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DanOCan

Death of a Geocacher

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Creston RCMP and BC Coroners investigate accidental death of geocacher

 

Kind of puts all our quibbles about Virtual caches, signing logs and micro spew into context, doesn't it? Sad news about an Idaho cacher visiting B.C. and being killed during the hunt. :(

 

This is absolutely a sad story, without a doubt... But I just can't shake a little smile from my face, because I presume that in his last moments, this man was doing something that he loved to do, and was doing so with his family. :(

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Creston RCMP and BC Coroners investigate accidental death of geocacher

 

Kind of puts all our quibbles about Virtual caches, signing logs and micro spew into context, doesn't it? Sad news about an Idaho cacher visiting B.C. and being killed during the hunt. :(

There was something similar posted a few years ago. In this case, the cacher was 75 years old. One would think that by that time, he would know better, so I have to wonder if there was something else involved... lack of balance, mini-stroke, or whatever involved. In any case, this is very difficult news for his friends and family, and I feel very badly for them. But on the positive side, he died doing something that he enjoyed doing, and he was not in a hospital bed with tubes and electrodes keeping him alive. I hope to be as fortunate when my time comes!

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One would think that by that time, he would know better, so I have to wonder if there was something else involved... lack of balance, mini-stroke, or whatever involved. . . But on the positive side, he died doing something that he enjoyed doing, and he was not in a hospital bed with tubes and electrodes keeping him alive. I hope to be as fortunate when my time comes!

 

This week, as I walked to work, I saw a fatal accident involving a 25 year old bicyclist who made the wrong turn at the wrong time. Life is too short, whether you are 25 or 75. Be careful.

Edited by justacacher
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Would it be in poor taste to see about having an event for him? After the funeral of course.

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Would it be in poor taste to see about having an event for him? After the funeral of course.

 

We had one for a local cacher that died unexpectedly last year. It went over pretty well, and his family showed up and everything. Treat it the right way, and I think it would be seen as it is meant.

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Sad, but glad he died doing something he enjoyed and not a long painful death from cancer.

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Can't stop thinking, that IF this cache had been maintained, then the person would still be alive....

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Can't stop thinking, that IF this cache had been maintained, then the person would still be alive....

 

I don't think that is fair to the cache owner :( . The cache only had one DNF, five days before the unfortunate accident, with 70 finds.

Edited by GeoGerms
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Does make a good case for good hints though.

 

The owner came in later saying that you don't have to step off the pavement of the parking lot to get the cache.

 

First and foremost though, it is the job of the cacher, not the cache owner, to stay within one's own limits. You can't blame anyone but yourself if you go beyond your own capabilities.

 

And then on the other hand, sometimes Stuff happens.

Freak accidents happen that are the fault of no one. Happens every day all over the globe. It sounds like this might have been the case here.

 

I am very sorry for him and his family.

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It is sad when something like this happens, regardless of the activity/sport but, as noted, the cacher must stay within their own limits and also completely read the cache listing - complete and informative is the CO's responsibility.

 

We had a close call situation here a few years back: From the May 21, 2005 log of the The Pawpaw Cache

 

News Article

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Can't stop thinking, that IF this cache had been maintained, then the person would still be alive....

 

I don't think that is fair to the cache owner :( . The cache only had one DNF, five days before the unfortunate accident, with 70 finds.

 

And before that it hadn't been found since October 28, 2010. And the hint: rocks out of place

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Can't stop thinking, that IF this cache had been maintained, then the person would still be alive....
What? That's ridiculous. If I checked on every cache of mine that gets one DNF by some guy who has only a few hundred finds, I'd be checking on a whole lotta caches that were just fine! If the cacher had let his GPS settle in before climbing over the barrier between him and an 80 foot drop on a 1.5 terrain cache, then he would still be alive.
Witness accounts indicated that the group had stopped and had just begun locating the GPS bearings of the geocache when the man had stepped over the road side barriers, lost his footing and fell approximately 80ft.
Can't honestly say that I'd have restrained myself either, but I wouldn't be passing the blame off to the cache owner, who has, in fact, archived the cache out of respect of the situation.
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Can't stop thinking, that IF this cache had been maintained, then the person would still be alive....

I don't think that is fair to the cache owner :( . The cache only had one DNF, five days before the unfortunate accident, with 70 finds.

