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"Large" 5/5 Hide

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I have a GREAT series idea that I'm about to implement, but unfortunately, it requires a 5/5 "Large" hide. On the plus side, I have 5 acres of woods I can stash it in. On the downside, I have no idea how to make a "Large" container a 5/5. So, two questions. First, what's the smallest container I can use and still legitimately get away with calling it "Large"? Second, where would I need to hide it to make it a 5/5?

 

Thanks!

 

--Matt

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Not having placed any here (yet), please take these comments as just simple opinions.

 

For size, guidelines says a large is about a 5 gallon bucket, or 20 liters. The difficulty of terrain may be your insolvable issue, if you only have 5 acres to work in, unless you have some extreme terrain there.

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i guess anything between above the regular ammo box and up to the large 5-gallon bucket (about 20 liters, per guidelines, will qualify as large

 

hiding a large with a 5 difficulty will certainly be a challenge

 

the question is when you say "I have 5 acres of woods I can stash it in", do you mean your own land?

 

if that's the case i would think, but don't quote me on it, that the "not buried" will not apply to own land, you could have a nice hole with a cover as such that you can have real grass or moss growing on it as camouflage

 

if its not your land you sure have a challenge to deal with but it also depends on what the area has to offer

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If the "5 acres of woods" has a tree with branches large (and high) enough to support an ammo can and a persons weight, hang it from the branch (heavy zip ties)for a verticle rope climb.

Tough to hide something that large from ground view (to make it a "5") though.

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Require some kind tool to open the container and put the container where a watercraft would be required to reach it.

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if that's the case i would think, but don't quote me on it, that the "not buried" will not apply to own land. . . .

 

Is this true?

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Put in a swimming pool.

 

Draw a log on the bottom of the pool. Use a color that's 2 shades darker than the color of the liner.

 

The pool is your container and is large.

 

You need a diving mask to sign the log,thus it is a 5 terrain.

 

Because it is hard to see, it is nearly impossible to find if you don't know it's there, so it's a 5 difficulty.

 

There's your Large 5/5.

 

 

 

Seriously, though, 5 terrain usually means the finder needs special equipment. Your best bet for that is probably up a tree, unless there's a pond on your 5 acres. Finding a way to hide a large container so that it's a 5 difficulty? and in a 5 terrain location? Hmm...

 

Not really sure you've got a "great idea for a series" if you don't know how to hide what sounds like the lynchpin cache for the series. :unsure:

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Require some kind tool to open the container and put the container where a watercraft would be required to reach it.

 

If I sink it in a river or a lake in such a way that you can't get to it from the land but may be able to retrieve it from the boat, that's pretty much an automatic 5/5 (or, at least, at 4/4), right?

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Not really sure you've got a "great idea for a series" if you don't know how to hide what sounds like the lynchpin cache for the series. :unsure:

 

This is true, but in all seriousness, the concept is potentially great if I can get this wrinkle worked out. I can rejigger it and make it so that the "Large" is a 4/4, but I'd prefer not to.

 

Unfortunately, the PQ I just did returned only 11 results within 1000 miles of my house with Large caches of 4/4 or higher (1/2 of which are underwater; one's even on a shipwreck in Lake Michigan). So, you're right, I may need to re-evaluate this.

 

--Matt

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If I sink it in a river or a lake in such a way that you can't get to it from the land but may be able to retrieve it from the boat, that's pretty much an automatic 5/5 (or, at least, at 4/4), right?

 

If you need a boat (and I really mean need, i.e. can't be done by swimming), then it's a 5 terrain. Difficulty isn't changed.

 

If you do need "special skills or knowledge", like you would for a scuba cache (training required), then it's a D5.

Edited by dfx

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if that's the case i would think, but don't quote me on it, that the "not buried" will not apply to own land. . . .

 

Is this true?

 

Best to discuss this aspect with your reviewer.

 

Numerous threads have discussed the "buried" issue. It's been stated that, if for no other reason, it's a "bad" idea because other cachers will find a buried cache and assume that it's permitted. "Monkey see, monkey do".

 

Then you have the possibility of new caches popping up all over the place, buried, and angry land managers freaking out about those damned cachers again.

 

There's been a lot of work over the years to dispel the image of "buried treasure" being a literal description of geocaching. It hardly seems worth it to undo all that work, doesn't it?

 

Hang an ammo can in a tree, or put it under water...but please don't bury it in the ground.

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Attatch the cache to yourself, and it will make it 5/5 automattically. People will have to locate you with having no idea where to start. Who knows what great lenghts people will come to locate you.

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Require some kind tool to open the container and put the container where a watercraft would be required to reach it.

