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How do you zero in on a cache?


k2dave
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When I get close (lets say w/i 100ft) I make sure my gps is getting a good signal and switch to compass mode. Take out a magnetic compass and get a bearing. I try to estimate based on distance where that point is.

 

I move in and try to get to about 20ft and take another compass reading. I look for the 0 spot and look for obvious cache hiding spots. then I try to find the zero spot. This may require some compass readings along the way. When I get w/i ft (and didn't find the cache yet. I look for something on the ground to mark the zero point (tree, rock) then look around for the hiding spot then take another look at the gps. if it is still under 5 ft then I know my readings are pretty good and the gps goes away. If I'm off a little (up to 15 ft) then I know the direction I should search in and try to find the new zero point.

 

If I still can't find it I try spiraling out to about 25ft. Then I will try to decode the hint and.or read descriptions to see if the cache placer was off.

 

-------> Did you ever do any trail maintainence? - if so you will know that all but the most worn trails need continuous maintenance to prevent mother nature from reclaiming it. herd paths are quickly reclaimed - k2dave to a troll

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I tend to use the following steps to locate a cache:

 

1) Follow the arrow until it approaches zero feet It might still say ten feet away or whatever. I know I'm close because the distance and directions will start to go batty. I mark this physical point. Drop my pack, set a stick at the location, remember the approximate spot, whatever. At this point, I also verify the difficulty rating. This can give me a clue as to how it is hidden (Not always, however. A few weeks ago, I found one that required what I would call 'beginner rock climbing'. It had a terrain rating of 1.5.)

 

2) I look for the obvious hiding places in the area (within about 30 feet of my marked location). Piles of sticks, rocks, or leaves, downed trees, stumps, the base of trees, in bushes. 95% of the time, this results in a find.

 

3) If I still haven't found it, I'll back off 75 feet or so and shoot a bearing. Pull out the hand-dandy compass on march the distance shown on my GPSr. Mark the location as in number 1, above. (Some cachers do this step first. I prefer to snag the easy ones without this step, as explained above. If I have problems, I'll do this step.)

 

4) Follow the procedure in number 2, above.

 

5) Pull back 75 feet in a different direction, follow the procedures in step 3 & 4 with the 'marked location' being the intersection of the two bearing lines.

 

6) Expand my search area to about 50 feet from the marked location.

 

7) Decrypt the hint. This will typically give me the bit of info I need to find it. Beware of obfuscation.

 

8) Look everywhere. Expand search area to 75 feet of marked location.

 

9) Go to the next cache on my list. If I come back on another day, I will typically find it with no problems.

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1) Just follow the arrow until I get to about 60 ft away.

 

2) switch to map mode and try to walk a straight line toward the zero mark without going to far left or right.

 

3) When I hit the zero, if I haven't already, I just take a minute to do a visual scan the area and look for the obvious spots.

 

4) Begin the search in earnest, using the hiking stick to poke under any rock or into any hole that may hide snakes instead of the cache.

 

5) If at this point I haven't found it, I get the pda, and hit the hint button so I don't have to sit a decode the clue. I either find it or go on to the next.

 

george

 

Remember: Half the people you meet are below average.

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When I get to the area and I know that the cache is a well hiddened one I'll stop looking at the gps I'll only recheck if in doubt. I'll start scanning the ground for any disturbance (read tracks) I'll check the last found date to see how old a human track will be. I never look at the cheat notes, although I may cheat by letting my hound sniff out a hard one. Works for me..

icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

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I walk in the direction of "assumed" ground zero.

 

Rarely have I ever stood in a spot and had the unit read o.oo but once it starts climbing I stop and backtrack trying to get it as low as possible.

 

At that point, I look up from the GPS and consult...

 

eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1730810461

 

Master Yoda!

 

Technology only gets us so close. At some point, we must use the geocaching Force!

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I let Jenni (my Golden Retriever) out of the vehicle and say "Go Get the Cache".

 

I just hope that when she returns it that she covers it up as well as she found it.

 

I tried going with her once, but found that I just slow her down, so I usually wait in the parking lot for her to bring it to me.

