# Combination = Puzzle?

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If you need a combination to open a container, does that automatically make it a puzzle cache? I would like to make an easy cache that requires a combo, supplied on the cache page, to open, but I am concerned it will be ignored if it's listed as a mystery cache. I looked in the guidelines but can't seem to find the answer.

If the number is in plain sight on the cache page i don't know why it wouldn't still be a traditional. I have seen a couple just like you described.

Puzzle implies you have to solve something. If its in plain view for all to see it isn't a puzzle.

Puzzle implies you have to solve something. If its in plain view for all to see it isn't a puzzle.

Agreed. Puzzle caches are typically where you have to solve for the coordinates. If you are giving the coordinates and are merely giving instructions on how to open the cache, it's not a puzzle.

Puzzle implies you have to solve something. If its in plain view for all to see it isn't a puzzle.

Agreed. Puzzle caches are typically where you have to solve for the coordinates. If you are giving the coordinates and are merely giving instructions on how to open the cache, it's not a puzzle.

Not all "?" caches are puzzles that require you to find the right coordinates. If the container is at the given coordinates but you have to figure out the combination to the lock, then it's still a puzzle cache.

Puzzle implies you have to solve something. If its in plain view for all to see it isn't a puzzle.

Agreed. Puzzle caches are typically where you have to solve for the coordinates. If you are giving the coordinates and are merely giving instructions on how to open the cache, it's not a puzzle.

Not all "?" caches are puzzles that require you to find the right coordinates. If the container is at the given coordinates but you have to figure out the combination to the lock, then it's still a puzzle cache.

Right - that's why I said 'typically'. If you are giving INSTRUCTIONS on how to open, there is nothing to solve thus not a puzzle.

I also agree that the cache, as described by the OP, would not be a puzzle. In my opinion, this is little different from a cache owner who includes instructions on how to open a match safe.

Thanks for the replies, that's good news. What about if the combination was from a sign at the parking coords? I would think that would have to be a puzzle since you couldn't open it without reading the page AND following instructions once you got there.

Thanks for the replies, that's good news. What about if the combination was from a sign at the parking coords? I would think that would have to be a puzzle since you couldn't open it without reading the page AND following instructions once you got there.

To me, that sounds like a puzzle. You're solving for the combination.

Thanks for the replies, that's good news. What about if the combination was from a sign at the parking coords? I would think that would have to be a puzzle since you couldn't open it without reading the page AND following instructions once you got there.

Yes that would make it a puzzle cache.

If the combination is clearly listed on the cache page, it isn't a puzzle cache. If it takes any sort of figuring out, it is.

Listing it as a Mystery cache (remember, there really is no such thing as a puzzle cache) forces people to look at the cache page. I think that would be a very good idea in this case.

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Doug 7rxc

You mean like this:

Reading this topic reminded me of a cache I found a long time ago. I searched back through my finds and located it. I found the cache in late 2005 but went back to the page today and added a note and gave it a favorite point. You never know where a thread on these boards might lead you.

The advantage of listing it as a multi-cache or mystery/puzzle cache is that seekers should have read the cache description before seeking the cache. As others have indicated, some people will find a traditional cache without reading the cache description beforehand.

I've heard of locked caches listed as multi-caches. If the coordinates can be determined simply (e.g., by reading signs and doing simple arithmetic), then listing it as a multi-cache can make sense. If determining the coordinates is more involved than that, then listing it as a puzzle/multi-cache starts to make more sense.

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Doug 7rxc

Part of my standard TOTT:

Along with posting the combination on the cache page. I would also include the combo in the "hint". I have found a few caches that I didn't read the page on, got there and realized it had a lock. But luckily the combo was in the hint, which was on my GPSr. I like the idea of having the combo on a nearby sign, making it a mystery cache.

You mean like this:

Or maybe like this:

Market Street TB Caboose

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Maybe you could list the combo on the cache page so it is a traditional, and leave the combo nearby w/ those coords on the outside of the container for those who did not read the entire description.

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Maybe you could list the combo on the cache page so it is a traditional, and leave the combo nearby w/ those coords on the outside of the container for those who did not read the entire description.

Alternatively, maybe cachers should just read a cache description to make sure they understand what they're getting into. I love when cache descriptions have all sorts of warnings of "Don't do this! or Don't look there!" and people log "I did this (that was a mistake) or I looked here (boy was that wrong)". (Ya think?)

If people can't be bothered to read a short description of what the cache is about, then I would argue that they should get what they get. I don't believe in spoon-feeding or supporting bad behavior.

