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Would You Count This As A Find?


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I logged a cache this morning, which was located in a patch of woods in a residential neighborhood.  I was FTF.  As I made my way back to the street, the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away.

 

So I ask you, would you count this as a find?  In my log, I explained what happened and advised that the cache be disabled ASAP.  But it was published and I did find it, so...

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5 minutes ago, MysteryGuy1 said:

I logged a cache this morning, which was located in a patch of woods in a residential neighborhood.  I was FTF.  As I made my way back to the street, the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away.

 

So I ask you, would you count this as a find?  In my log, I explained what happened and advised that the cache be disabled ASAP.  But it was published and I did find it, so...

You deserve FTF! I personally would then immediately post a NA with the detailed explanation. 

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1 hour ago, MysteryGuy1 said:

I logged a cache this morning, which was located in a patch of woods in a residential neighborhood.  I was FTF.  As I made my way back to the street, the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away.

 

So I ask you, would you count this as a find?  In my log, I explained what happened and advised that the cache be disabled ASAP.  But it was published and I did find it, so...

 

By the   Geocaching Hiding Guidelines,   "If we receive complaints or become aware that a cache is in an inappropriate location, even if not prohibited by law, it may be disabled or archived."

I'd add an NA after logging my  Found It.   An abusive neighbor I'd think would make it disappear quick. Might escalate with the next finder.

It's entirely possible that a "neighbor/owner" doesn't even own that property, but for the safety of members, why take the chance.

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An update.  Within hours of my log posting, the CO posted new coordinates.  The new coordinates are "much closer to the street," but still appear to be on (or very close to) the same property.  I personally wouldn't go near there again, but it's no longer my problem.

 

I'm a bit annoyed that somehow the CO was able to go onto that property twice without incident, but when I went I almost started a war...

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44 minutes ago, MysteryGuy1 said:

An update.  Within hours of my log posting, the CO posted new coordinates.  The new coordinates are "much closer to the street," but still appear to be on (or very close to) the same property.  I personally wouldn't go near there again, but it's no longer my problem.

 

I'm a bit annoyed that somehow the CO was able to go onto that property twice without incident, but when I went I almost started a war...

I would still consider posting an NA. There are going to be other cachers showing up after you and if the nearby property owner is already irate at one person, they are not going to be less irate with the next half-dozen. It may not be on that persons property but they've shown that they're willing to chase people away. With enough irritation, things may escalate and this is just a game. 

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Well, first of all, to answer your question, of course you log the find. Why wouldn't  you?

 

As to the outraged property owner, what did you do to make him mad and why couldn't you resolve it? Did you talk to him or just ignore him? It seems as if you were in the perfect position to resolve his problem, but that requires you immediately accept his position as valid and apologizing profusely on behalf of the geocaching community and trying to understand his position about where his property was and whether the cache is on it. It could just be on his property, or it could be you accessed it through his property even though there was another way to GZ.

 

For all I know, you tried to do all that, and he was just irrationally belligerent, so I'm not accusing you of doing anything wrong, but I think it's important to recognize that even irrationally belligerent is a valid response if the cache was -- or just you were -- really were on his property.

 

As others have mentioned, naturally you'd post an NA in addition to your find unless you work out with the property owner that there really isn't a problem with the cache itself, and even in that case it sounds like the lease you need to post is an NM explaining what needs to be done so that this person's property rights are violated.

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2 hours ago, dprovan said:

As to the outraged property owner, what did you do to make him mad and why couldn't you resolve it? Did you talk to him or just ignore him? It seems as if you were in the perfect position to resolve his problem, but that requires you immediately accept his position as valid and apologizing profusely on behalf of the geocaching community and trying to understand his position about where his property was and whether the cache is on it. It could just be on his property, or it could be you accessed it through his property even though there was another way to GZ.

 

From the OP it doesn't sound like the neighbour was particularly interested in having a calm rational discussion about property boundaries: "the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away."

 

I had a similar situation a few years ago when I was sussing out some virtual waypoints at waterfalls in a national park for a multi I was working on. A woman in a station wagon, with two large angry dogs in the back, drove up beside me on the fire trail and accused me of tresspassing on her land. I said I thought I was in the national park, she said no, it was her land, so I asked her where her property boundary was and she pointed to the bridge just in front of us. I told her I wasn't going across the bridge and that seemed to pacify her enough for her not to release her dogs onto me, and eventually she drove off. I asked the park ranger about it later on and she said the woman's boundary was another 3km down the trail and I could go walking wherever I wanted to in the park, but I thought it best to abandon that cache and never submitted it for publication as I didn't want searchers to have a similar confrontation with her or her dogs.

