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Caching Restrictions Applied to Central Florida


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Abandoned / derelict areas are really vulnerable to vandalism, looting, and squatting. The people who are still living there have good reason to be sensitive to an influx of strangers skulking around. The archive notice is crystal clear about why these caches were archived - time to move on to somewhere else where the game is welcome.

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So the locals wouldn't need to tell the difference because the people they'd want to shoot wouldn't be there to begin with.

Let's look at this from another angle: Do you really think enough geocachers would blanket the area so successfully, and over a long enough period, that they would be a deterrence to the criminal element? I just don't see that happening.

 

--Larry

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Abandoned / derelict areas are really vulnerable to vandalism, looting, and squatting. The people who are still living there have good reason to be sensitive to an influx of strangers skulking around. The archive notice is crystal clear about why these caches were archived - time to move on to somewhere else where the game is welcome.

^ ^ ^

 

This.

 

It's obvious to me that one or more residents of this area are suspicious of strangers showing up in their development who aren't there on what they consider legitimate business. They don't know, and they don't care, about geocaching. It still involves, in their eyes, "acting suspicious". For reasons we aren't privy to, these same residents are already nervous about strangers in their midst.

 

Knowschad, do you really think someone who knows nothing about geocaching would consider rummaging around in bushes as not suspicious? On the couple of occasions when I've been confronted by the police while geocaching, that's exactly what I was doing.

 

In this case, the residents' need for security and peace of mind trumps any "right" we might think we have to hide geocaches on their turf. I vote for archiving all those caches and finding a more appropriate place to hide them. If there aren't more appropriate places, it probably means the area has enough caches already.

 

--Larry

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Abandoned / derelict areas are really vulnerable to vandalism, looting, and squatting. The people who are still living there have good reason to be sensitive to an influx of strangers skulking around. The archive notice is crystal clear about why these caches were archived - time to move on to somewhere else where the game is welcome.

^ ^ ^

 

This.

 

It's obvious to me that one or more residents of this area are suspicious of strangers showing up in their development who aren't there on what they consider legitimate business. They don't know, and they don't care, about geocaching. It still involves, in their eyes, "acting suspicious". For reasons we aren't privy to, these same residents are already nervous about strangers in their midst.

 

Knowschad, do you really think someone who knows nothing about geocaching would consider rummaging around in bushes as not suspicious? On the couple of occasions when I've been confronted by the police while geocaching, that's exactly what I was doing.

In this case, the residents' need for security and peace of mind trumps any "right" we might think we have to hide geocaches on their turf. I vote for archiving all those caches and finding a more appropriate place to hide them. If there aren't more appropriate places, it probably means the area has enough caches already.

 

--Larry

 

True. At least not without an explanation. And I don't think that homeowner would be conducive to listening to an explanation.

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Just because a piece of property contains no buildings, is not fenced, and is not posted with No Trespassing signs dies not mean it is public property. Unless it is public property like a park, preserve, or other government property then an individual or company owns it.

 

Exactly...just being on a roadway doesn't make it a public RoW. Honestly, I'm a little surprised that bunch got published.

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More people like what? How could a homeowner possibly know the reason someone is skulking around their neighborhood?

Let me try again. The question I ask myself is, "Should the home owner oppose or encourage caches in their neighborhood?" If they oppose caches, then no geocachers are in their neighborhood, making it more attractive to scofflaws since there are fewer witnesses, and those witnesses are more likely to be away from home during the day. If they encourage caches, then more people will be in their neighborhood looking for the cache. Assume for the sake of discussion that the additional traffic is not a problem, then the cachers themselves do not create a problem, so the question the homeowner might want to ask is if the cachers' presence will reduce the number of undesirables.

 

Let's look at this from another angle: Do you really think enough geocachers would blanket the area so successfully, and over a long enough period, that they would be a deterrence to the criminal element? I just don't see that happening.

Curmudgeons consider every stranger in their neighborhood undesirable, so I was suggesting a way to approach a local that is opposing caches in a way that might make them reconsider that point of view. I don't know whether that would actually help, but remember that I wasn't speaking in general but suggesting how to approach that one individual I'm speculating is the entire problem here so that they might possibility see the advantages of geocachers in their neighborhood rather than see them as nothing but potential vandals. Who knows? If someone plants the idea that geocachers are good people in their heads, they might decide to embrace the hobby.

