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ianbutty

Geocaching at sea

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I'm trying to get a good long streak of consectutive days with finds going (currently at 51).  As a freelance photographer one of the things I get to do is talk on cruise ships, which is fantastic for increasing the number of countries I have cached in but the 'sea days' do make it difficult to get a really big streak of consectutive days caching.

 

I know there used to be such things as 'locationless' caches, but are there any caches left that could be legitimately logged on a day when I am in the middle of the ocean?  I did wonder about 'banking' some earthcaches - visiting the locations, just photographing them in detail and then only answering the questions when I'm out at sea.  But that feels like cheating.

 

Thanks

Ian.

 

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21 minutes ago, ianbutty said:

are there any caches left that could be legitimately logged on a day when I am in the middle of the ocean? 

 

In a word, no.  (aside, people try to post events on ships partly for this reason.  won't happen)

 

Back in Locationless   days, maybe.... To be "legit" your cruise would have had to provide you access to something that could be logged from the ship, palindrome coords https://coord.info/GC202B comes to mind and  "international space station  perhaps.  https://coord.info/GCC349

But no longer. There is single active Locationless, but it can only be logged while attending certain Mega and Giga events.

 

 

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It depends on how flexible your ethics are.  Mine aren't very flexible.  When I did a 366 day cache finds streak, I found each cache ON that calendar day - even if it was snowing, even if I had the flu.  When I had to travel for work, I found a cache at 4:00 a.m. on my way to the airport.

 

One possible exception would be challenge caches.  Personally I log my online find on a challenge cache dated on the date when I met the challenge requirements - even if I signed the physical cache log months or years earlier.  So, if you met the final requirement for a challenge cache while you were at sea, and you'd previously signed the physical log for that challenge cache, there's a good argument for dating your find as of the date when you were at sea.

 

A practical example would be an old school challenge based on Waymarking.  There are more than 40 of these.  You have a better chance of creating a waymark, or visiting an existing waymark, out in the middle of the ocean.  Suppose you sign the log for a Waymarking Challenge requiring finds in 50 different Waymarking categories.  You find 49 different categories prior to your trip.  While at sea, you validly log a waymark for an International Space Station sighting.  That is your 50th waymark, and you could log a find on the challenge cache the same day.

 

That is an edge case, to be sure.

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1 hour ago, ianbutty said:

But that feels like cheating.

 

The reason it feels like cheating is .... because it is B) Who are you fooling anyway?

 

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My husband and I began geocaching in March, 2017.  We enjoyed it, and set ourselves a goal to find at least one cache a day in 2018.  We gave ourselves some rules - it had to be a container we found and signed the log. Events, EC's, Virtuals would not count (even though it would give us the smilie - we wanted to see if we could go out and find a container and sign a log every day of 2018!)

 

All was going well, till we decided on a whim to take a 4 day cruise in October.  After booking it and looking things over in more detail, planning  for caching on Catalina Island and in Ensenada, Mexico (a new country, yay!), we realized there would be one day at sea, with no place to find a cache!  Our "streak" would be at around 300 days, probably something we would never do again as it was a lot of work as the days went by and caches close to home were getting fewer and fewer, and how could we do this, legitimately??

 

Our solution is similar to what you suggested: ( "I did wonder about 'banking' some earthcaches - visiting the locations, just photographing them in detail and then only answering the questions when I'm out at sea.  But that feels like cheating.")  We visited an Earthcache where the cruise ship docked in Ensenada, got a few details as we left the ship and gathered more info as we got back on board at the end of the day.  Then, did our research and submitted answers while we were at sea the next day, effectively logging it on the "sea day".  So, we stretched our own rules about signing the logsheet for a physical cache every day, and we claimed the EC find on the day at sea when we submitted our answers, keeping the streak alive on our stats.  Yes, it did feel a bit like cheating, but only ourselves and our own rules.  We just delayed logging until we had done our research and submitted our answers, one day.

 

Your situation, doing a lot of cruising as a job with many days at sea with no place to physically find a geocache, probably makes our solution untenable for more than a couple of ports that may have an Earthcache to log.  It was our one anomaly in the 400 + days, and stats notwithstanding, we still feel we accomplished what we set out to do in 2018.  YMMV

 

Side note: We were able to finish the year, then kept going for another month + a few days for another challenge (400 day streak) - we knew we'd never do it again, so while we were at 365 we just continued on and ended it at 404 (seemed appropriate!)

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55 minutes ago, on4bam said:

 

The reason it feels like cheating is .... because it is B) Who are you fooling anyway?

 

Which is why I wasn't planing on doing it.  (Unless there had been a load of people saying... "...but that's what everyone does...")

 

34 minutes ago, CAVinoGal said:

Side note: We were able to finish the year, then kept going for another month + a few days for another challenge (400 day streak) - we knew we'd never do it again, so while we were at 365 we just continued on and ended it at 404 (seemed appropriate!)

Great story and congratualtions on your 404 streak.

 

1 hour ago, The Leprechauns said:

A practical example would be an old school challenge based on Waymarking.

I'll have a look at those - but realisticly I suspect with multiple sea days it I wouldn't find enough that I could do in advance.

