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Placing A Cache


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I would like to know how many geocachers, who have placed cache for others to find, think that it is important to get permission from the property owner, such as a city or county agency, even if the grounds have no signs posted, such as No Trespassing or Keep Out and etc?


I have a lot of caches out there and most of them are in city and county parks. However, I will not put a cache into a state park, simply because I don't like the idea of having other pay for parking to find a cache.


My city caches were installed with a permit issued by my city's parks & recreation dept. As for others that are in my county, I have permission and/or blessing from the powers that be.

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I generally use Criminal's "Frisbee Method" to determine if I need to ask permission.

The only caveat would be that if there is a regular groundskeeper, attendant, or an occupied building nearby the cache site I would ask/inform.


I also try to make it so that a grounds crew, etc. would never see it if they were just doing their normal job, so it won't be an issue.


Edit: Spelling and a few clarifying adjectives.

Edited by Bull Moose
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Asking permission may seem like the right and noble thing to do, however there are sometimes permanent consequences. Once you get the “No” it’s all over. You can fight it if you have the time, but if they tell you no, that’s it. Now they know about the game and may decide to become proactive at removing caches. There is also the risk that while you’re getting the jerk-around from the land manager, or have been told no, another cacher can come along and hide one in the very same park. Then what, are you going to narc them out and start a regional cache war? I hope not.


I will not ask for permission to engage in a game for which the state has no declared prohibition.


As it stands right now, there is no prohibition at state parks in WA. I have had a discussion with a State Park manager about a certain cache that was removed by them. He said he is aware of caches in other state parks, and there is no problem with them, but in this particular area they decided to wait until the park was developed before allowing it.


As to the $5 fee, I have never had to pay. I have I hide at Kopachuck State park and if you park out on the street, it’s free. It will add about 100 feet or so to your walk.

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I have asked for and received permission for caches that I have placed on National forest (Siuslaw and Willamette), Benton County OR parks, ODFW (a state wildlife refuge), and BLM land.


I also have three caches which are on logging land belonging to Boise-Cascade and Weyerhauser/Willamette. I have not asked permission to place those due to the same concerns cited by Criminal. In the gated logging areas where I have these caches, the general policy is that "non-motorized recreation is allowed", so I have loosely interpreted that as permission to geocache!

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We have a cache placed in the Tahuya Forest. We contacted the director and he said he'd heard of geocaching before but was concerned about the impact it would have on the environment. There is a lot of motorcycle activity in parts of the forest but not in the area we wanted to hide the cache. We told him roughly how many people would visit it (based on other caches in similar areas) and that most geocachers try to protect the environment (cache in trash out). He gave us permission.

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I've been allowed to participate in motorcycle races in national parks. You think we did a little damage? A year later you couldn't tell we were there, it was all grown over.


Here I place on BLM land or on land owned by timber companies. Neither give a hoot about caches, they're more concerned about the dozens of abandoned cars left in the woods every year.

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Here's one deterrent to getting permision for me, at least: It's almost impossible to for me to get in touch with the right people. For example, I'm trying to organize a CITO in Bremerton where I live. I work M-F all day in Seattle, an hour by ferry. I'm trying to do THEM a FAVOR and I can't get anyone there to return calls or e-mails and I can't go down to the office because I'm at work an hour away during their office hours. I can't imagine what it would be like trying them to do me a favor.


Combine that with what I saw when I just did my taxes: the thousands of dollars I paid in property taxes. I feel that gives me a right to responsibly and reasonably use Bremerton parks. I consider the appropriate hiding of a geocache a responsible and reasonable use. (Don't even get me started on federal income tax and the use fees I pay for National Parks and what I think of their blanket no caches and no dogs rules.)


Now, if we start talking about other pieces of private or semi-private property, schools, libraries, University property, then what is appropriate may not include a geocache for which permission was not explicitly recieved.


And as far as State Park caches - $5 isn't a big deal for me. It's just not. I understand it is to other people. That's fine. Don't hunt the caches then.

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