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Combatting "CO Burnout"


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I'm looking for some creative suggestions (other than the obligatory "take a break" solution) from other cache owners on how they combat "inconsiderate cacher syndrome" and the various other problems that seem to intersect on that general "CO Burnout" venn diagram.

 

To be clear, I'm not talking about losing the will to "maintain caches", I'm fine with maintaining what I have... I'm referring to losing the desire to design and deploy any new "creative cache hides", because of the increasingly nagging inner-voice that says "it'll just get mangled anyway, don't bother"...

 

The most recent "inconsiderate cacher" example that sent me over the edge, happened to an excellent cache (not mine) that integrated the use of a combination lock: A previous finder forgot the combo after they opened the lock and so they, apparently, couldn't be bothered to figure it back out to secure the mechanism properly... Instead, they put the cache back, unlocked, and also didn't bother to report a problem to the CO or in the logs. (I checked)

 

I mean seriously. What the heck is wrong with people?

 

I guess I'm beginning to understand why some people just throw out film cans and call it a day. Nobody cares when THOSE get damaged or not put away properly. :huh:

 

Anyway, returning to point. What do other CO's do to combat this feeling?

Edited by daschpeeg
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Anyway, returning to point. What do other CO's do to combat this feeling?

I was going to say, "organise an event", but I see you've done that already.

 

How about an earthcache? My first is in the queue right now and I'm excitedexcitedexcited ! :rolleyes:

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::nodding:: know what ya mean. I don't think there's any way to make people care if they don't already. I guess you can take solace in the knowledge that actually most people do. Most cachers do appreciate a fun challenging cache and most will take whatever steps are needed to try to preserve it for the next finder. It's that one, singular, heck-bent-for-the-numbers cacher that will drive you over the edge with a self centered attitude and leave a cache open to the weather or hide it somewhere more convenient for him. But.. you aren't doing it that one, you're doing it for the pleasure of everyone else, right? Try to find your place of Zen. It's still fun, isn't it?

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A previous finder forgot the combo after they opened the lock and so they, apparently, couldn't be bothered to figure it back out

So, you need the combination to unlock and to re-lock? That's strange.

 

The combination locks I have seen just click closed and lock without needing to enter the code.

 

Either get one of these Master brand locks, or write the code inside the cache. Make it easier to do it right and maybe they will.

 

Or, just find some other universe where people always do what you want.

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I cache in the same area as the original poster (OP) to this thread. I can tell you that he puts out some of the most creative, and sometimes the most difficult, caches in the area. He puts enormous amounts of time and effort into the creation of each hide. He is also very good at checking caches after DNF's (which he gets all the time). In other words, he's not the kind of cacher you want to see burnout. I'd bet I've found at least five of his caches in some sort of disarray due to a previous cacher not taking care with the cache.

 

I've also seen the cache he's referring to. It's so easy to put back together a chimpanzee could do it, and if not, there are included instructions. It's an extremely well-done cache that is quickly accumulating 'Favorite' points.

 

So how to prevent "burnout" when cachers inevitably perform these stupid tricks? I'm not sure I have any good advice. I'm pretty sure Groundspeak would not approve of applying electrical shock therapy to selected cachers.laugh.gif

 

All I can suggest is the usual "blah, blah"...focus on the positive and accept the negative. But that is pretty thin gruel to somebody who puts in so many hours to create and maintain special caches.

 

Maybe I will put in that Feedback recommendation for approval of electroshock prods.

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A previous finder forgot the combo after they opened the lock and so they, apparently, couldn't be bothered to figure it back out

So, you need the combination to unlock and to re-lock? That's strange.

 

The combination locks I have seen just click closed and lock without needing to enter the code.

 

Either get one of these Master brand locks, or write the code inside the cache. Make it easier to do it right and maybe they will.

 

Or, just find some other universe where people always do what you want.

I'm sure he was just giving one example.

 

As to your last comment... please wait until you hide some caches before you make comments like that, OK? That wasn't very kind.

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A previous finder forgot the combo after they opened the lock and so they, apparently, couldn't be bothered to figure it back out

So, you need the combination to unlock and to re-lock? That's strange.

 

The combination locks I have seen just click closed and lock without needing to enter the code.

 

Either get one of these Master brand locks, or write the code inside the cache. Make it easier to do it right and maybe they will.

 

Or, just find some other universe where people always do what you want.

 

As I stated in that post, that particular example wasn't my cache. I just happened to witness it. And I believe it WAS a master lock. The type with the 4 black "nub dials" (for the lack of a better term) with numbers and letters on them.

 

And thank you for mature "zinger". I was looking for constructive answers.

Edited by daschpeeg
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I would not suggest continuing this battle so long as you lack the calling.

Perhaps you could focus your creative juices in some other direction?

