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carleson

What's in your toolbox ?

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Hi could you share some of your geocache toolbox outfit or do you just use your GPS ?

In My toolbox i have:

Gloves, knife, and some extra pencils.

 

/carleson

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Gel Pen, Gerber multitool, magnetic reacher, gloves, map, compass, spare batteries, water and a pare of dry shoes in the trunk of the car.

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For a P&G run it's my GPS, a pen, and some water/snacks. If I'm going in the woods I carry my dayhike pack, which is outfitted from a list of 10 essentials for hiking. A quick google search will turn up many sites with the hiking essentials list. The link given above has some very good information for setting up a pack for caching.

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Tweezers for retrieving nano logs, pens, gloves, hiking stick - for poking (I love the sound of stick hitting polypropelene)and getting me up and down hills, flashlight, camera and swag.

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Hiking staff for poking where hands should not go.

First Aid Kit

Flashlight

Spare Batteries

Emergency Blanket

Pencils

Pens

Spare Log Sheets

Matches

Hat

Garden gloves

Water

Snack

misc - depending on season

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Most of what they said.

 

I also carry;

Pencil sharpener

Spare zip lock bags

'What is Geo-caching' info sheets

Advil

Edited by Tir19 & GreenTerra

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Have a small backpack which is normally very close by just in case there's caches around containing:

- UV black light torch

- a magnetic flashlight

- pocket knife which also doubles as a 4 in 1 screwdriver

- telescopic magnetic pick up tool

- spare batteries

- powerbank for phone/GPS

- gloves for creepy crawlies guarding GC

- various spare logbooks

- spare ziplock bags

- SWAG of many sizes 

- pens and sharpie marker

- hand sanitizer

- muesli bar, snacks, juice and medications for t1d

- notebook for field notes

- measuring tape

- log roller

- cable ties

- tweezers

I think that's everything? 

 

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Unless the cache owner explicitly ask us to bring some special required item (for instance, "bring a AA battery" for electrical gadget caches), all we really need to have on us is a pen ―and even that not always.

As with any activity requiring skill and effort, it is tempting to delude ourselves to buy and carry more "stuff" as if it will somehow compensate for lack of skill and effort. 

When you see an open list of countless items not specific to the activity (like food, water, underware, shoes, driving licence, dentures...), ask yourself if their author are trying very (too) hard to justify a hoarding habit and/or rampant consumerism. In my experience, most of the time, those lists are more indicative of insecurities than actual needs. I have yet to see an ammo can be opened with an emergency blanket or a bison tube found with an antidepressant.

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2 hours ago, alain4s said:

 ... As with any activity requiring skill and effort, it is tempting to delude ourselves to buy and carry more "stuff" as if it will somehow compensate for lack of skill and effort. 
When you see an open list of countless items not specific to the activity (like food, water, underware, shoes, driving licence, dentures...), ask yourself if their author are trying very (too) hard to justify a hoarding habit and/or rampant consumerism. In my experience, most of the time, those lists are more indicative of insecurities than actual needs. I have yet to see an ammo can be opened with an emergency blanket or a bison tube found with an antidepressant.

 

In this hobby, I'd sorta agree if someone does caches that are rarely up-to 2 in terrain.   Some do a bit more for that "Found It"... 

Have even mentioned a few times that "tactical" packs filled with "stuff" is often overkill. 

My altoids tin has most of what's needed to be okay a day or two.  

 - But on just a lengthy walk, in terrain more than a packed, groomed trail,  I will take some necessities JIC my quiet walk is now a medical emergency.

We stay ultra lite when possible, and most I might need in gear, even  for a have-to overnighter fits in a camera bag. 

I thought preparedness was common sense...

 

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Good lists! 

Since I do a lot of woodsy caching I add:

One pill bottle with some: Advil, Ibuprofen, Sudafed

Benadryl stick

Insect repellant

Cammo tape

A few sheets of paper towels

Last two items can be used for cache repair as well as makeshift bandages.

 

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2 hours ago, cerberus1 said:

 

"tactical" packs filled with "stuff" is often overkill. 

 


I agree.

Besides, "tactical" has become the code word for "military-looking toys for kidults fantasizing about being heroic avengers". A pink 5$ compass is considered a girly toy. The same compass but in black with green "digital camo" squares printed on it suddenly becomes a "tactical" compass and it can be sold $25. "Tactical" is a marketing term. It refers, not to some objective property of the product, but to the intended clientele.

 

Quote

But on just a lengthy walk, in terrain more than a packed, groomed trail,  I will take some necessities JIC my quiet walk is now a medical emergency.


I agree, preparedness is just common sense.

I wear a flotation vest when kayaking. And I believe it's a good idea to have a fire extinguisher in the trunk of my car. But, I don't consider neither the life vest nor the fire extinguisher as part of my geocaching gear, the same way I don't consider wearing shoes and underwear while replacing a sink in my kitchen as part of my renovation tools. I never had to wear special underwear to find a geocache nor to administer CPR to a bison tube. I wear warm clothes winter and cool clothes in summer. But I don't consider wearing clothes as part of my geocaching gear. I breath air, drink water and eat food. But I don't consider air, water and food as part of my geocaching kit.