Edited by daschpeeg

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Maybe you could list the combo on the cache page so it is a traditional, and leave the combo nearby w/ those coords on the outside of the container for those who did not read the entire description.

Alternatively, maybe cachers should just read a cache description to make sure they understand what they're getting into. I love when cache descriptions have all sorts of warnings of "Don't do this! or Don't look there!" and people log "I did this (that was a mistake) or I looked here (boy was that wrong)". (Ya think?)

If people can't be bothered to read a short description of what the cache is about, then I would argue that they should get what they get. I don't believe in spoon-feeding or supporting bad behavior.

With a traditional cache all you should really need are the coordinates. If you can't find it you'll probably read the description and hint, but many cachers don't read those before heading out.

With a traditional cache all you should really need are the coordinates. If you can't find it you'll probably read the description and hint, but many cachers don't read those before heading out.

I respectfully disagree. Sometimes there is relevant information to convey in a description, even in a traditional. E.g.:

* It's not in the flower beds, please don't look there

* It's not in a sprinkler

* Placed with owner's permission, but I'll tell you EXACTLY where to look so you don't do something bad

* The cemetery/library/other area are open during these hours

* It's NOT the LIVE wires hanging out of the nearby electrical box

* Please don't check inside the rabid Great Dane's mouth for the cache

* Approach from the east as to not disturb the slumbering zombies

Edited by daschpeeg

I agree with this... otherwise we could simply post coordinates for caches.

There is much to see there D/T rating, Type of cache, Size of cache, How long it's been there, Attributes.

Also other forms of coordinates for those that prefer. And that is outside the Description.

I look after one that has clear hints in the description, limits on what you need to do to find it and on what the site owner would not like to see occur and so forth. It takes me a lot of time and effort to keep it active for the community at large. I don't own it or have control of the listing other than suggestions... but it is a highly popular place to beat your head on it seems.

Without reading the page, this can be at jeopardy of closing down. So people should read IMHO.

Doug 7rxc

With a traditional cache all you should really need are the coordinates. If you can't find it you'll probably read the description and hint, but many cachers don't read those before heading out.

I respectfully disagree. Sometimes there is relevant information to convey in a description, even in a traditional. E.g.:

If common sense was actually common...
* It's not in the flower beds, please don't look there

I'd like to think most cachers don't just tromp through flower beds and if a cache is rated appropriately they wouldn't spend much time picking through the flowers anyway.

* It's not in a sprinkler
Sprinkler caches are almost always a bad idea. They usually violate the buried caches guideline and turn some cachers into vandals when they can't figure out how to put a real sprinkler back together.
* Placed with owner's permission, but I'll tell you EXACTLY where to look so you don't do something bad
Looks like an example of a bad hide. if the area is that sensitive to being searched, there shouldn't be a cache there.
* The cemetery/library/other area are open during these hours
Most cachers are out during the day so chances are the place will be open.
* It's NOT the LIVE wires hanging out of the nearby electrical box
I've found a cache inside the base of a post where there were live wires within inches of the cache. Normally I'd say it's up to the cache to be careful but this one was a bit ridiculous.
* Please don't check inside the rabid Great Dane's mouth for the cache
Traveling caches haven't been allowed for many years.
* Approach from the east as to not disturb the slumbering zombies
If muggles, even dead or undead, are that much of a problem then maybe it isn't such a great place for a cache.

If common sense was actually common...

And if pigs flew (without cannons) and... and...

I'd like to think most cachers don't just tromp through flower beds and if a cache is rated appropriately they wouldn't spend much time picking through the flowers anyway.

You've never seen cachers tear through mulch in flower beds looking for a micro not on the ground (because a GPS bounce sent them there for a few minutes)?

]Sprinkler caches are almost always a bad idea.

I generally agree with this, but I didn't say the cache was a sprinkler. In this example the cachers "just assume" it must be a sprinkler hide.

* Placed with owner's permission, but I'll tell you EXACTLY where to look so you don't do something bad. Looks like an example of a bad hide. if the area is that sensitive to being searched, there shouldn't be a cache there.

Perhaps, but an environment can be suitable for certain "searches", but not others... One shouldn't have to account for a cacher taking a screwdriver to the environment or kicking down a metal post while "looking for a cache", either...

* The cemetery/library/other area are open during these hours. Most cachers are out during the day so chances are the place will be open.

Some sites have different weekend, weekday and holiday hours. Especially libraries (with our current economy). We have some libraries closed on Mondays, more limited hours on Thursday, etc.