For your next few hides, stick to basic containers, such as a beloved ammo can, but place them in areas that require a lot of effort, skills or special equipment to get to, such as nipple deep in a swamp or way up your favorite creek. Hopefully, you won't run afoul of someone too dumb to deal with an ammo can. :lol: because you are a creative person, eventually you will feel the craving to build some more unique container hides. Don't fight the calling. That path leads to madness. :lol:

 

Post script: Thank you for taking such pride in your hides!

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I cache in the same area as the original poster (OP) to this thread. I can tell you that he puts out some of the most creative, and sometimes the most difficult, caches in the area. He puts enormous amounts of time and effort into the creation of each hide. He is also very good at checking caches after DNF's (which he gets all the time). In other words, he's not the kind of cacher you want to see burnout. I'd bet I've found at least five of his caches in some sort of disarray due to a previous cacher not taking care with the cache.

 

Stop making me blush. It's unbefitting of a conquering alien. :laughing: Thanks though.

 

 

I've also seen the cache he's referring to. It's so easy to put back together a chimpanzee could do it, and if not, there are included instructions. It's an extremely well-done cache that is quickly accumulating 'Favorite' points.

 

And it deserves it. I just hope it lasts...

 

So how to prevent "burnout" when cachers inevitably perform these stupid tricks? I'm not sure I have any good advice. I'm pretty sure Groundspeak would not approve of applying electrical shock therapy to selected cachers.

 

Perhaps a Groundspeak-branded antidepressive / lackey coin? ;)

 

All I can suggest is the usual "blah, blah"...focus on the positive and accept the negative. But that is pretty thin gruel to somebody who puts in so many hours to create and maintain special caches.

 

If it were a 1% cacher problem that would be much easier to cope with. Lately, it feels like a good 20-30% problem, but maybe I'm just too emotionally wrapped around-the-axle at the moment to see clearly.

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I cache in the same area as the original poster (OP) to this thread. I can tell you that he puts out some of the most creative, and sometimes the most difficult, caches in the area. He puts enormous amounts of time and effort into the creation of each hide. He is also very good at checking caches after DNF's (which he gets all the time). In other words, he's not the kind of cacher you want to see burnout.

 

This is a very positive testimony from someone who would know. This is what it's all about. Sounds like you're doing a good job. :)

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What do other CO's do

I know what you mean about cache fragility. I had a cool container (worked on it for a couple of weeks), made from a plastic lawn ornament. It seemed too breakable, so I reinforced it (hadn't placed it yet). I accidentally broke it last week.

 

I have three new containers placed, but without activating them. They’ve been in place for 2 months. Just knowing muggles won’t immediately find them is a stress-reliever. And these caches will never be as peaceful as they are now.

 

But I do go check my hides when logs are posted. There's always a little maintenance, putting it back just so. One cache's camo got pretty destroyed (like, immediately), but fortunately, that didn't cause serious issues. I don't know if I'll ever bring myself to place one that's not... well... foolproof.

Edited by kunarion
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From my personal experience, I place my more creative caches in more remote locations. By remote, I mean you are going to have to go for a 3-5 km round trip hike through a forest with varying terrain half an hour's drive north of the city . This tends to encourage those cachers who are in this activity more for the experience than the numbers to go for these caches. From the logs I receive, they appreciate the effort gone into the cache and they themselves take the extra effort to make sure everything goes back the way it should be. If anything goes amiss with the cache, then I would attribute it to an honest mistake and not negligence.

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From my personal experience, I place my more creative caches in more remote locations. By remote, I mean you are going to have to go for a 3-5 km round trip hike through a forest with varying terrain half an hour's drive north of the city . This tends to encourage those cachers who are in this activity more for the experience than the numbers to go for these caches. From the logs I receive, they appreciate the effort gone into the cache and they themselves take the extra effort to make sure everything goes back the way it should be. If anything goes amiss with the cache, then I would attribute it to an honest mistake and not negligence.

 

It's a great idea and certainly very practical for many folks. Unfortunately, in my case there are some "body issues" at work that limit my ability to place hides in such a manner. If I could, I would.

Edited by daschpeeg
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The most creative caches I have found haven't been in necessarily remote or hard to get to places but easier to get to places that maybe weren't as well traveled or explored because people don't know they are there (rural or on a lesser traveled route). But most areas where I cache are not traveled well since they're in the boonies.

 

I don't own any caches at this point (probably better as I don't have time to maintain them). I can't give any advice for burn out in general.

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I've got this to look forward to. :sad: I've just spent two days making the item that will house my first cache, and before putting it out I was having reservations about how flimsy the latching mechanism was and whether it is going to stand up to the rigours of the average cacher. I've put notes in the cache itself and in the listing asking any finders to be sure that the hiding place is closed properly after putting the cache back. I've also restricted the listing to premium members only in the hope that cachers who are prepared to pay a little might be a little more serious about this hobby, and therefore more respectful of the caching ethos. But I just know my cache is going to get mangled.

