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JL_HSTRE

Earthcache Permission

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Per the Earthcache Guidelines...

 

8. All EarthCache sites developed must have prior approval of the landowners before submission (depending on local country laws and customs). The developed text should be sent to the landholder/manager for approval. When applicable the cache owner must have written permission from the owner or appropriate land-managing agency. The name, title and contact details of the person that authorized this EarthCache MUST be given at the time of submission in a "Reviewer Note". If permission is not required, please provide the reason, i.e. public road pull-off in a "Reviewer Note". If information about permission is not provided, the submission may not be published.

 

What are some other examples of locations where permission would not be required? Would a free public beach access not require permission?

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Just tell them where it is, I think it depends on their mood. I have an earthcache in a state park (Caches are OK) and it was approved with no questions, but I had to fight for my earthcache on the sidewalk of Main St!

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I had one (my only EC) in a City and County reserve published with no permission required. I had another in a State and County Park that was first denied because the reviewer thought it was federal land, when I corrected the reviewer I was then told I needed the State's permission. Same reviewer for both caches. The State and County park has at least a dozen traditional caches with no permission required, so not sure why EC's should be more difficult. Also not sure why the distinction between a State Park and a City/County Park....cities and counties are basically a subcomponent of the state system. Anyway, I decided not to bother. Too bad too as I thought it was a cool EC, but I can just plant a traditional there that educates cachers on the same EC facts without the added hurdle of seeking permission from politicians/administrative officers.

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When I corrected the reviewer I was then told I needed the State's permission.

 

In California, state parks allow geocaching provided they are not more than three feet from the trail, and further than 300 feet from a sensitive water feature. Virtual caches are allowed under the same guidelines, and in almost all designated areas where traditional caching is not permitted. Since the policies are fully developed, and include earthcaching, I would think that you have permission as long as your earthcache conforms to this policy.

 

Nevertheless, when I developed an earthcache in a state park, I contacted the chief ranger. He doubled checked the proposed location and provided some helpful information on the geology of the area, so it was a simple process.

 

When I contacted a regional open space land manager, not too far from where you live, I was told that they permit geocaching within 250 feet of a trail, so I need not bother asking. In such cases, it would seem redundant for earthcache reviewers to ask for more.

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Not sure about Stateside - but here in the Middle East - and in South Africa - I always try and place my EC's on publically acessible land with 24/7/365 access - e.g. a lay-bye on the side of a public road, a desert all access area, a public park etc.

 

These do not require permission for people to access - so no need for permission for an EC. I did get permission for the SA Geological Society to use a book of theirs and a geological trail around Johannesburg for a series of caches however - not the landowner - but the people who designed the geological trail.

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I placed one on an experimental forest unit of a National Forest nearby. It had a written policy posted online that virtual caches are preferred and do not require permission. I posted that link to the reviewer, and no questions were asked.

 

I needed verbal permission (via the telephone) from a county parks official for an EC at a county park.

 

I got written (e-mail) permission from an official of a private land conservancy agency to put an EC on one of their preserves with a publicly-accessible trail (constructed and maintained by local Boy Scouts).

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Maybe I am just dense but why would an Earthcache anywhere on PUBLIC property need a permission? Most all the guidelines stated relate to placing a physical item. Since nothing physically is being left behind there should not be any permission required.

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Maybe I am just dense but why would an Earthcache anywhere on PUBLIC property need a permission? Most all the guidelines stated relate to placing a physical item. Since nothing physically is being left behind there should not be any permission required.

 

Really it is pretty simple. It is about ensuring that bringing people to the site does not cause a conflict with the management of that site - many sites have multiple management issues, such as the protection of rare and endangered fauna, the protection of archeological artifacts and the protection of a geological phenomenon. That protection has been in many cases, obscurity (i.e. because people don't know about it, they don't visit). By placing an EarthCache we may cause a management issue and so the land manager needs to make sure that the EarthCache fits into their management plan.

 

On a second level, seeking permission has raised the positive profile of caching in the eyes of land managers, opening the way of all types of geocaching on those lands.

 

We realize that it seems a step in the process that to many seems superfluous, but it is as important as developing great logging tasks!

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Really it is pretty simple. It is about ensuring that bringing people to the site does not cause a conflict with the management of that site - many sites have multiple management issues, such as the protection of rare and endangered fauna, the protection of archeological artifacts and the protection of a geological phenomenon. That protection has been in many cases, obscurity (i.e. because people don't know about it, they don't visit). By placing an EarthCache we may cause a management issue and so the land manager needs to make sure that the EarthCache fits into their management plan.

