend going over the satellite views of the forest and located 12 plots. I have caches in 8 of them.

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Topo maps, in my experience, don't really tell you all that much. About the only useful thing they can tell you is where trails are, as trails tend to go to interesting places.

I guess it's what you are used to. Yesterday morning I found this on the topo:

3638310691_10a31c828c.jpg

Which lead me to this:

3639121960_a0ff8f63e6.jpg

In the afternoon. I'm now going to put a series there.

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GCN9TX

 

Here's the one that I just adopted. I know most of you have seen better locations but for around here I think its perty dang sweet. I also know most (if not all) of you have seen a lot worse areas with active caches right now. I think the pic to finder ratio is really nice. 33 pics and 50 finders. If there's room for it I'll add another cache or two to this park to give it a little more variety to attract more cachers. Maybe a P&G and a CITO unless the place is already spotless. We'll see. Swizzle

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Finally a use for those big 'coffee table' photography books your grandmother gives you ever Christmas!

 

Like this one - http://huntsville.about.com/od/booksauthor...enicnorthal.htm

 

or this one for MrsB (although The Blorenges don't need any help, they find way cool picturesque views already!)...

 

http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/..._pod_image.html

 

By using photography books and websites you get to see the place before you go there.

 

For more fun try to locate the cache at the spot from which the picture was taken.

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One thing to think about when looking for a beautiful spot is places you hung ou at when you were young

Like my cache Hidden Falls it's a really nice area with a waterfall that not many people Know about and lot's of cachers seem to like it. And reason I know about this spot is because it's a place I used to go to all the time as a kid

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One thing to think about when looking for a beautiful spot is places you hung ou at when you were young

Like my cache Hidden Falls it's a really nice area with a waterfall that not many people Know about and lot's of cachers seem to like it. And reason I know about this spot is because it's a place I used to go to all the time as a kid

 

Thank you. I think that is a great idea and one I wish I could use. (Your cache looks like a beautiful one.)

 

I grew up in Colorado so all my hiking experience and all my memorable places from childhood are there. But that is what makes the area I live now so incredibly exciting to me. I'm not used to swamps. They seem like places of dark magic and thrilling danger to me in ways that the Rockies didn't.

 

On the other hand, I have less to fall back on when it comes to thinking up good hiding places and I'm having to learn an entire new movement vocabulary and equipment list to negotiate the swampy land. We've had quite a few amusing experiences where our Colorado-honed impulses utterly failed us hiking in the Midsouth, starting with our first impulse to go hiking in mid-July (95 degrees and 90 percent humidity) when it was hot in the city and we assumed it would be cool along the hiking paths because the Rockies were always a cool respite in summer. Let's just say that the Midsouth river trails are not a cool respite from midsummer heat. :D

 

Carolyn

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As the hobby/ sport has become more popoular I think most of the good spost have gone.

 

I have been lucky and found what I think is a realy good location for cache but it seems to be constintly being muggled which might ecplain why there isn't one there allready.

 

While you are out and about you will will develop "cachers eye" the ability to know where to hide one and to find a good location. I admit I have still to refin my "eye" with 184 finds (not all logged quite yet) I have a lot to go.

 

>.>

<.<

 

most the good spots have been taken eh?

The continental US is 3.79 MILLION Square miles. Assuming that it averages out to one "good" spot per 4 square miles, that equates to .95 million "good" spots in the US. That's more "Good" spots in the US, then there are active caches world wide. (.87 million)

 

You might have a leg to stand on if you said "I think most of the good spots in my area have gone."

 

Sorry,

 

Most of my ideal spots in this part of the UK, is what I ment in perticuler. I just thought that with the growing intrest in the hobby/ sport the there might be a simmiler thing elsewhere.

 

It's an odd thing, but most of my UK friends make the same geographic mistake at times. (The funniest such situation was when one friend offered to drive over from her hotel in San Francisco to eat lunch with me in Denver. I had to gently explain the distance to her.) I wonder whether it is hard to picture vast swathes of wilderness if one grows up in an area that has been continuously inhabited for thousands of years. Perhaps our childhood geography embeds tracks into our brains that we revert to when we process new knowledge about places.

 

I had the opposite reaction in the UK. I felt a bit overwhelmed by all the history and the evidence of human habitation everywhere I looked. I felt a bit cramped and as if I were always stepping on someone's unmarked grave.

