Jump to content

Hiding Caches In Muggle Rich Areas


hikemeister
Followers 2

Recommended Posts

Today I went after a couple of micros over my lunch break. The second one was in a small park with many hiding places, but the hider selected the single park bench looking over the beach for the spot. There were two muggles sitting in the bench, so I could not go after the cache.

 

Last week I had to go back to another cache three times, because it was hidden at the end of a fishing pier, right where people stand to fish.

 

So here is the question -- as a cache hunter, how do you feel about caches being hidden at the one location where muggles are likely to be standing?

 

Is this (1) a fantastic hiding technique -- because it makes the hunt more challenging, or (2) a royal pain in the $#@ because after you drive all the way to the site and find the cache, you often cannot get it?

 

Just wondering what folks think. I have some caches hidden in public places, and these finds are allowing me to see the issue from a different point of view.

Link to comment

I like the challenge of "outwitting" the muggles. mind you, I have my boundaries, and wouldn't want to have EVERY cache be like that, but the occasional one is a fun break.

 

Its now archived, but there was one in our area hidden with permission right in front of the window of a very popular restaurant. It was a themed eatery, and had an antique gas pump along the sidewalk. The cache was a film canister, sitting along the pump. We passed by, in plain view of the people eating, and casually stopped as if helping our 2 year old son with his shoe lace. Nobody in the restaurant, nor driving by, ever looked twice as we casually sauntered away to a bench to write in the log.

 

Another micro was hidden near a fantastic Veterans memorial. We happened to stop by on Veterans day, unaware of the coincidence. Though noone else was visiting, we felt it was more appropriate to come again another day to search, and simply enjoyed the site for what it was.

 

I guess my best advice is to let the hunters know in your description as to what to expect. Simply stating that it is a very public place, and cunning may be needed, will allow them to make their own decision.

Link to comment

(3) A little of both. In a densely populated area the Muggle issue sometimes can't be avoided. However, I think that Muggles should not be used to add to cache difficulty if there is a good and convenient alternative location. The Muggle-proximate location, aside from being an annoyance, increases the likelihood of the cache being accidently found and ruined. I guess that's the cache owner's risk to take, but I'd rather see the challenge come from clever hiding or puzzles than annoyances I can do nothing about.

 

EDIT: More Thoughts: A micro is easier to deal with in a Muggle area than a traditional. It's tough to be discreet with an ammo box in broad daylight. On another note, I recently visited a cache that was in woods directly accross from and in view of a house. There were lots of adjacent woods without houses. If I were the homeowner I don't think I'd enjoy having strangers wandering around across from my house at all hours, legal or not. I guess what I'm saying is don't just think of this issue from the caching perspective. Try to be aware of our effect on Muggles, not just vice-versa.

Edited by Karma Hunter
Link to comment

I think a cleverly placed cache in a muggle rich environment is an excellent find. It's up to the cacher to be as devious as the hider in retrieving the cache. Discretion is key.

 

I like a challenge. The challenge doesn't necessarily need to be in the difficulty of the terrain. The challenge doesn't necessarily need to be a cache disguised as a rock in a field of rocks. The challenge could easily be a cache the takes a bit of wile and/or patience to retrieve.

 

There's my opinion, such as it is.

 

Happy caching and stuff! :blink:

Link to comment

I almost never go out of my way to look for a single micro. This way, if I think that my finding the cache would put it at risk of being muggled, I'll just move on to the next cache. It would be too irritating to drive twenty minutes to find that I can't look for a cache do to people in the area.

 

That being said, some of my favorite urban micros have included finding, logging, and replacing a cache without any nearby person being the wiser. Who hasn't used the 'tie the shoes' trick to remove and replace a low micro?

Link to comment

I think the occasional area that might require some skill/cunningness to get the cache would be interesting. But I pity the people who live in cities where ALL the caches are in parks where they are mostly park and grabs with tons of muggles lingering around...

