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Dangerous/extreme Geocaches


jwalsh
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I was reading in the newsletter today about two dangerous/extreme geocaches, TMA-1 in California and Tube Torcher in North Carolina. I'm not sure these are good for geocaching.

While I can understand the thrill and challenge of these caches for people that are properly prepared for them, in the United States, governments, both state and federal, have a tendency to make laws to protect the absolute dumbest members of the population from themselves.

The first time some ill-prepared person gets killed trying to go for for a geocache, the politicians will hear only one word, "geocache". There will immediately be bills before the legislature to make ALL geocaching illegal. I don't think we want political intervention.

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I am a newbie and it is the freedom of this hobby/sport/game that now has me addicted. We can't "dumb down" geocaching. The only caches out there would be 1/1 stars since anything harder might get some idiot hurt.

 

If it is unsafe then people have to make their own judgments. If those decisions are bad then they may not be around to make more of them.

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Geocaching is extraordinarily dumbed down as it is.

 

We need more challenging and/or so-called dangerous caches. That's what attracted me to this hobby in the first place, not the prospect of finding a film cannister stuck to a light pole in a parking lot.

 

Jamie

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It's funny, I've never heard of any bills in the legislature to ban rock climbing, or mountain climbing, or snow shoeing, or sky-diving or <fill in almost any other activity> or even hiking, yet ill-prepared people die doing those things every year.

 

Try not to blow things out of proportion.

Edited by Gloom
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Dumbing down caching anymore will be the end of the sport for sure. Every outdoor sport is at your own risk. People get killed every year rock climbing, sky diving, etc. etc.

 

Tube Torcher looks awesome. I wish there were some caches like that in my area. The other day, another local cacher and I were joking about flying out there to find it. Maybe we will someday... :D

 

So, while I completely understand your point, caching is ten thousand times (this number is rounded up from my scientifically proven "cache danger factor" :D) more dangerous than many other sports. I don't think caching could even begin to be called an "extreme" sport, as a whole. Parts of the searching can be extreme, but those are few and far between.

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The first time some ill-prepared person gets killed trying to go for for a geocache, the politicians will hear only one word, "geocache". There will immediately be bills before the legislature to make ALL geocaching illegal. I don't think we want political intervention.

This would have reasonable people forming the NCA. Soon, narrow minded fascists would take over the NCA. It would become the biggest lobby in Washington, using their power to defeat any politician who disagrees with them. Yes, you're right, let's drop this idea....before anyone pries my GPSr from my cold, dead hands! :D

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I don't think caching could even begin to be called an "extreme" sport, as a whole. Parts of the searching can be extreme, but those are few and far between.

 

Exactly, the 1/1s outnumber the ?/4s or ?/5s by far, right?!

 

And that's were the rating comes into the picture: Looking at a terrain-5-rated cache? Beware! And ask yourself whether you are really prepared to go for it.

 

Legislature cannot replace a person's own self-judgement. We (the geocaching community) should only make sure that anyone reading a cache description finds enough information in the cache details (rating/text/logs) to really assess the risks involved and whether he/she can handle them.

 

Best regards,

HoPri

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Geocaching is an outdoor activity and no different in many ways than hiking. Dozens, if not hundreds of people die each year in hiking accidents. There are always some paternalistic legislators who think their job is to protect us from ourselves, so it isn't out of the realm of possiblilty for one to propose anti-geocaching legislation, but I don't see it going very far. And of course, in the litigation crazed society we live in someone will get hurt and there will be a lawsuit. That is just a matter of time.

 

However I don't see either as a reason to take the adventure out of a sport where the basic premise is to attract people with "a GPS and a hunger for adventure".

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I completely agree with the need to not "dumb down" geocaching. Idiot proofing this sport would only spawn another underground web site. One thing I might suggest would be a means of policing (for lack of a better word) the rating system.