 

I have to admit, in the back of my mind, I'm imagining that this is a typical hermit that considers anyone in their neighborhood to be trouble whether they're actually causing any trouble or not, so while I'm suggesting presenting the case that caching would be a deterrence to the criminal element, what I'm really thinking is that there's no criminal element there to begin with, so it's more a case of making them see all the strangers as friendly geocachers, since that's what they really are because there never was a criminal element involved. But perhaps there's already tons of real trouble in the neighborhood that just hasn't been described in the presented evidence.

 

I'd ban the idiot that left that mess, archive the caches, but leave it open to others more responsible.

Did I miss something? The only comment I noticed about the actual cache quality suggests that these are good caches. Do you have any reason to call this "that mess" and to call the CO an "idiot" other than the fact that there are many of them?

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Just because a piece of property contains no buildings, is not fenced, and is not posted with No Trespassing signs dies not mean it is public property. Unless it is public property like a park, preserve, or other government property then an individual or company owns it.

Exactly...just being on a roadway doesn't make it a public RoW. Honestly, I'm a little surprised that bunch got published.

But neither does undeveloped lots mean it isn't a public RoW. Sure, if this is really private property not open to the public, then there's a problem, but I don't see anything in the street view to suggest that's the case.

 

Certainly the geocaches actually on the undeveloped lots themselves would run afoul of permission requirements, although I can't help but recognize that this is a case where the letter of the law, while reasonable, is preventing caches that in practice wouldn't cause any actual problems.

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Why would you even mass place geocaches in neighborhoods? Has the saturation of geocaches reached a point that residental areas are all that is left? I know that as a parent that I wouldn't want people that I don't know wandering around my neighborhood. Even if you told me you were a geocacher, that doesn't mean I'm going to accept that you are a good person. Neighborhoods should be off limits.

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I'd ban the idiot that left that mess, archive the caches, but leave it open to others more responsible.
Did I miss something? The only comment I noticed about the actual cache quality suggests that these are good caches. Do you have any reason to call this "that mess" and to call the CO an "idiot" other than the fact that there are many of them?
The caches themselves may or may not be messes, but it seems pretty clear to me that the overall situation created by the mass placement of that many caches in that neighborhood has created a mess. And that's what I assumed xonewingx was referring to.

 

Whether or not the CO should be banned is a separate issue though.

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Curmudgeons consider every stranger in their neighborhood undesirable, so I was suggesting a way to approach a local that is opposing caches in a way that might make them reconsider that point of view.

How do you know that this is simply some curmudgeon who doesn't hanker to strangers? And how do you know that the area hasn't actually had (maybe still has) a crime problem? What you're suggesting sounds to me as if geocachers could serve as a sort of de facto Block Watch program for the community. Really?

 

--Larry

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Just because a piece of property contains no buildings, is not fenced, and is not posted with No Trespassing signs dies not mean it is public property. Unless it is public property like a park, preserve, or other government property then an individual or company owns it.

Exactly...just being on a roadway doesn't make it a public RoW. Honestly, I'm a little surprised that bunch got published.

But neither does undeveloped lots mean it isn't a public RoW. Sure, if this is really private property not open to the public, then there's a problem, but I don't see anything in the street view to suggest that's the case.

 

Certainly the geocaches actually on the undeveloped lots themselves would run afoul of permission requirements, although I can't help but recognize that this is a case where the letter of the law, while reasonable, is preventing caches that in practice wouldn't cause any actual problems.

 

It's fairly obvious just from the layout that we're talking about a subdivision (by the way, how many different variations on "Malauka" can they come up with?!?). The map alone should have at least sent up a flag in the reviewer's mind. Generally a developer owns the property (or a bank in the case of a bankruptcy/foreclosure) and parcels are sold off to the homeowners. So eventually you have homeowners and the HOA in charge of the entire area.

 

The oldest cache in Georgia has been threatened many times, only available because the HOA allows it. They like to disable it before and during any local mega events to reduce traffic to the neighborhood. It only exists because of a mutual understanding, something the CO of that "Power Mesh" of caches doesn't appear to have negotiated here...

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The caches themselves may or may not be messes, but it seems pretty clear to me that the overall situation created by the mass placement of that many caches in that neighborhood has created a mess.

Eh. I don't really have enough information to say that this entire flap wasn't caused by one cache down the street from one curmudgeon, so I wouldn't want to jump to the conclusion that the number placed is a significant factor.

 

How do you know that this is simply some curmudgeon who doesn't hanker to strangers? And how do you know that the area hasn't actually had (maybe still has) a crime problem? What you're suggesting sounds to me as if geocachers could serve as a sort of de facto Block Watch program for the community. Really?

