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Dr Jeckyl and Mr Hide

Is Geocaching Dead?

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There's so little discussion on here nowadays that I have to wonder if Geocaching is soon to be a thing of the past.

 

I've been caching for a number of years, and remember the heady days where that's all I wanted to do in my spare time, but the last few years, finding caches has generally been a disappointment. Most of the time the caches are mouldy, smelly boxes of tat, the kind of stuff you'd normally throw away. And good luck finding a pencil, or a sharpener to fix that broken one you do find.

 

And don't get me started on travel bugs and that sort of thing. The number of tags and coins I put out and never saw or heard from again is really a huge letdown.

 

Now that people are more into games like Pokemon Go, perhaps Geocaching won't survive.

 

Am I wrong to feel this way?

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Since this is in the tech forum, your question is clearly about the tech side and the musings about the moldy boxes was meant for some other group.

 

I actually consider it a GOOD thing that this group is so quiet. I used to dread the day after Christmas when this group was flooded with questions from people about their new GPS, each struggling with a missing cable or some crotchety USB/Serial adapter, or unable to find decent software. The available tools are so much better (and, perhaps, local support groups are better) that we're just not seeing that. Our local group used to teach a class each Jan to help those new to the game work through all these issues and we've just not had to do that for years. I won't say that we never have original questions even in this group, but so much has been written and is easily findable via search that we're just not having to repeat the same conversations every few days. The tools are absolutely more accessible to newcomers now than they were at the beginning of the century. I have kind of the same thing going on with GPSBabel (where geocaching is only one of many verticals served); in 2002 people were trying things that couldn't be done or hadn't been done before. These days, most of the verticals are feature complete with wide device and format coverage and just about anything someone wants to do can be found via online help (which has evolved from 15 years of answering questions not well described before) or a Google search. I've seen a downturn in traffic in just about ALL of the various product forums I participate in.

 

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To the OP - you may not be seeing a lot of discussion in the GPS sub-forum. Have you explored the other forum categories? It seems that all of your posts have been in the "GPS/API/Techology" sub-forum, but you will find more discussion about geocaching in the other sub-forums.

 

I'm not sure what URL you're using to reach the forums, but you can go here to see the list of the various sub-forums.

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Am I wrong to feel this way?

 

I think so. It seems you could do with some better filtering of caches you want to do.

Yes, many are not worth going after but many are, it just takes more time/work to filter them out.

Maybe it's regional and there are no "good" caches near you.

 

I keep all local caches in GSAK and tag caches when going through them as "to do" or "don't bother" (reading listings and logs, looking at favorites, images..). When going on a cachetrip we just choose an area we want to go, filter on "to do" caches.

There are still plenty of "quality caches"(*) around, it just takes some effort to filter them out.

 

(*) personal choice, ymmv.

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Am I wrong to feel this way?

 

I feel exactly like you do. I checked to see where you cache, you're in my area. So maybe it's true for us.

 

I can't muster up the enthusiasm to go out caching. I've tried every which way of filtering to get better caches but it's not working. You can't filter out junk and filter for well maintained quality cache containers. Reading logs doesn't help either, it seems very few people are bothered by junk caches.

 

I've noticed the decline in the forums and I too think it's a reflection on the decline of the game.

Edited by L0ne.R

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I noticed the original poster and L0ne.R haven't placed a cache based on their profiles. There's nothing wrong with not placing caches, but maybe you should consider placing a few quality hides in your areas. Monkey see - monkey do. Maybe if folks see some quality hides, they will place some of their own. Just an idea.

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I noticed the original poster and L0ne.R haven't placed a cache based on their profiles. There's nothing wrong with not placing caches, but maybe you should consider placing a few quality hides in your areas. Monkey see - monkey do. Maybe if folks see some quality hides, they will place some of their own. Just an idea.

 

My partner and I have placed over 60 caches since 2002. We have a team account and pride ourselves in maintaining quality caches. No micro caches. Always authentic Lock & Locks, ammo cans or jars with a gasket to keep the contents dry. Quick response to problems. The caches get checked at least twice a year. Only have what we can reasonably maintain - currently 12 active caches. Retrieve and archive any of our caches that become a chore to maintain (i.e. going out to check on it becomes a chore rather then fun).

 

Some comments we get:

 

"It took us a while to discover the hiding spot even with the excellent hint. This one deserves a favourite point for the creativity and execution."

"One of four xxxx caches found today - all were creative, well placed and well maintained. Thanks for going above and beyond."