 

If I sink it in a river or a lake in such a way that you can't get to it from the land but may be able to retrieve it from the boat, that's pretty much an automatic 5/5 (or, at least, at 4/4), right?

 

Why a 5/5? Why not a 1/5, or a 2.5/5, or even a 4/5? Unless you do something to make the find extremely difficult as well as the terrain, why would the difficulty automatically be a 5?

If it's in the middle of a lake, and the co-ords are accurate, surely that drops the difficulty right down?

 

Difficulty rating:

* Easy. In plain sight or can be found in a few minutes of searching.

** Average. The average cache hunter would be able to find this in less than 30 minutes of hunting.

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Reviewer account responding re buried. The guideline on "buried" is quite succinct:

 

Geocaches are never buried.

 

and does not have a clause saying, "except on your own property". You'd need Groundspeak's permission, and best to get it before the cache is hidden; this isn't a case where there's reviewer discretion.

 

____________________________________________________

 

Re boat + scuba as an automatic 5/5 - this is my opinion, and not a guidelines issue, but I'd say no. At least not at recreational dive depths (less then 120 feet) in open water.

 

The 5 in the terrain covers the boat + scuba. I think keehotee's post above mine sums this up rather well.

Once you're on site, how hard is the cache to actually find? could be anywhere from 1 - 5.

 

At great depth, such that 1) it's difficult to generate coords that correspond to the bottom location and

2)the dive itself becomes technical (hazardous exposure or any dive requiring decomposition stops in resurfacing) with a lot of cover on the bottom, then maybe it becomes a 5 difficulty, possibly requiring multiple attempts to find the hidden object.

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Require some kind tool to open the container and put the container where a watercraft would be required to reach it.

 

If I sink it in a river or a lake in such a way that you can't get to it from the land but may be able to retrieve it from the boat, that's pretty much an automatic 5/5 (or, at least, at 4/4), right?

 

As others of suggested, the difficulty and terrain ratings are independent of each other. With only 5 acres to work with, the only way you're really going to get a 5 for terrain is to place the cache such that it requires special equipment (scuba, boat, tree climbing rope, etc). Achieving a 5 star for the difficulty rating for a large is more problematic. You didn't mention whether or not the cache had to be a traditional. A legitimate 5/5 cache that does *not* require special equipment and is a traditional cache type is extremely rare. Most achieve a 5/5 rating by making it an unknown cache, and to be a legitimate 5 stars for difficulty, the puzzle should be very difficult, requiring days if not weeks to solve.

 

Have you ever *found* a 5/5 cache? If not, it would be a good idea to do so. Otherwise, you won't really know just how difficult a 5/5 cache should be.

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Buy an old olive barrel (55 gallon, plastic). Split a tree log in thirds and wrap those around the barrel. Drop in a swamp/bog that has some deep spots. There, problem solved. Wasn't that easy? Need a swamp? Mine is on an 80 acre parcel, in upper lower Michigan.

Edited by A & J Tooling

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if that's the case i would think, but don't quote me on it, that the "not buried" will not apply to own land. . . .

 

Is this true?

 

Best to discuss this aspect with your reviewer.

 

Numerous threads have discussed the "buried" issue. It's been stated that, if for no other reason, it's a "bad" idea because other cachers will find a buried cache and assume that it's permitted. "Monkey see, monkey do".

 

Then you have the possibility of new caches popping up all over the place, buried, and angry land managers freaking out about those damned cachers again.

 

There's been a lot of work over the years to dispel the image of "buried treasure" being a literal description of geocaching. It hardly seems worth it to undo all that work, doesn't it?

 

Hang an ammo can in a tree, or put it under water...but please don't bury it in the ground.

 

while that is very true it only applies to a newly dug up hole

 

3.Geocaches are never buried. If a shovel, trowel or other pointy object is used to dig or break ground, whether in order to hide or to find the cache, then it is not permitted.

 

nothing in that guideline suggests that you can't use an existing hole, and i have seen one hidden like that in my area by none other than the reviewer themselves

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Re boat + scuba as an automatic 5/5 - this is my opinion, and not a guidelines issue, but I'd say no. At least not at recreational dive depths (less then 120 feet) in open water.

 

Even your basic open water diver has to undergo training, which at the very least is a full weekend long, while many spread over the course of 2-10 weeks. You can't even rent scuba gear without a certification. Plus, depending on agency, it's highly discouraged to go beyond depths of 60-80 feet before having gained significant diving experience. That's why any scuba cache is a D5 in my book, even though I did see several of them with a much lower rating.