 

On a second level, seeking permission has raised the positive profile of caching in the eyes of land managers, opening the way of all types of geocaching on those lands.

 

We realize that it seems a step in the process that to many seems superfluous, but it is as important as developing great logging tasks!

 

Well I am glad I read this as I too wondered about this and now reading it, it makes sense. This would be great to add as part of the requirements of an Earthcache when seeking permission and why.

I had talked to many others who said it isn't Physical so why do you need permission, I didn't need it when I placed my Earthcache.

 

Phil

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I have a couple of EarthCaches in urban areas which can be done from the sidewalk. These did not require permission. The EarthCaches that I have which are in parks, were all placed with permission of the park. I've never had any trouble with getting permission from the park managers to place an EarthCache - they are usually quite excited about it. Sometimes they have additional comments that they want added to the cache page (park hours, stay on trails, no dogs, etc.), but that's about it. It has always been a positive experience for me.

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I also have both situations. Ones that require little or no permission since you are doing exactly what you are supposed to do as set out by the property managers. I also have one in Niagara Falls that required permission and a permit that is put up for review after a set term. Either way it really opens your eyes to the care and concern put forward by the EC team of reviewers. By establishing these good relationships we can proceed with our hobby (essentially) worry free. Something that the traditional caches struggle with much more often.

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Sorry, but once again, unless it it private property, permission for an EC on public property (parks, etc) is or at least should be unnecessary! Our parks benefit from our work and we shouldn't ask anyone to go to a prohibited area so if it is legal, why the permission? I am told by some lawmakers that there is no way permission can be denied!

I am all for developing relationships and keeping in touch with the Park managers, but that can be done without dealing with the red tape and inefficiencies of our government. We belong to several "Friends of the...(insert park name)" and that's how to create good will, not asking permission for cachers to go where they are invited to go in the first place! Thanks. :)

P.S. I am sorry we are into this again because all arguments have been made at least a hundred times before with the same result!

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Back in my University days, I took a really interesting course on park management. As part of that course, we spent a week in Banff National Park talking to Park Rangers, researchers, etc. Banff is an interesting case. It is Canada's first National Park and has hordes of visitors every year. The Trans-Canada Highway runs right through the middle of the Park. They have quite the balancing act to do to try to keep the Park pristine and enjoyable for future generations, while allowing all the visitors that want to see it now.

 

Yes, the Parks are open to the public, but the Park Rangers need to be able to manage how and where the public travel while they are in the Park. There are safety issues to consider, endangered species, and all sorts of other factors. Giving them the heads up about placing a cache there allows them to check if there are any issues with having additional visitors to that area.

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Back in my University days, I took a really interesting course on park management. As part of that course, we spent a week in Banff National Park talking to Park Rangers, researchers, etc. Banff is an interesting case. It is Canada's first National Park and has hordes of visitors every year. The Trans-Canada Highway runs right through the middle of the Park. They have quite the balancing act to do to try to keep the Park pristine and enjoyable for future generations, while allowing all the visitors that want to see it now.

 

Yes, the Parks are open to the public, but the Park Rangers need to be able to manage how and where the public travel while they are in the Park. There are safety issues to consider, endangered species, and all sorts of other factors. Giving them the heads up about placing a cache there allows them to check if there are any issues with having additional visitors to that area.

 

"Giving them a heads up", no problem. Crawling on your hands and knees to ask permission and waiting for months for a reply, problem!

As I said, the assumption is the cache is placed in a public, not an off limits area. Most parks do a good job educating visitors as to which is which. If a cache developer is dumb or arrogant enough to 'place' an earthcache is an off limits area, he or she ought to be banned from the park or from earthcaching!

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"Giving them a heads up", no problem. Crawling on your hands and knees to ask permission and waiting for months for a reply, problem!

As I said, the assumption is the cache is placed in a public, not an off limits area. Most parks do a good job educating visitors as to which is which. If a cache developer is dumb or arrogant enough to 'place' an earthcache is an off limits area, he or she ought to be banned from the park or from earthcaching!

 

Why is it a problem if you have to wait months for a reply - it's an Earthcache - not a matter of life or death. As others have stated, obtaining permission raises positive awareness of our activities - if permission is denied then hopefully it is not because of red tape but because of the sensitive nature of the area.

 

How does one know if they are placing an Earthcache in an off limits area in a wilderness setting? A municipal park is one thing - but what about provincial, state or national parks that have a trail system? Just because there is a trail doesn't meant that it is fine to go wandering 100 m off of it - the trail is there for a reason - to ensure you don't wander off into an off-limit area. You may not see those wildflowers that are considered a species at risk until it is too late.

