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JL_HSTRE

Earthcache Permission

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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.

 

I think the frisbee example only gets you so far. When you and a a friend go pitch a frisbee around, or let's say spread out a blanket and have a picnic, that's just you, and special park rules may not apply. But if you want to organize a frisbee event or to have a big group picnic, most parks will require a permit or some sort of special arrangement. That's how I view the earthcache permission. They may not show up all at once, but your earthcache will specifically draw dozens if not hundreds of people to the same spot. The park wants to make sure it's done so it doesn't harm the place.

 

Realistically, I think such policies are designed by the park authorities to catch things that you and I know full well that geoaware and the other EC reviewers would never allow. Just because we wouldn't put out a bad earthcache doesn't mean that someone else, say, on one of the umoderated cache listing services, might not try to put something out there that damages the place.

 

Heck, if you want to know why parks are careful about specialized activities like this, you need look no further than the Delicate Arch fiasco. Michael Fatali, a professional photographer who made his living taking pictures in parks, took a photo tour to Delicate Arch in Arches National Park in Utah back in September 2000. In order to get a cool lighting effect, he lit some paraffin fireplace logs under the arch. The paraffin spilled and scorched the rock. At his court hearing, he admitted doing the same thing in Canyonlands National Park on multiple occasions (just without spilling the logs). He had permits for his group every time, but obviously failed to disclose that he'd be setting fires there.

 

I think they're also there to ensure that the local park staff knows about the caches there, not only to keep track of them, but also in many cases to incorporate them as another feature of the park. "Say, I see you're hiking with a GPSr. Have you heard of geocaching? There's a great earthcache along the trail you may want to try."

 

I have yet to work with the Park Service to set up an earthcache, but so far I've worked with two state park systems (Alabama and Virginia) and a local city park. Between the phone conversations I've had with folks and the follow up emails to document the permission, I think I've spent a total of one hour getting permission for our earthcaches that required it.

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Anyone out there fimilar with currant policy on listing virtual EarthCaches in Cherokee National Forest? I have the understanding that permission was not required on established trails? I know that some new policys are in the works for a Special Use permit for phyical geocaches if the Land Manager deems it nessary, but I thought EarthCaches on eatablished trails did not require permission? :huh:

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All earthcsches require landowner permission. Period

 

Not necessarily. If an EarthCache site is on a public right of way it does not.

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Anyone out there fimilar with currant policy on listing virtual EarthCaches in Cherokee National Forest? I have the understanding that permission was not required on established trails? I know that some new policys are in the works for a Special Use permit for phyical geocaches if the Land Manager deems it nessary, but I thought EarthCaches on eatablished trails did not require permission? :huh:

 

I Know that in South Carolina National Forests, no permission is required for Virtuals and/or earthcaches. I have a written copy of the policy and please all reviewers, don't require it because it will not be given! As to other areas, we are not sure.

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All earthcsches require landowner permission. Period

 

Not necessarily. If an EarthCache site is on a public right of way it does not.

 

You are right at least to now!

That's true A&T, for now anyway. I have in the past asked permission and have been granted permission to place caches in areas that are in question in the district 8, which is from Texas to Virginia and all the lower States. I have permission, or was told that permission to list virtuals is not needed on established trails by the ranger districts in my area, which include Jefferson and Cherokee National Forest.

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