Edited by dfx

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Re boat + scuba as an automatic 5/5 - this is my opinion, and not a guidelines issue, but I'd say no. At least not at recreational dive depths (less then 120 feet) in open water.
Even your basic open water diver has to undergo training, which at the very least is a full weekend long, while many spread over the course of 2-10 weeks. You can't even rent scuba gear without a certification. Plus, depending on agency, it's highly discouraged to go beyond depths of 60-80 feet before having gained significant diving experience. That's why any scuba cache is a D5 in my book, even though I did see several of them with a much lower rating.
What about a cache that requires you to rappel over a cliff, but is sitting out in the open and can be seen from above and below? It requires special equipment, right? So 5 terrain, but what's the difficulty?

 

Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required. Does that up the difficulty? No. Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff.

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.

I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.

Edited by dfx

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.
I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.
I knew I should have just stuck to the scuba diving example, you completely missed the point. I forget that some people refuse to connect the dots and need it drawn out for them. Let me rephrase:

 

Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock piece of corral would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff corral reef.

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.
I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.
I knew I should have just stuck to the scuba diving example, you completely missed the point. I forget that some people refuse to connect the dots and need it drawn out for them. Let me rephrase:

 

Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock piece of corral would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff corral reef.

 

No I didn't miss the point, I just don't agree. According to your logic, an ammo can hidden in 60 feet of water would get the same ratings as an ammo can on an island. That doesn't seem right.

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.
I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.
I knew I should have just stuck to the scuba diving example, you completely missed the point. I forget that some people refuse to connect the dots and need it drawn out for them. Let me rephrase:

 

Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock piece of corral would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff corral reef.

 

No I didn't miss the point, I just don't agree. According to your logic, an ammo can hidden in 60 feet of water would get the same ratings as an ammo can on an island. That doesn't seem right.

If you need a boat (special equipment) to get to that island, it's a "5" for terrain. If you need SCUBA gear (special equipment) to get a cache 60' down, that's a "5" for terrain.

 

If the island cache is in plain sight or its location is obvious, it's a "1" for difficulty. If the underwater cache is blaze orange with nothing around it, that makes its location obvious so it gets a "1" for difficulty.

 

Where's the problem?

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.
I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.
I knew I should have just stuck to the scuba diving example, you completely missed the point. I forget that some people refuse to connect the dots and need it drawn out for them. Let me rephrase:

 

Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock piece of corral would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff corral reef.

No I didn't miss the point, I just don't agree. According to your logic, an ammo can hidden in 60 feet of water would get the same ratings as an ammo can on an island. That doesn't seem right.
By your logic, though, a blaze orange ammo can and a well-camoed nano should have the same D rating when placed in spots that take similar knowledge/skill/training to get there. That's wrong across the rest of the Terrain Spectrum, not just across different examples of what would be T5.

 

Perhaps you should review the Ratings System, as outlined in the Knowledge Books and stop making up your own.

Edited by Too Tall John

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By your logic, though, a blaze orange ammo can and a well-camoed nano should have the same D rating when placed in spots that take similar knowledge/skill/training to get there. That's wrong across the rest of the Terrain Spectrum, not just across different examples of what would be T5.

 

No, not "similar knowledge/skill/training", and not necessarily the same D rating, but once you've hit D5, everything beyond that is off the chart. The same applies to T5. A cache on an island that's 1km from the shore and can be paddled to is T5. But a cache that's 30km from the closest shore is also T5, although quite a lot harder to get to. It's just how the rating system works.

 

Perhaps you should review the Ratings System, as outlined in the Knowledge Books and stop making up your own.

I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.

Edited by dfx

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I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.
WAIT! I actually took your advice and reviewed the Knowledge Books. You are correct, it does NOT imply Knowledge.

 

At all.

 

It states it:

stars5.gifRequires specialized equipment and knowledge or experience
So, if the OP wants to hide a 5/5 cache, they simply can't rely on the use of Specialized Equipment and the knowledge to use it. Edited by Too Tall John

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I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.
Perhaps you should review the definition of "implied", as outlined by the Dictionary, and stop making up your own.

 

If it said it, it wouldn't be implied now, would it?

 

Perhaps you should stick to what the guidelines actually say, instead of making up your own implications :rolleyes:

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I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.
Perhaps you should review the definition of "implied", as outlined by the Dictionary, and stop making up your own.

 

If it said it, it wouldn't be implied now, would it?

Perhaps you should stick to what the guidelines actually say, instead of making up your own implications :rolleyes:
Perhaps you should read my edit, then, reread the guidelines.

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Perhaps you should read my edit, then, reread the guidelines.

 

Perhaps you should rereread the guidelines then.

Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

This is for D5, not T5. Back to square 1. I'm outta here.

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I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.
Perhaps you should review the definition of "implied", as outlined by the Dictionary, and stop making up your own.

 

If it said it, it wouldn't be implied now, would it?

Perhaps you should stick to what the guidelines actually say, instead of making up your own implications :rolleyes:
Perhaps you should read my edit, then, reread the guidelines.

 

While I've always read the T5 requirement as also having the knowledge to use the equipment (otherwise, what good is having it), the problem with the KB write-up is that the training is in BOTH categories:

 

Difficulty: 5 star Extreme

A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

Terrain: 5 star Requires specialized equipment and knowledge or experience

(boat, 4WD, rock climbing, SCUBA, etc.) or is otherwise extremely difficult.

 

So according to that, a 5/5 is anything you need the specialized skill to complete.

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I could say the same thing to you. "Knowledge how to use the equipment is implied" isn't mentioned anywhere.
Perhaps you should review the definition of "implied", as outlined by the Dictionary, and stop making up your own.

 

If it said it, it wouldn't be implied now, would it?

Perhaps you should stick to what the guidelines actually say, instead of making up your own implications :rolleyes:
Perhaps you should read my edit, then, reread the guidelines.

 

While I've always read the T5 requirement as also having the knowledge to use the equipment (otherwise, what good is having it), the problem with the KB write-up is that the training is in BOTH categories:

 

Difficulty: 5 star Extreme

A serious mental or physical challenge. Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.

 

Terrain: 5 star Requires specialized equipment and knowledge or experience

(boat, 4WD, rock climbing, SCUBA, etc.) or is otherwise extremely difficult.

 

So according to that, a 5/5 is anything you need the specialized skill to complete.

Not necessarily. You may need special equipment (a boat) to get to a cache but if it's in plain sight when you get there, it isn't a "5" for difficulty, only terrain.

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Perhaps you should read my edit, then, reread the guidelines.
Perhaps you should rereread the guidelines then.
Requires specialized knowledge, skills, or equipment to find cache.
This is for D5, not T5. Back to square 1. I'm outta here.
'K, bye.

 

Read in context, that definition comes from a column that describes how difficult it is to find the cache, not how difficult it is to get there.

 

Let's take, for example, a cache that requires a UV Light to see coords to the next stage. I (may or may not have, cough no spoilers cough :ph34r: ) recently searched for such a cache. This (hypothetical :ph34r: ) stage of a cache was on a nice, paved walkway, wheelchair accessible. Does it get T5 because I needed special equipment? Of course not, but it's cases like this that made them put "specialized equipment" into the difficulty column.

(BTW, I may or may not have DNFed the cache implied above, so you may or may not find it in my profile...)

Edited by Too Tall John

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<snip>

So according to that, a 5/5 is anything you need the specialized skill to complete.

Not necessarily. You may need special equipment (a boat) to get to a cache but if it's in plain sight when you get there, it isn't a "5" for difficulty, only terrain.

 

Oops, yes, you're correct and wasn't what I'd intended to say. It was just quick typing and leaving out that part of the equation since the discussion was around the scuba example.

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<snip>

So according to that, a 5/5 is anything you need the specialized skill to complete.

Not necessarily. You may need special equipment (a boat) to get to a cache but if it's in plain sight when you get there, it isn't a "5" for difficulty, only terrain.

 

Oops, yes, you're correct and wasn't what I'd intended to say. It was just quick typing and leaving out that part of the equation since the discussion was around the scuba example.

I commented on the SCUBA example earlier, too.

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So, to answer the OP's question, To make a Large 5/5 cache, make it a multi. Stage 1 holds the coords, but in order to read them, you need a UV light, or some such tool. There's your D5. The final is up a tree, or in some other terrain that requires equipment to get to the cache. There's your T5. How to make it a large is up to you.

 

I'm guessing that the series is going to involve caches that increase in size and D/T, so there'll be a Nano 1/1, a Micro 2/2, a Small 3/3, a Regular 4/4, and a Large 5/5. What if each cache were also a different type? A Traditional, a Multi, a Letterbox, a Puzzle, and a ... something else? Earthcache? Virtual (they're coming back supposedly)? Wherigo? You could turn my 5/5 idea into a puzzle pretty easily...

