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How Many Caches Did You Find...

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I am new to geocaching and just found my first one earlier this week. I know there are no firm "rules", but I would like to know approximately how many caches a beginner should find before placing any. I am doing all I can (such as reading, watching videos, playing around with my GPS and such), and learning all I can about geocaching before I place any. I personally don't think I should place any caches until I find at least 25 of them. Is this a reasonable self-imposed limit on my part? About how many caches did you find before you planted your first one?

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I don't think placing any arbitrary number, even if it's self imposed will really work.


Someone could find 25 micro LPC's and think that's all there is to this world. Someone else could find 25 matchstick case caches hung in pine trees and do the same thing....see where I'm going with this.


If you're going to place an arbitrary number of cache finds on yourself before placing one, then make sure you deliberately seek a wide variety of cache sizes and difficulty/terrain ranges.


Me, I guess I was one of the most fortunate - I started caching as the new partner of a well established cacher. I got to go on maintenance runs and was encouraged to find the cache as practice. On day long caching runs we did micro's in the trees, LPC, guardrail caches and hikes far into the forest - just because!! I learned by doing, quite quickly, which types of caches I like to find (any type/size) and where I like to find them (anywhere but in urban areas). I place caches based on those likes and dislikes.

Edited by Team MacKenzie
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58 finds, almost two months. Six years later, it's still there.

You're ready to hide a cache when you understand the guidelines, and understand what makes a good cache. Found one today (a first cache) that was a M&Ms tube in a ziplock in a bush in a park. Surprised it's still there. :antenna: Or the four for a buck food container under a rock...

Water tight and durable are desired attributes.

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about 50 for us, then we placed one very close to home so we could keep an eye on it when it needed maintenance.


we also wanted to make sure it wasn't going to be a 1 season activity. we made sure we liked it and were going to keep doing it. glad i placed it close to home, it's been muggled, tree fell over and a few other things.

Edited by brucered
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I can't remember our actual number, but I think it was quite a few. Then, like a previous poster, we placed the first close enough to keep an eye on it easily....

edit to add - found our first cache Jan 3/2007, placed first hide(s) June 2008. That was when we felt ready.

Edited by popokiiti
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I have a friend who placed his around 100. I placed mine around 200.


Waiting till at least 25 is a good idea to give you some experience and be more confident that you will stick with geocaching for awhile. Keep an eye out when finding caches not only what kind you like and dislike but also what kind of containers and placements do and don't work (damaged, waterlogged, etc). When you do place it, be open to feedback from your finders and be sure your coordinates are good.


That you ask this question in the first place rather than just rushing off and placing a cache as soon as the whim struck you is a good sign.

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I started planning my first hide after finding about 50 caches, but I'd found about 85 caches before it was published.


I don't think there's any number that is the "right" number of caches to find before hiding a cache. I think the important thing is to find enough different kinds of caches to know what kinds of caches you enjoy, what kind of cache you want to maintain for the long term, and what kind of cache you'd like to be known for when you meet other cachers in person at local events.

Edited by niraD
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I had around 30 when I placed my first cache.

You are on the right track if you are doing the reading about how to place a cache, especially taking multiple readings of the coordinates and getting that part right. Also, once you place one, be willing to do good maintenance checks on a regular basis. I stop by and visit mine just to view the logs and make sure they are replaced correctly, etc. So far, mine are being well received by those who log the find.

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We're over 500 finds in 4+ months and counting. We haven't planted one yet.


Why so long? We live in cache dense area which has a lot of LPC's and tree hides. We decided we wanted to do more interesting hides. By interesting we mean unique containers, better camo, or extra fun. We DON'T need another film canister in the bushes in our area.


We're in the process of purchasing cantainers, camo supplies and scouting locations. The hardest part is finding good locations which fit our plans.


We're really looking forward to the day when the caches go 'live'. :antenna:

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Over 800 since 2006 and 1/2 cache.


Well, I've not hidden any yet, but I did unofficially adopt one (obviously orphaned) when I replaced the broken Coolwhip container with a very secure large-mouth thermous I happened to have in the van. And that cache is still there.


I've got three ammo boxes, two bison tubes, one magnetic nano, a fake pinecone, and a tree branch container which I'll set out in the wild ... someday. Someday.


My biggest concern? That they not be lame!

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I've got 24 finds so far in a few weeks of caching. I probably won't hide any until this spring. By then I will probably have 100-200 finds and have tried some multi's, puzzles and 3 star difficulties. I just want to get a feel for what the most interesting and respected caches are. I also live in an urban area with way too many boring film canisters in a palm tree. I've seen some really cool physical camoflauged containers online and some neat ideas for themes or placements. I really want to plant one out in a large park, not in a busy area. So the cachers can bring their kids, make all the noise they need to make finding it, relax and take the time to look at the log, sort through the trade items, etc. I have kids so I want a great kid-friendly, but not TOO easy cache, to start out with. I am thinking of doing one walking distance from my kids' elementary school and starting a geocaching club at school...maybe next year~ :santa:

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I found around 80 beforehand but hiding was my main interest in the hobby. They have been pretty well received.