 

1 hour ago, Isonzo Karst said:

In a word, no.  (aside, people try to post events on ships partly for this reason.  won't happen)

I didn't think there would be but I'd be silly not to ask. 

 

2 hours ago, Touchstone said:

I must remember to pack my swiming trunks and a snorkel then! ;-)

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There are some Earthcaches that are in locations that cruise ships frequent with the intention of being done from a cruise ship.

For example we did GC1510R while aboard a cruise ship on a sea day.  

But that is pretty cruise dependent.    

 

 

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31 minutes ago, schmittfamily said:

There are some Earthcaches that are in locations that cruise ships frequent with the intention of being done from a cruise ship.

For example we did GC1510R while aboard a cruise ship on a sea day.  

But that is pretty cruise dependent.    

 

 

Indeed and I'll be checking my route to see if there are any (but I suspect not on this trip).  I did manage to do one from a cruise ship last year - https://coord.info/GC6CD6 

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2 hours ago, ianbutty said:
3 hours ago, on4bam said:

 

The reason it feels like cheating is .... because it is B) Who are you fooling anyway?

 

Which is why I wasn't planing on doing it.  (Unless there had been a load of people saying... "...but that's what everyone does...")

 

Unfortunately that's how things like throwdowns,  and container swapping or divide and conquer practices when doing power trails get started.   

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My own streak was broken by an at-sea day as well.  While I really would have liked to have kept the streak going, the trade-off (especially as it was in the winter) was worth it!

Like you, I saw the problem coming, and there just wasn't any legitimate solution where I'd be cruising, and that's before there were any earth caches in the middle of the ocean, but after some of the more 'creative' locationless ones (like GC202B) were still allowed.  Due to that kind of travel, I doubt I'll ever beat my streak that ended with that first caching cruise.

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Maintaining a streak just isn't that important enough to change up my entire lifestyle for. If you have to cheat then what's the point? The moment one cheats the idea of a streak becomes completely 100% meaningless.

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My brother was chatting with Dr Jay (world record streak holder) and he has accepted that he can’t go on any cruises because it’s impossible to maintain the streak. I guess it just depends on your priorities - the streak or the job??

 

For reference

https://www.geocaching.com/p/default.aspx?guid=07c0a989-f408-485d-bc14-57c4c76e28d5&tab=stats#profilepanel

Apparently he’s found a cache every single day since Jan 25, 2007....

Edited by Korichnovui

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There are at least 2 caches in the UK which don't exist (but you just need to work that out, then log as found). Used one on a snowy day as a calendar filler. One is an anagram of April Fool, the other has a name to do with lying.

I want a cache on 25 April again as a calendar filler (4th loop of grid) but I'm flying to Rio that day and won't have a chance to get a cache on the way to the airport - and will arrive in Rio on 26th. So I might use the lying one (Plan B). If a new cache near home doesn't pop up in the next 2 months (Plan A), I'll get one of my nearby caches adopted by Oxford Stone Junior and log that (Plan C). Questionable perhaps, but conscience clear.

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I don't have a horse in this race as streaks are not my thing, but I've heard of people who do EarthCaches but then log them as found on the date they work out the answers to the questions and send them off to the CO...

 

Some people log challenges on the day they qualify rather than the day they found the container, if they happen to only realise they qualify while poring over their stats on a cruise then they might use that date when they log...

 

 

 

 

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On 2/14/2020 at 10:00 AM, The Leprechauns said:

It depends on how flexible your ethics are. 

Flexible ethics. I'd like to borrow that, the phrase that is.

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7 hours ago, 31BMSG said:

Flexible ethics. I'd like to borrow that, the phrase that is.

Is that like "bending the truth"?

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10 minutes ago, The Jester said:

Is that like "bending the truth"?

Alternative facts.

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I started a streak not long after we started caching in 2007.  It was pretty doable at first, but then it started to feel like work.  And when a date night to Frankfurt turned into a desperate hunt for the final to a multi cache by the light of my Nokia flip phone, I knew it was time to hang it up.  But for each of those 102 days, my butt was out there finding caches and signing logs, or attending events, or visiting virtual/earthcache locations and gathering the required information, not finding loopholes and pencil whipping logs online.

 

Even if I had maintained my streak, there would have been several periods I would have been unable to go find a cache - mostly tied to military field exercises.  Not as fun as an ocean cruise, but just as limiting as far as my ability to go find a cache.  It would not have occurred to me to game the system in order to "keep the streak alive," because I know I wasn't out geocaching those days.

 

Most of geocaching is tied to one's integrity.  Without going out to physically inspect each find a cacher claims or some other form of auditing, ultimately a given cache owner is bound by that cacher's word that they found those caches.  That's true for any given geocache out there.  It only changes for challenge caches by adding the word "challenge" in there.  Personally, I'd like my word to mean something.

 

It's interesting to see some of the logic offered above as "solutions" to the problem of maintaining personal integrity.  I don't buy it.  Were I the owner of a challenge cache and discovered any admission of such "flexible ethics" when logging my cache, I would take a screen shot of the post and delete the find, because I read those posts as an admission that they knew they failed to meet a challenge but falsely logged a find anyway.  Personally, I find that disappointing.  But I don't own any challenge caches, and I'm not the Cache Police, so I'll just shrug and move on to another thread.

Edited by hzoi
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