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What's the custom for a "didn't find" log?


dfense
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I am wondering if and when to log a "didn't find it"...

 

After the first casual try?

After the third real intense 30 minute "turn every stone twice"?

 

Any advice/opinion?

 

Thanks,

dfense

 

(Could not search the forum for this, as all keywords are < 4 characters. Sorry if this was already asked ;-) )

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I am wondering if and when to log a "didn't find it"...

 

After the first casual try?

After the third real intense 30 minute "turn every stone twice"?

 

Any advice/opinion?

Some people (e.g. moderator briansnat) will log a DNF if he presses "go to" on his GPSr.

 

Others are not quite so extreme. Some will only log if they think they've given it a good search. Some will log if they abort because of muggle. There's a huge variation here, so pick what you're comfortable with.

 

I log if I've spent more than a minute searching.

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For me, when a DNF is appropriate depends on whether I feel like I've done a good job of searching. If I'm cutting it short because I can't think of where else to look, that's a DNF. If I just walked up to ground zero and realize that I have to get back to work NOW, I don't consider that a real attempt. I'm very inconsistent about DNFs due to folks standing around the site, though. Sometimes I log a note and sometimes it's a DNF, and I can't think of any real logic to that for me.

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I log a DNF if I get reasonably close and couldn't find it. That includes not being able to look because there were too many muggles around or because GZ is under water, as this may affect future cachers looking, and of course looking for the cache and not finding it, but does not include if I set out to find the cache but then need to turn around just as I get there/ after a minute or two because my toddler twins act up or similar.

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Some people (e.g. moderator briansnat) will log a DNF if he presses "go to" on his GPSr.

 

I don't care who you are. That's funny right there. :)

 

For me it depends on whether or not I've given the cache more than just a cursory search. I tend to log more DNF's than most cachers I know. On one cache (GCNZAQ), I logged three DNF's in the six months between my first search and the eventual find.

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Any time I search in earnest, I post either a Found It log (assuming I found it, of course) or a DNF log. If I get to the location but don't really search for some reason (lack of time, too many muggles, whatever), then I post a DNS (Did Not Search) as a Note.

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I subscribe to the, I looked for it, but didn't find it - log a DNF with one exception (recently decided on this). I must have made a true attempt for the cache.

 

Basically if I tried to find it, but came up against some obstacle, weather, muggle, etc. that prevented me from finding it (and I was reasonably close to ground zero) then I log it as DNF.

 

If however I start out to the cache and get side tracked, interrupted, decide to call off the hunt before I get close to ground zero, etc. I'll either not log it, or simple submit a note if I feel it's appropriate to share the experience.

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For me, when a DNF is appropriate depends on whether I feel like I've done a good job of searching. If I'm cutting it short because I can't think of where else to look, that's a DNF. If I just walked up to ground zero and realize that I have to get back to work NOW, I don't consider that a real attempt. I'm very inconsistent about DNFs due to folks standing around the site, though. Sometimes I log a note and sometimes it's a DNF, and I can't think of any real logic to that for me.

 

I'm pretty much the same. If I end up throwing my arms up in the air and going "Well, I give up" that's a DNF. But if I'm in a hurry and there are still obvious areas I haven't checked (and I intend to return anyway) then I'll just let it slide. I usually mention it in my log the next time anyways. If I know I won't be back anytime soon though I'll log it and mention it was a half-hearted attempt.

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If I hunt for a cache I post a DNF when I don't find it. If I arrive at the general area of the cache and decide not to hunt I may post a note but not a DNF. Yesterday at Noon I stopped at a new cache that was in the middle of a busy corporate campus. I made my way to the general area of the cache and decided not to hunt as there were literally hundreds of people out and about. I posted a note. I went back in the evening and made the find. If I had even checked one possible hiding spot when I visited at Noon I would have posted a DNF rather than a note.

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I won't post a DNF unless I have made an earnest effort to search. If I spend two minutes on a difficulty 5 cache, I won't post a DNF, but maybe a note, since the difficulty rating indicates it should take much longer than that to find the cache.

