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tmitchh

No more Glacial Erratics Earthcaches

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In my local area there are a few erratics, and no waterfall EC's. I was never inspired to develop an erratic EC, but after reading through this thread I think I may just try to develop one to see if I can get it published. I have one in mind that is somewhat unique, I may just give it a shot. The majority of the fun in creating any EC is in the self learning and discovery, whether its published or not, you cannot take that learning experience away from me.

If its good enough and gets published so others can enjoy, that's great. If it doesn't make the cut, C'est la vie. I know I will have enjoyed the research.

 

I applaud the EC team in preventing EC's from becoming film cans under lampskirts.

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I have pulled my submission. No longer watching this topic either. Good luck to everyone.

 

Hey out there to any whom may care. Well, was it worth it to lose another earthcacher? :huh:

Did you read GeoawareUSA4's post? Please tell us how not having land owner permission, not providing one's answers in a Reviewer Note, and not annotating one's sources of information on the cache page as clearly required in the guidelines is anyone but the cache developer's issue. The reviewer even provided tmitchh with the land manager's contact information to make obtaining permission as easy as possible. :)

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In my local area there are a few erratics, and no waterfall EC's. I was never inspired to develop an erratic EC, but after reading through this thread I think I may just try to develop one to see if I can get it published. I have one in mind that is somewhat unique, I may just give it a shot. The majority of the fun in creating any EC is in the self learning and discovery, whether its published or not, you cannot take that learning experience away from me.

If its good enough and gets published so others can enjoy, that's great. If it doesn't make the cut, C'est la vie. I know I will have enjoyed the research.

 

I applaud the EC team in preventing EC's from becoming film cans under lampskirts.

I do agree with you that the self learning is the best part.I have learned oodles form the listings I have created...and putting what I have learned in my own words to show others on the page makes the learning that much more rewarding.

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I do agree with you that the self learning is the best part.I have learned oodles form the listings I have created...

 

I agree. Fortunately no one can take that away.

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I have pulled my submission. No longer watching this topic either. Good luck to everyone.

 

Hey out there to any whom may care. Well, was it worth it to lose another earthcacher? :huh:

Did you read GeoawareUSA4's post? Please tell us how not having land owner permission, not providing one's answers in a Reviewer Note, and not annotating one's sources of information on the cache page as clearly required in the guidelines is anyone but the cache developer's issue. The reviewer even provided tmitchh with the land manager's contact information to make obtaining permission as easy as possible. :)

 

I am sorry, but you miss my point. Too many obstacles have been erected which turn off any incentive to develop earthcaches. GeoawareUSA4 simply regurgitating the party line doesn't change a thing! I think I can speak from a little bit of experience. Between ever changing and unclear guidelines and arbitrarily eliminating and/or severely limiting certain types of earthcaches, present and future EC developers are being turned off!

As to 'needed' permission. I will not bore you with my, and shared by many others, opinions regarding asking National Parks to give them 'free' advertising to get people to visit their parks. If you are interested, search the thread library for additional information. One small note regarding the permission factor. Jeremy himself questioned the requirement and indicated there was room for a change! As far as opinions go, you cannot go any higher!

Pedantic questions, overly ridged requirements, and totally unnecessary permissions are changing the face of earthcaching and while I fully appreciate your right to differ, I believe these changes and/or enforcements are making earthcaching exclusive not inclusive!

Thanks.

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I have pulled my submission. No longer watching this topic either. Good luck to everyone.

 

Hey out there to any whom may care. Well, was it worth it to lose another earthcacher? :huh:

Did you read GeoawareUSA4's post? Please tell us how not having land owner permission, not providing one's answers in a Reviewer Note, and not annotating one's sources of information on the cache page as clearly required in the guidelines is anyone but the cache developer's issue. The reviewer even provided tmitchh with the land manager's contact information to make obtaining permission as easy as possible. :)

 

I am sorry, but you miss my point. Too many obstacles have been erected which turn off any incentive to develop earthcaches. GeoawareUSA4 simply regurgitating the party line doesn't change a thing! I think I can speak from a little bit of experience. Between ever changing and unclear guidelines and arbitrarily eliminating and/or severely limiting certain types of earthcaches, present and future EC developers are being turned off!