I did a lot of research on these forums and other places first though. Honestly, you don't have to find a hundred caches to know enough about the hobby.

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...I would like to know approximately how many caches a beginner should find before placing any....


I found one, then I placed 1. it's a good hide. It's still active.


The simple truth is there are things you can only learn by being a cache owner. Finding them will only teach you what other people do. It won't help you be creative with your own hides. As a matter of fact it may get in the way of creative hides. I've noticed regions have styles they use. They have styles because people monkey see monkey do and left behind their own ideas in the process.

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Hid my first after about 10 finds, don't see as it matters as long as you read the guidelines, it's proving a popular cache!

I've hidden a few now and enjoy this as much as finding.

My advice would be contact a local hider and ask them to help with your first if you are unsure, there are some amazing ideas for hides on this forum.

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None. I hid a cache the night I created an account and found my first one the next day. That cache is still active. I often hear the argument that new cachers should not hide until after they are familiar with the game. My cache has never been DNF'd and I've never had a problem with it. I use a good contianer, put in a log and pen, swag, cache note and an "official geocache" label on the container.

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I've found 69 over two months and hidden none so far. I have an idea of where I would like to hide one very close to my home, but although the area is an abandoned victorian industrial site, I expect I will have to get permission from landowners, so that has somewhat put me off so far.

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After every 250 finds we make a cache ourselves.

When you make a (new cache) it can be anything, but only after having found lots of different types you'll really know what "anything" can be.

So try to find all kinds of types and especially find the ones that people have described in their logs as: this was really a great cache, this is the best one ever etc. etc.

It's easy to make a cache, but it's not easy to make a special cache that people will remember and will talk about to others!

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I like the variety of answers!


We'll be placing our first soon, I hope ... I think I'm around 40+ finds or so now, been going since spring. But we also letterbox, and so we have that extra experience thrown in. I want to do our first plant very soon because it's going to be our tenth anniversary, and since it's geocaching's tenth as well, that seemed pretty cool. So I want to plant it in a significant spot. Just need to double-check the coordinates with my husband's gps app to compare, and also trying to seek the park ranger for permission (nothing there states that it's required, and there are many others along the same trails, but we want to be thorough). My biggest concern is that it might overlap some other unseen cache (not Premium members yet) ... but if so, we can adjust. The timing is too cool to pass up. :laughing:


We (me and my kids) planted our first letterbox pretty soon after our first few finds, we were that excited. (We live in a cache-dense area, but not so many letterboxes ... we've had modest success but those who have found ours seemed to like them pretty well. One is nearby in a park, one is in a library. We had a blast making them and planning clues.)


At the very least, I'm jotting down ideas for places or themes or containers as I get them, so I'll have that to work with. :) And I do have a goal of beating my in-laws ... they have a ton more finds than us as cachers, and they're the ones that got me interested in this ... but they've never gotten around to hiding one. So I want to be first so they can find it! LOL.

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Today I have 10. I'm going to place one tomorrow. I'd have more,but between work (military) and taking the kids caching, it slows us down a bit. As of now I only plan on placing one cache, and there's another one that I will maintain that is in a park that we go to all the time. I want to place a cahce where I am because it is close to home and a place I am in all the time, that is unknown to people. I think they will be amazed at the peace they will find while they are in there.

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I hid my first cache when I had found about 30 or so, and I have had nothing but compliments in the logs. One cacher with over 4000 finds even stated my first cache hidden was in his top five nationwide. So don't be intimidated by those with a mega number of finds saying that only those who have vast experience can do a good cache, thats just so much piffle. Follow the rules, have fun, and enjoy the hobby, it is not rocket science.

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We're at more than 160 finds and still haven't hidden one yet. B)


Had we not asked for permission from our city park board, we'd have hidden our first a month ago. They temporarily refused permission while they developed an official policy. That seems to finally be happening, so we should have it hidden soon.


We'd like to get our feet wet with one that's walking distance from home before we place more further away.

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I had about a hundred.


I am glad I waited until then.


To me it seems there were points where I seemed to really "get it". 100 caches was the first of those points.


By then I had seen a good variety of caches and had a good idea of what was going on.


I've seen too many placed by bare beginners that are in baggies, or garbage bags, or are in really bad locations.


Once you've been caching a while you end up thinking you've seen it all, and want to do something really special, rather than just throwing one out for the number.


and only after a while do you know what something special is.