 

If I never make it to GZ for whatever reason (muggles, water over a path, park is closed, etc.), then I will write a "DNS" (did not search) note. My reasoning is of course I surely won't find a cache if I don't even look. If several people post a DNF when they actually did not even look, it may lead to others removing that cache from their hunt.

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Although I am very new at this, I have only had one DNF out of the 15 I have looked for so far. It took 4 tries to get that last one, I logged a DNF on the first two attempts, posted a note on the third, then smiley faced it finally on the fourth try. I will at least post a note if I get close to the cache, that way the CO knows that people are trying to look for it, even if I am just saying why I could not do a proper search.

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If my GPSr says I am within a 100' of the Cache and I can't find it, for what ever reason, I log a DNF with a explanation why I was unable to find it, i.e. weather, Muggles, or just my inability to find it.

 

No shame in a DNF, at least you are out looking. :D

Edited by BrrrMo
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DNF's are an important source of information for the cache owner. There is no stigma attached to posting DNF's, granted they're no fun, but we all get our share of them. If I get a couple of DNF's on one of my caches that I think is an easy one I will check to make sure it's OK. More times then not it's missing. I worry more when I have a ***** and it's got lots of finds. That's a real good indication something is wrong there as well.

Do the cache owner a big favor and post your DNF's. We really do appreciate it....

Edited by RonFisk
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Same as most - we log a DNF if we have come up empty handed after the hunt. If we do not get out of the cachemobile as it is a high muggle zone on that day, we don't log a DNF as we haven't searched. Caches that do not yield a find by REALLY experienced cachers...1,000+, 1,500+ and 2,000+ we defnitely log a DNF to save fellow cachers a wasted trip.

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If my GPSr says I am within a 100' of the Cache and I can't find it, for what ever reason, I log a DNF with a explanation why I was unable to find it, i.e. weather, Muggles, or just my inability to find it.

 

No shame in a DNF, at least you are out looking. :)

 

What do you do if you are further from the cache? Last weekend we hiked for 35-40 minutes to get to the cache and then came up against a river we could not cross. According to Genie (our GPSr) the cache was about 450' from our location and if we had crossed the river we would have been able to find it.

 

I felt that we had trudged through high weeds, water, and other obstacles, fought mosquitoes and other bugs, and generally worked hard to get to the cache, therefore we should log a DNF. The total time getting to the river's edge and then back to our car was over an hour. (Besides, I had pictures I wanted to upload and a great story to tell).

 

My beloved felt that we had not come close enough to the cache for it to qualify as a DNF because we didn't actually get to do any searching for the second stage. Besides, we clearly took the wrong route. Therefore it shouldn't be logged until we had made an honest effort to search.

 

We ended up with a compromise and I posted a note with our story and photos.

 

What would you have done?

 

Carolyn

Edited by Steve&GeoCarolyn
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If my GPSr says I am within a 100' of the Cache and I can't find it, for what ever reason, I log a DNF with a explanation why I was unable to find it, i.e. weather, Muggles, or just my inability to find it.

 

No shame in a DNF, at least you are out looking. :)

 

What do you do if you are further from the cache? Last weekend we hiked for 35-40 minutes to get to the cache and then came up against a river we could not cross. According to Genie (our GPSr) the cache was about 450' from our location and if we had crossed the river we would have been able to find it.

 

I felt that we had trudged through high weeds, water, and other obstacles, fought mosquitoes and other bugs, and generally worked hard to get to the cache, therefore we should log a DNF. The total time getting to the river's edge and then back to our car was over an hour. (Besides, I had pictures I wanted to upload and a great story to tell).

 

My beloved felt that we had not come close enough to the cache for it to qualify as a DNF because we didn't actually get to do any searching for the second stage. Besides, we clearly took the wrong route. Therefore it shouldn't be logged until we had made an honest effort to search.

 

We ended up with a compromise and I posted a note with our story and photos.

