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Remember when you first started geocaching - What Frustrated You The Most?


Headhardhat
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Remember when you just started geocaching? Even before you found your first 100 finds or so. What was the most frustrating thing about finding a geocache?

 

I am going way back in the geocaching time machine to make a GeoSnippits video showing how to find a geocache as a complete noob. Where do you look? What do you look for? Where do you even know where and what to do? What frustrated us the most when we just started out geocaching.

 

As always I go to the experts which is you.. Thanks in advance for all your thoughts and insights.

 

Will let you know when the next GeoSnippits will be out... Will be soon.

 

Thanks as always,

 

-HHH :lol:

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It hasn't been that long for us...

 

Logging - When do you post a DNF, NM, NA?

 

Figuring out that GPS isn't always accurate and what to do about that.

 

Etiquette when meeting other cachers.

 

FTF protocol when multiple cachers appear at the same time.

 

How to hide what you're doing from muggles.

 

Experienced CO's who aren't very understanding with (new) cachers. (We've come across a few.)

 

Cedar & Juniper bush hides.

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I'm still new!

 

What was frustrating is looking for standard containers...pill bottles, ammo cans ,lock n lock. I went to several caches that I picked it up and had no idea it was the container. Now I'm having more fun since I've learned to INSPECT EVERYTHING! Especially when they don't tell you "cache container is a peanut butter jar"

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When I started, caching was a bit different than what it is today. There were fewer hides, most of them in my area involved hikes, sometimes to places or trails I had never been. But the urban hides around where I work also brought me to some great locations and I set off to explore.

 

Caching has always been about the location for me. I became a premium member from the start. I soon got a pda to store cache information. If I got three in a day, I was happy. I met a few cachers who became friends. It was all new, what was there not to like?

 

Around my 100th find, I did my first lamp post, and thought the person who hid it was a genius (who would have thought that these things lift up?).

 

Somewhere around this time, I also did my first film can in a seemingly random place on a busy city street. It was surprising rather than frustrating. Why would someone want to bring me to that particular spot?

 

I remember seeing my first WAH HOO on a log about that time, after someone signed a blank log. That also kind of surprised me. why make a big production out of something that is either obvious or a matter of time, geography or circumstances?

 

At around 100 finds, I had yet to have my first encounter with an irate property owner when a cache was placed with less than adequate permission. I had not become bored with parking lots. Extracting a small log sheet in a nano was the last thing that I equated with caching.

 

Some of these things would become more frustrating later on.

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Remember when you just started geocaching? Even before you found your first 100 finds or so. What was the most frustrating thing about finding a geocache?

 

I am going way back in the geocaching time machine to make a GeoSnippits video showing how to find a geocache as a complete noob. Where do you look? What do you look for? Where do you even know where and what to do? What frustrated us the most when we just started out geocaching.

 

As always I go to the experts which is you.. Thanks in advance for all your thoughts and insights.

 

Will let you know when the next GeoSnippits will be out... Will be soon.

 

Thanks as always,

 

-HHH :lol:

 

Not enough time/daylight to get all the caches I wanted! :lol:

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My most frustrating thing early on was when I would post on the forums,

There was someone who would often write in and discount everything I said because

 

I ONLY had 300 caches, then again when

 

I ONLY had 500 caches, and again when

 

I ONLY had 600 caches.

 

So how many caches does it take to know anything?

 

Or does anyone ever know anything?

 

I have no idea what that was about but I found it very frustrating.

 

I haven't gotten that lately, I'm sure I'll get it after this post though.

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Well, since I just started caching 4 months ago and have just over 100 caches, I guess I'm an expert on this one, solitary topic! ;)

 

I'm with the others--working the GPS was the toughest part. And then, to be totally honest, I had a very, very tough time finding my first LPC. I had NO CLUE that the "skirts" on lightposts lifted before I started caching. Hadn't a clue.

