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rules for hiding caches


dustymax
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I just archived a stolen cache in order to place a new one. The reviewer says he can't approve it because the old one was placed on October 1 and "Geocaching expects at least 3 months for a cache."  I never saw that in any of the rules, it isn't fair, and I'm not at all happy with it. If I can't publish the new one, can I re-activate the stolen one and replace it? In any case, I don't understand the reasoning!

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The reviewer has already answered your question about whether or not the stolen one can be reactivated:

 

 I can't publish this one. I can unarchive the other one if you want. You could place one at this location for Happy New Year.

Please let me know if you want your Halloween hide unarchived.

 

The guidelines do explicitly mention that caches are intended to have a long life, but sometimes things happen and that's why your reviewer is offering you the option to unarchive.

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The "cache permanence" concept is part of the Geocache Hiding Guidelines, including the three month minimum expectation.

 

Your reviewer has already offered to unarchive the first cache you hid at the same location ("Happy Halloween"), which you archived on October 31st.  You can repurpose that cache page to say "Happy Thanksgiving," "Happy New Year," etc.  Having a separate cache for each holiday, at the same spot, is called "cache churning." That is precisely what the Guideline gets at.

 

So, I am not sure why you are unhappy.

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18 minutes ago, dustymax said:

I just archived a stolen cache in order to place a new one. The reviewer says he can't approve it because the old one was placed on October 1 and "Geocaching expects at least 3 months for a cache."  I never saw that in any of the rules, it isn't fair, and I'm not at all happy with it. If I can't publish the new one, can I re-activate the stolen one and replace it? In any case, I don't understand the reasoning!

 

There is a process to request un-archive.  But how soon after publication was that one missing?  It may be a tough spot to keep a cache.

 

But don't archive it on the expectation to un-archive it.  If my cache is generally viable, I'll "deactivate" it, wait a month or so, then place a new container.  There are "cache permanence" guidelines, but I don't see that exact term in The Help Center now.

 

At least one of mine in one park was "moved" by newbs who thought that's what you do (my log book even developed those instructions inside the front cover, "Move this to a new place and re-hide it").  But for caches that are at times kind of a hang-out, it may require a whole new level of cache hide to prevent the muggling.  Spend the 3 months planning how you'd design that.

 

Edited by kunarion
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2 hours ago, dustymax said:

I just archived a stolen cache in order to place a new one. The reviewer says he can't approve it because the old one was placed on October 1 and "Geocaching expects at least 3 months for a cache."  I never saw that in any of the rules, it isn't fair, and I'm not at all happy with it. If I can't publish the new one, can I re-activate the stolen one and replace it? In any case, I don't understand the reasoning!

Long term

Hide your cache to have a long life.

Temporary caches intended to stay active for fewer than three months will not be published.

 

https://www.geocaching.com/play/guidelines

Edited by Max and 99
Added the link.
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1 hour ago, dustymax said:

I just archived a stolen cache in order to place a new one.

If the cache was stolen, the proper way to deal with that is to temporarily disable the cache until you can get a replacement put out.  Archiving a cache to replace with another at the same location, when the first has been in place only a month, is seen as "churning" and not allowed.

 

The reviewer has graciously agreed to un-archive the cache so you can get a replacement put back in that location.  And if it gets stolen again within a short time period, I would rethink the location and/or the hide style so it stays hidden.

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1 hour ago, dustymax said:

I never saw that in any of the rules

 

It's right there in the guidelines:

 

Quote

Must be accessible

  • Long term
    • Hide your cache to have a long life.
    • Temporary caches intended to stay active for fewer than three months will not be published.
    • Caches intended to move will not be published.
  • Availability
    • Caches must be available most of the week.
  • No contact required
    • Caches cannot require geocachers to contact the cache owner or anyone else.

 

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This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

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14 minutes ago, dophe said:

This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

The definition in the guidelines is "Temporary caches intended to stay active for fewer than three months will not be published."

 

A 2 year limit is well past the 3 month standard.

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39 minutes ago, dophe said:

This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

Interesting about the two years. But like niraD said that's way longer than the 3 months stated in the help center. Do they allow you to reapply for the same cache? I'm just wondering if the two years is meant as a review of the specific cache they gave permission for?

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20 minutes ago, Max and 99 said:
1 hour ago, dophe said:

This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

Interesting about the two years. But like niraD said that's way longer than the 3 months stated in the help center. Do they allow you to reapply for the same cache? I'm just wondering if the two years is meant as a review of the specific cache they gave permission for?

 

Yeah, that's how it works with caches in national parks here. From their policy document:

 

image.png.4d58c9635e3ae16a6516993702218844.png

 

For the three caches I've placed in parks, the initial term has been less than the maximum, either two or three years, but a few months before that's up I've emailed the ranger about extending it and she's just said Yes, that's fine and put the request through her boss who eventually issued a new permit. My oldest one, first approved in 2017, has since had its permission extended through to 2024.

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1 hour ago, dophe said:

This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

 

There's a few parks and state parks in particular, that have a time limit on how long their permits are for.

Most if not all, it's because after that time is when they start to see "geo trails" and other overuse/wear signs to the area.

This gives the area time to regrow.   We have seen caches placed a year or two later in the same spot.

We've also seen parks extend their timeframe, when they see little difference to the area from cachers.

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2 hours ago, dophe said:

This brings up a question about how long a long life is...

There's a park that has a 2 year limit on geocaches as stated on the permission sheet.  Is this long enough or does the park need to think about extending the limit?

 

Why not stop by and ask why the limit is two years?  They have a reason, and it's not uncommon.  My bet is you'll find it's environmental.  :)

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From what I'm getting, the park is wanting to insure the caches are 'fresh'. I guess the idea is if the cache is archived at 2 years and moved to another location that this will attract new visitors as well as prior visitors since it's a new cache. 

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6 hours ago, cerberus1 said:

 

There's a few parks and state parks in particular, that have a time limit on how long their permits are for.

Most if not all, it's because after that time is when they start to see "geo trails" and other overuse/wear signs to the area.

This gives the area time to regrow.   We have seen caches placed a year or two later in the same spot.

We've also seen parks extend their timeframe, when they see little difference to the area from cachers.

 

My three caches in national parks are accessed across rock from established hiking trails so there's little chance of a geotrail forming, given the number of finders they get (19 finds in four and a half years, 14 finds in three years and 11 finds in one year respectively). The others I've seen approved in national parks were similar, being close to an established trail and accessed across rock or open groumd.

 

5 hours ago, dophe said:

From what I'm getting, the park is wanting to insure the caches are 'fresh'. I guess the idea is if the cache is archived at 2 years and moved to another location that this will attract new visitors as well as prior visitors since it's a new cache. 

 

Given that the biggest stumbling block to getting caches allowed in NPs here after they were originally banned was overcoming their fear that caches would become litter, I suspect the time limit is to make sure caches aren't abandoned, so if someone applies for an extension when the initial period expires, then the owner is still active and taking responsibility for their cache.

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17 minutes ago, barefootjeff said:

I suspect the time limit is to make sure caches aren't abandoned, so if someone applies for an extension when the initial period expires, then the owner is still active and taking responsibility for their cache.

 

That actually would be pretty cool!  Although I'm uncertain that such a policy alleviates "problems with Geocaches", or if it creates new problems.

 

But I would not be surprised if it's simply that they like the power, being able to mess with people with arbitrary "expiration dates".  :ph34r:

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