And before that it hadn't been found since October 28, 2010. And the hint: rocks out of place

The first winter after it was hidden only one group of cachers found it between October and March. There were no Finds between November of 2009 and March of 2010 as well, so I don't think the fact that it hadn't been found since last October would be any reason to suspect that it needed maintenance. Cache has been there a few years so the bulk of the locals would have done it already and so it really would only be in the tourist season where you would expect it to be found on a regular basis.

 

The cache owner is from my area and has a very good history of cache maintenance when there are issues. Even though this cache is one province over, I have no doubts he would have performed maintenance on the cache if there had been any reason to suspect it needed it. Shifting the blame in any way, shape or form to the CO is not justified, IMO.

 

It was a sad accident and it serves as a good reminder that we need to watch out for ourselves out there.

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On top of this tragedy, the responding SAR team is today having a memorial for one of their members lost in a river rescue attempt a short while back. That was the first SAR fatality on active duty in BC. Would not be surprised if the service isn't on TV news today.

 

On that note, please take care out there on all levels. From filing trip plans with responsible people, suitable to your adventure, to using the tools and skills that are appropriate to the terrain and difficulty. Come to think about it, make sure any caches you own are correctly (as much as possible) rated for terrain and access related difficulty. Mention any hazards on your cache pages where they are significant.

 

My sympathy goes out to both this cacher and his family, and to the family of the lost SAR member as well.

 

Also one more time as I've said before... People who venture out into the wild, need to support their local SAR services.

Without that support the service will be severely limited in some areas. This is a volunteer service, but fate doesn't discriminate as to who it involves... subject or rescuer.

 

Doug 7rxc

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So sad, may he rest in peace

what a horrible tragedy

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when the man had stepped over the road side barriers

 

Bolding mine.

 

Isn't that pretty much asking for trouble?

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I have always wondered if someone had died while geocaching, though, I thought it would've been because of an accident with equipment while doing rappelling, or going into a nuclear reactor, not because of a cache that is just barely more difficult then a wheelchair accessible cache.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

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Most accidents happen because people forget common sense things. All the safeguards in the world won't help you if you don't pay attention 100% of the time while in a new area, you've never been in before.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

 

Not the thread to have this discussion.

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I'm a bit confused about the barrier. Was it a guardrail, or ecology blocks or something?

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I'm a bit confused about the barrier. Was it a guardrail, or ecology blocks or something?

 

I'm guessing it was a cement road barrier.... don't know for sure.

Here's the satellite image of the pullout:

http://maps.google.ca/maps?hl=en&ll=49.429716,-116.755942&spn=0.001783,0.005284&t=k&z=18

 

So sad. What a "simple" drive by cache. Must have been such a shock for the family. :(

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My condolences go to the family and friends of this geocacher. I also feel for the CO - who is totally innocent, but must be feeling awful right now.

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My condolences go to the family and friends of this geocacher. I also feel for the CO - who is totally innocent, but must be feeling awful right now.

It would probably make the CO feel better if it was a Heart Attack, and not from the Blunt Force Trauma he reviewed when bumping his head into the tree. I'm curious to see what the cause of death is, was it the fact he lost his bearings and hit the tree, or was something else involved, that was unavoidable whether geocaching on a hill, or at home watching TV.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

 

I would suspect the co archived the cache out of respect for the poor man that died at the cache area. Albeit just my 64 year old brains opinion :rolleyes: .

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A geocacher around where I live died (Just of old age I presume) and some people adopted his caches and I found one of them the other day. Pretty nice gesture.

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So sad. He died in his brother-in-law's arms. The brother-in-law requested that the co archive this cache.

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The moderating team has received complaints about several posts to this thread, as being in poor taste. While poor taste is not per se a violation of the forum guidelines, participants in this discussion are reminded of the "respect" guideline. Before posting, read your post and imagine that you were saying those words to (1) the family of the deceased geocacher, and (2) the owner of the cache where this accident happened. Are you being respectful? If you would feel funny about saying the same thing in a face-to-face conversation, reconsider what you were going to post.

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when the man had stepped over the road side barriers

 

Bolding mine.

 

Isn't that pretty much asking for trouble?