"What a cool area for the cache! The puzzle was easy with the right tools, although the solution of the solve kind of amazes me. I loved the area with all the fresh snow, and I loved the final container! Here's a fave!"

Edited by L0ne.R
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Now that people are more into games like Pokemon Go, perhaps Geocaching won't survive.

 

Have you spoken to anyone under 18 lately? Pokémon GO is a thing of the past, a total fad that has died out already. When it comes to cyber games, people (especially youth), have absolutely no attention span. The fact that Geocaching has been around for decades is a testament to its long term viability as an actual game and activity for the family.

 

Speaking to the quality of caches, I agree. It's a great topic to bring up at the next local Geocaching group meeting. Local chapters and the level of involvement by the Geocaching community can make a big difference.

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Geocaching has declined to about where it was in 2009. One of the problems it now suffers from is from 3-5 year old 1.5/1.5 junk from no longer active cachers that prevents placement of caches for local cachers to find requiring geocachers to drive further and further away. Our state now goes through periods of 2 or 3 weeks before a single cache gets published. The solution is either a big push by Groundspeak for 1.5/1.5 to be archived so that new placements near them can be put in place. I also believe that if a cacher has been inactive for over a year that all those caches should be automatically archived.

 

As far as this sub-forum being dead, that is due to the lack of competition from GPS companies. Garmin is the only one left.

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My partner and I have placed over 60 caches since 2002. We have a team account and pride ourselves in maintaining quality caches. No micro caches. Always authentic Lock & Locks, ammo cans or jars with a gasket to keep the contents dry. Quick response to problems. The caches get checked at least twice a year. Only have what we can reasonably maintain - currently 12 active caches. Retrieve and archive any of our caches that become a chore to maintain (i.e. going out to check on it becomes a chore rather then fun).

 

 

Thanks for keeping those up. But the truth is, most cachers go after 1.5/1.5 LPC's caches, not quality caches in the woods. Again, the numbers back this up.

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But the truth is, most cachers go after 1.5/1.5 LPC's caches, not quality caches in the woods.

 

I'm seeing the same thing with our cache placements. Geocaching has been on a decline for quite some time, and I'm not seeing the FTF players anymore.

 

Geocaching has became a quantity over quality game of power trails and throwdowns. :(

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I noticed the original poster and L0ne.R haven't placed a cache based on their profiles. There's nothing wrong with not placing caches, but maybe you should consider placing a few quality hides in your areas. Monkey see - monkey do. Maybe if folks see some quality hides, they will place some of their own. Just an idea.

 

My wife is the one who logs the caches we find. We own a few in our area and check on them as often as possible.

 

I can hardly find the enthousiasm to log my own finds, but my wife has logged 439 finds and 6 hides, most of which I participated in.

 

We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

The number of times I've reported caches in need of maintenance and never heard back is also annoying.

 

But it gets tedious to always find the caches in similar condition.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. <_<

 

Tossing out a throwdown is not helping. It only holds up an area where an active geocacher could place and maintain a geocache. Things like this have killed the sport.

 

Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. <_<

 

That's your prerogative.

 

I do what I think is best.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. <_<

 

That's your prerogative.

 

I do what I think is best.

 

Sure, and that is what has killed geocaching. Carry a bag full of "repair caches" to toss out, prop up junk where the owners have left the game, and strut like a peacock because you are helping. Nope, I don't think so. You aren't helping by propping up junk the the owner agreed to maintain.

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Since I've participated in this thread as a non-mod, my moderator involvement is awkward. However, as this thread has veered further away from actual GPS tech topics, past Geocaching topics, and is bordering on personal attacks, I'm going to post one reminder to keep this conversation on topic for "GPS and Tech" before I close it for being off topic.

 

Instead of issuing personal love letters in the form of warnings, I'll ask everyone involved to brush up on forum rules of civility, staying on topic, etc.