Edited by Too Tall John

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Without knowing what you're doing (having proper training) you're just as likely to splat on the ground as you are to hang yourself in the rope, so training is required.
I don't think that's quite the same level of training, 30 minutes of instructions should be enough. Doesn't qualify as "very specialized knowledge or skills" in my book. At least that's what I've seen people doing, I'm not a climber myself, so I don't really know.
I knew I should have just stuck to the scuba diving example, you completely missed the point. I forget that some people refuse to connect the dots and need it drawn out for them. Let me rephrase:

 

Ability to use the equipment is implied in the need for special equipment. Otherwise, an "in the open" ammo can and a nano that looks like a rock piece of corral would have the same D rating when placed on the same rock-faced cliff corral reef.

 

No I didn't miss the point, I just don't agree. According to your logic, an ammo can hidden in 60 feet of water would get the same ratings as an ammo can on an island. That doesn't seem right.

If you need a boat (special equipment) to get to that island, it's a "5" for terrain. If you need SCUBA gear (special equipment) to get a cache 60' down, that's a "5" for terrain.

 

If the island cache is in plain sight or its location is obvious, it's a "1" for difficulty. If the underwater cache is blaze orange with nothing around it, that makes its location obvious so it gets a "1" for difficulty.

 

Where's the problem?

 

I suspect that the problem is that the difficulty rating has often (and inappropriately, IMHO) been used as a means to increase the overall rating of a cache that has an automatic 5 for the terrain rating.

 

I've always questioned the use of the automatic 5 rating for special equipment. This issue that I have with it is that it makes no distinction between a cache which requires special equipment and a significant amount of training/skill to safely navigate to ground zero, and a cache which requires the same type of equipment, but really doesn't require much in the way of skills.

 

For example, the use of a kayak is a common form of transport for many a 5 star terrain cache. One of those caches might be located on a small island in the middle of a relatively small pond or reservoir that is typically calm, warm enough such that hypothermia is not a risk, and require no more skill that maybe an hours worth of experience in a kayak. An identically rated cache might be located on a small island, a mile of the coast of Newfoundland where the water temperature can cause hypothermia within minutes, typically have conditions that involve strong currents, negotiating 3' high breaking surf, with swells in the 6-10 range, and limited visibility due to fog. Even those with several years of experience and formal training can be challenged by the "terrain" for such a cache.

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If you need a boat (special equipment) to get to that island, it's a "5" for terrain. If you need SCUBA gear (special equipment) to get a cache 60' down, that's a "5" for terrain.

 

If the island cache is in plain sight or its location is obvious, it's a "1" for difficulty. If the underwater cache is blaze orange with nothing around it, that makes its location obvious so it gets a "1" for difficulty.

 

Where's the problem?

 

The problem is that you don't need just the scuba gear to do an underwater cache.

 

JoeRandomCacher wants to do a scuba cache. Can he do it as it is now?

NO, because he doesn't have scuba gear. Ok, so there's your T5.

Now he goes to a dive shop to rent some gear. But they won't let him rent it, because he's not certified.

But he's lucky and knows someone who has a complete set of gear and (irresponsibly) let's him borrow it. Can he do the scuba cache now?

NO, because he doesn't know what the heck he's doing and is likely do end up dead or very injured.

So he goes and takes a scuba course. It takes him 10 hours of theory classes, 10 hours of pool exercises and 4 checkout dives to get certified and to be able to safely do the dives. Here's your D5.

Can he go do the scuba cache now?

NO, because he still doesn't have scuba gear and needs to rent it. Yep, so it's T5 as well.

 

There's no such issues when doing an island cache with a boat. You can just get the boat and head over.

 

But I'm not really posting here. :ph34r:

Edited by dfx

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I just put a "large" one out, used a large cooler that I spray painted with black, green & tan - looks great. Should be published tomorrow :)

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Your best bet for the difficulty is going to be a puzzle to solve. Put a lock on the container and make people solve for both the coords and the combination of the lock. Without knowing the terrain you have to work with, that might be the more difficult to rate correctly. Just because it's up a tree doesn't mean it's a 5T cache. Can the tree be climbed? If so, it's not a 5. Also, be aware that when placing a cache in a tree, it might not get put back in the tree. People who are inclined to actually put together a ropes system to get a cache will probably take the time to put it back, but they might not. Are you willing to maintain the 5T cache? Able to? Just a couple thoughts.

 

Good luck.

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If you need a boat (special equipment) to get to that island, it's a "5" for terrain. If you need SCUBA gear (special equipment) to get a cache 60' down, that's a "5" for terrain.

 

If the island cache is in plain sight or its location is obvious, it's a "1" for difficulty. If the underwater cache is blaze orange with nothing around it, that makes its location obvious so it gets a "1" for difficulty.

 

Where's the problem?

 

The problem is that you don't need just the scuba gear to do an underwater cache.

 

JoeRandomCacher wants to do a scuba cache. Can he do it as it is now?