 

For example, right now the cache owner uses their subjective opinion to rate terrain and difficulty. I've found caches with 4/5 ratings that could be dashed from a car with no special equipment. I've also found caches rated 3/2 which took multiple visits and were extremely challenging. The point is that a cache hider can't really estimate the skills of people who will come after him. The eyes of the hider are also inherantly biased; I learned this on my first hide from the logs. I made a serious effort to rate my cache accurately, but it wasn't until I tweaked the ratings based on log feedback that the rating fell into its groove.

 

My suggestion is to have a cache be optionally rated by those who complete it. In this way, the finders could establish their own ideas about the ratings (linked to the guidelines we are supposed to follow in those ratings). And it would lead to more statistics, so that MUST be good :D One aspect of this which I find appealing is that the local geocaching community would be able to collectively voice their opinion about a cache. While there would be the occasional person who rates everything a "5", I believe most people would take it seriously and the result would be a more accurate number.

 

To tie this back in to the main topic here, I believe that a more accurate rating system would do a better job of setting expectations. This could potentially raise the safety of the sport from an outsider's perspective, or a newbie's perspective. It would also raise the enjoyment of the established cachers in the area by decreasing the potential to hunt for a 3-5 rating but find that it's barely a "1".

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I'm not sure these are good for geocaching.

On the contrary!

 

Take it from someone who has done Tube Torcher, there should be more of these out there. We've only found some ~450 caches and already we're burned out on the drive-bys. It's hard to get motivated to do a 1/1 crappy *ware cache thrown behind some business in trash strewn woods. The "thanks for the cache" gets hung up in our throat over these.

 

This sport needs challenging caches. As more and more people get into the sport and rack up the experiece they will be looking for more; more scenic views, more interesting places, and more challenges.

 

If there weren't cache like Bradley's Bottom, Tube Torcher, or Panther Tail Perch we'd probably quit.

 

And you know what? I can't remember ever coming across a crappy, trash-filled cache at the end of a good challenge. Maybe you just have a different class of cacher doing these. [EDIT]Not trying to sound elitist, but if one is going to make the effort of conquering the challenge, it seems as though they also tend to make the effort to trade kindly.[/EDIT]

Edited by CoyoteRed
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My suggestion is to have a cache be optionally rated by those who complete it. In this way, the finders could establish their own ideas about the ratings (linked to the guidelines we are supposed to follow in those ratings). And it would lead to more statistics, so that MUST be good One aspect of this which I find appealing is that the local geocaching community would be able to collectively voice their opinion about a cache. While there would be the occasional person who rates everything a "5", I believe most people would take it seriously and the result would be a more accurate number.

 

And how about the first person who does it? Where do they get the rating? And what if the first person rates a fairly easy cache a 4, which could scare off others from trying it. I think this is way too subjective. What one person calls a 4 another may call a 2. Since the geocaching community is a heterogeneous mix of former couch potatos, pasty faced geeks and long time outdoors enthusiats, there will be quite a difference in perceived difficulty.

 

All we need is for cache owners to follow the established guidelines for rating a cache. Unfortunately too many ignore them.

Edited by briansnat
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The comparison with other outdoor sports is misleading, because geocaching is an organized activity which both provides specific advice on cache hunt and encourages the players to engage in specific hunts.

Any organized oudoor event would typically have detailed liability release forms, incident review procedures or boards, cancellation procedurres on occasion of dangerous conditions, S&R arrangements, and often participant qualification / gear / team composition req's.

GC.com doesn't even have the danger rating. The terrain rating is largely about exertion and gear needed, rather than about falls, lightinings, snakebites, or avalanches. Not to mention being run over by a car. As soon as the lawyers pay attention, this site will also have extensive warning and releases, and monthly safety committee minutae.

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www.geocaching.com is just a listing service. You are not forced to do anything.

 

Next people will be suing the agency that makes maps, because they didn't have listed inch by inch each potential danger that you might encounter while traversing the territory covered on the map.

 

And, there are disclaimers on the site as it is, on every cache page.