I thought I made it clear that I don't know those things. I'm reacting because other responses seemed to be assumed they're true without much justification. My comments were in the context of approaching a resident in order to exchange more information.

 

But, yeah, exactly: geocachers in a neighborhood have an effect more like a block watch than like a vandal attack. So why do we accept the resident's attitude that the impact of the caches and the people they attract will be as negative as the impact of the worst outsiders the residents can imagine?

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I did a similar series of caches in Florida a couple years ago (http://coord.info/GC44R3A)

 

There were a few dozen caches in a abandoned development, where the roads and street signs were all in, but only a handful of homes were ever built. It was pretty cool to drive through the area, feeling like some alien picked up the houses and left everything else.

 

When I pulled into the area, I saw a couple police cars driving around and one of them eyed me driving into the area. On one of the first finds, I see the car drive up again and pull up behind my car. I came out of the overgrowth and explained what I was doing. He had never heard of geocaching before. A second police car pulled up, fortunately, as he knew all about geocaching and had seen many other cachers in the area.

 

Seems like areas like these attract crime, being mostly abandoned. There had been some rapes in the area, where women were dragged back here. There were several cases of arson as well, one of which was still smoldering when I was there.

 

For the few families living in such an area, any traffic is going to cause alarm because of the history of crime in a mostly abandoned area, so they are likely to call the police and raise an issue.

 

I'd much rather see caches like these, that are CLEARLY not on public property (somebody owns it, not the town/county/state), than to have more bad press given to geocaching.

 

Archive first, unarchive if permission is proven. There are plenty of other public lands to geocache on.

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I don't see a fundamental difference between a geoart and a power trail either. Zoom out a little on that map you'll see several linear power trails. Calling it something other than a power trail doesn't make it immune to the negative impact of placing an excessive number of geocaches in one area.

Power trails are designed for quick finds and are not intended to have any redeeming features. Geoart may or may not be intended for quick finds, but their primary redeeming feature is location of posted coordinates.

 

What timandweze describes in this case is just a bunch of normal caches with high density, neither power trail nor geoart.

 

Having said that, the issue here is the high density, not whether it's a power trail.

 

I agree. It's the high density of caches that brings large numbers of geocachers to places which might not be conducive to a lot of extra traffic. The debate over whether it' a power trail or geoart or calling it something else is just a smoke screen.

 

Not a smokescreen, you're trying to label this a power trail so you can post how bad all power trails are, this is not a power trail.

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I don't see a fundamental difference between a geoart and a power trail either. Zoom out a little on that map you'll see several linear power trails. Calling it something other than a power trail doesn't make it immune to the negative impact of placing an excessive number of geocaches in one area.

Power trails are designed for quick finds and are not intended to have any redeeming features. Geoart may or may not be intended for quick finds, but their primary redeeming feature is location of posted coordinates.

 

What timandweze describes in this case is just a bunch of normal caches with high density, neither power trail nor geoart.

 

Having said that, the issue here is the high density, not whether it's a power trail.

 

I agree. It's the high density of caches that brings large numbers of geocachers to places which might not be conducive to a lot of extra traffic. The debate over whether it' a power trail or geoart or calling it something else is just a smoke screen.

 

Not a smokescreen, you're trying to label this a power trail so you can post how bad all power trails are, this is not a power trail.

 

Who cares what its called? It is a cluster of caches hidden for the purpose of building the critical mass that will bring a lot of cachers to the area. And apparently it was done without due consideration for those that live in the area and perhaps enjoy their former privacy, or perhaps are afraid of crime, or for whatever reason, don't want us there. Does anything else really matter?

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this is not a power trail.

 

But it is an excellent example of the negative impact that the removal of

 

Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. The two main goals of the saturation guideline are to encourage you to seek out new places to hide caches rather than putting them in areas where caches already exist, and to limit the number of caches hidden in a particular area, especially by the same hider. Groundspeak may further restrict cache listings in areas where cache saturation becomes a concern.

 

from the guidelines. There was a reason for that clause. While it might not be much of a problem out in the desert, it can present problems in populated areas.

 

This game should not trump people's right to enjoy their home. Consideration should be given before bringing a ton of traffic into a previously quiet neighborhood.

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I don't see a fundamental difference between a geoart and a power trail either. Zoom out a little on that map you'll see several linear power trails. Calling it something other than a power trail doesn't make it immune to the negative impact of placing an excessive number of geocaches in one area.

Power trails are designed for quick finds and are not intended to have any redeeming features. Geoart may or may not be intended for quick finds, but their primary redeeming feature is location of posted coordinates.