PS and after a while you are really sure you are going to stick with the game long enough to provide maintenance for those caches

Edited by Sol seaker
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Welcome to the sport........I think a good self-imposed limit is 100 finds. I didn't hide my first cache until I had 130. I think it's good to fully understand what makes a good hide before placing your first. When a new cache is released, and if I don't recognize the cachers name, I look to see how many finds they have. If it's less than 50 I generally wont attempt a FTF run because I've already looked for caches that weren't even hidden yet, or the coordinates are way off, or when I get there it's a stupid pringles can with black electricians tape as camo shoved in the crotch of a tree. Very poor quality caches is my point. I would recommend waiting until you've been exposed to what makes a good hide and container.

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We have found 62 and have not placed one yet. We have adopted one that was placed in 2001 (the owner had moved away and was moving even farther). I personally feel that we could make a good hide now, we just haven't found the right place yet. The key is knowing what makes a "good hide" and by that I don't just mean longevity, or difficulty. There are many things to be considered (more than I feel like typing). HERE is a very good article that is already typed that will give a lot of information on how to determine if you are ready.

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My first hide was before my first official find. However its one of those spiffy watching you type caches. Great for meeting people when you work from home. Second, I waited until I had about 25 done, so I could get a feel for how things work better, so I could hide it better. Working on getting permission so I can do a truly evil 3rd cache, which will come in around my 50 mark.

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After a full year of cacheing, we feel like we owe it to the community to add some caches to the mix.

And, after a year, we know what we value in a cache (creativity + location +maintenence) and hope that we can make our caches worth others time. I don’t yet know if we’ll pull that off, but we’ll try.


Like lots of areas, In Illinois there is a big difference between the seasons - the bushwhaking and mosquitoes get fierce in the summer, the leaves are tough in the fall, ice/snow is a constant threat in the winter, and we get floods in the winter/spring. We have put prospective cache containers under water in the sink for days to see which will maintain log integrity, and also put them in the freezer to see what will happen.


I’m glad that we know that before placing our first hide.


I’m encouraged that lots of folks have posted great successes on their early hides, and I look forward to hunting theirs if I can. A good cache is a good cache, regardless of who placed it.




P.S. We also want to learn the perspective of a C.O. so we can post better logs and better help with maintenance on caches we find.


We started the hobby in late fall, and after our 100th find around Christmas we felt that we were ready to place our first hide.

But we didn't do it - and I'm glad that we didn't.

But that doesn't disparage other folks who did - it all comes down to talent. We needed to do more research, that's all.

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I am new to geocaching and just found my first one earlier this week. I know there are no firm "rules", but I would like to know approximately how many caches a beginner should find before placing any. I am doing all I can (such as reading, watching videos, playing around with my GPS and such), and learning all I can about geocaching before I place any. I personally don't think I should place any caches until I find at least 25 of them. Is this a reasonable self-imposed limit on my part? About how many caches did you find before you planted your first one?


I think the reason people are advised to find a few caches first is so they can get a good feel for how they are placed and what they normally contain...to encounter them in a variety of terrains, sizes, and difficulties. Then you are better armed to create and place your own cache. It also helps you discover if you actually enjoy the sport enough to take responsibility for maintaining your own cache. They don't want "flash in the pan" type folks placing a cache and then never bothering to read log entries or maintain the cache over several years - potentially for decades!


If you want to self-impose a minimum of 25 caches found before placing your own cache, that is up to you. Personally, I was much too impatient to wait even that long. I think I placed my first one after having found fewer than 10 caches. It just depends on your readiness and your commitment level to the sport. After finding a few caches with my son, I quickly realized this was a wonderful, wholesome family activity that could satisfy several needs; my inner-nerd, and spending time with my children. I instantly fell in love with it and I know myself well-enough to know that I'll never abandon the sport or the caches I have placed. If you are not convinced that geocaching is something you can honestly see yourself doing for the next few years...I would not place a cache.


Great posts and responses!

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I am new to geocaching and just found my first one earlier this week. I know there are no firm "rules", but I would like to know approximately how many caches a beginner should find before placing any. I am doing all I can (such as reading, watching videos, playing around with my GPS and such), and learning all I can about geocaching before I place any. I personally don't think I should place any caches until I find at least 25 of them. Is this a reasonable self-imposed limit on my part? About how many caches did you find before you planted your first one?


I just started caching about a 2 weeks go and I'm up to 25.. I haven't planned anything yet, but I am going to wait so i can see what others have done such as types of containers/caches, style of hiding, placements ect.. once i feel that I have seen quite a few I will plan out my caches.. Right now it is a learn from the best and plan for future caches. Thankx to Tour Sport for getting me into this, I am soo obsessed with this sport!!

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