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It's funny, I've never heard of any bills in the legislature to ban rock climbing, or mountain climbing, or snow shoeing, or sky-diving or <fill in almost any other activity> or even hiking, yet ill-prepared people die doing those things every year.

 

Try not to blow things out of proportion.

Well said.....move along people, nothing to see here.......

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It's funny, I've never heard of any bills in the legislature to ban rock climbing, or mountain climbing, or snow shoeing, or sky-diving or <fill in almost any other activity> or even hiking, yet ill-prepared people die doing those things every year.

 

Try not to blow things out of proportion.

Well said.....move along people, nothing to see here.......

Well, if we are gonna talk about blowing things out of proportion, might I suggest this thread?

 

Acme Ackbar strikes again.

 

(edit - fixed dumb html error.... stupid buttons! :D Thank you for the ehads up!)

Edited by New England n00b
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I was reading in the newsletter today about two dangerous/extreme geocaches, TMA-1 in California and Tube Torcher in North Carolina. I'm not sure these are good for geocaching.

While I can understand the thrill and challenge of these caches for people that are properly prepared for them, in the United States, governments, both state and federal, have a tendency to make laws to protect the absolute dumbest members of the population from themselves.

The first time some ill-prepared person gets killed trying to go for for a geocache, the politicians will hear only one word, "geocache". There will immediately be bills before the legislature to make ALL geocaching illegal. I don't think we want political intervention.

Actually, the popularity of geocaching has created an abundance of hand-wringers, brownnosers, lame-o micro-hiders, pantywastes, and geomommys.

 

We need more dangerous caches to thin the herd a bit... :D

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Outdoor activities can be dangerous. Some are organized with all kinds of liabilty disclaimers and some are not. That people get injured doing outdoor activies is pretty well known. Mountain biking, climbing, moutineering etc. are fine as examples because in some cases people do these from listing sites or books and other times through organized events.

 

I do not foresee legislators acting to regulate an outdoor sport such as geocaching. If anything, both legislators and the common law act to limit liabilty for such activities. For example, most states have recreational use laws that allow landowners to make their property publically available for recreation without liability for injury that occurs on the property. General common law protects against liability through various doctrines such as assumption of the risk. The short version of this doctrine is that a person who knows or should know of the danger assumes the risk of injury and cannot hold another liable for an injury.

 

Regardless, GC.com already has various disclaimers and limitations. Everyone agreed them when they joined the site.

 

Could someone stupidly try something that they are not able to safely do? Sure, but in the cases of extreme caches, I have always seen a description of the cache and a high difficulty rating on the page. Regardless, what was involved would be seen at the site. At that point, the person should have known of any danger. I don't see a reason to dumb down the sport to protect those people. If they can read a cache page and use a GPS, they are smart enough to know better and injuries are, and should be, the injured person's responsibility.

 

I will note that if a person put out a dangerous cache where the danger was hidden and there was no warning, there would be the possibility that the injured person could sue the cache owner. Again though, that is what basic common law is for. It is not the type of thing that typically gets legislated.

Edited by carleenp
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Actually, the popularity of geocaching has created an abundance of hand-wringers, brownnosers, lame-o micro-hiders, pantywastes, and geomommys.

 

We need more dangerous caches to thin the herd a bit...

 

Yep, and and a good dose of personal responsibility wouldn't go amiss either (no suing people because you're a dumbass)

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Does anyone else smell herring? This thread starter has been around for 3 years, has 150+ finds, and starts a forum career with this one? :D

Anyway-carleep said it best and nicely too.

Or maybe we should bulldoze the mountains so all the ski slopes are gentle bunny slopes? :D

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At that point, the person should have known of any danger.

Not necessarily. I recall logs from people who recently did an "extreme" cache on a decrepit railway bridge. The walk to the cache over the rotted planks is probably more dangerous than the climb to the cache ... especially because potentially, many of the rotted planks could have been covered by snow.

 

You didn't mention anything about "dangerous" (or, for that mater, 'benign,') caches placed on private or public property without the express permission of the property owner or controlling agency.