 

What timandweze describes in this case is just a bunch of normal caches with high density, neither power trail nor geoart.

 

Having said that, the issue here is the high density, not whether it's a power trail.

 

I agree. It's the high density of caches that brings large numbers of geocachers to places which might not be conducive to a lot of extra traffic. The debate over whether it' a power trail or geoart or calling it something else is just a smoke screen.

 

Not a smokescreen, you're trying to label this a power trail so you can post how bad all power trails are, this is not a power trail.

 

Who cares what its called? It is a cluster of caches hidden for the purpose of building the critical mass that will bring a lot of cachers to the area. And apparently it was done without due consideration for those that live in the area and perhaps enjoy their former privacy, or perhaps are afraid of crime, or for whatever reason, don't want us there. Does anything else really matter?

 

I do, I will admit the caches in question were not a good idea but I feel some here have an alternate agenda and see this as another opportunity to bash power trails.

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this is not a power trail.

 

But it is an excellent example of the negative impact that the removal of

 

Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. The two main goals of the saturation guideline are to encourage you to seek out new places to hide caches rather than putting them in areas where caches already exist, and to limit the number of caches hidden in a particular area, especially by the same hider. Groundspeak may further restrict cache listings in areas where cache saturation becomes a concern.

 

from the guidelines. There was a reason for that clause. While it might not be much of a problem out in the desert, it can present problems in populated areas.

 

This game should not trump people's right to enjoy their home. Consideration should be given before bringing a ton of traffic into a previously quiet neighborhood.

 

Then shouldn't the reviewer be responsible for publishing them?

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this is not a power trail.

 

But it is an excellent example of the negative impact that the removal of

 

Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. The two main goals of the saturation guideline are to encourage you to seek out new places to hide caches rather than putting them in areas where caches already exist, and to limit the number of caches hidden in a particular area, especially by the same hider. Groundspeak may further restrict cache listings in areas where cache saturation becomes a concern.

 

from the guidelines. There was a reason for that clause. While it might not be much of a problem out in the desert, it can present problems in populated areas.

 

This game should not trump people's right to enjoy their home. Consideration should be given before bringing a ton of traffic into a previously quiet neighborhood.

 

Then shouldn't the reviewer be responsible for publishing them?

 

Why? With that clause now removed, they have to hold their nose and hit publish if the caches adhere to the guidelines.

 

This is not a reviewer problem. This is a let's push the guidelines as far as we can and hide as many caches as we can pack in there just because we can and homeowners be darned problem.

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The idea is that geocachers are in the area for reasons not related to tormenting the locals, so with more people like that in the neighborhood beyond the handful of residents, the less interesting the area will be to people that want to do something nefarious. So the locals wouldn't need to tell the difference because the people they'd want to shoot wouldn't be there to begin with.

More people like what? How could a homeowner possibly know the reason someone is skulking around their neighborhood?

 

I ask again, how will they know the difference between geocachers and crooks? Please tell me what differentiates the two groups from the perspective of homeowners looking for suspicious activity?

 

Maybe if we all wore the same uniform, carried official geocaching ID badges and drove around in marked Scooby Vans....

 

--Larry

Did you read some of the logs? Assalt on the area? Teams of more then 5 cachers. I think in the short of time they were published and archived there were about 21 cachers who logged. I think even in that small number the groups would be noticed and people would question it. I have seen and reported caches placed in communities that have large signs that read Private Property-No Tresspassing and have HOAs. Some COs believe just because you live in a community you can place caches there. You would need to get permission from the HOA which is hard to do.

Edited by jellis
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What's the acceptable minimum number of armed confrontations by an angry homeowner before you would tip the balance in favor of archiving the caches in that one neighborhood?

His question is legitimate: what is "the neighborhood"? I read the the story as involving one or a small number of hotheads. Ok, I understand we have to accommodate the hotheads. *But to what degree?!* No caches within a quarter mile of their home? A half mile? A mile?

 

How would you suggest Groundspeak handle it if a guy with a gun says "I don't want any caches in my town/county/state, or else!"?

 

I have no problems archiving caches *near* the person's house. I do hope that the threat of violence was *immediately* reported to the police. That's doing a community service, because that hothead with the gun is someday going to be on the evening news!

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What's the acceptable minimum number of armed confrontations by an angry homeowner before you would tip the balance in favor of archiving the caches in that one neighborhood?

His question is legitimate: what is "the neighborhood"? I read the the story as involving one or a small number of hotheads. Ok, I understand we have to accommodate the hotheads. *But to what degree?!* No caches within a quarter mile of their home? A half mile? A mile?