Not really. In fact, generally I'd say that it is safer to be behind them where the cars can't hit you.

 

It sounds like this was a misstep, apparently into some loose rocks and rubble on a hillside. Started to slide, couldn't get a grab on anything solid until he hit his head on the tree. Could have just been a few cuss words and scrapes/bruises, but he hit his head instead of breaking a leg. Every one of us is that far from his fate.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

 

Out of respect.

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I hope I haven't said anything offensive. :(

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I have always wondered if someone had died while geocaching, though, I thought it would've been because of an accident with equipment while doing rappelling, or going into a nuclear reactor, not because of a cache that is just barely more difficult then a wheelchair accessible cache.

We know of someone who, while caching, had an auto accident resulting in multiple fatalities. No one can know for sure, but GPSr distraction could have been a player.

makes me constantly cautious when checking the screen (walking and driving).

I have almost stumbled over a bank, fell off a boulder, slipped on a riverbank. And I'm a young punk of 71.

Lots of things can happen anywhere.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

because the family member requested it, the co chose to archive it. It would be pretty bold to not archive it at the direct request of the family members. It's just a respect thing

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Every one of us is that far from his fate.

 

I've lived with that knowledge since I was a volunteer firefighter and went to my first fatal accident. A misstep here, a moment of inattention there, wrong place, wrong time -- it can happen to any of us at any time, often through no fault of our own. Sometimes the "simple" situations are the ones that end up being the most dangerous because we don't put the same care and attention into our activities as we do if we're climbing a narrow mountain ridge, for example.

 

This is one of those "there are no winners" situations.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

because the family member requested it, the co chose to archive it. It would be pretty bold to not archive it at the direct request of the family members. It's just a respect thing

Ah, I never noticed the request. I guess a better question was why it was requested. But that's too far off topic, so let's end this whole side converstation.

 

Thanks.

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Just noticed the cache was archived... Why? If I hide a 5/5 and someone dies because they made a really bad decision while going for my cache (Like rock climbing freehand.) then I would post a note saying that you should not climb free-hand and allow the cache to live. I'd be upset if I couldn't get a find if it was a cache I've been eyeballing for a while.

because the family member requested it, the co chose to archive it. It would be pretty bold to not archive it at the direct request of the family members. It's just a respect thing

Ah, I never noticed the request. I guess a better question was why it was requested. But that's too far off topic, so let's end this whole side converstation.

 

Thanks.

I think ending your part of this discussion is a very, very good idea. Thank you!

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Creston RCMP and BC Coroners investigate accidental death of geocacher

 

Kind of puts all our quibbles about Virtual caches, signing logs and micro spew into context, doesn't it? Sad news about an Idaho cacher visiting B.C. and being killed during the hunt. :(

There was something similar posted a few years ago. In this case, the cacher was 75 years old. One would think that by that time, he would know better, so I have to wonder if there was something else involved... lack of balance, mini-stroke, or whatever involved. In any case, this is very difficult news for his friends and family, and I feel very badly for them. But on the positive side, he died doing something that he enjoyed doing, and he was not in a hospital bed with tubes and electrodes keeping him alive. I hope to be as fortunate when my time comes!

 

Anytime you want to cache together you give me a call. You've got my number. :ph34r:

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sad to hear. Does not sound like a bad cache placement based on the little details, CO would not expect anyone to go over the barrier and it was only a 1.5 terrain cache at a rest stop. Am sure most of us have done far more challenging than that. Someone either searched too far or lost their balance or something like that. Condolences to the family and am sorry for the CO. Glad Keystone said what he said. The post by Q10 was not called for in my opinion. However, glad to see we have monitors and more decent people on the forums than say MSNBC or Yahoo or many other online websites that folks seem to flock to say horrible things just to make crazy political points or to make people feel bad.

 

Kinda interesting timing because this weekend my friend and I were discussing why we do not hear more geocachers passing away while geocaching. We were speaking of hiking and the like as we had heard of a number of hikers dying of late who were not geocaching. It can happen to any hobby, skiing, geocaching, river rafting, hiking, mountain climbing....folks take risks when they get out of bed every day. Only second one I have seen, there was one in Spokane of a newbie cacher a year or two ago. Must be more of course, and will get more as more cachers enter the hobby just by sheer percentage chance.

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