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Cache Placement Guidelines: include rubbish removal?


daywalk
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I'd like to suggest that the cache placement guidelines include a specific recommendation that the cache placement area and the probable search zone around the hide should be thoroughly tidied up before the cache is placed.

 

The general geocaching information does refer to CITO; however, reading through the cache placement guidelines I'm astonished to realise that there is no recommendation to remove rubbish from a cache hide area before placement or remove trash as part of cache maintenance.

 

Let me emphasise that I am not speaking about responsible cachers who mistakenly put their cache in an untidy area. We were looking for one a fortnight ago where the hide had been quickly changed because of problems at the first site. Looking off the path we found a lot of rubbish, and stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces? In this case, immediately after we logged a DNF and a comment about the rubbish, the owner emailed to say that they had put the cache into a new hide by reaching in from the path and therefore hadn't realised there was rubbish off the path, and that they would return as soon as possible and tidy up the area. They're the type of cachers we want to encourage!

 

But what about the irresponsible cachers? I've encountered newly-placed caches where it is obvious that the owner has not even attempted to clean up the area before placing the cache. Recent examples include rotten and half-disintegrated rubbish under drifts of leaf litter beside the cache, broken glass near caches, and loose strands of barbed wire trailing down the bank on either side of the hide (not just unpleasant but a danger, especially to children). If I've got the time and equipment I'll do a cleanup, as I know other responsible cachers also do, but this is not addressing the basic problem.

 

We have put one cache in a local area where there used to be a tip close by, and before placement I spent literally hours cleaning up broken glass and crockery from the cache area, a wide area around the hide and the likely approach routes. Most other cachers will have done the same.

 

I'm happy to do ongoing litter control when I visit a cache, removing whatever rubbish has blown into the area recently, but I object to doing extensive clean-ups of pre-existing rubbish. To be honest, I'm starting to feel abused by these CITI (Cache In, Trash IN) cachers. Yet, if I ignore the rubbish I am just leaving the same unpleasantness for the next cacher to see. And it doesn't do much for the reputation of geocaching as a recreational activity if you take a proto-geocaching friend to find a cache which turns out to be surrounded by rubbish.

 

Why not make it an explicit expectation that the hide area and probable search area be cleared of trash before a cache is placed, and that trash removal is part of ongoing cache maintenance?

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Why not make it an explicit expectation that the hide area and probable search area be cleared of trash before a cache is placed, and that trash removal is part of ongoing cache maintenance?

 

Why not? Because most cachers are respectful and already practice CITO, and those who don't aren't going to comply with the guidelines anyway.

 

There are already enough pointless "Needs Maintenance" logs by n00bs as it is. Can you imagine the chaos that would ensue if whiners could get caches shut down every time some muggles left a beer bottle near the cache site?

 

Ridiculous.

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stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

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stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

I've run across it as well. If they are going to toss the poo into a bush, at least have the decency to leave the bag out of it.

It's just backwards thinking to bag poo and toss it into nature. (unless the bags are biodegradable, and even then...)

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stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

 

This is something my husband and I have noticed a lot while hiking and dives us nuts! I feel the same way, don't bother to even bag it if your not going to remove it, you are making the situation worse and now not just being inconsiderate but littering something that no one else wants to have to remove! It's really quite bizarre and far too common here.

 

I think CITO is a part of the game, but unfortunately the nature of some locations would require more than an individual could do. And as previously mentioned, suggestions and guidelines aren't different enough in enforcement to really matter to people who don't already do it. I have also seen people purposely put caches in area with trash and incorporate the hide.

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I'd like to suggest that the cache placement guidelines include a specific recommendation that the cache placement area and the probable search zone around the hide should be thoroughly tidied up before the cache is placed.

 

This is probably the most bizarre recommendation that I've seen since I've been geocaching!

If you don't like the area where the cache is hiding, go find a different cache. When you do go caching, exercise due caution.

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While I'm not in favor of your suggestion, for some of the reasons listed here, I can tell you how I've managed to avoid caching amongst detritus: Avoid park & grabs. It seems the average litterbug, (being too lazy to properly dispose of their trash), is too lazy to cart said rubbish a few miles into the backcountry, just for the pleasure of tossing it under a bush. The only trash I've ever found near one of my bush hides is a granola bar wrapper that probably fell unnoticed, out of a cacher's pocket.