As to 'needed' permission. I will not bore you with my, and shared by many others, opinions regarding asking National Parks to give them 'free' advertising to get people to visit their parks. If you are interested, search the thread library for additional information. One small note regarding the permission factor. Jeremy himself questioned the requirement and indicated there was room for a change! As far as opinions go, you cannot go any higher!

Pedantic questions, overly ridged requirements, and totally unnecessary permissions are changing the face of earthcaching and while I fully appreciate your right to differ, I believe these changes and/or enforcements are making earthcaching exclusive not inclusive!

Thanks.

 

Ok...I am now starting to get very uncomfortable about this misinformation. It does not seem to matter what we say or how we try and help people to understand, this misinformation is just WRONG. Some facts:

 

1. The guidelines have been changed only four times since 2004. Some of the changes were to make them more clear. I think they are now VERY clear. Four changes in seven years is hardly "ever changing"

 

2. NO types of legitimate EarthCache topics have been eliminated. What we have said is that we will no longer accept duplicated EarthCaches (especially those with the exact same logging tasks) in the same area. This was a response to the cut and paste of EarthCache texts to multiple sites, often flooding an area with almost identical EarthCaches. That duplication could not have been good for the game.

 

3. The US National Park system has insisted that we follow the permission requirement. It has enable a HUGE positive swing in geocaching in the National Parks which were once extremely negative towards all forms of geocaching. Jeremy was in the initial meeting with the National Parks....and no suggestion has ever come from Jeremy to make any change to the permission guidelines. No matter what 'privilege" any individual feels they have to do what ever they like in a national park the bottom line is that they have no privilege at all, and they must abide by the rules and regulations set by the park.

 

Please please please lets stop this regurgitation of misinformation and emotive vitriol.

 

And just to reinforce my argument that the guidelines are clear and that what we do is not making the development of EarthCaches harder, we just broke the record for the most active EarthCaches with over 17,700! That is a HUGE growth...so surely the silent majority find the process fun and exciting!

Edited by geoaware

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I have always found it ridiculous that an earthcache needs permission from the park service and POC information must be provided, but I can put a film canister at the same spot and have no issues.

I'll add that geoaware recently posted what I consider the ultimate answer to this question.

I'm copying it below, because it does address your concern and ties it to the original thread topic as well:

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!

 

i was always curious to know the answer to that requirement, which for the record i think its ridiculous

 

but that reasoning has to be some kind of joke lol...earthcaches are placed in parks and places that are accessible to the general public, most often for a fee...you mean to tell me that any of those places will forego the profits and limit the number of visitors per day?

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12. NO types of legitimate EarthCache topics have been eliminated. What we have said is that we will no longer accept duplicated EarthCaches (especially those with the exact same logging tasks) in the same area. This was a response to the cut and paste of EarthCache texts to multiple sites, often flooding an area with almost identical EarthCaches. That duplication could not have been good for the game.

 

Now I call bull on this. In the past I posted a topic about a submission I had for a spring in the area that had been an EarthCache but had been archived. Not only were the questions different, they were more educational than the previous ones were. The submission was denied because it was pretty much just another spring to you people and it wasn't "unique" enough. Sure, there are some unique ways a spring is formed, but in most cases, there's only a few ways it happens. So I ask you...how's a person supposed to be unique enough to satisfy you people?

 

So what defines the same area to you? 10 miles? 100?

Edited by Arthur & Trillian

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I have always found it ridiculous that an earthcache needs permission from the park service and POC information must be provided, but I can put a film canister at the same spot and have no issues.

I'll add that geoaware recently posted what I consider the ultimate answer to this question.

I'm copying it below, because it does address your concern and ties it to the original thread topic as well:

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!