However, I carry a pen that writes on wet paper that I wouldn't carry otherwise to sign logs. 

That said, if someone considers fidget spinners, sandwiches and boil pain relieving ointments as part of their "geocaching" kit, I don't mind if it improves their enjoyment of the game. To each their own. I, personally, wouldn't list those items as geocaching essentials. That's all.

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9 minutes ago, alain4s said:

That said, if someone considers fidget spinners, sandwiches and boil pain relieving ointments as part of their "geocaching" kit, I don't mind if it improves their enjoyment of the game. To each their own. I, personally, wouldn't list those items as geocaching essentials. That's all.

I agree.  There are certain things I bring with me for Hiking, which wouldn't change whether there were caches on the trail or not. For example, bear spray.  If that every becomes something that's needed for geocaching, rather than just hiking, then I'll have to quit caching altogether.

 

The only things in my backpack that are there specifically for geocaching are the multiple writing implements, UV flashlight, folding extendable mirror, and extendable magnet.

 

 

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15 hours ago, alain4s said:


Besides, "tactical" has become the code word for "military-looking toys for kidults fantasizing about being heroic avengers". A pink 5$ compass is considered a girly toy. The same compass but in black with green "digital camo" squares printed on it suddenly becomes a "tactical" compass and it can be sold $25. "Tactical" is a marketing term. It refers, not to some objective property of the product, but to the intended clientele.
 

 Oh yes ! We call it 'tacticool' ,  it's apparently worth at least a 50% mark-up in price . Madness. Pay extra for stuff you can't find again when you drop it ...

 

I'll agree that acquiring  'stuff' is far less use than acquiring skills and experience, that goes for any and every outdoor activity, but 'stuff' is seductive and sitting at home trawling websites for things to buy to be 'properly equipped' for those activities sucks the unwary down into a black hole of consumerism: if only I had that top of the range GPS/tacticool torch/backpack festooned with straps and pouches/whatever, then I'd have fewer DNFs ...  be a better cacher ... be the envy of other cachers ...   Spending to cover any eventuality and own the best of everything can become an end in itself, victims become an utterly prepared cacher who doesn't actually get outside and cache that much ...

 

The most important item in my caching toolbox is my cumulative experience, and it will incorporate the time and effort I give to learn new stuff in the future (I hope) from novel and interesting caches, hides and COs. I've not yet got to.

 

Having said that, because I am the sort of person who likes to be prepared,  and everyone knows can be relied on to provide paracetamol/paper tissue/ sticking plaster when those things are suddenly needed , I carry such things 99% of the time: including a compact first aid kit ,  Swiss Army Knife, tiny single AAA cell torch , length of duct tape, 2m of cord , cereal bar, couple of folded sheets of rite in the rain paper ,  zebra mini mechanical pencil . When out in the countryside walking (which is where I mostly cache) I add suitable clothing and kit for the terrain, season and trip length in a suitable sized bag or rucsac, nothing to do with caching there, it's  all dictated by outdoor comfort and survival.

 

I almost always have a camera of one kind or another with me in normal life too, again that's not cache trip specific but taking photos along the way increases my enjoyment of a caching walk, and sometimes comes in handy to give muggles a reason why I'm stood at a particular spot ... a DSLR gives muggles the impression of serious photographer , as well as taking decent quality photos. A caching boat trip gets the waterproof go pro. instead.

 

Actual cache specific kit items which are added to whatever bag or rucsac or jacket pocket is convenient are

1) GPS 

2) Spare set of AA batteries for GPS

3) Pen ( a lovely but cheap uni-ball powertank , which has pressurised ink and writes at any angle or on wet stuff- like a space pen but you don't cry if you lose the cheap powertank ...) I choose a red one as it is easier to spot when I drop it , and the distinctive colour of ink helps ID my tiny scrawl on nano logs etc.

4) Spare pen - usually a mini sharpie

5) Spare spare pen - usually a cheap retractable biro

6) Tweezers for annoyingly tiny logs

7) Cheap keyring compass - not for navigation, that's Darwin Award territory - for help finding magnetic nanos when I drop the dratted things in long grass.

8) A few micro log strips and press seal bags to fit then, small bit of green plastic coated garden wire, small sandwich bag . For minor cache repair, the plastic bag is for removing and transporting soggy rubbish.sweets etc for disposal without them messing up my pocket.

9) If I'll not be wearing or carrying gloves because of the weather I take a single gardening glove to protect my right hand against nettle stings etc

10) A few signature items and small swaps plus any TBs I am moving on. TBs are in a securely zipped pocket used only for them:  I dropped one accidentally once from a trouser pocket and was mortified, took me a return visit, a day's hunt and 100mile round trip to find the thing. Never again !

11) A7 wirebound notebook for doing calculations for multi cache finals.

12) Possibly the most unusual item I carry specifically for caching : a tiny MP3 recorder that looks like a thumb drive , into which I can dictate my thoughts and cache comments as I walk, so my logs can be full and accurate.

 

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