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I have an answer to the dog poo thing, since everybody wonders how it happens. Well I have an answer to part of it at least.

 

I believe that many people who walk their dog bag the poop, and then leave it on the side of a trail to pick up on their way back. I've seen people do this, the reason being is who wants to carry a bag of poop for a long walk?

 

When people take a different way back, or forget about it, the bag of crap (oh wait, that's woot ... the bag of poop) stays. People may put their bag under a bush until they return so that it's not seen by others who are out walking.

 

Unfortunately it seems like lots of people either forget or take a different way back, based on the number of bags out there that I have seen. I would be surprised if people bagged with the intent of leaving it out there.

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stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

I've run across it as well. If they are going to toss the poo into a bush, at least have the decency to leave the bag out of it.

It's just backwards thinking to bag poo and toss it into nature. (unless the bags are biodegradable, and even then...)

 

This is a fairly common problem in my neighborhood as well, in spite of the fact that garbage cans are provided to properly dispose of this sort of mess. I think it's rather unfortunate that the mfg. of the dispensers chose to advertise the bags as "Biodegradable". Lately I've also caught a few ads on TV where a popular snack chip maker is advertising their packaging as "Biodegradable" and "environmentally friendly". I can't wait to be picking up empty chip bags on my next hike/walk.

 

Oh, and don't get me started with the National Park Service problem with "buried treasure" B)

 

Human waste: Proper human waste disposal prevents spread of disease, exposure to others, and speeds decomposition. Catholes, 6 to 8 inches deep and 200 feet from water, are often the easiest and most practical way to dispose of feces.

 

This notion is slowly going the way of the dinosaurs in heavily impacted areas such as Mount Whitney. Probably not far in the future, those little dispensers will be dotting the landscape for hikers as well .

 

Back OT.....I think the Guidelines are long enough :)

 

I could get behind the notion of putting a link to the CITO pages a bit more prominently on every cache page along with the eye-catching logo :)

 

Edit spelling.

Edited by Touchstone
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Not only am I against cache owners being required to clean the surrounding area when placing a cache, I think that a cache placed in a somewhat trashy area is a good way to identify these areas for clean-up.

It would be, if cachers actually practiced CITO anymore.

 

When I started in 2003 practically every cacher I knew carried a trash bag, and used it.

 

It was not at all uncommon to meet cachers on the trail carrying out a bag of trash.

 

CITO events were quite common.

 

Today, not so much.

 

When explaining our game to landowners and newcomers I used to include CITO as a common ethic shared by geocachers. I no longer do, because so few practice it that it would make me out to be a liar.

Edited by TheAlabamaRambler
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stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

I've run across it as well. If they are going to toss the poo into a bush, at least have the decency to leave the bag out of it.

It's just backwards thinking to bag poo and toss it into nature. (unless the bags are biodegradable, and even then...)

 

There is a spot around here where dozens of full trash bags are piled up on the side of the same road in several places. I went to look into one, perhaps to find some indication of who left it there, and found leaves. :laughing: In fact, they all were bags of leaves, and all seemed like they are being dumped by the same person over several seasons. Why couldnt they rip the bags open when they got to the woods? :laughing: Sheesh.

 

CITO should be encouraged, but you cant force it on anyone. I cleaned up an area, filling 3 garbage bags full of beer cans. Several months later several new beer cans reappeared. After I got a few logs saying the spot was nasty, I archived the cache. When I went out a few months later to pick it up, I noticed the entire area had just recently been thoroughly cleaned by a neighborhood group.. :anibad:

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...Why not make it an explicit expectation that the hide area and probable search area be cleared of trash before a cache is placed, and that trash removal is part of ongoing cache maintenance?

 

Looking at this specificly. Litter is against the law. Why make someone innocent personally responsible for dealing with the behavior of others? If we don't want to punish the innocent it's best if we leave CITO as a voluntary feel good about doing it thing instead of compulsory punishment of the innocenet.

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Why not? Because most cachers are respectful and already practice CITO, and those who don't aren't going to comply with the guidelines anyway.

 

I agree you cannot force this to complied with so it would be a wasted effort.

 

stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces?