 

_____________________________________________________

 

Support your local rescue team.... Get Lost!

_____________________________________________________

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Look at the ground

 

When I get to the area and I know that the cache is a well hiddened one I'll stop looking at the gps I'll only recheck if in doubt. I'll start scanning the ground for any disturbance (read tracks) I'll check the last found date to see how old a human track will be. I never look at the cheat notes, although I may cheat by letting my hound sniff out a hard one. Works for me..

..................

is that SOGA--"Signs of Geocaching Activity"??

icon_biggrin.gif

 

barondriver1.jpg

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I'm just the opposite of most posters--I use the map mode to get to the general area, then I switch to the arrow to get within about 30', then I start looking for hiding spots. If I still can't find it, then I back off a little bit and turn on the electronic compass. An interesting side note--on one of my recent finds, I was stumped, and I knew the cache should be in this one downed log but I just wasn't finding it, so I stood about five feet from the log, turned on the compass, and it said I was five feet away and the arrow was pointing right at a piece of plastic sticking out from under a peice of bark I didn't think to look under earlier. I know that'll probably never happen again, but I thought it was really cool when it did.

 

www.1800goguard.com

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quote:
Originally posted by k2dave:

When I get close (lets say w/i 100ft) I make sure my gps is getting a good signal and switch to compass mode. Take out a magnetic compass and get a bearing. I try to estimate based on distance where that point is.


 

I use track mode almost all the way until the arrow is right on top of the flag. This technique has become a lot better since the firmware upgrade as there are now more zoom levels.

 

Then I switch to coordinate mode and compass my way until I'm within a few thousandths of minutes in both longitude and latitude.

 

Then I search all around muttering about millions of darn rocks that all look the same... um... I mean I start looking around for likely hiding spots. icon_smile.gif

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i circle it for 20 minutes <IMG WIDTH="15" HEIGHT="15" SRC="/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif" alt="eek"><BR><BR>welcome to MY world!!!<BR>------------------------------------------------------------<BR><A HREF="http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CacheAcrossAmerica" TARGET=_blank>http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CacheAcrossAmerica</A><BR><A HREF="http://www.geocaching.com/seek/nearest_cache.asp?u=KD7MXI" TARGET=_blank>http://www.geocaching.com/seek/nearest_cache.asp?u=KD7MXI</A><BR><A HREF="http://www.cachunuts.com" TARGET=_blank>http://www.cachunuts.com</A>

 

i start 40 feet from zero then search in a ever closing circle :D

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Look at the ground <BR><BR>When I get to the area and I know that the cache is a well hiddened one I'll stop looking at the gps I'll only recheck if in doubt. I'll start scanning the ground for any disturbance (read tracks) I'll check the last found date to see how old a human track will be. I never look at the cheat notes, although I may cheat by letting my hound sniff out a hard one. Works for me.. <BR>..................<BR>is that SOGA--"Signs of Geocaching Activity"??<BR> icon_biggrin.gif<!--graemlin::D--><BR><BR><IMG SRC="http://home.kscable.com/fcr/barondriver1.jpg">

 

ah, what do you do for the ones up in a tree? Seems that looking on the ground you will get some DNF's on what should be easy caches.

 

Jim

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Of course in most cases I use my GPS to get in the area. I check it for a few mins to see that Im going in the right direction & when I think Im close I stop & spen a few mins scanning the area. It then becomes a head game. 'Where would I hide a cache?' Ive done pretty good doing it this way. I dont want to get tunnel vision by looking at my GPS more than the area. It works for me. I have been almost always been victorious. : )

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I use the GPSr to get to GZ. Once I get there I hook the GPSr on my belt and start looking around.

Sometimes I read the cache page ahead of time, sometimes I get there and look around first.

If I don't find it where the GPSr took me I'll usually do the "Clover Leaf" thing I read about here, I walk away at least 60' and follow the arrow back to GZ. I do this 3 or 4 times from different directions and narrow down the GZ point.

Usually after 10 or 15 minutes I'll start working my way through the description, logs and then hint.

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