 

Finally, just because an area may deemed to be used by the public, doesn't mean that we have unfettered access.

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Unfettered access? I have no idea what that means or if it has ever, ever been granted to anyone!

If it is open to the public, it's open to the public. I have never heard of a State or National Park which is open to the public which doesn't communicate with that same public where is can go! If you are not allowed there, they will tell you one way or another i.e. signs, trail markers, brochures or trained guard dogs with big teeth and no love for any other human other than their handler!

And yes, months is too long to wait. No, it's not life or death and that's not much of an argument or excuse taking excessive amounts of time to respond.

Let's move out of the realm of theory to an actual case. I will not mention the park to preserve someone's dignity, but it took me 7 months to get approval and for most of that 7 months, there was no response! We are volunteers and 'friends of this park' and they have asked me to do other ECs. I even have an award from the same park, but 7 months? I have been asked to be a speaker at one of their regional conferences, but 7 months? Sorry and maybe you are in your twenties and 7 months is nothing to you but to someone who in in his upper sixties, 7 months is a lot of time! No not life and death, but some of us have more and some of us have less time.

Just like so many in government, some forget who they really work for! Technically speaking, unless it's another guideline that has changed but not communicated, you must have visited the site within the last couple of months!

Heck at the rate some government bureaucrats respond, your sedimentary rock may have metamorphosed into something else so then a rewrite becomes necessary. My apology, I couldn't that..........the devil made me do it! :P

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I have worked for a government agency, and sadly I know how long it can take to make decisions. There is always just so much red tape. You are right that 7 months is too long to respond to a request from the public. However, that is an issue with that particular Park Manager, it is not a reason to say that permission should not be necessary in any park.

 

If you run into a situation where you can't get a park to respond, I can recommend a few things. First of all, you should wait at least two weeks before bugging them again, but then send them a friendly note to see if they can update you on the status. This might help to bump your request up the priority list. If you are not getting any response through email, try calling the office. You will likely just get through to an administrative person, but they can be very helpful in trying to track down that boss to get a decision. Be sure to get their name, and ask when they think you might be able to expect a response. If you don't hear anything back by then, call them back to see if you can get a status update.

 

Try not to bug them too often (ie, don't call every day), but if you feel that a reasonable amount of time has passed since they last communicated with you, then call them again. Always be friendly and courteous, but as they say - the sqeaky wheel gets the grease.

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I have worked for a government agency, and sadly I know how long it can take to make decisions. There is always just so much red tape. You are right that 7 months is too long to respond to a request from the public. However, that is an issue with that particular Park Manager, it is not a reason to say that permission should not be necessary in any park.

 

If you run into a situation where you can't get a park to respond, I can recommend a few things. First of all, you should wait at least two weeks before bugging them again, but then send them a friendly note to see if they can update you on the status. This might help to bump your request up the priority list. If you are not getting any response through email, try calling the office. You will likely just get through to an administrative person, but they can be very helpful in trying to track down that boss to get a decision. Be sure to get their name, and ask when they think you might be able to expect a response. If you don't hear anything back by then, call them back to see if you can get a status update.

 

Try not to bug them too often (ie, don't call every day), but if you feel that a reasonable amount of time has passed since they last communicated with you, then call them again. Always be friendly and courteous, but as they say - the sqeaky wheel gets the grease.

 

+1

 

This is exactly how I handled my Niagara falls park cache. It took about 4 months and a few gentle reminders, but in the end they were happ to do it and I was glad to have my permit approved.

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Heck at the rate some government bureaucrats respond, your sedimentary rock may have metamorphosed into something else so then a rewrite becomes necessary. My apology, I couldn't that..........the devil made me do it! :P

I'm been keeping in touch with rangers to review 20 or so locations for the past 2 years. The request has changed hands and I'm assured that my request is always in their mind. But there is always something more pressing on thier agenda, loss of staff, forest fires, avalanches, building fires, rock slides. It puts my request in perspective. Though I would appreciate return calls and/or e-mails.

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I'm been keeping in touch with rangers to review 20 or so locations for the past 2 years. The request has changed hands and I'm assured that my request is always in their mind. But there is always something more pressing on thier agenda, loss of staff, forest fires, avalanches, building fires, rock slides. It puts my request in perspective. Though I would appreciate return calls and/or e-mails.