 

Now this astounds me, I really cannot fathom some people's thinking sometimes. Only last week I came across something similar, two bags of poo thrown in a hedge. If a dog owner goes to the trouble of doing the right thing and picking up their dog's mess as all dog owners should, why then be so irresponsible to just dump it? Surely they must realise that they've managed to be more environmentally destructive than if they'd not bothered to clean up in the first place??

 

The other day while caching I came upon a tree with a crook at about shoulder level, only 2 feet off the trail, and only about 100' from the parking area. And what do you suppose was sitting there in the crook? :anibad: YUCK!!!

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:D I feel really, really dispirited about rubbish around caches. :D

 

I've just found a cache placed only four days ago. It is a film canister tucked beside a post at the start of a pedestrian overbridge. It was placed by a well-known, respected, very intelligent and experienced local caching duo. I jumped down beside the bridge to pull out the cache.

 

And on the ground around the hide, caught under the bushes, there was the usual ancient rubbish you find in such places- bottles, cans, plastic bags, paper, takeaway containers, a sweatshirt... The cache owners had not tidied the area when they placed the cache.

 

I had a 65 litre rubbish bag in the car so I fetched it and did CITO. I didn't clean up all the rubbish in sight, just what was within 3 or 4 metres of the hide. I tried to get most of the broken glass but there's probably still some underfoot. I tore my favourite old jacket reaching under a bush for bottles...

 

So now I feel like Muggins. I'm the drongo who bought the rubbish bag, has to pay to put another rubbish bag out for collection next week, spent a quarter-hour cleaning up the area, got dirty trouser-knees and a torn jacket. :grin:

 

Silly fool that I am, I've put more time, money and effort into this cache than the lazy cache owners have. I've let myself be taken advantage of. Certainly I'll log that I've done CITO, but I would rather earn my :wub: CITO-karma :grin: by picking up new rubbish, not pre-cache-placement trash.

 

One of the recurring themes in these forums seems to be disgust with rubbish around cache hides. There are certainly a lot of people who do their bit with CITO, and we all appreciate finding neat and tidy cache hides.

 

I think it would be a very positive step for Geocaching to amend the cache placement guidelines to include specific CITO recommendations. Why not add just two sentences to the guidelines? For example:

Cache placement: When you place a cache, remove trash from the cache hide area and the probable search zone around the hide.

Cache Maintenance: When you make a maintenance visit, remove trash from the hide area and the probable search area.

 

Of course not all cachers would follow a CITO guideline when they place and maintain their caches, just as there are a number of cachers who don't comply with the present guidelines. And of course there would be no way for reviewers or other cachers to enforce CITO guidelines, just as there is no way of enforcing the present guidelines. And even when a cache hide area starts off tidy, rubbish will inevitably accumulate again. So what?

 

If CITO was included in the cache placement guidelines, it would set the standard: an expectation that cache owners shall remove trash from around their cache hides.

 

And it would be much better for the Geocaching public image!

At present, according to the cache placement guidelines, trashy caches are perfectly acceptable. :D

Include CITO in the cache placement guidelines, and Geocaching can finally point out that the geocaching community specifically expects tidy caching. :D

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:D I feel really, really dispirited about rubbish around caches. :D

 

I've just found a cache placed only four days ago. It is a film canister tucked beside a post at the start of a pedestrian overbridge. It was placed by a well-known, respected, very intelligent and experienced local caching duo. I jumped down beside the bridge to pull out the cache.

 

And on the ground around the hide, caught under the bushes, there was the usual ancient rubbish you find in such places- bottles, cans, plastic bags, paper, takeaway containers, a sweatshirt... The cache owners had not tidied the area when they placed the cache.

 

I had a 65 litre rubbish bag in the car so I fetched it and did CITO. I didn't clean up all the rubbish in sight, just what was within 3 or 4 metres of the hide. I tried to get most of the broken glass but there's probably still some underfoot. I tore my favourite old jacket reaching under a bush for bottles...

 

So now I feel like Muggins. I'm the drongo who bought the rubbish bag, has to pay to put another rubbish bag out for collection next week, spent a quarter-hour cleaning up the area, got dirty trouser-knees and a torn jacket. :grin:

 

Silly fool that I am, I've put more time, money and effort into this cache than the lazy cache owners have. I've let myself be taken advantage of. Certainly I'll log that I've done CITO, but I would rather earn my :wub: CITO-karma :grin: by picking up new rubbish, not pre-cache-placement trash.