 

i was always curious to know the answer to that requirement, which for the record i think its ridiculous

 

but that reasoning has to be some kind of joke lol...earthcaches are placed in parks and places that are accessible to the general public, most often for a fee...you mean to tell me that any of those places will forego the profits and limit the number of visitors per day?

 

I have maintained and I will always maintain that it is ridiculous to require permission to visit a set of waypoints that in any other case you'd never need it...

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I have always found it ridiculous that an earthcache needs permission from the park service and POC information must be provided, but I can put a film canister at the same spot and have no issues.

I'll add that geoaware recently posted what I consider the ultimate answer to this question.

I'm copying it below, because it does address your concern and ties it to the original thread topic as well:

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!

 

i was always curious to know the answer to that requirement, which for the record i think its ridiculous

 

but that reasoning has to be some kind of joke lol...earthcaches are placed in parks and places that are accessible to the general public, most often for a fee...you mean to tell me that any of those places will forego the profits and limit the number of visitors per day?

Oh yeah, I assure you, some parks do limit the number of people who go to certain areas. Some parks limit the number of people by requiring permits and/or setting daily limits. For example, there are times you need a permit to hike Half Dome When the cables are up, the limit is 50 people per day.

 

In Zion Narrows, there is a limit of 80 permits per day for hikes from Chamberlain's Ranch to Zion Canyon.

 

Many of the wilderness areas in Inyo National Forest limit the number of visitors per day.

 

And those aren't the only places, by far. And some places that don't set limits have areas that are too sensitive for extra traffic. Those places probably shouldn't have an EarthCache without the land managers being aware of it.

 

Another angle is that land managers don't like surprises, and there have been issues in the past with letterboxes and traditional geocaches that have soured some land managers. If you don't contact them, how would they react if they discovered your EarthCache some other way?

 

On the bright side, most city, county, and state land managers don't have to work with the limitations and the restrictions of that kind of magnitude, and they usually are glad to have the "free publicity". Still, the best spot for an EarthCache isn't always "right on the trail" so naturally you need permission from the land manager to encourage people to go to those spots. They want the experience to be safe and enjoyable for all and not to cause damage to their park. It's not all negative--Some of the land managers get excited when they learn about EarthCaches and work with you, suggesting better spots, supplying information, and being helpful in general.

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In the past I posted a topic about a submission I had for a spring in the area that had been an EarthCache but had been archived...

 

...The submission was denied because it was pretty much just another spring to you people and it wasn't "unique" enough.

 

Please tell me you are kidding.

 

You asked to make a cache in a saturated category and because it was different than the one that got archived, you think you got a raw deal. I am pretty sure your "but it was better than the last one" argument doesn't measure up to the 10s and 100s of similar caches that the reviewers have seen.

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I've only had good experiences so far. I published three Earthcaches this spring. For the first, the reviewer asked me to change a couple of questions, which I did, and it was published. My second and third Earthcaches were published as I originally submitted them, no questions asked. I find the guidelines to be clear, and I really enjoyed the learning process that went along with developing them.

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Oh yeah, I assure you, some parks do limit the number of people who go to certain areas. Some parks limit the number of people by requiring permits and/or setting daily limits. For example, there are times you need a permit to hike Half Dome When the cables are up, the limit is 50 people per day.

 

In Zion Narrows, there is a limit of 80 permits per day for hikes from Chamberlain's Ranch to Zion Canyon.

 

Many of the wilderness areas in Inyo National Forest limit the number of visitors per day.

 

And those aren't the only places, by far. And some places that don't set limits have areas that are too sensitive for extra traffic. Those places probably shouldn't have an EarthCache without the land managers being aware of it.

 

Another angle is that land managers don't like surprises, and there have been issues in the past with letterboxes and traditional geocaches that have soured some land managers. If you don't contact them, how would they react if they discovered your EarthCache some other way?