 

Most of the "dangerous" or "extreme" caches I have encountered have fallen into that category. In addition to the example cited at the beginning of this post, I have visited: Caches placed in highly unstable boulder fields, caches placed in areas of structures not intended for public access, caches placed in abandoned buildings, caches placed in mines, caches that required rock climbing in parks where rock climbing is expressly forbidden by the park rules, caches placed hundreds of yards off-trail in parks that have rules requiring users to remain on the trails, caches placed within fenced-in areas or other areas clearly not intended for "public access."

 

In such cases, the property owner/controlling agency has in no way agreed to assume full or partial liability for the activity, (that was reviewed and approved by Groundspeak, Inc./geocaching.com without landowner/controlling agency knowledge or consent) yet would indeed be among the primary targets should someone become injured. And despite any disclaimers to the contrary, Groundspeak, Inc., its agents and the cache owner would be among those targeted by litigation.

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In cases with hidden dangers, there could be a cause of action for an injured person to sue the cache owner. Hence why cache owners should also be careful and divulge risks etc. Hide a cache with hidden dangers that a person could not and should not have known about, and you could face a lawsuit if your actions injure a peson. Note though that the minute a person sees the danger and undertakes it anyway, the owner is not likely to be held liable. likewise, issues of tresspass and such arise when caches are placed on private property without persmission. However, there are already full bodies of law that cover those topics. My point is that I don't foresee legislation seeking to regulate caching as a sport and any liability involved when the law is already equipt to deal with it. Such legislation simply isn't necessary. Nor do I think dumbing down the sport to try to protect others from injury is necessary.

Edited by carleenp
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@carleenp

 

What if the owner legitimately doesn know about the danger. 

 

Example the route the hider takes to the cache site is a nice maintained trail, but if you come in from the south you have to walk through abandoned wells, open pits, and dilapidated bridges??

 

Scott

A cache owner is not likely to be held liable for dangers that the owner was not aware of, although caches placed on the owner's own property can open up a whole new can of legal issues. The basic rule there is foreseeablilty. Could the cache owner reasonably foresee the injury happening? Then, the isses with assumption of the risk would also still be applicable. Holes, old bridges etc. are things that a person can find in certain areas, and that in itself likely puts the cache finder back into the "should have known" category and any liability is their own. Basically they assumed the risk of searching for a cache through an area that could contain such things.

 

The ways a cache owner would most likely have liability are (1) if the owner maliciously made the cache dangerous in a hidden way or (2) The owner was fully aware of a danger or should have reasonably forseen a danger, it was hidden in a way that the finder could not see or appreciate the danger (a general test for assumption of the risk), and there was no warning of the danger.

 

Ack, I feel like I'm answering a law school exam question! :D

 

Anyway, my point all along in this thread was just that there are legal systems in place that deal with these types of issues and that legislators tend to stay out of those areas.

 

For those interested in all the wierd legal complications behind a sport such as caching, I am considering writing a couple of articles on the subject for Today's Cacher. I won't likely get around to that until this summer though. I also wasn't sure if there would be all that much interest in such articles. They would generally focus on issues of tresspass, premises liability (e.g. placing caches on your own property) and recreational liability.

Edited by carleenp
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While I think the foreseeability argument is nice, I don't think that a person who places a cache on PUBLIC land owes a duty to the cache seeker. If there is a danger in a park (for example) the park board, commission, whatever, owes a duty to everyone in the park to warn of the danger.

 

For the interest of Geocaching and geocachers people should think good and hard about the possibilities of a cacher harming themselves on private property when looking for a cache. In some states, a trespasser is owed a duty by the land owner (make sure the land is safe for all who enter).

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@carleenp - I would be interested in reading the articles you're describing. The Internet makes it pretty easy to find out what the laws are but finding out how they have been interpreted by the courts can be a different matter altogether.

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While I think the foreseeability argument is nice, I don't think that a person who places a cache on PUBLIC land owes a duty to the cache seeker. If there is a danger in a park (for example) the park board, commission, whatever, owes a duty to everyone in the park to warn of the danger.

