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After all the horror stories I've been reading about lost travel bugs, I was tickled pink at how near 'picture perfect' my own first travel bug experience was.


We've seen plenty of examples of what not to do with travel bugs. I thought I would share one that, in my opinion, was handled very well. icon_smile.gif


I recently released three travel bugs into the system. (And, since this was prior to having checked out this forum, I didn't have the foresight to include any kind of extra 'instruction card' to help ensure that they were being logged on the site, or being kept on track with their goals). One of those, Eensy Weensy Spider was quickly picked up by a nearby cacher, who mentioned (in both the cache log and the TB log) that he was planning to travel to LA in a few weeks, and would be able to get EWS very close to one of the places listed in his goals.


Although there was no activity on this traveller for over three weeks, I wan't worried at all, since I knew what the person's gameplan was. Then, upon placing EWS into a new cache, he clearly stated in the log its ultimate goal was, and asked for help in continuing him in that direction. (And yes, I realize that many people deliberately avoid reading the logs in case there are spoilers...but it's still nice that every chance was made for people to be aware of the specific goals for the traveler.)


Then today, I got an e-mail with a picture of EWS next to a water fountain in the DTW airport...again, in perfect line with his goals.


My hat's off to DrewG, for setting a perfect example of how to play the travel bug game. icon_biggrin.gif

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If/when you do release a travel bug, I'll be curious to hear how your experience goes.


We've had a long streak of less than idea weather here, so none of my bugs has moved since I posted this entry. But now that Spring has arrived (not that you'd know it from the snow and below freezing temperatures outside at the moment), I'm hoping geocaching activities in general will start picking up soon in my area.

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Please don't let the TB horror stories discourage you. I've released eight so far and am only frustrated with one. The stories some of them collect are a lot of fun to tell, like the one of mine that almost got ate by a bear! Although frustrating at times they are also a lot of fun.

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I've released 7. Six are still in play; The seventh was washed away in a flash flood over the weekend. All four that I've found so far are still in play. So 10 of 11 I've had contact with are still around.


Don't let the missing TB discussions disuade you from playing. I've got a higher percentage of my TB's still in the game (6/7 - 86%) than caches (20/24 - 83%)!



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Ironically, the very next person to handle my EWS travel bug took it right PAST the hoped for destination, and dropped it in another cache several hundred miles away. That in itself is ok, since going to various states is kind of cool, and it's not any further from the goal than before...just on the opposite side of it, two states away from the last drop off.


But, the part that bugs me is that, in his log of the new cache, the cacher included the 'secret logging number' of my bug, after I'd gone to the effort to erase it from any pictures I'd posted.


I immediately left a note to the person, thanking him for giving EWS a lift, and asking if he could please modify his cache log to include the TBxxxx tracking number rather than the tag number.


It's now going on three days, and the log hasn't been updated, nor have I gotten a response to my e-mail. icon_frown.gif


To give the person the benefit of the doubt (perhaps they don't check their e-mail very often), I thought I'd watch to see when he logs another geocache find, and see if he updates his previous log then.


Other than being a little irked that people don't read/follow the posted instructions for travel bugs, I'm not too worried, since I've never heard of any actual cases of people posting false logs on travel bugs whose numbers get blazened into plain view in logs or pictures. But I'd still prefer not to have the number on public display if I have any say.


(If the person doesn't log a find by the end of the weekend, do you think I should send him another e-mail; or e-mail the cache owners, and ask for their support; or just let it go and not worry about it?)

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It looks like 3 days is a good magic number for waiting for responses.


I got a nice note from the above-mentioned geocacher, apologizing for the mistake, and mentioning that it was his first travel bug experience. I checked the cache in question, and he has made the requested change. icon_smile.gif


As luck would have it, though, there still seems to be a problem. On the bug page, the last entry shows it as having been placed in the cache; but at the top it still shows "in the hands of"...and there's no travel bug link on the cache page, even though the TB entry log links to it.


Any idea why it's not showing up, and how I get it fixed?

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With a little work and patience, the above-mentioned logging problems were corrected, and EWS has been travelling smoothly ever since. He's since met his first goal, and has had several pictures posted of his adventures. Each leg of his travels has been at least 200 miles, and he's averaging only a week or so at each transition.


Thanks to a chain of thoughtful and helpful people, I've been having tons of fun watching the Eensy Weensy Spider, as he travels about on his quest to climb 'water spouts'. (I especially cracked up at the log that mentions, "as soon as we closed up the cache, down came the rain and washed us and the spider out." icon_biggrin.gif)



"I may be slow, but at least I'm sweet!" 196939_800.jpg

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