 

On the bright side, most city, county, and state land managers don't have to work with the limitations and the restrictions of that kind of magnitude, and they usually are glad to have the "free publicity". Still, the best spot for an EarthCache isn't always "right on the trail" so naturally you need permission from the land manager to encourage people to go to those spots. They want the experience to be safe and enjoyable for all and not to cause damage to their park. It's not all negative--Some of the land managers get excited when they learn about EarthCaches and work with you, suggesting better spots, supplying information, and being helpful in general.

 

+1

 

And THAT is why we pay you the big bucks Neos2.

 

I have trouble hearing that cachers could place a micro in the same spot and there wouldn't be a probem getting it published. Aren't people pursuing permission for their traditional caches? We have a great group of cachers that operate large night caching events every year and place a ton of wonderful caches with the specific permission of the conservation authority.

 

I went to an event earlier this year where two of our veteran local cachers placed all of their caches under the direct supervision of the conservation management.

 

Why is permission even an issue for discussion, doesn't it really come down to due diligence. Either you need permission for an area or you don't, it doesn't matter what type of cache it is, it is still our responsibility to get it. Proving it shouldn't be a problem.

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I have always found it ridiculous that an earthcache needs permission from the park service and POC information must be provided, but I can put a film canister at the same spot and have no issues.

I'll add that geoaware recently posted what I consider the ultimate answer to this question.

I'm copying it below, because it does address your concern and ties it to the original thread topic as well:

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!

 

i was always curious to know the answer to that requirement, which for the record i think its ridiculous

 

but that reasoning has to be some kind of joke lol...earthcaches are placed in parks and places that are accessible to the general public, most often for a fee...you mean to tell me that any of those places will forego the profits and limit the number of visitors per day?

Oh yeah, I assure you, some parks do limit the number of people who go to certain areas. Some parks limit the number of people by requiring permits and/or setting daily limits. For example, there are times you need a permit to hike Half Dome When the cables are up, the limit is 50 people per day.

 

In Zion Narrows, there is a limit of 80 permits per day for hikes from Chamberlain's Ranch to Zion Canyon.

 

Many of the wilderness areas in Inyo National Forest limit the number of visitors per day.

 

And those aren't the only places, by far. And some places that don't set limits have areas that are too sensitive for extra traffic. Those places probably shouldn't have an EarthCache without the land managers being aware of it.

 

Another angle is that land managers don't like surprises, and there have been issues in the past with letterboxes and traditional geocaches that have soured some land managers. If you don't contact them, how would they react if they discovered your EarthCache some other way?

 

On the bright side, most city, county, and state land managers don't have to work with the limitations and the restrictions of that kind of magnitude, and they usually are glad to have the "free publicity". Still, the best spot for an EarthCache isn't always "right on the trail" so naturally you need permission from the land manager to encourage people to go to those spots. They want the experience to be safe and enjoyable for all and not to cause damage to their park. It's not all negative--Some of the land managers get excited when they learn about EarthCaches and work with you, suggesting better spots, supplying information, and being helpful in general.

 

Just want to correct you about Half Dome. They release 400 permits a day for the hike with an additional 50 (or more) issued by the park service the day of to make up for no shows.

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For the record I have had emails/phones calls with National Parks about five caches they denied permission for.

 

One was in an area the park did not want people in. It was too dangerous, and park policy has closed the trails except in special circumstances.

Two were in areas where they were trying to save an endangered plant, so they were trying to minimize impact in that area.

Another was at a location where there was Obsidian, there was not a lot and they feared that highlighting the fact it was there would increase scavenging/collecting, so they ask that it not be included.

A phone discussion with NPS in the desert southwest let me know they did not want an Earthcache at a location in deference to a local Indian Tribe. The Earthcache bordered the Indian Reservation and is considered Sacred to the native American. They manage that location to minimize visitors and impact.

 

So there are instances. Are they common? No. But they are there. There are instances were the parks do not want people at specific locations.