 

What would you have done?

 

Carolyn

For me that would have been a DNF log and I would have had fun with it.

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If my GPSr says I am within a 100' of the Cache and I can't find it, for what ever reason, I log a DNF with a explanation why I was unable to find it, i.e. weather, Muggles, or just my inability to find it.

 

No shame in a DNF, at least you are out looking. :)

 

What do you do if you are further from the cache? Last weekend we hiked for 35-40 minutes to get to the cache and then came up against a river we could not cross. According to Genie (our GPSr) the cache was about 450' from our location and if we had crossed the river we would have been able to find it.

 

I felt that we had trudged through high weeds, water, and other obstacles, fought mosquitoes and other bugs, and generally worked hard to get to the cache, therefore we should log a DNF. The total time getting to the river's edge and then back to our car was over an hour. (Besides, I had pictures I wanted to upload and a great story to tell).

 

My beloved felt that we had not come close enough to the cache for it to qualify as a DNF because we didn't actually get to do any searching for the second stage. Besides, we clearly took the wrong route. Therefore it shouldn't be logged until we had made an honest effort to search.

 

We ended up with a compromise and I posted a note with our story and photos.

 

What would you have done?

 

Carolyn

 

I would have logged a DNF. I started my hunt and didn't find the cache. DNF or note, neither is really wrong in that situation as long as you log domething.

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How about if you log a DNF on a cache and later on go back and find it? Do you delete the previous DNF or let it stand and re-log with a smilie?

Let the DNF log stand and create a new log for the find.

 

Oops! I have been going back to my previous DNF logs, and changing them to Finds and updating the dates. I do it this way so I can go back into my profile and see which caches I need to re-visit. If I just do another log, the DNF is still there, then I have to search my finds to see if I have re-visited and found it.

 

I feel like it makes things more organized and cleaner to do it this way. Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache. It makes it look like more people have DNF'd a cache, when in reality it could be a few cachers who just keep logging DNF's everytime they visit and cannot find.

 

Any advice/thoughts on this? Does the cache owner receive notification if someone changes/updates a log?

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Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache. It makes it look like more people have DNF'd a cache, when in reality it could be a few cachers who just keep logging DNF's everytime they visit and cannot find.
As a cache owner, I'd want to know that my cache has been DNFed 6 times in the past month. The difference between the possible permutations (e.g., 6 visits from a single cacher, 3 visits each from 2 cachers, single visits from 6 separate cachers) is secondary.

 

Does the cache owner receive notification if someone changes/updates a log?
No.
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. Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache.

 

nope, it doesn't.

 

your DNF is part of the cache's history and when you change it to a found log instead of making a new log for your find, you erase part of the cache's history in addition to part of your own history.

 

 

the only time i don't log my DNF is if i'm at the location and i think the cache is sufficiently substandard as to be beneath contempt; in those cases i will wait until i have found it before i pass judgment on it and call for the clams' choreographer.

 

even for poor caches, though, the general rule is that i log all attempts, even in one day.

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How about if you log a DNF on a cache and later on go back and find it? Do you delete the previous DNF or let it stand and re-log with a smilie?

Let the DNF log stand and create a new log for the find.

 

Oops! I have been going back to my previous DNF logs, and changing them to Finds and updating the dates. I do it this way so I can go back into my profile and see which caches I need to re-visit. If I just do another log, the DNF is still there, then I have to search my finds to see if I have re-visited and found it.

 

I feel like it makes things more organized and cleaner to do it this way. Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache. It makes it look like more people have DNF'd a cache, when in reality it could be a few cachers who just keep logging DNF's everytime they visit and cannot find.

 

Any advice/thoughts on this? Does the cache owner receive notification if someone changes/updates a log?

We did this when we started because we thought it was the proper way logs were posted. Then we found out this is not the case. The DNF is a part of your historical experience and a part of the history of the cache. The owner does not receive an email if you edit a prior log. By editing your DNF logs you are actually editing your history. Post a new log and be happy.