 

Honestly, I started getting that from some parks. So I made it simple for them, I sent them my write up, asked for a review and approval. Within a matter of days, I had their holy blessing. I even went as far as to create the cache, save it, and show them at a meeting. Now, they know when I send one up, it will only take a minute of their time.

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<snip>Sorry and maybe you are in your twenties and 7 months is nothing to you but to someone who in in his upper sixties, 7 months is a lot of time! No not life and death, but some of us have more and some of us have less time.<snip>

 

30 years ago I was in my twenties.

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My earthcache in Grand Canyon National Park took 8 months. It involved multiple emails, clarifications, and I had to write the entire earthcache so they could determine the effect on the park, despite my reassurances that the entire thing could be done from established trails.

 

I don't know if I'll every do another one, it was so much work.

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My earthcache in Grand Canyon National Park took 8 months. It involved multiple emails, clarifications, and I had to write the entire earthcache so they could determine the effect on the park, despite my reassurances that the entire thing could be done from established trails.

 

I don't know if I'll every do another one, it was so much work.

 

I am sad to hear that it was such a challenge, but I noticed that you created a 5/5 for your first EC. Pretty ambitious don't you think? You alsoo were in a Park, were permissions can be a little more difficult to come by. Glad to see you were successful, I am sure that the finders of that cache appreciate your hard work.

 

It sounded like your difficulty was in the write up, unless you want to share a little about the permission issues.

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My earthcache in Grand Canyon National Park took 8 months. It involved multiple emails, clarifications, and I had to write the entire earthcache so they could determine the effect on the park, despite my reassurances that the entire thing could be done from established trails.

 

I don't know if I'll every do another one, it was so much work.

 

I am sad to hear that it was such a challenge, but I noticed that you created a 5/5 for your first EC. Pretty ambitious don't you think? You alsoo were in a Park, were permissions can be a little more difficult to come by. Glad to see you were successful, I am sure that the finders of that cache appreciate your hard work.

 

It sounded like your difficulty was in the write up, unless you want to share a little about the permission issues.

Here's the long sad story.

 

I hiked the canyon early October. Within a week of returning, I mailed a letter to Grand Canyon National Park (GCNP)discussing my plans and requesting permission. It was a full month before I got the first reply. It was a very nice lady from the Flagstaff office, and I communicated with her. Essentially, I explained what I wanted to do, then reexplained, then explained again. It was interesting when she told me that part of the problem was that it was GCNPs first earthcache: I never got a reply when I pointed out that there were 2 just on the North Rim alone. I finally got permission in May. The lady with whom I communicated didn't have the authority to grant me permission, she was the go between, and the person in question would be out, or hadn't looked at it, etc. Apparently the park service is a government agency :D

 

When the process was bogging down, I decided to contact a reviewer and see if my cache would be publishable. Contacting them was near-impossible: there is no contact email. I finally wrote up the cache page, and submitted it. When the reviewer looked at it, he gave me guidance which allowed me to work with him while waiting for GCNP approval. It would often take the reviewer 3-4 weeks to respond to my notes: I would both put them as reviewer notes on the cache page, and copy and paste it in an email. I suspect there aren't many earthcache reviewers.

 

One difficulty I encountered was that in January the rules changed for earthcaches, and there was no grandfathering of existing caches or previously submitted caches. This made my cache extra difficult.

 

Bottom line: Yes I did get it published, and yes I was ambitious to do such a difficult and involved cache, but it was 100 times the work of my most difficult traditional, puzzle, or multicache.

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Bottom line: Yes I did get it published, and yes I was ambitious to do such a difficult and involved cache, but it was 100 times the work of my most difficult traditional, puzzle, or multicache.

 

I am glad you were able to overcome it all. But know this, all that work makes for some very appreciative logs and some very cool photos. It isn't a coincidence that some of the most favourited caches are ECs. I am on EC #7 and the great logs are almost coming in on a daily basis, it definitely pays you back!!

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My earthcache in Grand Canyon National Park took 8 months. It involved multiple emails, clarifications, and I had to write the entire earthcache so they could determine the effect on the park, despite my reassurances that the entire thing could be done from established trails.

 

I don't know if I'll every do another one, it was so much work.

 

Unfortunately your situation is not much different from others dealing with the NPS. Where is that so called endorsement between the NPS and GSA? Somebody (like one of the PTB) ought to make contact with the highest levels of the NPS and remind them of their endorsement or renew it or something! It, the old endorsement, obviously isn't worth the paper it's printed on.