Edited by geoawareUSA2

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For the record I have had emails/phones calls with National Parks about five caches they denied permission for. . . . So there are instances. Are they common? No. But they are there. There are instances were the parks do not want people at specific locations.

 

I have also read references on this site to a few earthcaches that had to be archived after problems developed at the site. The only way that a land manager might know if an earthcache is causing problems is if they are aware that the earthcache is there. So permission seems like a matter of common courtesy, even in the absence of any requirements.

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Oh yeah, I assure you, some parks do limit the number of people who go to certain areas. Some parks limit the number of people by requiring permits and/or setting daily limits. For example, there are times you need a permit to hike Half Dome When the cables are up, the limit is 50 people per day.

 

if a set number of permits are issued it further negates the permission requirement, they obviously have a measure in place to control traffic so no matter how badly i want to go if the number of permits has been exhausted there is nothing i can do about it, is there?

 

Another angle is that land managers don't like surprises, and there have been issues in the past with letterboxes and traditional geocaches that have soured some land managers. If you don't contact them, how would they react if they discovered your EarthCache some other way?

 

well that should have no weight in the issue....i can see how they will have an issue with traditionals and letterboxes because they require a container to be left behind, but earthcaches are the most non intrusive cache you can ever get...it certainly complies with "take nothing, leave only footprints" concept

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Oh yeah, I assure you, some parks do limit the number of people who go to certain areas. Some parks limit the number of people by requiring permits and/or setting daily limits. For example, there are times you need a permit to hike Half Dome When the cables are up, the limit is 50 people per day.

 

if a set number of permits are issued it further negates the permission requirement, they obviously have a measure in place to control traffic so no matter how badly i want to go if the number of permits has been exhausted there is nothing i can do about it, is there?

 

It doesn't necessarily negate the permission requirement.

The park manager has a duty to manage the land, and they need all the facts to do it efficiently. Even the most wary managers only want to be able to evaluate the impact from the 'advertisement' of the site --more traffic than usual, a different traffic pattern, a different type of visitor, etc.

 

Hopefully, posting a new EarthCache will change the number of visits an area gets. Sometimes that impact is keen at first. We know that's only temporary, and slows down after the locals all visit. If you've let the land manager know the EarthCache is there, you can discuss that with them, even show them logs from other nearby EarthCaches so they can see the typical pattern. Who knows, the park manager might consider allowing additional (special?) permits for people who only want to visit the EarthCache site.

 

Having that communication strand going with the land managers can be an extremely positive thing. I know some of the local state parks people were very lukewarm about geocaching in their parks until they were contacted about EarthCaches. Now they are more likely to allow both physical geocaches and EarthCaches on their properties. Some of the state parks have created their own caches & EarthCaches and hosted caching events. (Full disclosure: In a couple of parks it's because there is a cacher on staff, but that isn't true of the state parks nearest me).

 

Edited to add: I think my reply does a fine job of answering the second statement you made as well. EarthCaches can impact land use in several ways.

Edited by Neos2

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To all of those who have chosen to participate in the permission or no permission debate....it may be nice to vent, but it is a total waste of time. Please believe me because I have wasted more time on this topic than most. Even though the head guru himself (no less than Jeremy) questions the need for permission in National Parks, have we ever seen a change in an EC guideline or rule that was already set? Oh yes, with sufficient howls, some 'proposed' guidelines were not implemented like the vacation and proximity rules, but once a rule is laid down, forget it! It's cast in concrete! Back to our posed question. The answer is..............NO!

Some have made valiant attempts at explaining the need for the permission, but have fallen very short.

How many differing organizations recommend, publish or extoll the virtues of visiting our National Parks? A quick Google search will show literally hundreds and hundreds. Are they all bad actors because they didn't get permission to publish tips on where to hike? Or maybe they are terrible citizens for telling you where, when and how to go to photograph that breathtaking scene without obtaining permission! Oh yes, those terrible birdwatchers are among the most of the notible outlaws for publishing those darn photos of birds and where to see/photograph them. Ski slopes in National Parks. Good grief, you can bet your long johns, permission wasn't obtained for doing articles and recommending winter fun where allowed in National Parks by the ski folk, but we all know how nonconformists they are anyway!