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Active cachers from United States 2016 2015 Difference

Last week 14948 29428 -14480 -49%

Last month 67163 87354 -20191 -23%

Since 1st of January 594709 643006 -48297 -8%

Whole year 594710 645009 -50299 -8%

 

Active cachers in United States 2016 2015 Difference

Last week 15040 29553 -14513 -49%

Last month 68425 88652 -20227 -23%

Since 1st of January 617020 665815 -48795 -7%

Whole year 617024 667912 -50888 -8%

 

Active cachers in and from United States 2016 2015 Difference

Last week 14573 28854 -14281 -49%

Last month 66214 86245 -20031 -23%

Since 1st of January 591995 640608 -48613 -8%

Whole year 591996 642612 -50616 -8%

 

It does appear that there is less "Geocaching Activity" comparing 2016 to 2015. While I would not call Geocaching "Dead", I would say that it is going through some sort of transformation. Groundspeak is going to have to address some of the shortcomings in Geocaching. But remember, a game is only as good as the participants. Groundspeak can set up guidelines, but it is how the players play that will either attract or turn away potential new cachers. Some cachers I meet are absolutely wonderful people, they are helpful, social, happy and enjoy caching. While other's I have met make me sorry I am in the same sport as them. When I see someone with 50,000 FINDS and 5 HIDES, I label them as a TAKER and not a GIVER. The point of Geocaching is to get outdoors, learn to use a GPS or Smartphone, make friends and have fun. Maybe do an occasional CITO event, attend a few get together's. And while we all have a few caches that we were not personally at, (I have a few), logging finds by the thousands that you were not at personally takes away from the friendly challenge of finding caches and misses the point entirely of why Geocaching was even started, that being to get outdoors and discover new places. Something else to consider is how Groundspeak DESTROYED Challenge Caches. Challenge Caches were a fantastic addition to the game. But now we have to learn how to program a GEO-CHECKER to put out a Challenge Cache?! I'm sorry, but that is really STUPID (and don't try to tell me how easy it is to program a Geo Checker) I have a dozen great CHALLENGE CACHES that I would love to put out, and I am talking Ammo Cans, Medicine Cabinet sized caches in the city, but will not do it as long as Groundspeak requires a Geochecker. Anyway, Groundspeak owns Geocaching and they can see the numbers on a daily basis. I love caching and will continue to do it but would sure love to see more participants.

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I think people..well, geocachers that have been doing this for a while, are getting tired of boring caches; nano on the back of a stop sign, pill bottle under a lamp post in Wal-Mart, etc. There are still a decent amount of good, quality geocaches out there, but not like it used to be, at least not in my area.

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Somehow I have confused why this topic is in a tech forums, but I do have opinions on why geocaching is in a decline, and like to discuss it with other geocachers without fear of being banned.

 

I'm mostly a cache owner, and my listings are PMO. I don't hide LPC's or micros, and I keep my caches well maintained.

 

I'm seeing more "get your fix" caches for the numbers, and less good caches placed in interesting locations.

 

Truthfully, these throwdowns and not logging DNF's are causing me to lose interest in geocaching. The game was more interesting to me when it was played as intended.

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Here is a New Year's Resolution for every cacher out there. HIDE a new cache, make it available to everyone so we can introduce NEW people to the game, and make it a cache that YOU would enjoy finding. Like others have posted, a Magnetic Key holder or pill bottle under a lamp post skirt or magnetized to a Public Utility Box is getting really old. Try something like a fake pine cone reachable from the ground (yes, I have gone 50 feet up in a pine tree to get a fake pine cone, not what you call a good introduction to our sport) or an old fashioned ammo box out in the woods/desert/plains. Let's see if we can make the game better with some better caches. Just a thought!

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Here is a New Year's Resolution for every cacher out there. HIDE a new cache, make it available to everyone so we can introduce NEW people to the game, and make it a cache that YOU would enjoy finding. Like others have posted, a Magnetic Key holder or pill bottle under a lamp post skirt or magnetized to a Public Utility Box is getting really old. Try something like a fake pine cone reachable from the ground (yes, I have gone 50 feet up in a pine tree to get a fake pine cone, not what you call a good introduction to our sport) or an old fashioned ammo box out in the woods/desert/plains. Let's see if we can make the game better with some better caches. Just a thought!

 

I don't think encouraging people to hide caches is the answer, even encouraging good caches that are maintained and appeal to a wide audience. (Most caches these days are unmaintained and appeal to people who like/prefer micro log-only caches).

 

I think Groundspeak management started to kill the game when they promoted numbers. First by removing the 'don't hide a cache every .1 miles' rule. Once powertrails became normalized, the hobby/pastime became a game, a competition. The new culture was reinforced by challenge caches. Those gates will likely never close and maybe it's too late if they did revert to 'don't hide every .1 miles' rule. They've already lost many (probably most) of the hobbiest players who enjoyed caching as a pastime, not a competition. If they reverted they probably won't get the hobbiest back and they may lose what's left - the competitive people who are in it for the smileys, the stats, the grid filling and challenge qualifying - the actual cache part of geocaching has little value.