 

Back to the current situation, the CO has responded and moved the cache so really you've done your bit now and anything more from you is likely to just rankle them.

Edited by barefootjeff
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26 minutes ago, barefootjeff said:

From the OP it doesn't sound like the neighbour was particularly interested in having a calm rational discussion about property boundaries: "the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away."

Yes, it could have been hopeless. We can't tell from this description because one possibility is that it didn't occur to the OP that the owner had every right to be angry and, consequently, the OP didn't take responsibility for his own trespass. I tried to explain that well enough for the OP to make his own determination about whether he should reassess the encounter.

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14 hours ago, dprovan said:

Well, first of all, to answer your question, of course you log the find. Why wouldn't  you?

 

As to the outraged property owner, what did you do to make him mad and why couldn't you resolve it? Did you talk to him or just ignore him? It seems as if you were in the perfect position to resolve his problem

 

I initially thought that the cache might immediately be disabled once I explained what happened, and it would have seemed odd logging a cache where I was literally the only one to ever find it.

 

As far as the property owner, I tried to apologize and explain that I had no idea the woods were part of his property but he just kept on screaming.  He asked no questions and gave me no chances to say anything.  Every word out of his mouth was a threat.  How would you have resolved it?  All I did to make him mad was be on his property.

 

As far as my log, I did address the issue and the CO responded.  While I'm uncertain that the CO's actions will fully resolve the situation, I feel like I'm overstepping in confronting him again.  Personally, I believe most cachers will see my log and stay away.

Edited by MysteryGuy1
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Neither the original location nor the new location appear to be on private property, per Google Maps' property boundaries.  The new location, being much closer to the road, will hopefully work out better.  If the neighbor continues to be upset, and complains to Geocaching HQ, it is highly likely that HQ would archive the cache just because it's causing problems for visitors.

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7 hours ago, Keystone said:

Neither the original location nor the new location appear to be on private property, per Google Maps' property boundaries.  The new location, being much closer to the road, will hopefully work out better.  If the neighbor continues to be upset, and complains to Geocaching HQ, it is highly likely that HQ would archive the cache just because it's causing problems for visitors.

 

For the guy to complain to Geocaching HQ, he would actually need to understand what I was doing there.  He didn't even try to give me a chance to explain.  If there's another incident with a different cacher, maybe then.  But I think the CO would just archive it before any complaints were filed.

 

I assume the guy never actually called the police as he threatened, but it occurred to me that if he did they probably wouldn't have taken him very seriously.  "Some guy was in the woods way behind my house.  He's a menace to society.  No, I didn't ask him why.  Now do something!"

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On 4/24/2021 at 3:07 PM, MysteryGuy1 said:

I logged a cache this morning, which was located in a patch of woods in a residential neighborhood.  I was FTF.  As I made my way back to the street, the owner of the house closest to GZ began screaming at me as though I'd just smashed up his new car with a baseball bat, threatening to call the police if I didn't get off his property NOW.  He kept laying into me non-stop until I was in my car driving away.

 

So I ask you, would you count this as a find?  In my log, I explained what happened and advised that the cache be disabled ASAP.  But it was published and I did find it, so...


That has happened to me.  Some people consider the street or the property next to theirs as their property.  Or they have a real or imagined problem with strangers there.  Cops have pulled up behind my car, and once told me that burglars use the vacant woods to rob houses in the neighborhood.  One guy stood me down on a road like it was high noon... and said drug dealers hang out at the dead end.  I mention such encounters in a cache log.  But almost nobody else seems to attract the police and crackpots like I do.

 

I logged the Find if I found it and signed the log.  But if I’m poking around in the forest when cops pull up behind my car (flashing lights and all — nice touch), that tends to distract me from hunting a cache for some reason. :unsure:
 

Now when I recognize the perfect storm at a cache place, I skip those caches.  Cul-de-sacs, woods right next to a house, a cache in a very fancy subdivision with no place to park (no public hiding area, no specifics in the cache description), skippable for sure.

Edited by kunarion
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