Sorry, I couldn't resist this somewhat tongue-in-cheek essay, but my point is simple, we are only sending fellow earthcachers to visit our National Parks and enjoy them. After all, isn't that what the National Park people want? If it is off limits, it is off limits and who in their right mind is going to send someone where an arrest will be made. If it happens, that will make a most interesting log and reactions will occur! I don't know of a National Park which has off limits areas which doesn't mark the trail or publish brochures with instructions as such.

Silly, silly, silly and I am among the most silly! :)

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KK&M....I welcome you to write to the NPS service requesting that all geocaching be allowed on Park Service land. Your voice will always be welcome in the debate.

 

However the current agreement in place with NPS, and similar agreements with other land management agencies, calls for you (as a developer) to seek and gain permission before placing an EarthCache. The NPS has asked us to check that that permission quoted is valid.

 

This agreement is not to limit peoples access to the NP, but to assist the NPS to protect sites. It is their decision, and not the decision of the EarthCache team....we are just upholding our agreement with them (and other services across the country and around the world.

 

Your beef here is with the land management agencies that request us to have such permissions - not with the EarthCache/Groundspeak team!

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KK&M....I welcome you to write to the NPS service requesting that all geocaching be allowed on Park Service land. Your voice will always be welcome in the debate.

 

However the current agreement in place with NPS, and similar agreements with other land management agencies, calls for you (as a developer) to seek and gain permission before placing an EarthCache. The NPS has asked us to check that that permission quoted is valid.

 

This agreement is not to limit peoples access to the NP, but to assist the NPS to protect sites. It is their decision, and not the decision of the EarthCache team....we are just upholding our agreement with them (and other services across the country and around the world.

 

Your beef here is with the land management agencies that request us to have such permissions - not with the EarthCache/Groundspeak team!

 

I am sorry, but you imply that the 'permission' standard is all due to the NPS and other land management agencies. Well, you agreed and you didn't have to! The NPS like many other federal agencies want maximum control and you gave it to them! I have been advised that there is absolutely nothing legally the NPS could do if one of their trails, sites, etc. or a potential earthcache were published! What are they gonna do? Sue for copyright infringement? Maybe God would have something to, say about that! Do ya think earthcachers, after showing their membership cards, would be banned from from all NPS property?

"Your beef here is with the land management agencies". No it's not, it is with you agreeing with them and making us second class citizens utilizing what we already support by paying our taxes and/or admission fees!

When you say the agreement is not to limit access, but an unintended consequence of it is just that! In the deep history of earthcaching we can see why from a PR standpoint you sought the support of the NPS and that's all well and good, but what has it gotten for us? 1. Open doors? 2. Easy access? 3. Timely responses? Answer: none of the above!

Again, don't throw it off on the agencies like the NPS. It takes two to tango!

Isn't it time to revisit the GSA side of the agreement and free up more potential earthcaches? Please believe me that there are an awful lot of NPS personnel who would welcome it! They have enough to do as it is!

Thanks.

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I haven’t been geocaching for long and I have been developing earthcaches for an even shorter time – so I do not claim to be an expert.

 

But I have found working within the guidelines (I suppose the most recent and stringent ones!) to be quite easy and quite helpful in fact. By being forced to make the effort to contact landowners/land managers – I have found that it builds trust and they are generally willing to go the extra mile to help you when you take the time to get to know them and to work with them. One of my caches is placed in a National Park. I was able to work with the landowner and a local archaeological trust to resolve an issue with a traditional cache which was causing a problem with an important Neolithic burial site! I am now welcome to establish other earthcaches because they know me and trust I care about the park.

 

By working within the earthcache guidelines – (which I personally view as simply showing good manners when it comes to obtaining landowner permission) we can enhance the reputation of our hobby.