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Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache.
nope, it doesn't.

 

your DNF is part of the cache's history and when you change it to a found log instead of making a new log for your find, you erase part of the cache's history in addition to part of your own history.

If you're concerned about "skewing the numbers", then don't delete/convert your DNF logs after you find the cache.

 

As an example, consider a cache that takes a typical geocacher three trips to find. It should have at least twice as many DNF logs as Found logs. For each Found log, there should be a couple DNF logs. Plus there should be DNF logs from those who haven't found it yet.

 

If the DNF logs are deleted/converted every time someone finds the cache on a return visit, then the cache will have fewer DNF logs than it should. That could cause some to underestimate its true difficulty.

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Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache.
nope, it doesn't.

 

your DNF is part of the cache's history and when you change it to a found log instead of making a new log for your find, you erase part of the cache's history in addition to part of your own history.

If you're concerned about "skewing the numbers", then don't delete/convert your DNF logs after you find the cache.

 

As an example, consider a cache that takes a typical geocacher three trips to find. It should have at least twice as many DNF logs as Found logs. For each Found log, there should be a couple DNF logs. Plus there should be DNF logs from those who haven't found it yet.

 

If the DNF logs are deleted/converted every time someone finds the cache on a return visit, then the cache will have fewer DNF logs than it should. That could cause some to underestimate its true difficulty.

 

Alright, I am converted. I will just do new logs from now on instead of editing. I will just have to find a better way to keep track of prior DNFs that I need to re-visit.

 

thanks for the advice fellow cachers B)

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I've had a cache owner take my DNF rather seriously, giving me unsolicited hints and offering to check the cache to be sure it is still there.

 

I'm a newbie with only 20 finds, so it is going to take me longer to find something than a experienced cacher with well-tuned geo-sense. I'm going to be a bit cautious about posting my DNFs, especially if the site is easy to reach and I can go back another day and search again.

 

I have been using field notes to keep track of my temporary DNFs. I realize that I'm the only one who can see my field notes, but at this point, that's probably a good thing. Then, when I finally do find the cache, or run out of places to search and declare it a DNF, I can put the whole saga in my log.

 

There was one cache (4/1.5) a few miles from my home that I must have visited at least 4 times over a period of two weeks until I finally found it last Saturday. I suppose it would have been good for a chuckle to read all my DNF's interspersed between the found logs of more experienced cachers.

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I am wondering if and when to log a "didn't find it"...

 

After the first casual try?

After the third real intense 30 minute "turn every stone twice"? ...

 

The way I see it, it's feedback to the cache owner about the cache difficulty.

 

If a cache stumps me as in I can't find it and I've tried everthing I can think of. That's a DNF.

 

If I get tired of looking, the fun stops, it gets dark, I get hungry and wander across the street for a burger, and I haven't tried everthing, that's a note.

 

If I step out the front door and never make it to the cache because my ex shoots me in the knee cap for not paying child support as ordered for the kids that aren't mine. That may be an interesting story but it's not really even related to the cache so that's likely neither a note or a DNF.

Edited by Renegade Knight
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Plus, I think it skews the numbers to have multiple logs on one cache.
nope, it doesn't.

 

your DNF is part of the cache's history and when you change it to a found log instead of making a new log for your find, you erase part of the cache's history in addition to part of your own history.

If you're concerned about "skewing the numbers", then don't delete/convert your DNF logs after you find the cache.

 

As an example, consider a cache that takes a typical geocacher three trips to find. It should have at least twice as many DNF logs as Found logs. For each Found log, there should be a couple DNF logs. Plus there should be DNF logs from those who haven't found it yet.

 

If the DNF logs are deleted/converted every time someone finds the cache on a return visit, then the cache will have fewer DNF logs than it should. That could cause some to underestimate its true difficulty.

 

Alright, I am converted. I will just do new logs from now on instead of editing. I will just have to find a better way to keep track of prior DNFs that I need to re-visit.

 

thanks for the advice fellow cachers :)

 

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