 

PS I'm not understanding why this topic is in GPS Technology.

Edited by L0ne.R

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PS I'm not understanding why this topic is in GPS Technology.

 

I'm glad it's not just me. :laughing:

 

I'm all for creative cache hides, but a micro is a micro, and I don't seek them anymore. :(

 

The most memorable cache for me of 2016 was a propped up (ThrowDown) by the community cache that was once an ammo can placed by a person that left the game many years ago, and it was because of it's location on the AT. I don't think geocaches are even allowed along the AT anymore, so we are losing interesting locations.

 

I own a few "Grandfathered" listings myself on NFS property. :ph34r:

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As a new geocacher, I will add my opinion. To me, the main point of geocaching is getting me out of the house, and walking in areas I have not been before. To me, therefore, it is more important to have well-maintained caches, than well hidden ones. Whilst I appreciate the occasional challenge, I don't want to spend 20 minutes finding each cache - I want to find it, log it, and get onto the next one, which will normally take me down a path I haven't walked before. I do like the interesting caches, however - the pine cones, the false rocks and the home-made objects. I also appreciate thoughtfulness in the placement of the cache. Searching several ivy covered trees holds no attraction. One is ok.

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Am I wrong to feel this way?

 

I feel exactly like you do. I checked to see where you cache, you're in my area. So maybe it's true for us.

 

I can't muster up the enthusiasm to go out caching. I've tried every which way of filtering to get better caches but it's not working. You can't filter out junk and filter for well maintained quality cache containers. Reading logs doesn't help either, it seems very few people are bothered by junk caches.

 

I've noticed the decline in the forums and I too think it's a reflection on the decline of the game.

 

+1, ditto, exactly,,, just what we're encountering in our area. :(

 

The geocaching forums here used to be busy with lots of topics and discussion. Those that didn't participate here utilized the local gecoaching forum. These both slowed down when facebook group(s) came along. Now even on facebook, participation is pretty much dead, at least around here.

 

Imo, the phone app is part of the problem because it is download and go. Because of the way it's being pushed to get quantity of players, it has taken away from the overall wellness of our hobby. I have no idea what the numbers are but i figure there are plenty of people downloading and trying the app. But at the same time, i'm also sure that the vast majority aren't sticking with it. Let's face it, it's an app that once played, gets tossed aside for the next newest and greatest app that comes along. One of the problems is that the app only lets basic members find the junk out there. No doubt there are many people who never get to experience what geocaching can actually be.

 

I think geocaching can make a comeback, but only if we take the emphasis off quantity and place it back on quality.

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Here is a New Year's Resolution for every cacher out there. HIDE a new cache, make it available to everyone so we can introduce NEW people to the game, and make it a cache that YOU would enjoy finding. Like others have posted, a Magnetic Key holder or pill bottle under a lamp post skirt or magnetized to a Public Utility Box is getting really old. Try something like a fake pine cone reachable from the ground (yes, I have gone 50 feet up in a pine tree to get a fake pine cone, not what you call a good introduction to our sport) or an old fashioned ammo box out in the woods/desert/plains. Let's see if we can make the game better with some better caches. Just a thought!

 

Not every cacher. If a person is ready to hide, has at least a little bit of geocaching experience, and is ready accept responsibility with cache ownership, then by all means, they should go for it. Some people aren't cut out to be owners and that's fine.

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Here is a New Year's Resolution for every cacher out there. HIDE a new cache, make it available to everyone so we can introduce NEW people to the game, and make it a cache that YOU would enjoy finding. Like others have posted, a Magnetic Key holder or pill bottle under a lamp post skirt or magnetized to a Public Utility Box is getting really old. Try something like a fake pine cone reachable from the ground (yes, I have gone 50 feet up in a pine tree to get a fake pine cone, not what you call a good introduction to our sport) or an old fashioned ammo box out in the woods/desert/plains. Let's see if we can make the game better with some better caches. Just a thought!

 

Incentivizing cache placement and/or making cachers feel obligated to place caches is detrimental to the game. Cache ownership should only be taken on by cachers who are ready and willing to assume the responsibility. Quality caches take time, money, and work. It's not reasonable to demand this of people indiscriminately.

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Quality caches take time, money, and work.

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Here is a New Year's Resolution for every cacher out there. HIDE a new cache, make it available to everyone so we can introduce NEW people to the game, and make it a cache that YOU would enjoy finding. Like others have posted, a Magnetic Key holder or pill bottle under a lamp post skirt or magnetized to a Public Utility Box is getting really old. Try something like a fake pine cone reachable from the ground (yes, I have gone 50 feet up in a pine tree to get a fake pine cone, not what you call a good introduction to our sport) or an old fashioned ammo box out in the woods/desert/plains. Let's see if we can make the game better with some better caches. Just a thought!