* It's NOT the LIVE wires hanging out of the nearby electrical box. I've found a cache inside the base of a post where there were live wires within inches of the cache. Normally I'd say it's up to the cache to be careful but this one was a bit ridiculous.

Ugh. How many favorite points does it have?

* Please don't check inside the rabid Great Dane's mouth for the cache. Traveling caches haven't been allowed for many years.

And yet, people would check there.

* Approach from the east as to not disturb the slumbering zombies. If muggles, even dead or undead, are that much of a problem then maybe it isn't such a great place for a cache.

Ok, not just zombies. Approach from the east to avoid the stream, 1/4 mile of thorny bushes, the rabid donkey AND the zombies.

I'd like to think most cachers don't just tromp through flower beds and if a cache is rated appropriately they wouldn't spend much time picking through the flowers anyway.

You've never seen cachers tear through mulch in flower beds looking for a micro not on the ground (because a GPS bounce sent them there for a few minutes)?

Sadly, the emphasis these days seems to be on quantity over quality so that does tend to bring out the "scorched earth" style of searching.

If the area is that sensitive to being searched, there shouldn't be a cache there.

Perhaps, but an environment can be suitable for certain "searches", but not others... One shouldn't have to account for a cacher taking a screwdriver to the environment or kicking down a metal post while "looking for a cache", either...

Another thing cache owners need to take into consideration, but many don't, is how the worst cacher is going to affect the area when searching.

* Approach from the east as to not disturb the slumbering zombies.
If muggles, even dead or undead, are that much of a problem then maybe it isn't such a great place for a cache.

Ok, not just zombies. Approach from the east to avoid the stream, 1/4 mile of thorny bushes, the rabid donkey AND the zombies.

I have found many caches "the hard way" where I've found the easy trail on the way back to the car. Still not a reason to *have* to read the cache page on a traditional cache.

With a traditional cache all you should really need are the coordinates. If you can't find it you'll probably read the description and hint, but many cachers don't read those before heading out.

I respectfully disagree. Sometimes there is relevant information to convey in a description, even in a traditional. E.g.:

* It's not in the flower beds, please don't look there

* It's not in a sprinkler

* Placed with owner's permission, but I'll tell you EXACTLY where to look so you don't do something bad

* The cemetery/library/other area are open during these hours

* It's NOT the LIVE wires hanging out of the nearby electrical box

* Please don't check inside the rabid Great Dane's mouth for the cache

* Approach from the east as to not disturb the slumbering zombies

none of those things will prevent you from logging a cache, though. It is still possible to find the cache and sign the log using the coordinates alone. The information is to help protect the environment, protect the cacher, or protect the zombies. It is possible to tear up the flower bed, break the sprinkler heads, electrocute the owner, burn the books, shoot the dog, and take a cricket bat to the zombie's heads, and still be able to log the cache.

On the other hand, a cache with a lock needs a combination. Without it, you cannot log the cache without destroying it. The mystery cache type was created as a catch all for anything that doesn't fit the other cache types, not just for puzzles.

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Maybe you could list the combo on the cache page so it is a traditional, and leave the combo nearby w/ those coords on the outside of the container for those who did not read the entire description.

Alternatively, maybe cachers should just read a cache description to make sure they understand what they're getting into. I love when cache descriptions have all sorts of warnings of "Don't do this! or Don't look there!" and people log "I did this (that was a mistake) or I looked here (boy was that wrong)". (Ya think?)

If people can't be bothered to read a short description of what the cache is about, then I would argue that they should get what they get. I don't believe in spoon-feeding or supporting bad behavior.

I actually agree w/ you, daschpeeg. However, I was giving the OP an option. Why? Because somewhere down the line a cacher will show-up with the OPs coords entered as a waypoint and no access to the description. He/she could be having a bad day and take it out on the locked cache (kind of a last straw thing).

I did a cache exactly like that once. Traditional, but you had to read the hint to get the combination for the lock. Unfortunately I had simply thrown 30 or so low D/T caches into my gps to do on a road trip, and had no access to the combination and no possible way to solve it. I wasn't really impressed. I didn't go all crazy and wreck the cache, but I did feel like the CO had wasted my time. If the cache requires research to solve, even if that research is just reading the cache page, please rate it accordingly.

Edited by aniyn

From experience as a CO you will get those that do what I call "Caching by the seat of your pants" where they go out with just the coordinates and get to the location to find that other necessary information was needed. Don't be surprised if you get comments like "Why was it locked?"

Doug 7rxc

Part of my standard TOTT:

Wheres your pipe bender and waterjet cutter

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