 

One of the recurring themes in these forums seems to be disgust with rubbish around cache hides. There are certainly a lot of people who do their bit with CITO, and we all appreciate finding neat and tidy cache hides.

 

I think it would be a very positive step for Geocaching to amend the cache placement guidelines to include specific CITO recommendations. Why not add just two sentences to the guidelines? For example:

Cache placement: When you place a cache, remove trash from the cache hide area and the probable search zone around the hide.

Cache Maintenance: When you make a maintenance visit, remove trash from the hide area and the probable search area.

 

Of course not all cachers would follow a CITO guideline when they place and maintain their caches, just as there are a number of cachers who don't comply with the present guidelines. And of course there would be no way for reviewers or other cachers to enforce CITO guidelines, just as there is no way of enforcing the present guidelines. And even when a cache hide area starts off tidy, rubbish will inevitably accumulate again. So what?

 

If CITO was included in the cache placement guidelines, it would set the standard: an expectation that cache owners shall remove trash from around their cache hides.

 

And it would be much better for the Geocaching public image!

At present, according to the cache placement guidelines, trashy caches are perfectly acceptable. :D

Include CITO in the cache placement guidelines, and Geocaching can finally point out that the geocaching community specifically expects tidy caching. :D

 

You did a great thing. It would be awesome if every cacher cleaned up cache areas. However, you can't force it on anyone. Hold a CITO event and they can get a smiley for participating.

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:wub: I feel really, really dispirited about rubbish around caches. :grin:

 

***snipped for tl;dr***

 

 

The cache owners didn't put the garbage there.

 

You were not obligated to pick up the garbage.

 

It was your choice to take on this responsibility. Kudos to you! Sadly, I think the good karma is somewhat mitigated by the martyr complex.

 

---

 

Geocaching already addresses the garbage issue with the CITO philosophy, and CITO events.

 

There is absolutely no way to enforce a mandatory clean-up guideline. A cache owner cannot possibly be held responsible for every piece of litter that has ever been dropped somewhere near his/her cache.

 

Most of us play this game with good intentions, and do what we can to make a positive contribution. The guideline you're proposing *punishes* cache owners for others' behaviour over which they have no control. That is completely unfair, and totally ridiculous.

 

Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience, but blaming the cache owner is totally out of line. If you think so little of the cache owners in your area, perhaps it's time to play a different game.

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:D I feel really, really dispirited about rubbish around caches. :D

 

I've just found a cache placed only four days ago. It is a film canister tucked beside a post at the start of a pedestrian overbridge. It was placed by a well-known, respected, very intelligent and experienced local caching duo. I jumped down beside the bridge to pull out the cache.

 

And on the ground around the hide, caught under the bushes, there was the usual ancient rubbish you find in such places- bottles, cans, plastic bags, paper, takeaway containers, a sweatshirt... The cache owners had not tidied the area when they placed the cache.

 

I had a 65 litre rubbish bag in the car so I fetched it and did CITO. I didn't clean up all the rubbish in sight, just what was within 3 or 4 metres of the hide. I tried to get most of the broken glass but there's probably still some underfoot. I tore my favourite old jacket reaching under a bush for bottles...

 

So now I feel like Muggins. I'm the drongo who bought the rubbish bag, has to pay to put another rubbish bag out for collection next week, spent a quarter-hour cleaning up the area, got dirty trouser-knees and a torn jacket. :grin:

 

Silly fool that I am, I've put more time, money and effort into this cache than the lazy cache owners have. I've let myself be taken advantage of. Certainly I'll log that I've done CITO, but I would rather earn my :wub: CITO-karma :grin: by picking up new rubbish, not pre-cache-placement trash.

 

One of the recurring themes in these forums seems to be disgust with rubbish around cache hides. There are certainly a lot of people who do their bit with CITO, and we all appreciate finding neat and tidy cache hides.

 

I think it would be a very positive step for Geocaching to amend the cache placement guidelines to include specific CITO recommendations. Why not add just two sentences to the guidelines? For example:

Cache placement: When you place a cache, remove trash from the cache hide area and the probable search zone around the hide.