 

For the interest of Geocaching and geocachers people should think good and hard about the possibilities of a cacher harming themselves on private property when looking for a cache. In some states, a trespasser is owed a duty by the land owner  (make sure the land is safe for all who enter).

 

I think the answer to the public land question is the classic lawyer phrase "it depends." Usually the risks involved with hiking on public land would be of the type that the cache finder assumes the risk. But imagine a maliciously willful dangerous hide: E.g. I hide the cache behind a hidden well puposely knowing that people will not see the well and will fall. I would guess that there is a cause of action against me if someone is injured. The public nature of the land would make no difference as far as I know.

 

Where the public nature of the land makes a big difference is that an injured person often cannot sue the State (or city or whatever entity owns the land) under local tort claims acts. There it is important in determining where and when the state etc. owes a duty. But just because the local government mgith owe a duty, doesn't mean that others might not as well. Of course the deep pocket government is who would likely be sued though.

 

Also the law can be different for caches an owner places on their own property. In some states the land owner could be responsible for more risks on their private land than they would be on public land. Like I said before, that is a whole other can of legal worms such as the trespasser issue mentioned here. I agree that people should think carefully before placing caches on their own property. At least have decent insurance!

Edited by carleenp
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Personal view only!!

I feel that this thread starts out on a false premise. Because there are not too many 'extreme' caches as compared to 'basic' (lower number) caches I think the danger, if there is one, is the same in all of them. What I mean is, if a person was to slip on a wet log in the woods while hunting a 1/1 the word would still be 'Geocaching'. In the eyes of anyone unaware of the game, the game would still get the blame. Such risks exist in all out door activities and it is something that is accepted by those who indulge in such things.

 

To make things clear, what I mean above by 'danger' is not the chance of a fall - obviously that is greater in some cases than other. I am referring to the 'danger' of caching being blamed for an injury/fatality.

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The comparison with other outdoor sports is misleading, because geocaching is an organized activity which both provides specific advice on cache hunt and encourages the players to engage in specific hunts.

 

Unlike hikes organized by local hiking clubs? Unlike ski trips organized by ski clubs? Unlike guide books that suggest certain hiking trails?

 

A cache owner is not likely to be held liable for dangers that the owner was not aware of, although caches placed on the owner's own property can open up a whole new can of legal issues. The basic rule there is foreseeablilty. Could the cache owner reasonably foresee the injury happening?

 

Carleen, being a lawyer, you realize that anybody can sue anybody for any reason and if they look hard enough they will find some slip-n-fall lawyer to represent them. Whether or not a suit has merit, the party being sued (the cache owner, GC.COM, the park where the cache is hidden, etc...) will have to hire a lawyer to defend theirselves. Sometimes the case will be thrown out and it will only cost the cache owner a few thousand dollars. If the case gets in front of a jury all bets are off.

Edited by briansnat
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Carleen, being a lawyer, you realize that anybody can sue anybody for any reason and if they look hard enough they will find some slip-n-fall lawyer to represent them. Whether or not a suit has merit, the party being sued (the cache owner, GC.COM, the park where the cache is hidden, etc...) will have to hire a lawyer to defend theirselves. Sometimes the case will be thrown out and it will only cost the cache owner a few thousand dollars. If the case gets in front of a jury all bets are off.

 

Of course. I am writing from the basis of a likely outcome of a suit or an ability to state a cause of action. A suit can always be filed that is without merit. Tort cases also are often more difficult to dismiss early in the process. Often completely meritless suits don't get filed though because the attorney won't take such a case on a contigency fee and the injured person has no money to pay the lawyer. Plenty of questionable cases get taken, however, if there is insurance invoved because of hopes of a settlement.