NO, because he doesn't have scuba gear. Ok, so there's your T5.

Now he goes to a dive shop to rent some gear. But they won't let him rent it, because he's not certified.

But he's lucky and knows someone who has a complete set of gear and (irresponsibly) let's him borrow it. Can he do the scuba cache now?

NO, because he doesn't know what the heck he's doing and is likely do end up dead or very injured.

So he goes and takes a scuba course. It takes him 10 hours of theory classes, 10 hours of pool exercises and 4 checkout dives to get certified and to be able to safely do the dives. Here's your D5.

Can he go do the scuba cache now?

NO, because he still doesn't have scuba gear and needs to rent it. Yep, so it's T5 as well.

 

There's no such issues when doing an island cache with a boat. You can just get the boat and head over.

 

But I'm not really posting here. :ph34r:

That's why mountain climbers add a decimal after the 5. A 5.4 may be relatively easy but no novice is going to be able to do a 5.9 until they gain some significant experience (and thus are no longer a novice). For geocaching, just calling either one a "5" is good enough. Are some 5's harder than others? Sure, but our rating system is only there to give you an idea of what to expect, not to be a definitive guide to everything you may encounter.

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Require some kind tool to open the container and put the container where a watercraft would be required to reach it.

 

If I sink it in a river or a lake in such a way that you can't get to it from the land but may be able to retrieve it from the boat, that's pretty much an automatic 5/5 (or, at least, at 4/4), right?

 

It would be 5 for terrain. Not necessarily 5 for difficulty. I've seen many caches called 5/5 that aren't close. Usually they are 1/5 or 1.5/5. Difficulty is misused in most of the 5/5's I've seen. There is a 5/5 near me that is in a tree. You can see it clearly about 40 feet up, but you need climbing equipment to reach it. It's really a 1/5.

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There's no such issues when doing an island cache with a boat. You can just get the boat and head over.

 

 

That's the kind of mentality that gets a lot of people killed, often about this time of year, when the air temperature gets into the high 70s, and the big box mall sporting goods stores start having sales on kayaks, and are sold be sales droids that really don't know anything about the risks involved in kayaking.

 

For some reason there seems to be this perception that kayaking is a risk free activity that requires no special skills or safety knowledge. Rarely do people buying their first kayak, often a 200-300 boat sold from a mall sporting goods store as "Beginner Sea Kayak", know of the risks of hypothermia (and how to dress to reduce the risks), the importance of paying attention to the weather, the importance of floation for the kayak itself (either via sealed bulkheads or additional flotation devices), the killing potential of low head dams, when it is or isn't appropriate to use a boat tether, or even basic navigation rules when paddling among much larger water craft.

 

For example, a few years ago I met up with several other people for several days of kayaking in southern Florida. One of the local kayakers was in a recreational style kayak that I was familiar with and I noticed that she didn't have float bags in it (it's the type of boat that has no bulkheads) when we stopped for lunch on a nice beach. When I asked about it she said that the place she bought it from told her that it wouldn't sink because of the material used in it's construction. I asked if she'd ever tested to see what would happen if she capsized and the boat filled up with water. Since there were several of us there and we gave it a try. We walked out into the water where it was about 4 feet deep about 30 feet from shore and tipped it over, then starting splashing water into (simulating waves breaking onto the deck and into the boat). Then I asked her to get it back to shore. She tried getting in and paddling it but couldn't make any progress. Then she got out and tried dragging it to shore. I suggested that she try it without touching her feet to the bottom (simulating a capsize in water over her head) and she couldn't move it at all. Eventually, we helped out (simulating the importance of paddling with at least one other person) and were able to drag the boat to shore but it took three people to tip it back over and empty the water.

 

Kayaking fatalities are relatively rare but more often than not it involved inexperienced paddlers that were not wearing a PFD, hadn't dressed for immersion, and a failure to account for changes in the weather.

 

That's why mountain climbers add a decimal after the 5. A 5.4 may be relatively easy but no novice is going to be able to do a 5.9 until they gain some significant experience (and thus are no longer a novice). For geocaching, just calling either one a "5" is good enough. Are some 5's harder than others? Sure, but our rating system is only there to give you an idea of what to expect, not to be a definitive guide to everything you may encounter.

 

Whitewater river ratings only go up to a five to rate the difficulty of a section of a river. However, they not only take into account the flow of the river, obstacles that require skill to be avoided, but also the consequences of a failure to successfully navigate that section. A river section that is in a canyon without a road in close proximity might be rated a point higher than a section of river with essentially the same type of water but has a road running along next to it.