 

I get the gist of what your saying. Better quality caches for all.

 

I agree

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Once powertrails became normalized, the hobby/pastime became a game, a competition. The new culture was reinforced by challenge caches.

Challenge caches can be used to reinforce a wide range of cultures within geocaching. In that respect, they are like other types of caches.

 

There are challenges that require people to find highly favorited caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like quality caches.

 

There are challenges that require people to find high-elevation caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like to hike up mountains.

 

There are challenges that require people to find island caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like boating (or hiking across frozen lakes).

 

There are grandfathered challenges that require people to find hundreds of caches in a single day, which provide enjoyment to those who like power trails. But

people who dislike power trails complained, and new challenges of that type are no longer allowed.

 

There are challenges that require people to find a diverse range of cache types, which might encourage folks to expand their horizons. But if a challenge requires finding six different icons in a single day, then it is no longer allowed to be published, because people who dislike "numbers" caching complained.

 

There were challenges that required people to find caches whose titles included animal names, which provided enjoyment to those who liked different kinds of geocaching goals. But people who dislike such "bookkeeping" tasks complained, so new challenges of this type are no longer permitted.

 

Challenge caches offer something different to people who have grown tired of simply finding Tupperware under a pile of sticks. But with the hobbling of challenges, geocaching has become less diverse and less interesting. So, maybe the decline in challenges has even contributed to the overall decline in geocaching.

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the actual cache part of geocaching has little value

 

I'm not convinced that there ever has been a time where the majority of cachers had the same understanding of what the actual cache part of geocaching is about and shared the same values.

 

It never has been about numbers or statistics for me, but also not about the actual container and its contents but rather about the journey, the experiences on the way, the scenery and the physical activity.

 

I never ever cared about things like swag, specially crafted logbooks, decorated containers etc.

 

In my experience there are almost as many different preferences than cachers around.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. <_<

 

Tossing out a throwdown is not helping. It only holds up an area where an active geocacher could place and maintain a geocache. Things like this have killed the sport.

 

Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

 

This is my position exactly, I wish folks archived caches more often so we'd get new placements.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. dry.gif

 

Tossing out a throwdown is not helping. It only holds up an area where an active geocacher could place and maintain a geocache. Things like this have killed the sport.

 

Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

 

This is my position exactly, I wish folks archived caches more often so we'd get new placements.

 

I've never quite understood the notion of "freeing up a spot for new placements". If an area is so saturated that a CO can't find a place to hide a cache, perhaps there are already enough caches in the area. If an area is heavily saturated, expanding the area where one might hide a cache will effectively provide new placements. Those looking for new caches to find may just need to travel further to find a cache.

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Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

 

It depends on the geocache. There are many nice caches that deserve to stay alive. Whatever would be hidden after an archival cannot even come close to the archived cache.

There is no value per se in just having new placements.

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Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

 

It depends on the geocache. There are many nice caches that deserve to stay alive. Whatever would be hidden after an archival cannot even come close to the archived cache.

There is no value per se in just having new placements.

 

Yes, it depends on the cache. I have a few "Grandfathered" caches that I may consider to let others adopt, and I have other caches that I was required to fill out a permit to place and they have a time limit imposed by the land manager.

 

For me, new cache placements helps keep geocaching interesting. :)

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Once powertrails became normalized, the hobby/pastime became a game, a competition. The new culture was reinforced by challenge caches.

Challenge caches can be used to reinforce a wide range of cultures within geocaching. In that respect, they are like other types of caches.

 

There are challenges that require people to find highly favorited caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like quality caches.

 

There are challenges that require people to find high-elevation caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like to hike up mountains.

 

There are challenges that require people to find island caches, which provide enjoyment to those who like boating (or hiking across frozen lakes).

 

There are grandfathered challenges that require people to find hundreds of caches in a single day, which provide enjoyment to those who like power trails. But

people who dislike power trails complained, and new challenges of that type are no longer allowed.

 

There are challenges that require people to find a diverse range of cache types, which might encourage folks to expand their horizons. But if a challenge requires finding six different icons in a single day, then it is no longer allowed to be published, because people who dislike "numbers" caching complained.