 

I think it's a nice challenge, but also a pain in the a** if you're not expecting it. Which is why I like to see alot of times, what park the cache is in (helps me figure out wether I'll be running into lots of people or not.) And some people are even nice enough to put in their cache descriptions,

 

"The cache is in a very populated area, please be inconspicuous when grabbing the cache, if for some reason, you are unable to replace it, please take it home and email me..."

Link to comment

I'd rather not do them. Any time you give even the slightest opportunity to have a cache plundered is bad. I most likely won't even hunt urban micros, in part because of the muggle factor, and in part because that's just not my cup of tea. Gimme a good ol' ammo box in the woods and I'm a happy cacher. Just my opinion.

Link to comment

One of our most memoriable caches was in an old train station that had been converted into a information center/tour bus stop. This is when team work pays off, my wife distracted the counter clerk while I retrived the cache. After we signed I went up and ask a question while she replaced it. I felt like Secret Agent Man* doing a dead drop.

 

*A TV series that was popular when dinosaurs roamed the earth. :lol:

Link to comment
Is this (1) a fantastic hiding technique -- because it makes the hunt more challenging, or (2) a royal pain in the $#@ because after you drive all the way to the site and find the cache, you often cannot get it?

And the answer is, YES!

 

Part of the fun can be the frustration of trying to get to a cache unnoticed. Part of the frustration can be not being able to get to a fun cache because you'll be noticed. Isn't life like that anyway?

 

When a bunch of us get together some of the best stories are about the long hikes on difficult terrain that made the cache worth while. But some of the best stories are also about how "James Bond-like" someone had to be to recover the cache, sign the log and get it back without being noticed.

 

Take em as they come. The important part is have fun with it.

 

Bret

Link to comment

It's a lot easier to hide a cache in a muggle rich area than it is to find one. The hider gets to choose the location. The finder has to search for it. Making the "drop" can be done by simply reaching into a bush to hang a cannister, then walking away. When you have a 50+ foot area to search, and the clue isn't specific, you are in for a lot of suspicious looking searching. The espionage type dead drop analogy isn't a perfect parallel because both the hider and the finder know of the location in advance. Retrieving a container is easier when you already know where it is. For tough urban caches, go get 'em in warm weather while it's raining. A big umbrella can sheild your actions from view.

Link to comment

My answer is both 1 and 2. I actually like those a lot. It's that feeling that I'm doing something wrong and I need to be stealthy so I don't get "caught". Even though I'm just a geek playing a game. But on the other hand it is a pain in the a** to have to go back if it's a long drive. But that's part of the game.

Link to comment

I don't mind dealing with bystanders, except... Two recent finds come to mind.

 

In the first instance the gawkers were all dog owners, with their dogs. Some of those dogs were the size of small horses. And like any group of similarly minded folks, once one went belligerent they all followed.

 

"What was I doing under that there bush?", "Where was my dog?", AND THEN MORE POINTEDLY "You're not leaving any thing there that will hurt my dog, are you? And then the mumbled profanity!

 

The second involved two older folks, their dogs and some well-worn waist packs. While searching I stepped into, actually over, some of the landscaping. This couple immediately veered directly toward me and upon closing the distance at quick time, the man began his itterrogation.

 

The questions weren't so bad, but he keep fingering his waist pack, and what was well worn was the shape of a handgun. She had one too! I also recognized the brandname logo as a holster-maker. I backed off, but they went immediately home and called the police.

 

I was stopped about two blocks away and questioned about 'trampling the bushes'. I had some print outs from the cache site and had left the GPSr running, so my explanation was plausible and the officer and I had a friendly exchange and I was on my way.

 

Nobody stops a ballgame to query a searcher looking in the shrubbery, few poeple are concerned by someone taking clues from memorial plaques; but now I carry an old frisbee, some old jewelry, or a well used baseball to drop at the scene and claim that as my find when approached by strangers.