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So how to prevent "burnout" when cachers inevitably perform these stupid tricks? I'm not sure I have any good advice. I'm pretty sure Groundspeak would not approve of applying electrical shock therapy to selected cachers.laugh.gif

 

Maybe I will put in that Feedback recommendation for approval of electroshock prods.

 

Please! Can I?!? I don't mind maintaining my caches, but I'd rather be hunting caches! Nice mile hike in. (Not numbers cachers...) But, hey, peeps. If you hide the cache with the large rock in front, like you found it, the bears wouldn't chew on it!

How to handle it? My philosophy of life is: "Oh, well". Ya does what ya has to does and work from there. But it is frustrating.

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Having finders properly replace the container can be a real problem. After a container goes missing twice I usually switch to a "free" container, e.g. a camouflaged pill bottle to replace one that I've spent money on. Another possible solution is to tether the container with a string or plastic tie that blends in. This is often done around where I live due to flooding. It also lets muggles know that it's not a piece of trash to be removed and deters removal or misplacement. Perhaps if you hide containers only in areas where the cacher is not likely to be seen by others they will not feel as rushed to just quickly toss the container back anywhere and hurry out of there without properly securing it. I know I prefer finding caches where there is little likelyhood of being observed by others. These suggestions won't foil the "completely irresponsible" finder, but may help in some cases.

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300+ hides going on 10 years and I've not experienced this burnout. I've had some instances of lids not being secured properly and a few caches that have migrated from their original hiding places, as well as a few that have gone missing, and one plastic container smashed by a rock, but overall I've had surprisingly few issues caused by finders.

 

I guess one reason is that I'm not particularly "creative" with my containers. There isn't much people can do to mess them up beyond leaving the lid off or not re-hiding them properly.

 

Another possibility is that most of my hides do not appeal to "power cachers", meaning those whose goal is to accumulate many finds as quickly as possible. I think that in their haste to +1 the current cache and move on to the next, they're responsible for a lot of the damage to creative caches.

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So...the suggestions for combating "CO Burnout" so far are (heavily paraphrased):

 

  • It's a stage and everybody gets bummed out at times. This too shall pass.
  • Take on different activities such as hosting an event to mix it up.
  • It's inevitable that good caches will get trashed. Let go and treat it as opportunity to do something new or different.
  • Lower your expectation of others and find a point of enjoyment that doesn't rely on other's actions.
  • Focus on the cachers that appreciate the CO's effort and treat the caches with care, they are the majority.
  • Switch to different kinds of caches that require lower maintenance.
  • Place caches where finds are fewer and muggles are rare.
  • Focus on 'sturdy' caches.
  • Place the more creative caches in more remote areas.
  • Put out caches that aren't so involved and more 'disposable' (Ed. selfish note: Noooooo!!!!! Please Noooooo!!!!! tongue.gif

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Alien Dood, I both appreciate your post and feel your pain. And that's saying something considering I've not placed a single cache out there. That doesn't stop me from having an opinion though. :-) I've started and stopped this "hobby" a few times. I'm not in it for the numbers so I haven't always logged my hits or misses, although with this "handle" I'm logging everything, find or not.

 

You are the type hider I'd like to see more of, but based on what I see out there I'm not surprised that I don't see more of "your" type caches. It takes a lot of effort and it sucks when that effort is rewarded with indifference. I personally think there are more "don't really care folks" caching now than the stoked cachers.

 

If for nothing else, keep putting the interesting ones out there for people like me. We'll appreciate it, even though some doofus is gonna come along and mess it up.

 

Regards,

 

Mike

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Anyway, returning to point. What do other CO's do to combat this feeling?

I was going to say, "organise an event", but I see you've done that already.

 

How about an earthcache? My first is in the queue right now and I'm excitedexcitedexcited ! :rolleyes:

+1

 

Think about the fun gerological sites you've visited and see if you can creat an earthcache. It's been very rewarding for me.

Edited by TerraViators
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I know how you feel when you take the time and money to create a new hide and a Low Quality Cacher(Locust) comes by and violates your cache. I've had my caches broken, not closed and just not put back the way I intended the cache placement to be. It really made me mad at times. I almost stopped hiding caches but I have fun building and hiding caches. Now I tend to hide caches on hiking trails or offroad trails. Not as many finders but a lot less problems. I don't build the creative caches anymore, just creative camo on ammocans and mayo containers. Good luck.