If you (GSA, GS, etc.) still insist on permission to have people use our public National Parks (find earthcaches) why not grease the skids a little bit? I don't know if I can still find it or not, but that old letter between the NPS and GSA hasn't helped one bit!

Sorry, even though we are recognized volunteers with the NPS and have received awards from them, it hasn't helped with EC approvals. For now, it just isn't worth it. Often, we must deal with the Feds and cannot avoid it, but with regard to earthcaching and the NPS, it's like watching mud turn to shale! So to shale with it! (Sorry, if you get it, the devil made me do it!) :ph34r:

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My earthcache in Grand Canyon National Park took 8 months. It involved multiple emails, clarifications, and I had to write the entire earthcache so they could determine the effect on the park, despite my reassurances that the entire thing could be done from established trails.

 

I don't know if I'll every do another one, it was so much work.

 

Unfortunately your situation is not much different from others dealing with the NPS. Where is that so called endorsement between the NPS and GSA? Somebody (like one of the PTB) ought to make contact with the highest levels of the NPS and remind them of their endorsement or renew it or something! It, the old endorsement, obviously isn't worth the paper it's printed on.

If you (GSA, GS, etc.) still insist on permission to have people use our public National Parks (find earthcaches) why not grease the skids a little bit? I don't know if I can still find it or not, but that old letter between the NPS and GSA hasn't helped one bit!

Sorry, even though we are recognized volunteers with the NPS and have received awards from them, it hasn't helped with EC approvals. For now, it just isn't worth it. Often, we must deal with the Feds and cannot avoid it, but with regard to earthcaching and the NPS, it's like watching mud turn to shale! So to shale with it! (Sorry, if you get it, the devil made me do it!) :ph34r:

It all depends on the park. I wouldn't take your experience with the Grand Canyon as typical. My experience with Yosemite was similar, but now they are working quite well with the additional ones I've proposed. My submittals to Yellowstone, Pinncales, Zion, Point Reyes, Wupatki, and Wanut Canyon were very smooth and took only a few weeks. In addition, there are many other locations where the approval is not so arduous.

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Th 'skids' and constantly being greased....but the NPS system is decentralized so that these sort of decisions are made locally. That said, the situation is 500% better than 5 years ago, and I hope that trend continues.

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I hiked the canyon early October. Within a week of returning, I mailed a letter to Grand Canyon National Park (GCNP)discussing my plans and requesting permission. It was a full month before I got the first reply. It was a very nice lady from the Flagstaff office, and I communicated with her. Essentially, I explained what I wanted to do, then reexplained, then explained again. It was interesting when she told me that part of the problem was that it was GCNPs first earthcache: I never got a reply when I pointed out that there were 2 just on the North Rim alone. I finally got permission in May. The lady with whom I communicated didn't have the authority to grant me permission, she was the go between, and the person in question would be out, or hadn't looked at it, etc. Apparently the park service is a government agency :D

 

 

I am glad you stuck with the process. It took me five months to get my three earthcaches at the North Rim approved. My contact person told me (correctly) that these were the first earthcaches for the park and they wanted to be sure they were doing it right. She asked me some interesting questions, including the relationship of earthcaches to the existing virtuals. The submissions were reviewed by a park geologist. She wanted some information included to protect the park and make sure that visitors would be safe. It took awhile but I appreciated the park's interest and their help. For me, it was a good process. I had hoped that I would clear the way for future earthcaches, but it seems that you had to start over and the process took even longer!

 

That seems to sometimes be the case. When I proposed an earthcache to the Pt. Reyes National Seashore, I thought it would be very fast because the park already had existing earthcaches, including one of my own. It turned out that there had been a change of administration and the new people knew nothing about earthcaching, so I had to start from the beginning. They made a point of telling me that traditional caching would never be approved on their watch, but thought earthcaching was a great program.

 

In other NPS jurisdictions in my area, I have developed a good working relation with park officials, the resident geologist, and the trails supervisor. Those caches sometimes took awhile, up to a couple of months, but they had helpful suggestions and I felt we were working together as a team -- which is far better than simply submitting a cache that park officials would have no knowledge about. So the permission process has worked well for me.