Link to comment

Yep --

 

It was really interesting in the last two weeks to experience the feeling of driving about 20 minutes (each place), finding the cache, and then also finding that two people were sitting right on the bench where the cache was hidden. In that case the only thing to do is wait. My time was limited. I guess one could argue that this indicates an early morning visit would be better, but that never works for me due to traffic and my work hours. Same thing with that fishing pier cache -- but just got lucky this week because I had an early AM doctors appt nearby. I like urban caches that require stealth, but ones that totally screw you up (how can you get a micro off a bench where two people are sitting?) are not my cup of tea (well in my case, not my glass of beer).

Link to comment

We do urban micros, urban full-size caches, and rural caches as well. While in Texas, I took my uncle and older brother caching in Houston and Palestine. We found fullsize and micro caches in Houston. The micros were challenging becaues they were on a major street. The thrill was finding them while trying not to draw much attention. The hides were very clever.

Link to comment

Just figure out where the cache is, 'd*mn the torpedos' (muggles) and go get it; the name of the game is "Geocaching", not "Jr. Spy" or "U-R-The-Show."

 

Too many (almost invariably micro) caches prove to be nothing more than a cache owner 'daring' the seeker to avoid detection. For what? A leaky little container with a damp, slimy scrap of paper crumpled up and shoved in as a log?

 

The cache owner who deliberately places a cache in a location where seekers will appear suspicious or will be highly conspicuous is aware of the risk of exposure by a seeker and assumes such risk as a normal item of cache maintenance.

 

In other words, it's the cache owner's problem, not the seeker's. I'll reconsider my position should the quality of such caches improve dramatically.

Link to comment
Just figure out where the cache is, 'd*mn the torpedos' (muggles) and go get it; the name of the game is "Geocaching", not "Jr. Spy" or "U-R-The-Show."

 

Too many (almost invariably micro) caches prove to be nothing more than a cache owner 'daring' the seeker to avoid detection. For what? A leaky little container with a damp, slimy scrap of paper crumpled up and shoved in as a log?

 

The cache owner who deliberately places a cache in a location where seekers will appear suspicious or will be highly conspicuous is aware of the risk of exposure by a seeker and assumes such risk as a normal item of cache maintenance.

 

In other words, it's the cache owner's problem, not the seeker's. I'll reconsider my position should the quality of such caches improve dramatically.

Thats the spirit!!!! Way to get into the game!

Link to comment

I like what everyone has had to say so far. Let me give you my input. Thank goodness for "muggle potential" areas. Why? Here is our techinque for retrieval:

Once you think you have "found" it, we have a heavy necking session, and as we grope, we manage to grope it too! This is hilarious fun for us old foggies, 'cos you know not a soul will be checking you out! The coast is clear! We then can have a second session of fun while we put it back. Sorry guys, but I/we enjoy these spots for the moment of fun they give us in a heavy weighted world of "problems". We'll take our joy where we can get it at this age! Hope no one is offended by the "picture of random silliness" this creates in their minds, and we'll try and stay clear of you and your "groping" session while you are in a muggle area after a cache! Gee, maybe caching is better in groups, never thought about that! Shotgun wants to clarify this is not HIS sentiments at all, just me the other half!

Link to comment

Wow, we're really on the fence with this one...

My first instinct was to say that we don't care for them at all and Phreak swears that he HATES them but, looking back I think it depends upon how the cache is done.

 

One of our most favorite caches to do was The Slacker Movie Cache, it's a 9 stage multi with the 8 redirecters in muggle rich areas (most around a college campus). We tried to do most of the stages during 'offtimes' but occasionally we were still forced to use some stealth. The great thing was the ingenuity with how the cache owner hid these micros. His goal was NOT to put them where it would be nearly impossible to retrieve if muggles were nearby and I think he accomplished that. With a little patience the caches were easy to retrieve on the sly, walk away to write the information and return the cache. I think only on one stage were we noticed at all and we weren't even in the right area anyway!

 

We have been to others though that we really had to wonder if it was worth it. Those are the ones that you know where they are from 50 yards away but have to wait for what seems like forever just to be able to retrieve a filmcanister and squeeze your name on some little tiny scrap of paper that would barely hold the alphabet to begin with much less after a dozen cachers have found it. Oh and then you have to wait again to replace the cache. SIGH!