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I know how you feel when you take the time and money to create a new hide and a Low Quality Cacher(Locust) comes by and violates your cache. I've had my caches broken, not closed and just not put back the way I intended the cache placement to be. It really made me mad at times. I almost stopped hiding caches but I have fun building and hiding caches. Now I tend to hide caches on hiking trails or offroad trails. Not as many finders but a lot less problems. I don't build the creative caches anymore, just creative camo on ammocans and mayo containers. Good luck.

 

That's the first time I've heard "Low Quality Cacher(Locust)". I'll have to remember that. :-)

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I've got creative caches that have taken up to five years to put together during free time snatched here and there. A large part of that time is spent in trying to figure out how to best place the cache. I may reject five or six hiding spots-ex. that tree in the park with the cavity perfect for stashing a cache in but also too near foot traffic that passing kids will want to poke around in it , or that place I thought was perfect near the ballfield only to realize that muggles scour that area looking for foul balls or under a log near a camping spot that may end up in the campfire, etc.

I also put all kinds of (specific) instructions with the cache and on the cache page. Guess I sound a little bossy, ex. instructions on both the lid of the container and on the cache page stating to please replace lid tightly on container and rehide it so that it cannot be seen or a note on the cache page stating how this cache container is placed in a delicate hiding spot, please be careful not to tear up the hiding spot when looking for the cache. Even so many people just go with the coordinates and may not even read these instructions so I have to look for a spot that people can search around in and not do too much damage. I don't have too many containers disappear. I also check on my caches when I'm in the area where they are and correct problems like exposed caches before they are found out by others.

Actually I feel more of a let down by the fewer number of people willing to do my puzzle caches than by the few containers that have been muggled, but I put out lots of regular hides too that people are more apt to find so I can get more feedback.

I enjoy the local events and recommend that you attend one or two if you haven't ever been to one. You get to meet the people who have found your creative caches and hear the positive feedback. That gives me a great boost and I have made a lot of caching friends.

I don't put a lot of money into my containers- usually just recycled plastic jars, tupperware from rummage sales or $1 Walmart matchholders and the occasional lock and lock- all tested for leakiness. The swag is rummage sale items (I've found toys still in wrappers), dollar store purchases, close out items from sale bins and maybe once a year I'll get a gift certificate for a few dollars from a local icecream palor that I purchase using those annoying pennies I've found in my caches and coins I've picked up while hiking plus a couple more dollars thrown in.

I really do like the creative process for my puzzle caches, more than finding them. They are great fun to make and most people, once they try them, tend to like them.

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I'm looking for some creative suggestions (other than the obligatory "take a break" solution) from other cache owners on how they combat "inconsiderate cacher syndrome" and the various other problems that seem to intersect on that general "CO Burnout" venn diagram.

 

To be clear, I'm not talking about losing the will to "maintain caches", I'm fine with maintaining what I have... I'm referring to losing the desire to design and deploy any new "creative cache hides", because of the increasingly nagging inner-voice that says "it'll just get mangled anyway, don't bother"...

 

The most recent "inconsiderate cacher" example that sent me over the edge, happened to an excellent cache (not mine) that integrated the use of a combination lock: A previous finder forgot the combo after they opened the lock and so they, apparently, couldn't be bothered to figure it back out to secure the mechanism properly... Instead, they put the cache back, unlocked, and also didn't bother to report a problem to the CO or in the logs. (I checked)

 

I mean seriously. What the heck is wrong with people?

 

I guess I'm beginning to understand why some people just throw out film cans and call it a day. Nobody cares when THOSE get damaged or not put away properly. :huh:

 

Anyway, returning to point. What do other CO's do to combat this feeling?

 

Is it the Enigma#1 cache? Your online log is hilarious. :D:laughing: Looks like you're both a creative CO and a creative finder.

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Is it the Enigma#1 cache? Your online log is hilarious. :D:laughing: Looks like you're both a creative CO and a creative finder.

 

I can confirm that. Visit his favorite list and read his logs for more entertainment. For CO's that put extra effort into their caches, Daschpeeg will put extra effort into his logs. He'll even create photoshopped pictures and add them to the logs. He's also very good about letting other cachers know of caches he's come across that he thinks they'll like.

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know what you mean. gets old on the light skirts and magnet key holders. I am working on a new one and have been for three weeks. even though I am a newbie I still see the problems we face. I also like caches where you can find and trade something. makes it more inticing to find. I only have two hides and three more to put out. I put a lot of thought in each one and put them in areas where there aren't many close by. downside is people tend to go where they can find a lot on there route. mine has only been found about 4 times. gas prices probably keep them from driving out of there way for just 1 hide.

Edited by rangerbull
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<troll alert image snipped>

 

What the heck? Was there a post before this one that has been deleted before I saw it, or are you just randomly posting this image all over the place?

 

And yeah, the "sock signal" was cute the first couple of dozen times I saw it. It's getting old.

 

Yes, there was. You didn't miss much.

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