 

Anyway, I still wouldn't advocate dumbing down the sport because of that. This is going to be a litigious society regardless. Not sure there is much that can be done about that without major tort reform and that is not an appropriate topic for this forum. :o

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So what are your suggestions? Avoid dangerous caches and just have 1/1 in the future, OR start using IQ-tests to find out which persons that should be geocaching? :o

 

There is not a single person on this planet that are the same, we are all different. Some of us likes to find 1/1 drive-in-caches, other people likes to go scubacaching. Some people likes to go on long walks in desert, other likes to go geocaching in the jungle.. Some people wants to ride their bike to the race, other wants to run to their cache. Some people wants to find easy caches, other wants to use rope to climb down a really high cliff...

 

We are all seeking for a "rush"... We get an adrenalin rush by geocaching. Everytime you find a geocache you'll get a rush! Some people wants to use ropes, diving gear, crawl in tunnel systems/caves and so on, to get their rush.

 

As long as they are aware of the risk, let them do it.

 

IT IS ALWAYS UP TO EACH GEOCACHER TO DECIDE: SHALL I TAKE THIS CACHE - CAN I TAKE THIS CACHE - SHOULD I TAKE THIS CACHE?

 

If you don't want to do it, go find a different cache instead. There is almost 100.000 caches in the planet Earth, so their must be a more suitable cache for you if you don't want to take a certain cache.

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I was reading in the newsletter today about two dangerous/extreme geocaches, TMA-1 in California and Tube Torcher in North Carolina. I'm not sure these are good for geocaching.

While I can understand the thrill and challenge of these caches for people that are properly prepared for them, in the United States, governments, both state and federal, have a tendency to make laws to protect the absolute dumbest members of the population from themselves.

The first time some ill-prepared person gets killed trying to go for for a geocache, the politicians will hear only one word, "geocache". There will immediately be bills before the legislature to make ALL geocaching illegal. I don't think we want political intervention.

I've read the cache listing. These caches CLEARLY state that you can ending up injuring or killing yourself. So there is sufficient warning. As others have mentioned this is no different than hiking or rock climbing.

 

If someone is silly enough do something and not take the proper steps to protect themselves (or exercise good judgement) despite the warnings, I say more power to them as the gene-pool gets cleaner! (j/k - well sort of)

 

Seriously now, any outdoor activity is going to have inherent risks. Believe it or not, there are even more dangerous caches than the two in the newsletter (some hidden by an active volcanoes come to mind).

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Have some of you missed the text "Note:To use the services of geocaching.com, you must agree to the terms and conditions in our disclaimer." that is one EVERY cache page, showing a link to: a page saying the link has moved (!) and then it shows:

 

Geocaching Disclaimer

Geocaching.com is owned and operated by Groundspeak Inc. Information in the Geocaching.com database is updated regularly. Neither Groundspeak Inc., nor any agent, officer, employee or volunteer administrator of Groundspeak Inc. warrants the accuracy, reliability, or timeliness of any information and shall not be liable for any losses caused by such reliance on the accuracy, reliability, or timeliness of such information. While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of this information, portions may be incorrect or not current. Any person or entity that relies on information obtained from Geocaching.com does so at his or her own risk.

 

Geocaching, hiking, backpacking and other outdoor activities involve risk to both persons and property. There are many variables including, but not limited to, weather, fitness level, terrain features and outdoor experience, that must be considered prior to seeking or placing a Cache. Be prepared for your journey and be sure to check the current weather and conditions before heading outdoors. Always exercise common sense and caution.

 

In no way shall Groundspeak Inc. nor any agent, officer, employee or volunteer administrator of Groundspeak Inc., be liable for any direct, indirect, punitive, or consequential damages arising out of, or in any way connected with the use of this website or use of the information contained within.

 

Cache seekers assume all risks involved in seeking a cache.

This website is for personal and non-commercial use. You may not modify, copy, excerpt, distribute, transmit, publish, license, create derivative works from, or sell any information, or services obtained from this website.

 

Other products and companies referred to herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.

 

Groundspeak Inc. reserves the right to change the terms, conditions, and notices under which this website is offered.

