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NC State Parks


wimseyguy
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I know this thread is out there already but..

I am going to take a stab at meeting with the NC State parks folks to discuss the restrictions on caching there. I should have a good introduction to the real decision makers after this week due to a work related sitiuation. Please help out by sending me links to sites with geofriendly regulations so I can use these examples in my meetings. I simply do not have the time right now to do the research myself this week.

Thanks in advance and wish me luck.

 

These changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes;

Nothing remains quite the same.

Through all of the islands and all of the highlands,

If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane

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Link to Previous Thread Here

 

Here's the text of Honeychile's post after she spoke with the NC State Parks folks last summer.

 

quote:

I got a copy of the directive. It is dated June 26, 2002, from Philip K. McKnelly with the subject of "Geocaching Policy." My OCR didn't too well with this, so I'm keying it in from scratch; please give me a break on the discovery of typos The opening description of geocaching is something you are all familiar with it, but I wanted you to have the entire text of the directive.

 

* * *

 

This staff directive is to establish a policy to manage geocaching. Geocaching (GPS Stash, GeoStash) involves the placement of a container with various items within it in a specific location and then posting the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) coordinates to a website. Visitors to the website then attempt to locate this container using the GPS. This activity started soon after the U.S. Department of Defense turned off the selective availability of the GPS signals in May 2000. This improved the accuracy of most recreational GPS units to 10-20 meters. Contents of the container can be anything and typically involves the exchange of items. Another aspect of this activity is virtual caching. This does not involve the actual placement of a cache; rather, coordinates are provided for a specific location where there is a unique natural feature, park sign, etc.

 

Geocaches have been placed in our state paks without the approval of park staff. These placements have resulted in the following concerns:

 

* Caches have been placed in sensitive natural or cultural areas.

 

* Caches may contain inappropriate or dangerous items. (One park cache contained prescription drugs.)

 

* Caches have lead to the creation of spur trails resulting in resource damage and the possibility of visitors leaving established trails and becoming lost.

 

* Caches may be placed in dangerous or inappropriate areas such as on a cliff or underwater.

 

* The location of a cache may invite the public into an area we do not inspect for hazards.

 

In consideration of the above concerns it has been decided to manage geocaching through the use of the special activity permit procedure on a trial basis. If this activity is found to have a negative impact on the park resources or presents public safety issues the park superintendent may ban geocaching from specific park areas or the entire park. The following conditions are to be addressed when issuing a geocaching special activity permit:

 

* Virtual caches should be encouraged in lieu of physical caches.

 

* The $25 permit fee is to be waived for virtual caches.

 

* The persona applying for the permit shall provide a valid address and telephone number.

 

* The cache placement location, including GPS coordinates, must be stated on the permit and approved by the park superintendent to minimize undesirable impacts to cultural and natural resources as well as minimize hazards to the public.

 

* A specific time period when a cache may be left in place shall be designated to minimize the creation of spur trails. At the end of the designated time period the cache is to be removed and the web site posting retired by the permit holder. The actual time period the cache is permitted to be in place will be determined by the park superintendent, not to exceed three months.

 

* Caches may not be buried, nor may vegetation or stones be disturbed when selecting cache locations.

 

* Cache containers are to be transparent and have some form of latch or other closure to deter wildlife.

 

* Contents of the cache are subject to inspection by park staff at any time; park staff will have the authority to remove any items deemed unacceptable. Examples include food, medications of any type, pornography, weapons of any type, etc. A log book is encouraged in lieu of exchange items.

 

* All cache website postings must request the cache searchers to leave a note on their vehicle dashboard identifying the operator as being a geocachers (sic). Orienteering groups in parks currently do this for safety reasons.

 

Geocaches and any contents that are removed by park staff are to be documents in a case incident report. Park staff should periodically review the geocachings websites to monitor caches placed within the park.

 

This staff directive is effective immediately.

 

* * *


 

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Wow. That sounds harsh. icon_frown.gif

Still, it would be worth following up to see how their trial period went and if they could be persuaded to loosen up their restrictions in light of other states/localities efforts with their park systems.

 

Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza. - Dave Barry

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quote:
Originally posted by WE4NCS:

Perhaps our Easth Day activity will help sway the NC Parks people.


 

I agree the Earth Day Cache In, Trash Out activity can have a positive impact, particularly if the event was held in a State Park. Any idea how open park personnel would be to something like this?

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quote:
I agree the Earth Day Cache In, Trash Out activity can have a positive impact, particularly if the event was held in a State Park. Any idea how open park personnel would be to something like this?

Only one way to find out. Who wants to volunteer for this assignment? And how do we decide which park to clean up? icon_confused.gif

 

These changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes;

Nothing remains quite the same.

Through all of the islands and all of the highlands,

If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane

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A year old bump to this topic. I just had lunch with Bill Ross the Secretary of DENR . The door is open to discuss a revised policy. He asked if we would do an Earth Day CITO in a state park. I sent an email to the triangle yahoo group but also wanted to get the word out to the rest of the state. Discuss among yourselves and those you know who do not visit the forums.

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I just received an e-mail from the NC state park folks (I wanted to put a cache at Raven Rock SP). The rules listed by Honeychile are still in effect as of 26 Mar 04, except the special activity permit fee is now $30. Now I love geocaching and I want to give back to all the folks you hid caches in the past, but $30 every few months is too much.

 

I've also asked permission to place a cache on Ft Bragg gamelands (no go) and I'm waiting on a reply from one of the Fayetteville park co-ordinators. Looks kind of bleek for NC cachers, unless we don't ask permission.

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Geocachers becoming lost? Never. Now, it is possible that we can't find our way back to the exact part of a trail that we previously wandered from, but one thing about us is that we know our exact location on planet eart at just about every moment. lol. :rolleyes:

 

I think that you guys should try to organize a cito event in a park where you want to hide a cache, show them what cachers really do, promise to always keep you cache stocked with cito containers, etc...

 

Then show them some caches in the state that are placed legally... And perhaps see if they can losen the rules just a little bit so that y'all could maybe reach an agreement that the cache can be placed for a year? 3 month time limits show that these people don't pay a bit of attention to what caching's really like.

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