 

And of course Austin's moving cache is often times placed in muggle rich areas but at least with that you once found you can just go grab it and walk away. Only problem with that is looking like a fool walking away with a big rock in your hand. :D

 

I guess when all is said and done for us it depends on the thought and time that was put into a cache. We're pretty reserved people and don't want to have to 'tear' things apart in a muggle rich area while looking for the cache. We don't want the cache to be OBVIOUS but at the same time hiders should be concerned about impact of the area even in urban caches. (We've been to one recently where the bark was being stripped of a nearby tree by the cachers looking for a particularly challenging mystery cache. )

Link to comment
Too many (almost invariably micro) caches prove to be nothing more than a cache owner 'daring' the seeker to avoid detection. For what? A leaky little container with a damp, slimy scrap of paper crumpled up and shoved in as a log?

 

The cache owner who deliberately places a cache in a location where seekers will appear suspicious or will be highly conspicuous is aware of the risk of exposure by a seeker and assumes such risk as a normal item of cache maintenance.

 

In other words, it's the cache owner's problem, not the seeker's. I'll reconsider my position should the quality of such caches improve dramatically.

I have pretty strong negative feelings on this one. I'll go after just about any cache, but I don't get the same sense of satisfaction after finding the typical micro. Why not? - To borrow a line "A leaky little container with a damp, slimy scrap of paper crumpled up and shoved in as a log?". Yeah it was cool playing the spy (once), after that it's just plain annoying.

 

Perhaps this has just been my experience thus far, but after the first 35mm canister and/or hide-a-key the novelty wore out pretty quickly. I agree that there does not seem to be the same level of preparation in most micro cache hides. Let me see if I can guess the sequence of events:

 

1. Oh, this looks like a cool place to stick a cache.

2. Wait, I think I have a film canister in the car.

3. OK, let me mark this spot (taking about a second).

4. Anyone got any paper to make a log?

 

Voila - a micro cache is born, total thought process < 3min.

 

My apologies to those who go the extra mile because I have seen several that are extremely well done and obviously well planned and executed. Also, to be fair I've seen lots of traditional caches that are in the same (sinking) boat - just substitute gladware for film canister in step 2 above.

 

The bottom line is that I feel that I owe as much to the cache (any cache) as the owner did in creating it. While I still will not go out of my way to compromise a cache's position, there have been plenty of times (after the fact) that I felt that I should not have taken the extra time and care since so little thought went into it initially.

 

Unfortunately, micros seem to make up the majority of new caches that I have seen recently. I'm hoping that this is not a symptom of cache saturation (i.e. there are enough traditionals around taking up all the so-called "good" spots so that's what's left?).

Link to comment

Living in NYC I've hunted my share of urban micro caches, some in Central Park with hundreds of people around. (Actually it'easier with that many as your activities get lost in the maddening crowd).

 

But heck I get nervous that I'm being watched even when I'm a mile into the woods in an upstate park! BUt the ones that get me the most nervous are next to private residences. I'm waiting for the tap on the shoulder by some cop who got a call from the neighber reporting a suspicious looking character.

 

Having my dog Buddy with me makes me appear less suspicious plus I could always say I stopped there because "he hadda go!"

 

Alan <_<

Link to comment
So here is the question -- as a cache hunter, how do you feel about caches being hidden at the one location where muggles are likely to be standing?

Whenever I place an urban micro, or any cache really, I place it away from where muggles hang out. I want the seekers to be able to find and log my cache. That's why it's there. Now, a cache placed where muggles are near just requires more stealth when seeking it.

 

I do have one at or near a picnic table, but it is in a seldom-used park and not likely to have muggles in the way. I have one in a busy park, in sight of muggles, but still not where they seem to congregate. I have another on a busy street corner, but people in cars don't necessarily notice someone using the exercise trail 20 feet from the road. There is another outside of City Hall, but people don't hang out there for too long at a time. A seeker might have to wait 10 minutes before going in for the cache.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 2
×
×
  • Create New...