Edited by mulvaney

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I hiked the canyon early October. Within a week of returning, I mailed a letter to Grand Canyon National Park (GCNP)discussing my plans and requesting permission. It was a full month before I got the first reply. It was a very nice lady from the Flagstaff office, and I communicated with her. Essentially, I explained what I wanted to do, then reexplained, then explained again. It was interesting when she told me that part of the problem was that it was GCNPs first earthcache: I never got a reply when I pointed out that there were 2 just on the North Rim alone. I finally got permission in May. The lady with whom I communicated didn't have the authority to grant me permission, she was the go between, and the person in question would be out, or hadn't looked at it, etc. Apparently the park service is a government agency :D

 

 

I am glad you stuck with the process. It took me five months to get my three earthcaches at the North Rim approved. My contact person told me (correctly) that these were the first earthcaches for the park and they wanted to be sure they were doing it right. She asked me some interesting questions, including the relationship of earthcaches to the existing virtuals. The submissions were reviewed by a park geologist. She wanted some information included to protect the park and make sure that visitors would be safe. It took awhile but I appreciated the park's interest and their help. For me, it was a good process. I had hoped that I would clear the way for future earthcaches, but it seems that you had to start over and the process took even longer!

 

That seems to sometimes be the case. When I proposed an earthcache to the Pt. Reyes National Seashore, I thought it would be very fast because the park already had existing earthcaches, including one of my own. It turned out that there had been a change of administration and the new people knew nothing about earthcaching, so I had to start from the beginning. They made a point of telling me that traditional caching would never be approved on their watch, but thought earthcaching was a great program.

 

In other NPS jurisdictions in my area, I have developed a good working relation with park officials, the resident geologist, and the trails supervisor. Those caches sometimes took awhile, up to a couple of months, but they had helpful suggestions and I felt we were working together as a team -- which is far better than simply submitting a cache that park officials would have no knowledge about. So the permission process has worked well for me.

 

You are absolutely correct - working with NPS and other land managers as a team to develop and EarthCache is the best way to go. Rolling up with a complete submission and then asking them to approve it...without taking the effort to walk them through the process of what an EarthCache is can seem to lengthen the process.

 

Remember that you are talking to people who may, in the first instance, have a very negative opinion of geocaching and so the relationship needs to be nurtured so they understand the huge benefits an EarthCache can bring to their park.

 

In many cases, a thoughtful EarthCache developer working with Park people have paved the way for other cache types to be used in parks. :)

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I guess permission only applies when it is convenient. This cache was placed on 1/1/2011 and has 22 logs even though it is supposed to be disabled. After 6 1/2 months and no resolution of the lack of Permission, don't you think it is time to archive it? Or is just disabling it, the default way to approve the cache, so people can continue to log it and never need to get the permission issue corrected? <_<

 

John

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I guess permission only applies when it is convenient. This cache was placed on 1/1/2011 and has 22 logs even though it is supposed to be disabled. After 6 1/2 months and no resolution of the lack of Permission, don't you think it is time to archive it? Or is just disabling it, the default way to approve the cache, so people can continue to log it and never need to get the permission issue corrected? <_<

 

John

Could you clarify which cache you are referring to?

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We are in the process of working withe the tribe, it is proving to be a long slow process. There are a number of issues at play. Land ownership (tribe), and personal property (as the motel has a lease).

 

The decision was to disable it while the process was ongoing, and the cache owners other caches were not listed and have been on hold. I have not chose to archive it but leave it disabled. If people wish to log it, it is up to the cache owner. Hopefully a resolution will be forthcoming. I have heard a few things in my contacts from different individuals, one stating it was ok, and another that it was not. However neither felt they could speak for the tribe. Passed the info on, and into a void.

 

So it is disabled. Hopefully a resolution can be reached.

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I guess permission only applies when it is convenient. This cache was placed on 1/1/2011 and has 22 logs even though it is supposed to be disabled. After 6 1/2 months and no resolution of the lack of Permission, don't you think it is time to archive it? Or is just disabling it, the default way to approve the cache, so people can continue to log it and never need to get the permission issue corrected? <_<

 

John

Could you clarify which cache you are referring to?

 

The one that the link (http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_details.aspx?guid=52613b40-b4ae-4a2b-af70-5d1c64cee7c5) goes to.

 

No permission given or implied, but you can still "Log it". Nice work, huh?

 

John

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I have not chose to archive it but leave it disabled. If people wish to log it, it is up to the cache owner. So it is disabled. Hopefully a resolution can be reached.

 

There is no permission granted for the Navajo Reservation, so You pass the buck to the cache owner saying it is up to him to decide if it can be logged. What cache owner will say no you can't log it? They submitted the cache so people would visit it.

 

Slick, real slick. :o

 

John

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We are in the process of working withe the tribe, it is proving to be a long slow process. There are a number of issues at play. Land ownership (tribe), and personal property (as the motel has a lease).