 

 

I think it is quite clear, if you wanna go and get killed, it is all up to you... :o

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The comparison with other outdoor sports is misleading, because geocaching is an organized activity which both provides specific advice on cache hunt and encourages the players to engage in specific hunts.

Unlike hikes organized by local hiking clubs? Unlike ski trips organized by ski clubs?

You get my point. I am a member of several local outdoor recreation clubs. The activities are comparable in scope, but the geocachers' approach to safety stands out.

In the other clubs, the general wisdom is that the disclaimers are necessary but not sufficient. We also have registration before an outing abd check-out after it. We also have lists of required gear and essentials. We also have extensive safety training. We also have accident review policy. We also provide detailed info on local conditions. I have had incidents and cancellations on my trips, and I know that warning the players ahead of the game is by no means a sufficient safety measure.

You should get me right. I am very fond of anarchy and disorganization. But I also see that Groundspeak is playing with fire, and at some point Jeremy may be caught unprepared, and start mass elimination of potentially dangerous caches under a threat of a lawsuit. So enjoy it while it lasts.

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I know, let's make a new rule that protects us from ourselves????

 

There is such a law, the law of nature. "The crime is stupidity, or at least certains types of it. The sentence is death, and execution is immediate.There is no appeal, There is no need for humans to sub-legislate this law at a lower level." - R. A. Heinlen

 

Well, sometimes, anyway. And some say Heinlen was just a D.O.M. But he hit the nail on the head a lot, albeit in a chafing kind of way.

 

"Man claims nature, and Nature unhesitatingly claims the man." - ??

Shouldn't we just go caching and do our best? If Doofus is going to get himself killed not paying attention to something, it's not really our problem. His Doofus kin have no recourse because of the disclaimers, as said before.

 

Besides, geocaching (lowercase "g", in the general sense) has enough momentum that if it is prevented on Geocaching (big G).com, the bugger-caches will not die but simply go somewhere else. I have seen talk of this on texasgeocaching.com, expressed as a need for more extreme caches, possibly listed on an extreme caching site.

 

I apologize if this is pre-decreed blasphemy to TPTB but I found no other-sites-whose-name-shall-not-be-mentioned-here - type warnings.

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In Western WA we are lucky enough to have a lot of all types of caches, of all D/T ratings.

 

It allows me to cache, exactly how I want to. If I feel like a night cache, lots of them around. Long hike? Yup, when I feel like one, no problem finding one. Easy Lame micro? lot's of them (some of them mine). Evil micro, yup. Puzzle caches that make me feel smart when I figure them out, lots of them. Puzzle caches that make me feel stupid when I don't figure them out, lots of them too. Etc.

 

My point is, I would never want to lessen the sport for somebody else, by trying to govern the variety of caches.

 

Make this sport your own, do it you way, and let others do it their way.

If you find it too dangerous for you, play chess.

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I don't go after caches requiring mountain climbing because I'm not experienced at that. I don't go after caches that require scuba diving because I can't swim. I don't do caches at the north and south poles because I don't have the clothes, equipment or training for that environment. My momma taught me not to play in the street because it's dangerous.

No one makes anyone go after any cache. If you think it's too dangerous THEN DON'T GO!!! Kind of simple really.

 

Apparently common sense isn't common.

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You said it!

Yes, it can be frustrating when you can't/don't do a cache that beyond your limitations - and those limitations could be any number of things. But if it makes you uncomfortable or you are not properly equipped/trained, then you need to skip it and move on.

 

There is a cache a few miles from my house that I have not logged (but attempted twice now) that sits near a 50 shear drop-off. Now, children have done this cache, but I haven't because I am afraid of heights. Simple as that. I even went with company yesterday, and I still couldn't do it. They even brought the cache to me (I was about 15 feet from cache location), but I couldn't bring myself to sign the log.

 

Was I disappointed? Uh huh. Does it make me crazy that this is the only cache I have yet to find within 10 miles of my house? Uh huh. Am I a big baby? Sometimes. Am I going to risk a case of vertigo 10 feet from the edge of a cliff for a container of stuff? Um, no.