 

Perhaps these differing geographies lead to differing strategies for establishing and maintaining geocaching communities as well as issues related to cache placement.

 

Carolyn

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...or this one for MrsB (although The Blorenges don't need any help, they find way cool picturesque views already!)...

 

http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/..._pod_image.html

 

That link does lead to a lovely local view...

 

hedgerows-landscape-wales-483624-sw.jpg

 

... however, I take issue with the caption, in the link, under the photograph :D : That's not a hedgerow of hawkweed - That's a field growing oilseed rape. It's a common crop around these parts and causes a few weeks of misery in May and June for those who are particularly sensitive to its pollen. The vivid yellow fields add bold splashes of colour to our field patchworks at this time of year.

 

I like the idea of trying to find the exact spot that a photograph has been taken from. I remember mtn-man making reference to some caches he has done which are located at such locations used by a famous American photographer. (Sorry, the name escapes me... )

 

MrsB

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I guess it's what you are used to. Yesterday morning I found this on the topo:

<snip>

Which lead me to this:

<snip>]

In the afternoon. I'm now going to put a series there.

 

That seems like flawed logic to me; sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. You could throw a dart at that map, go to whatever random spot it landed on and be almost certain to find a nice spot somewhere along the way. It's just a matter of getting out into the world and looking.

Anyways, that's just my 2 cents. As long as we're all having fun nothing else matters.

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(The funniest such situation was when one friend offered to drive over from her hotel in San Francisco to eat lunch with me in Denver. I had to gently explain the distance to her.)

 

Stepping off topic briefly, we that have grown up on or near the Great Lakes see a similar phenomenon when people see them for the first time. "What's that dark spot out there?" "That's a ship." "Oh. How big a boat?" "No... a ship. Like on the ocean?" "....................................wowwwwwwww"

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I guess it's what you are used to. Yesterday morning I found this on the topo:

<snip>

Which lead me to this:

<snip>]

In the afternoon. I'm now going to put a series there.

 

That seems like flawed logic to me; sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. You could throw a dart at that map, go to whatever random spot it landed on and be almost certain to find a nice spot somewhere along the way. It's just a matter of getting out into the world and looking.

Anyways, that's just my 2 cents. As long as we're all having fun nothing else matters.

 

Knowing how to read and use a topo map is not quite throwing a dart at a map. It's quite the opposite in fact. A topo map can help you focus on a target area to explore.

 

Those contour lines bunched tightly together might mean an outstanding viewpoint. Bunched together contour lines with a stream could mean a waterfall. Widely spaced contour lines with a meandering river could indicate a swamp or floodplain.

 

Topo maps will often show abandoned mines, unique geological features and other places of interest, all good potential cache hiding spots

 

I've used topo maps to find waterfalls, outstanding views, swamps and numerous other places to hide caches. They are one of my key tools when I'm looking for a place to hide a cache.

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Thanks to everyone for their suggestions! I'm planning to compile them into an organized list for myself and when I do so, I'll post to this thread again.

 

We are utterly fascinated by some of those who have made the finding a place for a cache itself a geographic mystery to be solved, like Kit Fox's example of searching out the wrecked plane and Mrs. B's description of Mtn Man's determination to locate the spots famous photos were taken. My beloved was delighted with the idea. He is working on finding a worthy historical challenge. Since Tennessee was such a center for CCC and TVA projects, we are looking into that history. (The South isn't all about the Civil War, you know.)

 

Meanwhile, I have used Briansnat's description of topo map analysis and Dark Zen and Beautiful's marvelous photos of the topo map vs the actual location to convince my beloved that I need topo map software. I know that feeding my map hunger was not your intention, but I thank you nonetheless. I've been playing with the maps and trying to locate good places to go. Based upon Mrs. B's off-hand comment that we in the US have a larger gameboard, I've decided to widen our search and it's been a lot of fun to realize that a short way away is elevated terrain mixed with swamp and that this area has very few caches.

 

Meanwhile, we've decided to devote 2-3 caching days a month to finding a good spot. This has actually been the hardest part. We love finding caches so much that we sometimes exhaust ourselves in the cache-finding before we get to the cache-hiding part. But it's all good.

 

Thanks!

Carolyn

Edited by Steve&GeoCarolyn
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