 

The ones that still give me trouble are nanos in trees / shrubs / weeds.

 

Oh! A good one that threw me for a LONG time was a cache that was on the top of a fence post, with the metal "cap" hiding it. That would be a great one to mention to newbies. I think 3 of my 114 finds have been of this type.

 

I'll add more if I think of more. I love your Youtube videos, HeadHardHat!

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Activating a travelbug. Didn't understand the secret code thing. Had to contact GS and was told that the number on the envelope was the code. Doh.

 

Losing our second launched tb. Launched May 2003, gone in July 2003. Newbie kid took it and wouldn't respond to my email when I asked if he still had it. ;)

But our first tb is still active - launched Aug 2002 :D

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I'm still fairly new. I figured out the GPSr pretty quickly because I've always used one hiking but what gets me is that I tend to follow it like it's the Star of Bethlehem and then AFTER I find the cache I clue in that there was a trail I could have followed instead of bushwacking through chigger infested weeds.

 

I'm still using paper. I discovered geocaching about a week after I cleaned out my study closet and pitched all the old electronic equipment including my old PDA. BAH

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My most frustrating thing early on was when I would post on the forums,

There was someone who would often write in and discount everything I said because

 

I ONLY had 300 caches, then again when

 

I ONLY had 500 caches, and again when

 

I ONLY had 600 caches.

 

So how many caches does it take to know anything?

 

Or does anyone ever know anything?

 

I have no idea what that was about but I found it very frustrating.

 

I haven't gotten that lately, I'm sure I'll get it after this post though.

We've had similar issues with some CO's when reporting problems.

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caches with clue "email me for a clue" and when you email them, they wouldn't write back[yes i checked spam/junk folders]

 

Or hints that said "no hint.". I think I had come across a few of these with the first 100 caches. At one time I vowed to stop the search if I manually decoded it, but it became less of an issue with a pda.

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For the first few finds it was using the coordinate matching technique to find caches. Like many people I'm not a manual reader. So i opened the box, turned on the GPS and headed out for my first cache find.

 

Coordinate matching is a tedious and frustrating technique, particularly with the older units that didn't have the greatest reception. Coords would be bouncing all over the place.

 

I know a lot of newbies, particularly the ones with automotive units, use this technique today.

 

I was glad when I finally discovered that I could enter coordinates and use the compass navigation screen. It made things so much easier

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I think my frustration was not realizing that there were actually 'great' containers made to look like a stick or mushrooms or an electrical outlet or a nut & bolt. Not to mention the cache containers that some folks made that were really great & blended.

 

Now I love them. They are always a pleasure to find rather than just the 'look at the bottom of the post, its a ...... or heres a spoiler picture.'

 

Another frustration was not knowing the CO, which after awhile you figure out how they think & that in itself, often, is a clue what to look for.

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I'm very new at this. I'm still learning where typical hides are. I figured out really quick that you can't trust the GPS because it doesn't show you exactly where the cache is.

That's why it's frustrating not getting any hints on where the cache is.

 

I've found out that it's smart to use google earth to get an idea of where to look for the cache before you leave the house.

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OK so I haven't logged over 200 yet but the thing that frustrates me is that I'm forever forgetting a pen; I've signed the log with a bit of a stick and some mud before, or leaving a pen from my geobag (which at one point contained over two dozen of the things) in a cache or accidentally taking a pen from a cache and then not realizing it til I've gotten home. That and cloudy days under heavy tree cover. Ticks. I don't react to poison ivy (hurries to find some wood to knock) so that's not a major issue. So, my pen amnesia is an issue. That and not having a cache partner.

 

Edited because I can't type.

Edited by Butterfly Fox
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I'm very new at this. I'm still learning where typical hides are. I figured out really quick that you can't trust the GPS because it doesn't show you exactly where the cache is.

That's why it's frustrating not getting any hints on where the cache is.

 

I've found out that it's smart to use google earth to get an idea of where to look for the cache before you leave the house.