 

On balance however – I would not like to see earthcaches being blocked because similar examples can be found elsewhere. However reading the posts – I don’t get the feeling that is what is being said or done! It would be tedious to have several identical “cut and paste” EC in one area – so I am happy to “trust” the reviewers who make sure that EC’s remain “educational” “interesting” and where possible “novel” (at least within a reasonable distance).

 

Personally I want to thank the reviewers (in particular geoawareUK2) for the work they put into it. They are volunteers and I am grateful to them for their efforts.

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I'm sure most will welcome my last remarks on this subject.

We are mainly talking about American National Parks. No one is more interested in building trust and helping our Park system than I. Marge and I are 'certified' volunteers for some parks therefore we put our work where our mouth is!

Hey, any of you rule makers or enforcers, can you say that?????

Respect and support is volunteered not imposed by rule making! Hard, fast rules are sometimes necessary for some things i.e. traffic control, but they are not designed to built 'trust' or respect. They are designed for control!

I would always encourage us to make friends with Park personnel and to be a good ambassadors for earthcaching, but to demand permission to develop an EC is beyond logic and does nothing to foster any kind of relationship. It only creates barriers to earthcaching. Most of the Park folks think it is silly, but they too have to follow their own rules which were promulgated by Earthcaching. Approving earthcaches is for most Park personnel an royal pain in the butt. Oh yes, you may occasionally find a Park Super or Head Ranger who welcome the rules (control issue), but those who have been delegated with the tasks of enforcement think it is borderline foolishness!

This (the discussion) is a total waste of time and obviously falls on deaf ears who want to blame the NPS.

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KK&M, I feel your enthusiasm, but you gotta be realistic.

 

Yes Geocaching has a good foothold and a growing base, but we sneak around looking for hidden stuff most of the time. Not everyone is gonna be cool with that. For ECs which are totally related to the company, there has to be an effort to make it clear that it is not about the "hide and seek" aspect but about the education. If an organization like NPS said that they would allow a (newer and still somewhat unknown) game to extend itself throughout its domain, but only on a certain condition, I would take that deal.

 

Could you imagine ECs in the USA being banned from parks? Imagine how many awesome ECs wouldn't have been made. I totally agree that we should be treated like any other visitor to these parks, but if that is the deal then I would rather take it than leave it.

 

From Groundspeak's perspective, could you imagine the consequences that would come from being told by land management that you have to get permission and then publishing ECs without it, if I was one of those land managers and found out I was being ignored, I would be hopping mad. Being a business that doesn't respect other businesses is not a rep you want to have. They aren't a huge conglomerate company, they are a lot smaller and need to make friends (on a professional level) to ensure their longevity. They don't have to worry about customers (half of us are already hooked like drug addicts) but as this company grows it needs to have a good rep for working with other companies/organizations.

 

I hear your plea, but it is a much bigger issue than just freedom. You need permission to visit most of the national parks anyway, whether it is for the day or for a week, you may have to get a permit or pay admission. With the EC process all you are saying is "please". I know that because of us acting in good faith, most parks don't charge for permits for ECs and that is a pretty sweet deal considering the alternative.

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On the other hand, rarely is an EarthCache submission ready to publish on the first go.

 

I'm sorry, but I have to say I find this statement very disturbing. I'm glad I got involved with Earthcaching years ago when I did, because I've really learned a lot and seen some very interesting places. I'm saddened though that the policy now seems to be one of erecting barriers. It was a nice program while it lasted.

I've created 14 earthcaches and only had 2 sent back. One glacial erratic, which I conformed to the reviewer's wishes and it was published. The other is a beach in Hawaii. The reveiwer said I needed permission. I advised that the beach was not on private or managed land. The reviewer told me that s/he found it hard to believe that any land in Hawaii is not privately owned or managed by a government entitity. I called the county and they told me that the land was not privately owned or under any jurisdiction they were aware of. I sent the rep's contact info to the reviewer and it was published.

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