 

The decision was to disable it while the process was ongoing, and the cache owners other caches were not listed and have been on hold.

 

It seemed a little strange that this one was disabled but the other published earthcache on Navajo land left active -- but I was curious about it and appreciate the update.

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I have not chose to archive it but leave it disabled. If people wish to log it, it is up to the cache owner. So it is disabled. Hopefully a resolution can be reached.

 

There is no permission granted for the Navajo Reservation, so You pass the buck to the cache owner saying it is up to him to decide if it can be logged. What cache owner will say no you can't log it? They submitted the cache so people would visit it.

 

Slick, real slick. :o

 

John

 

The people that lease the property have given the ok. The contact with the reservation I had right after was both positive and negative. Some saying on leased property that would be ok. The other saying they were not sure so they would say no. Neither felt as if it were in their prerogative to make on official statement for the tribe.

The cache owner has been in contact with me, wondering if it should be archived, or enabled. It has been left that way until we can get a final answer. If the cache owner gets tired of complaints, or waiting for a definitive answer it will be archived. I will archive it if it looks like that is the direction talks are going, or enable it if it feels ok. He has been patient through this process, and I thank him for that.

 

We are being cautious because this could effect other caches, and caching on the reservation. Living down there I am sure you are aware of the slow bureaucracy that some tribes have. No one wants to go on record and get in trouble, only toss their thoughts on the matter.

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I created three EarthCaches for a state park. All required permission (as we know), one of the three needed additional permissions due to it being in a sensitive area. After about a year one of the three (the one requiring additional permission) needed to be archived as the area had become unsafe. The parks folks knew about the listings and where they were located so they were able to contact the owner of the listing which took folks to a place which became unsafe. Permission in this case was instrumental in keeping folks from going to what became an unsafe area. I know folks get lazy about permissions for many traditionals out there, and I sometimes grumble about HAVING to get permission, but in the long run gaining permission could just save folks from getting injured.

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Curious what is meant by unsafe

There was a wooden series of steps to the top of the feature....they were deemed unsafe and in need of repair...eventually they will be rebuilt.

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Curious what is meant by unsafe

There was a wooden series of steps to the top of the feature....they were deemed unsafe and in need of repair...eventually they will be rebuilt.

 

So, did the park close the stairs to everyone or just have the cache archived. If they closed the stairs while repairing them, then there was no need to archive the cache.

 

John

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Curious what is meant by unsafe

There was a wooden series of steps to the top of the feature....they were deemed unsafe and in need of repair...eventually they will be rebuilt.

 

So, did the park close the stairs to everyone or just have the cache archived. If they closed the stairs while repairing them, then there was no need to archive the cache.

 

John

The stairs were made off limits to all while the park itself has remained open. They asked that the listing be archived and their wishes were respected. Once the stairs are rebuilt I have no doubt that a new listing will take it's place. Coincidentally, I have an EC which has been disabled more over the past three years than it has been active due to two flood of the century events...one of which caused the emptying of an entire lake when it burst it's banks. This EC is also in a special "get two sets of permissions" location. Here they have not asked for an archive while the park is closed for rebuilding (trails and boardwalks destroyed) so the cache remains disabled.

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Well Lostby7 thanks for the specific example of how the permission arrangement creates a positive outcome for cachers and land management. This is the kind of stuff that helps people see that we care about these locations, that we aren't just a bunch of kooks running around in the woods looking to do whatever we want.

Edited by Flintstone5611

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

For those interested in the caches in question:

 

*Roche-A-Cri: Grotesque Towers GC1NGD2 was archived due to issue with the stairs...and yes I know this could have been rewritten to accommodate for the stair issue but that would have weakened the point of the EarthCache and was not the desire of the park staff.

 

*Parfrey's Glen State Natural Area (No. 1) GC1A9G5. This one has been closed twice due to unusual flooding events.

 

Permission and cooperation has helped to keep people safe and informed.

Edited by Lostby7

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

 

I 'get' the issue...I just wholeheartedly disagree with you.

 

I'll use the old "frisbee rule" to illustrate my position...it's ludicrous to have to ask permission to geocache (or visit a set of waypoints) where I can play frisbee or engage in any other activity the general public does without asking prior permission.

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

For those interested in the caches in question:

 

*Roche-A-Cri: Grotesque Towers GC1NGD2 was archived due to issue with the stairs...and yes I know this could have been rewritten to accommodate for the stair issue but that would have weakened the point of the EarthCache and was not the desire of the park staff.

 

*Parfrey's Glen State Natural Area (No. 1) GC1A9G5. This one has been closed twice due to unusual flooding events.