 

There were challenges that required people to find caches whose titles included animal names, which provided enjoyment to those who liked different kinds of geocaching goals. But people who dislike such "bookkeeping" tasks complained, so new challenges of this type are no longer permitted.

 

Challenge caches offer something different to people who have grown tired of simply finding Tupperware under a pile of sticks. But with the hobbling of challenges, geocaching has become less diverse and less interesting. So, maybe the decline in challenges has even contributed to the overall decline in geocaching.

 

I agree with both of you.

 

Lone.R,,, challenge caches have brought about a different, sometimes more aggressive way of participating. Completing these caches is paramount for many and they sometimes do really goofy things to say they found them. But at the same time, i don't blame the caches themselves because i realize the problem stems from people who take this stuff too seriously.

 

CanadianRockies,, Yep! I definitely believe that the doing away with challenge caches has taken its toll on our hobby. While there were some placed that seemed silly, there were many that provided a different kind of fun for me. Much of my interest for geocaching was lost when Groundspeak nixed them.

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I think geocaching can make a comeback, but only if we take the emphasis off quantity and place it back on quality.

That's what happened in my area, and consequently no one around here would think for a minute that geocaching is dead. Give it a try! Do it within you own culture, though: please don't encourage GS to invent more rules that will prevent us from continuing to have our quality caches like the rules that killed off the flourishing quality challenge cache scene we used to have.

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We do try to clean up and restore caches if necessary. Saw some while camping last Summer and one in particular was placed by a Forces member who'd been moved away, but nobody wanted to adopt it. We changed the container and log book, and added some decent swag.

 

I find it annoying that people like yourself prop up old junk thinking they are helping geocaching by doing so. dry.gif

 

Tossing out a throwdown is not helping. It only holds up an area where an active geocacher could place and maintain a geocache. Things like this have killed the sport.

 

Adopt a geocache? Why? Archive it and make room for a new placement.

 

This is my position exactly, I wish folks archived caches more often so we'd get new placements.

 

I've never quite understood the notion of "freeing up a spot for new placements". If an area is so saturated that a CO can't find a place to hide a cache, perhaps there are already enough caches in the area. If an area is heavily saturated, expanding the area where one might hide a cache will effectively provide new placements. Those looking for new caches to find may just need to travel further to find a cache.

 

There are no geocaches I haven't found within 5 or 6 miles of my house. If I want to to go to a local park and walk my dog and find a cache, that's impossible because it's full of 6 or 7 year-old caches. Archive them, give me some new ones, I'd like to cache without driving 30 minutes to get to a cache.

 

I'm not taking that position so that I can hide caches--I'm taking that position so that I can FIND caches. Does that make more sense?

Edited by Dame Deco

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Challenge caches offer something different to people who have grown tired of simply finding Tupperware under a pile of sticks. But with the hobbling of challenges, geocaching has become less diverse and less interesting. So, maybe the decline in challenges has even contributed to the overall decline in geocaching.

Excellent summarization.

 

Challenge caches were always a point of contention. But with their return, their variety is much more limited while their official process is more streamlined. How that translates into 'decline' or not is hard to tell. But for those who enjoyed them, it's MUCH more limited, while those who disliked them really just got their way, as it were, though some still argue the hobbling didn't help at all (from their perspective). So I'd agree that it's more likely that their newly imposed limitations may have in fact been a detriment over all to that segment of geocaching hobbyists.

 

As for geocaching's demise? I think it's far from 'dead'. I think it's more likely that it's 'dead' for a segment of geocachers, mainly those who remember 'the good old days'. But as with anything in life, things change and adapt. GC wouldn't be nearly as huge as it is today if Groundspeak hadn't adapted with the changing technology climate.

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I think geocaching can make a comeback, but only if we take the emphasis off quantity and place it back on quality.

That's what happened in my area, and consequently no one around here would think for a minute that geocaching is dead. Give it a try! Do it within you own culture, though: please don't encourage GS to invent more rules that will prevent us from continuing to have our quality caches like the rules that killed off the flourishing quality challenge cache scene we used to have.

As i've said many times, i think we have too much hand holding and too many rules as it is. I have given it try but i'm just about to give up since it's a waste of time at this point. Some of us old timers still participate somewhat but the few who are left don't cache anything like we used to. The few logs we do see are from fly by night phone app users. I own one cache that gets hit regularly, only because it's easy to find in a well traveled rest area. My other, imo, better quality caches,, forget about it.

 

It is good to hear that your area is doing well. I certainly hope that stays on track. But for mine, and i believe many other areas, this is not the case.