 

How would you suggest Groundspeak handle it if a guy with a gun says "I don't want any caches in my town/county/state, or else!"?

 

I have no problems archiving caches *near* the person's house. I do hope that the threat of violence was *immediately* reported to the police. That's doing a community service, because that hothead with the gun is someday going to be on the evening news!

I didn't see the map well enough but we have a power trail on roads with farms and ranches and parks. Most of the neighbors noticed when caches were placed in front of their homes. That's what attracts attention. One guy placed a chair in front of his house and sat there as cachers drove by. If these caches were more spread out and not in eye shot of anyones home, neighbors wouldn't notice so much. Especially if only one or two at a time not a car loaded with cachers. We should respect wishes of the neighborhoods and not try to place caches in every bare spot.

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Some COs believe just because you live in a community you can place caches there. You would need to get permission from the HOA which is hard to do.

 

You're probably right, but I think it's a bit less certain than you think. If I can invite my friends and a group from my club to my house or the park within "a community," why can i not invite my fellow cachers? If I invite my club members to a picnic at the community park, 50 people may "invade the territory" of the heat-packing hothead. If I invite cachers, we'll maybe see a huge crowd of 5 every now and then.

 

As I said, some communities may be that strict....

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Some COs believe just because you live in a community you can place caches there. You would need to get permission from the HOA which is hard to do.

 

You're probably right, but I think it's a bit less certain than you think. If I can invite my friends and a group from my club to my house or the park within "a community," why can i not invite my fellow cachers? If I invite my club members to a picnic at the community park, 50 people may "invade the territory" of the heat-packing hothead. If I invite cachers, we'll maybe see a huge crowd of 5 every now and then.

 

As I said, some communities may be that strict....

I think it's a difference of inviting friends over for a picnic then placing caches on private property without permission and having cachers coming over anytime they want.

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I think it's a difference of inviting friends over for a picnic then placing caches on private property without permission and having cachers coming over anytime they want.
Yep. It's a common HOA rule that you must remain with your guests while they use any common facilities owned by the HOA.
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I don't see a fundamental difference between a geoart and a power trail either. Zoom out a little on that map you'll see several linear power trails. Calling it something other than a power trail doesn't make it immune to the negative impact of placing an excessive number of geocaches in one area.

Power trails are designed for quick finds and are not intended to have any redeeming features. Geoart may or may not be intended for quick finds, but their primary redeeming feature is location of posted coordinates.

 

What timandweze describes in this case is just a bunch of normal caches with high density, neither power trail nor geoart.

 

Having said that, the issue here is the high density, not whether it's a power trail.

 

I agree. It's the high density of caches that brings large numbers of geocachers to places which might not be conducive to a lot of extra traffic. The debate over whether it' a power trail or geoart or calling it something else is just a smoke screen.

 

Not a smokescreen, you're trying to label this a power trail so you can post how bad all power trails are, this is not a power trail.

 

Who cares what its called? It is a cluster of caches hidden for the purpose of building the critical mass that will bring a lot of cachers to the area. And apparently it was done without due consideration for those that live in the area and perhaps enjoy their former privacy, or perhaps are afraid of crime, or for whatever reason, don't want us there. Does anything else really matter?

 

I do, I will admit the caches in question were not a good idea but I feel some here have an alternate agenda and see this as another opportunity to bash power trails.

The caches in question was not a good idea, but I am not against power trails when they are in their right place. Please think of the neighbor's children. :ph34r:

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The caches in question was not a good idea, but I am not against power trails when they are in their right place. Please think of the neighbor's children. :ph34r:

Were the neighbor's children being threatened by geocachers? That would change everything.

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The caches in question was not a good idea, but I am not against power trails when they are in their right place. Please think of the neighbor's children. :ph34r:

Were the neighbor's children being threatened by geocachers? That would change everything.

No, they were seeing that devilish invention, the *power trail.*

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Then shouldn't the reviewer be responsible for publishing them?

Geocache publishing is based on trust between the Cache Owner and the Volunteer Reviewer. Until given reason to believe otherwise, the Volunteer Reviewer believes that the Cache Owner actually did read and understand the Guidelines, including the Guideline about obtaining adequate permission, when s/he checked the box at the end of the new cache submission process. Unless a cache is in a known cache exclusion zone, the Volunteer Reviewer has little recourse but to trust the Cache Owner and publish the cache if all other Guidelines are also met. Edited by Greatland Reviewer
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