 

Oddly, I have done other caches with steep terrain, snow, ice, rain, wind, animals, in darkness, in tunnels - and had no problems. I've had near frostbite, gotten lost alone in the woods.... but there is just something about THIS location that freaks me out. Perhaps it's the highway below...

 

I understand the concern - but people really need to use their heads.

 

And, um, extreme guys - not everyone can do or wants to do extreme, and there is nothing wrong with that. There is room here for everyone - even "geomommys" (not that I am one - I am also afraid of children! :o

Edited by cool_librarian
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Let me try to explain better what I meant when I started this topic.

 

After the expense of the GPS receiver, a person can geocache as often or as seldom as they like, 24/7, all for free.

 

The idea that the general population can use a commodity on a continuing basis (GPS satellite signals) to do an activity that is entertaining (Geocaching) without having to pay a subscription or fee is problematic to certain people in authority.

 

The only way revenue could be gotten is if geocaching were declared illegal. But how do you do this? In and of itself, geocaching is harmless and if you cache in and trash out, it is environmentally beneficial.

 

However, if even 1 in 1000000 geocachers is killed, there will be an argument that geocaching is dangerous and should be made illegal. Once geocaching were made illegal, then geocachers who were caught would simply pay a fine and be on their way much like a speeder who is caught on the highway.

 

The revenue would not be as good as making every geocacher subscribe to the GPS signals but it would be better than nothing.

 

I realize that this makes me sound paranoid and maybe I am. Time will tell.

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Let me try to explain better what others are saying.

 

After the expense of a pair of boots, a person can hike as often or as seldom as they like, 24/7, all for free.

 

The idea that the general population can use a commodity on a continuing basis (any of the free trail systems) to do an activity that is entertaining (hiking) without having to pay a subscription or fee is problematic to certain people in authority.

 

The only way revenue could be gotten is if hiking were declared illegal. But how do you do this? In and of itself, hiking is harmless and if you leave no trace and clean up after others, it is environmentally beneficial.

 

However, if even 1 in 1000000 hikers is killed, there will be an argument that hiking is dangerous and should be made illegal. Once hiking were made illegal, then hikers who were caught would simply pay a fine and be on their way much like a speeder who is caught on the highway.

 

The revenue would not be as good as making every hiker pay admission to every trail they hiked but it would be better than nothing.

Edited by bons
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The only way revenue could be gotten is if geocaching were declared illegal.

See the problem ranger

 

Some parks charge a fee to place a cache as mentioned in the above thread. There are other ways of obtaining money besides fining people.

 

as far as the Man taking over geocaching... I'll stay out of that one.

 

Bons, just saw your post. :o That sums it all up very well.

Edited by geckoee
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Golf is a more dangerous sport than hockey, do you hear officials trying to ban the golf ball??

 

It is more dangerous to cross the street, than flying. Shall make all roads forbidden because of that?

 

It is all about calculated risks. I really hate spiders, snakes and that kind of animals.. Creepy animals.. :o And that is the main reason why I don't take the caches inside caves, tunnel systems and so on... There is my limit!

I know about geocachers that would enter a cave just to see how big the spiders are.. But not me... :D

 

So what's my point? We do all have different ideas, thoughts, preferences, risk calculations, turn-ons... and so on...

I can't see how the sport of Geocaching should be able to grow if all caches must be hidden behind a stone in the woods...? How fun would that be if all the caches should be identical?

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I believe in listing the dangers as a courtesy if nothing else.

 

One of my caches...

 

I know that I appreciate knowing in advance what I might be running up against.

I don't care if I am alone but when my 5 year old comes along, I would rather avoid vertical climbs, or frightening terrain...

 

But I concur with what was said earlier.

There are no laws against Mountain Climbing or Kayaking, or whatever...

There are certain risks associated with sports.

There will always be frivolous lawsuits, however we shouldn't worry ourselves sick over it. If anything, we should appreciate what Groundspeak has done.

After all, it's still free.

(I haven't paid a dime yet.)

:o

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