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I know my region is really flourishing, with a regular influx of new cachers. Sure, some people may seem to disappear, drop off the radar, or quit in frustration, but it seems like there are more joining than leaving, from what I've been seeing in my area.

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There are no geocaches I haven't found within 5 or 6 miles of my house. If I want to to go to a local park and walk my dog and find a cache, that's impossible because it's full of 6 or 7 year-old caches. Archive them, give me some new ones, I'd like to cache without driving 30 minutes to get to a cache.

 

I'm not taking that position so that I can hide caches--I'm taking that position so that I can FIND caches. Does that make more sense?

 

I understand your position but I do not share it and no, it does not match my geocaching philosophy.

I think that a cache should be archived if it is has a problem or the owner cannot or does not want to maintain it any longer.

I see no point in archiving a nice and properly maintained cache just to create a new one.

My oldest caches soon gets 14 years old and I plan to maintain it even longer. There are things which this cache intends to show and a new cache would not change that.

 

While I do have a number of unfound caches which do not require a 30 minute drive (at least when I do them by bicycle and thius avoid traffic jams) these caches are not attractive to me.

I typically spend at least 30 minutes travel time to the start point of my walk and that applies to most of my own caches too.

 

You would probably like the scene in an area of my home country where it happened several times that a trail of caches gets archived and later returns under a different name and different account. Those who want to add new +1s to their score are of course happy.

 

I wonder where you live. The cache map around your cache placements does not look dense to me at all. Are there so many areas there where it is not allowed to place caches? Personally, I rather think that such limitations are what kills geocaching in many areas.

Edited by cezanne

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There are no geocaches I haven't found within 5 or 6 miles of my house. If I want to to go to a local park and walk my dog and find a cache, that's impossible because it's full of 6 or 7 year-old caches. Archive them, give me some new ones, I'd like to cache without driving 30 minutes to get to a cache.

 

Do you really want to go to the same place over and over again to find the same cache over and over again although with a new listing just increasing your findcount?

One of the local events publishes 100+ caches every year and although most of these caches are great (mysteries, themed series) many are in the same area as their predecessors so finding them will not only bring you to the same area, some are along the same route. Fortunately the caches are mostly hidden at different places. While not attending the event we went caching in that area soon after the event, not anymore, we prefer to see different things when we go caching.

We're getting to a point where, in summer, we hardly can stay within a 1 hour drive radius. The shorter winterdays even bring us outside a 10 Km radius. Not that there are no caches nearby, there are plenty (even within walking distance) but we don't just want to go "pick up a cache".

 

As long as a cache is OK and there are no maintenance issues why would it need to be archived because it's already been there so long?

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There are no geocaches I haven't found within 5 or 6 miles of my house. If I want to to go to a local park and walk my dog and find a cache, that's impossible because it's full of 6 or 7 year-old caches. Archive them, give me some new ones, I'd like to cache without driving 30 minutes to get to a cache.

 

Do you really want to go to the same place over and over again to find the same cache over and over again although with a new listing just increasing your findcount?

 

 

Firstly, in my area (southern England) Geocaching isn't dead. Though the growth has flattened out.

 

Regarding archiving and the above quotes: Whilst I agree if a cache is good there is no need to archive it just to make a new cache to find, I would like to share my caching experience yesterday.

 

Three years ago, I found a series of 14 caches by the same owner on a walk of several miles. A nice walk and all quality caches with varied hides. That owner recently decided to archive the series and re-do it, publishing 15 new caches. The walk for the new series is pretty much the same, but the caches are all completely different. Different locations for the hides, and lots of new field puzzle type caches. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

 

It made me think how infrequently I've seen this done - where an active owner decides to rework some of their caches to make a new caching experience. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with keeping existing caches going for many years, BUT "renewing" caches like this example does give cachers truly new local caches to find. And I think helps the game.

 

I'm thinking of doing the same for some of my caches. I have a little series of 5 caches (4 plus a "bonus"). It is a lovely walk. The caches have been there 6+ years. They are all quality containers and I maintain them. But - looking at the bonus cache, it only has 2 finds in the past 2 years. If I was to renew it - with a different theme perhaps, and different hides in different locations, that might be a good thing.

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There are no geocaches I haven't found within 5 or 6 miles of my house. If I want to to go to a local park and walk my dog and find a cache, that's impossible because it's full of 6 or 7 year-old caches. Archive them, give me some new ones, I'd like to cache without driving 30 minutes to get to a cache.