 

Permission and cooperation has helped to keep people safe and informed.

 

With or without the earthcache there, the people were protected because the stairs were closed to the public. The permission for the cache did nothing to protect anyone since the area is now closed to the public.

 

John

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

For those interested in the caches in question:

 

*Roche-A-Cri: Grotesque Towers GC1NGD2 was archived due to issue with the stairs...and yes I know this could have been rewritten to accommodate for the stair issue but that would have weakened the point of the EarthCache and was not the desire of the park staff.

 

*Parfrey's Glen State Natural Area (No. 1) GC1A9G5. This one has been closed twice due to unusual flooding events.

 

Permission and cooperation has helped to keep people safe and informed.

 

With or without the earthcache there, the people were protected because the stairs were closed to the public. The permission for the cache did nothing to protect anyone since the area is now closed to the public.

 

John

I would disagree. The permission (therefore informing the powers of the precise location of the cache) allowed them to get the cache disabled quickly. In the case of the stairs, people go around obstacles all the time. People break rules to find caches...sad but true; how many cemetery caches are found after dark? Trespassing?

 

In the case of the second example where the park is actually closed, there are other trails into the (closed) park. My getting permission there allowed them to know that there was a cache in their now closed and potentially hazardous park. Disabling the listing discourages folks from trying to break the rules to log the cache...and trust me there have been no logs while the cache has been disabled...back-dated or otherwise...

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

 

I 'get' the issue...I just wholeheartedly disagree with you.

 

I'll use the old "frisbee rule" to illustrate my position...it's ludicrous to have to ask permission to geocache (or visit a set of waypoints) where I can play frisbee or engage in any other activity the general public does without asking prior permission.

 

That is weird. I thought that there are rangers and personnel in most parks to ensure that everything is status quo. Aren't they a reference to the parks permission for you to be there? Wouldn't they stop you if you went somewhere off limits?

 

Besides the fact that an earth science webpage supported by a business (namely GS) isn't really "any other activity" as you can easily realize. Just stop thinking about your own situation and start to realize that you stand as an ambassador to Groundspeak for representing their company in your own personal endeavors. If it goes bad you and GS look bad. The next person to attempt it will still be representing GS, since we are approaching under the same umbrella of Earthcaching.

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I am so pleased that some people 'get' the issue - and I agree, the examples are great.

 

I 'get' the issue...I just wholeheartedly disagree with you.

 

I'll use the old "frisbee rule" to illustrate my position...it's ludicrous to have to ask permission to geocache (or visit a set of waypoints) where I can play frisbee or engage in any other activity the general public does without asking prior permission.

 

The issue is that the land managers want to approve EC that are not where people play "frisbie" or picnic...but those that are currently protected because people do not know the sites exist....it has been a management practice for decades (and longer). Many of our best fossil sites, for example, on public lands have been protected because people do not know exactly where the site is. Once a site like this is published on the internet, you run the risk of unscrupulous people visiting the site and destroying it by trying to collect fossils. The same is true of caves, mineral sites, overhangs with paintings etc etc. So its a practice that has prevented the soiling of a huge number of our Earth science assets to allow further study.

 

Asking permission means that the land manager can check that a site can cope with the influx of people. Also, they can check that other issues (outside of the Earth science of the site) will not be a concern - like rare plants, track safety etc.

 

The only way to do this is for them to approve all EC that are developed in their sphere of management. It makes a load of sense.

 

That is the theory. The practice also brings into play the land managers experience with geocaching and geocachers etc. It is a sad fact that a few EarthCachers have, in the pas,t set us back a long with with some local land managers by being rude (demanding phone calls for example) and even placing EC's in locations where they have been denied permission. Some places have been closed off to all caching as a result.

 

We seemed to get slammed in these forums by people who have no understanding of all the hard work, endless meetings and careful negotiations that have and continue to go on behind the scenes to open up places for caching. But I truly believe that the EarthCache program has built many bridges with land managers around the globe. That EC are even allowed in many US National Parks where all other forms of geocaching is not, is just one example. Another example is that some parks now have active geocaching programs because of the work of ECers and Groundspeak. From the highest levels in the US NPS we have support for EarthCaching....but the system is decentralized and therefore it is the local staff that make the decisions.

 

So I guess, some will groan and moan about having to seek permission.....but at the end of the day its part of a process which has to be done to meet the guidelines.

 

I now think this issues has been stated and restated again and again..and that its probably time the thread was closed.

Edited by geoaware

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