Cache Maintenance: When you make a maintenance visit, remove trash from the hide area and the probable search area.

 

Of course not all cachers would follow a CITO guideline when they place and maintain their caches, just as there are a number of cachers who don't comply with the present guidelines. And of course there would be no way for reviewers or other cachers to enforce CITO guidelines, just as there is no way of enforcing the present guidelines. And even when a cache hide area starts off tidy, rubbish will inevitably accumulate again. So what?

 

If CITO was included in the cache placement guidelines, it would set the standard: an expectation that cache owners shall remove trash from around their cache hides.

 

And it would be much better for the Geocaching public image!

At present, according to the cache placement guidelines, trashy caches are perfectly acceptable. :D

Include CITO in the cache placement guidelines, and Geocaching can finally point out that the geocaching community specifically expects tidy caching. :D

 

Do you want a cookie?

 

Really now, you've done a good thing, and you're welcome to feel proud of yourself, but there doesn't need to be a requirement to CITO the area around all of your caches. If you want to, great! if not, oh well.

 

That being said, a Terrain 5 CITO around one of my caches would be interesting...

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It is a fine idea but due to the nature of the game it isn't possible to police the players. I would hope that everyone leaves things a little better than they found them. But to paraphrase what Bittsen said on a different thread the best thing is everybody can play and the worse thing is everybody can play.

Edited by hoosier guy
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I'd like to suggest that the cache placement guidelines include a specific recommendation that the cache placement area and the probable search zone around the hide should be thoroughly tidied up before the cache is placed.

 

The general geocaching information does refer to CITO; however, reading through the cache placement guidelines I'm astonished to realise that there is no recommendation to remove rubbish from a cache hide area before placement or remove trash as part of cache maintenance.

 

Let me emphasise that I am not speaking about responsible cachers who mistakenly put their cache in an untidy area. We were looking for one a fortnight ago where the hide had been quickly changed because of problems at the first site. Looking off the path we found a lot of rubbish, and stopped searching after finding a bag of ?possibly dog faeces? In this case, immediately after we logged a DNF and a comment about the rubbish, the owner emailed to say that they had put the cache into a new hide by reaching in from the path and therefore hadn't realised there was rubbish off the path, and that they would return as soon as possible and tidy up the area. They're the type of cachers we want to encourage!

 

But what about the irresponsible cachers? I've encountered newly-placed caches where it is obvious that the owner has not even attempted to clean up the area before placing the cache. Recent examples include rotten and half-disintegrated rubbish under drifts of leaf litter beside the cache, broken glass near caches, and loose strands of barbed wire trailing down the bank on either side of the hide (not just unpleasant but a danger, especially to children). If I've got the time and equipment I'll do a cleanup, as I know other responsible cachers also do, but this is not addressing the basic problem.

 

We have put one cache in a local area where there used to be a tip close by, and before placement I spent literally hours cleaning up broken glass and crockery from the cache area, a wide area around the hide and the likely approach routes. Most other cachers will have done the same.

 

I'm happy to do ongoing litter control when I visit a cache, removing whatever rubbish has blown into the area recently, but I object to doing extensive clean-ups of pre-existing rubbish. To be honest, I'm starting to feel abused by these CITI (Cache In, Trash IN) cachers. Yet, if I ignore the rubbish I am just leaving the same unpleasantness for the next cacher to see. And it doesn't do much for the reputation of geocaching as a recreational activity if you take a proto-geocaching friend to find a cache which turns out to be surrounded by rubbish.

 

Why not make it an explicit expectation that the hide area and probable search area be cleared of trash before a cache is placed, and that trash removal is part of ongoing cache maintenance?

 

Although it would be nice that caches are placed in nice areas people will continue to place them in places that IMHO are unacceptable. Placing a cache in a rubbish dump area, even with the possible expectation that cachers will police it doesnt work. It is 1 thing to place a cache somewhere that as time passes gets normal trail trash but to place a cache, & I have come across this when I went to find some caches, that has been placed in an area that has tires, trash, broken glass, plus whatever else should be disposed of at a legitimate landfill is total lack of responsibility on the CO's part. I not only dont continue to look for that cache I dont haul out a truck load of rodent infested garbage.

 

This isnt something that should need to be included in the requirements of placing a cache it should be COMMON SENSE.

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