 

Do you really want to go to the same place over and over again to find the same cache over and over again although with a new listing just increasing your findcount?

One of the local events publishes 100+ caches every year and although most of these caches are great (mysteries, themed series) many are in the same area as their predecessors so finding them will not only bring you to the same area, some are along the same route. Fortunately the caches are mostly hidden at different places. While not attending the event we went caching in that area soon after the event, not anymore, we prefer to see different things when we go caching.

We're getting to a point where, in summer, we hardly can stay within a 1 hour drive radius. The shorter winterdays even bring us outside a 10 Km radius. Not that there are no caches nearby, there are plenty (even within walking distance) but we don't just want to go "pick up a cache".

 

As long as a cache is OK and there are no maintenance issues why would it need to be archived because it's already been there so long?

 

Dame Deco makes an interesting point.

 

Although I don't think caches should be archived and re-hidden every year, I don't see the harm in archiving an older cache and replacing it with something new. Personally I enjoy doing maintenance on my caches because I enjoy the areas where my caches are hidden. Returning to a nice area is never an issue for me.

 

We have a 62 acre piece of open space in our town. One of the goals is increasing foot traffic on the property. I already have 6 caches that have been there for almost four years. I'm thinking about archiving all of them an placing 6 new ones.

 

You do what you have to do to feed the beast but who here enjoys traveling an hour to cache?

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Although I don't think caches should be archived and re-hidden every year, I don't see the harm in archiving an older cache and replacing it with something new.

 

It simply does not make sense to someone like me who thinks that it is about the locations and the journey which do not change in such a case.

Of course in urban areas with a high caching density it could be that two places of attraction are very close to each other and then the new cache could show something new.

 

You do what you have to do to feed the beast but who here enjoys traveling an hour to cache?

 

Actually I often drive an hour or more and then hike for a few hours. I do not live in the mountains, but enjoy hiking there.

I do not enjoy that much going for urban walks and I do it only when time, weather or other constraints do not allow anything else.

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You do what you have to do to feed the beast but who here enjoys traveling an hour to cache?

 

We go for caches we like to do. That means multi or themed/special series. Since most caches are (in our eyes) run of the mill, we skip them. I we can walk out the door, find 20 traditionals "hidden" behind a tree or drive an hour and do one fieldpuzzle/15-20Km multi guess what we'll choose ;) In summer an hour's drive is about standard. Starting the cachetour around 10 in the morning, ending around 18:00/19:00.

We still have a few caches further away for which we will stay in a B&B for one or two nights. As long as there are "quality caches" (our definition, ymmv)geocaching is not dead for us, the day only "thrown away micros along a busy road" are available it's time to spend more time doing other hobbies and going on walks/biketours without finding caches as we did before 2006.

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We go for caches we like to do. That means multi or themed/special series. Since most caches are (in our eyes) run of the mill, we skip them. I we can walk out the door, find 20 traditionals "hidden" behind a tree or drive an hour and do one fieldpuzzle/15-20Km multi guess what we'll choose ;)

 

I also go for caches I like (and I expect most of us do). And that is the case whether they are new or old.

 

The question related to the Dame Deco point is: If a CO were to archive a cache you like (e.g. an old multi stage cache near you with field puzzles in a great location that you had previously found and loved), and replace it with a brand new adventure (as good or better) but using the same general playing area, how would you feel?

 

If going to new locations is the most important thing, then you may not be interested.

 

Whilst I like going to new locations, I also enjoy revisiting good locations with a new adventure.

 

There is a CO near me who does excellent multi-stage puzzle caches. And he maintains them. I would never suggest that he should archive any. But, if he decided to archive one of his older caches which I had done and create a completely new one (new theme, new puzzles) in the same area (and the area is also nice), I'd be happy.

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It made me think how infrequently I've seen this done - where an active owner decides to rework some of their caches to make a new caching experience. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with keeping existing caches going for many years, BUT "renewing" caches like this example does give cachers truly new local caches to find. And I think helps the game.

 

It might make sense to do what you describe for a trail of caches where the caches focus on the hideouts, containers and maybe fields puzzles.

The majority of my caches are about locations and hiking routes and that's also the type of cache I prefer to find.

It does not make sense to rework such caches. The locations and the route stay the same.

 

In general, I prefer a multi cache of 20km with 5 virtual stages to a cache series of 6 caches along the same trail. For me it is about the 20km hike and not

about searching for different types of hideouts. Also when it comes to my own caches I would never consider to hide two caches at the same day.

Edited by cezanne

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