 

Geocache terrain ratings with the automatic 5 for special equipment rarely take into the account the consequences of an under estimation of the skill level that is actually required. Falling out of a boat while just heading out to an island in a small pond is likely going to result in nothing more than getting ones hair wet. Falling out of a kayak while heading out to an island with a crossing exposed to the wind, in 50 degree water might have far greater consequences.

 

As you said, the rating system is not perfect and as someone else once suggested, a 5 star terrain rating mean "you really should read the cache page listing carefully so that you know what you're getting into".

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That's the kind of mentality that gets a lot of people killed, often about this time of year, when the air temperature gets into the high 70s, and the big box mall sporting goods stores start having sales on kayaks, and are sold be sales droids that really don't know anything about the risks involved in kayaking.

 

For some reason there seems to be this perception that kayaking is a risk free activity that requires no special skills or safety knowledge. Rarely do people buying their first kayak, often a 200-300 boat sold from a mall sporting goods store as "Beginner Sea Kayak", know of the risks of hypothermia (and how to dress to reduce the risks), the importance of paying attention to the weather, the importance of floation for the kayak itself (either via sealed bulkheads or additional flotation devices), the killing potential of low head dams, when it is or isn't appropriate to use a boat tether, or even basic navigation rules when paddling among much larger water craft.

 

While I understand all that and as it relates to kayaking, usually a kayak is not the only way to get to an island cache. In most cases, it's theoretically thinkable to rent a large boat including the captain, just hop on board and be safely shuttled to the island. As long as this is theoretically possible, my understanding of the ratings is that D doesn't apply. However, once you have a cache that is indeed only reachable by kayak and nothing else, and requires the necessary skills (which have to be acquired somehow) to safely make the trip, I do feel that the D comes into play. I'd say that a large cache in a very obvious spot, but one that's only reachable by navigating hefty whitewater and so requires special skills, could make a perfectly legit 5/5 cache. It's certainly within the guidelines, whether the particular CO agrees with it or not is a different question.

 

Generally I agree that everything that relates to "getting there" is T, and everything that relates to "finding the cache once you're there" is D. But I feel that in those special cases, it's perfectly acceptable to reflect the added difficulty of making the trip in the D, especially since there's lots of other cases that also affect the D without necessarily being part of the "finding the cache" leg.

Edited by dfx

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Generally I agree that everything that relates to "getting there" is T, and everything that relates to "finding the cache once you're there" is D. But I feel that in those special cases, it's perfectly acceptable to reflect the added difficulty of making the trip in the D, especially since there's lots of other cases that also affect the D without necessarily being part of the "finding the cache" leg.
Welcome back. :ph34r:

 

Sounds like a similar mentality as to why people would log event caches multiple times when they found temporary event caches. Can't get the score within the system, so find a workaround? No thanks.

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I recently hid a "large" cache in a lava field. It is a 60mm mortar ammo box which is about 3 times the size of a standard 30 cal. ammo box. It was a bit difficult to get the box to the hole I planted it in.

The last 60 feet horizontal requires a climb of about 40 feet up over some unstable lava rock.

I rated it at 4.0D/4/5T. About half of the 5/5 caches I have logged were rated more than .5 higher in difficulty or terrain than they should have been. My cache "The BIG BOX" GC2WJWJ has been out for a week and no one has even tried for FTF.

I also have a puzzle cache rated I think correctly at 4.5/5 that has not been found since 2007.

The puzzle is not very difficult but the terrain is steep and rocky with volcanic ash underneath.

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So, to answer the OP's question, To make a Large 5/5 cache, make it a multi. Stage 1 holds the coords, but in order to read them, you need a UV light, or some such tool. There's your D5. The final is up a tree, or in some other terrain that requires equipment to get to the cache. There's your T5. How to make it a large is up to you.

 

I'm guessing that the series is going to involve caches that increase in size and D/T, so there'll be a Nano 1/1, a Micro 2/2, a Small 3/3, a Regular 4/4, and a Large 5/5. What if each cache were also a different type? A Traditional, a Multi, a Letterbox, a Puzzle, and a ... something else? Earthcache? Virtual (they're coming back supposedly)? Wherigo? You could turn my 5/5 idea into a puzzle pretty easily...

 

Yes, that's the general gist except that the Nano 1/1, Micro 2/2, Small, 3/3, and Regular 4/4 WERE each going to be traditionals with each containing a QR code which, when scanned, would reveal part of the coordinates for a Large 5/5 puzzle cache.

 

After having read through the responses on this thread, though, it's apparent that in order for me to pull off a Large 5/5, it's going to have to be multi (unless a QR code scanner qualifies as "specialized equipment" which, frankly, I don't think it should) which complicates this for the OCD part of me. I like the idea of mixing in the different types too.