We learned to check the logs even though it "might contain spoilers". Nothing more frustrating that spending a considerable amount of time finding a cache when a check of the logs shows that it is missing or the provided coordinates are off.

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I guess the most frustrating thing was transposing numbers on the Etrex yellow. The cache would be at N39 45.244 and you would put in N39 54.244 on your GPS unit... ARRRGH!!!!!!

 

Yeah, before being able to send coords to a GPSr it was a bit limiting .. punching all those numbers in using the equivalent of a bad joystick. Probably explains why I'd rather just run around with a pile of paper and see how close I was getting to one coordinate set or another.

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The most frustrating thing was driving over 100 miles just to get the only 2 caches that existed.

Once we found them, we would go home and wait for someone to hide one more.....

 

Same here. At that time, there were 3 caches in a 100 mile radius, all of them quite inaccessible for me. I waited two years for the first cache less than 60 miles from home. Even today there are only 5 caches within 60 miles (excluding my caches). A quick grab for me meant leaving home early in the morning, finding the cache in the afternoon and getting back home before midnight. Frustrating was going to find two remote caches (within the 100 mile circle) that required two nights of camping, and DNF'ing both.

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I've got to agree with the others, learning to "read" my GPS was our biggest challenge. In fact, it still can be the biggest challenge some days.

 

I also think most nanos are extremely frustrating but also challenging at the same time. The adrenaline rush you get after searching for one and getting to the poing of almost giving it up and then finding it is awesome. ;)

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Activating a travelbug. Didn't understand the secret code thing. Had to contact GS and was told that the number on the envelope was the code. Doh.

 

Losing our second launched tb. Launched May 2003, gone in July 2003. Newbie kid took it and wouldn't respond to my email when I asked if he still had it. ;)

But our first tb is still active - launched Aug 2002 :D

 

If you still have your "copy tag" (did they issue those back then?) you could actually send a new version out into the world. For that matter, you own the tracking number. You could make up a laminated TB tag with the tracking number and send out the "reincarnation" of your original. I did that once for a TB that went missing for over a year.

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We're still not very experienced, but we're getting better. But back during the first 50 caches, or so, the most frustrating thing for me was that I was too logical when I got to GZ. For example, I would think, "Well, those bushes are maintained by professional landscapers, so no one would hide a cache in there. It'll be gone in two weeks!" Then my hubbie would walk over and pick it right out. Or things like, "No one would put a cache in there because that would be a perfect place for a rattlesnake to be." Then hubbie would take the risk, and pull out the cache. (Come to think of it, that was my most frustrating thing when I first started caching... my husband found all the caches because he thought outside of logic! :rolleyes: ) I think I made too many assumptions that cachers would all be playing "by the book" so to speak, and that just isn't the case!

 

That, and my great disappointment with the degraded swag in the caches. We came out all armed with cool stuff from the dollar stores, and all we found were used theater tickets, marbles, rocks, rubber snakes, etc. Now we have come to expect that, and we usually leave something nice behind for the next person, and just don't take anything. If it truly is garbage (a bubble gum wrapper) we'll clean that out and throw it away.

 

BTW, LOVE your show!! Really helped us when we first got started!! Thank you!

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Finding a cache at a great cache location and it turns out to be a lousy cache container. Sometimes the container wasn't water-tight, so it was filled with water, and the log was a moldy mass of sludge. It was almost like it was a wasted cache. Because of the saturation rule, a decent cache can't be placed anywhere nearby, so the lousy cache is just taking up space.

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Well, since I'm Still a total noob (Yay for noobies :rolleyes::D ) I have some stuff to complain about. I absolutely HATE it when I arrive at the cache location, and after a minute of searching, find the cache, it's just that boring to find a cache without any effort put into it. I don't care about the cache size, or what type of container is, I just despise if it's in a very obvious or easy location.