 

Hmmmmm...gonna have to give this a little more thought.

 

BTW, thanks for the input everybody -- even those involved in the "street fight" that broke out earlier.

 

--Matt

Edited by mattvandyk

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Just assuming you have the terrain on your land, the container could be a fake squirrel nest up in a tree. That would be actually pretty easy to make and the fact that climbing the tree would give you your terrain. That sounds like a awesome idea i may just make one myself. All you really need would be some fake leaves around something molded in the shape of a nest, that fits in the spot of a tree that forks out to branches ( typical squirrel nest spot). Just have a lid on it, that opens up, with a peanut butter jar, Or places the leaves around a large bowl lock and lock that would be the right shape. This should be large enough to consider a Large cache id say. Id recommend a large cedar tree they have alot of branches and would be much harder to spot and a lot safer to climb. Hope this helps

Edited by Night_Hiker

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So, to answer the OP's question, To make a Large 5/5 cache, make it a multi. Stage 1 holds the coords, but in order to read them, you need a UV light, or some such tool. There's your D5. The final is up a tree, or in some other terrain that requires equipment to get to the cache. There's your T5. How to make it a large is up to you.

 

I'm guessing that the series is going to involve caches that increase in size and D/T, so there'll be a Nano 1/1, a Micro 2/2, a Small 3/3, a Regular 4/4, and a Large 5/5. What if each cache were also a different type? A Traditional, a Multi, a Letterbox, a Puzzle, and a ... something else? Earthcache? Virtual (they're coming back supposedly)? Wherigo? You could turn my 5/5 idea into a puzzle pretty easily...

Yes, that's the general gist except that the Nano 1/1, Micro 2/2, Small, 3/3, and Regular 4/4 WERE each going to be traditionals with each containing a QR code which, when scanned, would reveal part of the coordinates for a Large 5/5 puzzle cache.

 

After having read through the responses on this thread, though, it's apparent that in order for me to pull off a Large 5/5, it's going to have to be multi (unless a QR code scanner qualifies as "specialized equipment" which, frankly, I don't think it should) which complicates this for the OCD part of me. I like the idea of mixing in the different types too.

 

Hmmmmm...gonna have to give this a little more thought.

 

BTW, thanks for the input everybody -- even those involved in the "street fight" that broke out earlier.

 

--Matt

Hmm... I've seen caches like what you're describing, where the CO rated the D/T of the final based on the cumulative D/Ts of the prerequisite caches. Never saw it get to 5/5 I don't think, though...

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So, to answer the OP's question, To make a Large 5/5 cache, make it a multi. Stage 1 holds the coords, but in order to read them, you need a UV light, or some such tool. There's your D5. The final is up a tree, or in some other terrain that requires equipment to get to the cache. There's your T5. How to make it a large is up to you.

 

I'm guessing that the series is going to involve caches that increase in size and D/T, so there'll be a Nano 1/1, a Micro 2/2, a Small 3/3, a Regular 4/4, and a Large 5/5. What if each cache were also a different type? A Traditional, a Multi, a Letterbox, a Puzzle, and a ... something else? Earthcache? Virtual (they're coming back supposedly)? Wherigo? You could turn my 5/5 idea into a puzzle pretty easily...

Yes, that's the general gist except that the Nano 1/1, Micro 2/2, Small, 3/3, and Regular 4/4 WERE each going to be traditionals with each containing a QR code which, when scanned, would reveal part of the coordinates for a Large 5/5 puzzle cache.

 

After having read through the responses on this thread, though, it's apparent that in order for me to pull off a Large 5/5, it's going to have to be multi (unless a QR code scanner qualifies as "specialized equipment" which, frankly, I don't think it should) which complicates this for the OCD part of me. I like the idea of mixing in the different types too.

 

Hmmmmm...gonna have to give this a little more thought.

 

BTW, thanks for the input everybody -- even those involved in the "street fight" that broke out earlier.

 

--Matt

Hmm... I've seen caches like what you're describing, where the CO rated the D/T of the final based on the cumulative D/Ts of the prerequisite caches. Never saw it get to 5/5 I don't think, though...

 

No, I don't think it would be appropriate to factor the D/T of caches 1-4 into the determination of D/T for cache 5. The D/T of cache 5 should stand on its own. But, I think this means that either (a) it's not going to be the large, or ( b ) it's not going to be the 5/5. Oh well, time to rejigger this. Thanks for the idea of mixing in the "types". That's outstanding!

 

--Matt

Edited by mattvandyk

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