 

The second thing I hate (kind of like the first) is uncreative cache hiding techniques. Please no more GRC, LPC, and Parking Lot Caches, they have absolutely no purpose to them, I mean, Who really enjoys finding these caches? They're just wet blankets stopping other caches to be in the small park 50 feet from them!.

This has got to stop.

 

Oh, and HHH, I LOVE your videos, ;)B):unsure:

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Well, since I'm Still a total noob (Yay for noobies :rolleyes::D ) I have some stuff to complain about. I absolutely HATE it when I arrive at the cache location, and after a minute of searching, find the cache, it's just that boring to find a cache without any effort put into it. I don't care about the cache size, or what type of container is, I just despise if it's in a very obvious or easy location.

 

The second thing I hate (kind of like the first) is uncreative cache hiding techniques. Please no more GRC, LPC, and Parking Lot Caches, they have absolutely no purpose to them, I mean, Who really enjoys finding these caches? They're just wet blankets stopping other caches to be in the small park 50 feet from them!.

This has got to stop.

 

Oh, and HHH, I LOVE your videos, ;)B):unsure:

Start hitting up the higher difficulty ratings.

You'll have fun!

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I AM new...started a few months ago, but I don't have the time or ability to cache as often as I'd like to...which is kinda all the time. So far, I dislike the lack of creativity the locals have used...exactly how many caches will one hide in the hole of a tree in a cemetery? Also, people putting trash in the cache. (I thought it was cache in trash OUT har har). I bring my children with me and they absolutely LOVE it, and naturally, their favorite part is finding something interesting and finding something strange and awesome to leave behind...so far we've ran across a lot of trash...literally...one cache had a combo in it. A combo...you know, the pizza kind? 'Cept the filling had been sucked out of it. That same one also had a fortune cookie, and a crumpled up shopping list. :/ In others we found ticket stubs from the movie theater, more crumpled papers, food wrappers, dirty, muddy sticks or pieces of plastic that were obviously found nearby on the ground. Why not just sign the log and not leave anything? Leaving trash is rude and it sucks to see the disappointment on my childrens face when they want to leave something they've put a lot of thought into and there's only trash in return. I'm making it a point to only put neat or interesting things in caches, even if what I take out is a candy wrapper covered in ants, and am encouraging my local cachers to do the same.

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The number of caches out there that recieve no care after they are placed. The fact owners completely ignore the fact their cache has gone missing. I suspect there are many that got into this then lost interest and moved on. I now look at logs very carefully before deciding to go after a cache. Too many one stars out there that all of a sudden start to log too many DNF's in a row.

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Driving around figuring out where to park because parking coords were not posted.

 

Caches with incorrect difficulty/terrain ratings (the tendency to give a cache a high difficulty rating if the terrain is difficult).

 

Finding that the cache is in a trash-strewn locale.

 

Unresponsive COs.

 

Brambles! (until I wised up and bought lightweight but tough hiking pants)

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Two things bothered me alot - some things I just learned

 

1. Manually putting in the co-ord numbers with a rocker button - I meant to scroll right and I scrolled up and incremented the current number (without realizing it) which ended up with a useless co-ordinate.

 

2. The arrow jumped around when I got close and I wanted to walk right up to it.

 

3. Forgot to cut it off and tracked myself all over the state.

 

4. convert co-ord in other formats - still frustrated

 

5. Starting to late and it gets dark quicker than I could find the cache.

 

6. Avoiding Briars and PI

 

7. Avoiding Muggles - wasn't will to wait or come back

 

8. Trashed containers

 

9. useless trade items

 

10. Can't get a signal here in the holler!

Edited by GPS-Hermit
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Caches where I don't know what I'm looking for. Except in the case of clever, non-traditional hides (container inside an object, fake objects, etc) I still prefer cache descriptions that tell me it's an ammo can or a key case or a film can.

 

An aversion to moldy logs is probably 2nd.

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