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Rating System For Caches


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Hi All,

 

There is a new web site which offers a brilliant service for handicap geocachers

 

Handicaching

 

You can rate your own caches or caches you've visited. This will enable handicap Geocachers to better decide whether they can attempt a cache or not.

 

The rating is posted on the cache page and can be read with a simple click.

 

Can I ask everyone to at least rate your own caches???????

 

WoodSmoke

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Hat's off to whoever designed that site, what a great resource !

 

I've rated all the MoonHerb caches but I'm afraid they weren't placed with handicapped access in mind ;)

And that's the point of this site...............it tells people that ;)

 

No bad reflection on you, but at least everyone knows now :D

 

WoodSmoke

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And that's the point of this site...............it tells people that ;)

 

No bad reflection on you, but at least everyone knows now :D

 

WoodSmoke

I realise that ;)

 

With that in mind though..... What do handicapped geocachers look for in caches ?

 

Almost all of the 80 I've done (apart from a few virtuals) would be almost impossible for a handicpped cacher. I realise that there are degrees of handicap so do you think that a series of level, easy access caches would go down well ??

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With that in mind though..... What do handicapped geocachers look for in caches ?

 

All the help we can get MoonHerb ;);):D

 

Seriously....reasonable access where the odd stagger doesn't mean you wish you had packed a parachute...a location that even if it means a hands and knees approach is not too dangerous in at least dry weather.

 

Of course wheel chair cachers would usually need the assistance of a second party but I think most mobility restricted cachers like myself can get to about 90% of existing caches ... it is only the very few that are outside their capability IMHO.

 

Ullium.

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I really like this idea and have already rated one of my caches that I did with disabled access in mind. I have a son who is in a wheelchair (not into caching) so tried to make it so that it would be possible.

 

It is a multi over a very short distance which I originally intended to be a virtual, but rightly Eckingotn asked me to make a physical cache.

 

There are different levels of handicap so different caches will suit different abilities so I will try to rate all of my caches even the ones where you have to be quite phsically fit to do them.

 

Excelent resource.

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It was an American who introduced me to caching, who said that when rating the terrain - a 1 meant that someone in a wheelchair could access the cache. Anything above that would require more mobility. I used that in setting the rating for the one cache that I set.

Many American cache descriptions will also have a wheelchair logo, to show that someone with this level of disability could complete the cache. One I came across even mentioned that it was possible to complete from the window of a car, including the signing the log book.

 

Yorkstan

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Hi, a couple of things I would like to point out regarding the site.

 

You can also rate the caches you have visited, not just your own. This will help increase the number of ratings in the system.

 

Even if a cache isn't handicap accessible (under any definition of the term) still rate it. It is just as useful to someone to know which caches they definately can't do as which caches they definately can do.

 

If you link to ratings on cache pages and in cache logs, the site will become visible to people who don't read the forums.

 

Thanks for your support and comments. :D;);)

 

Groover

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With that in mind though..... What do handicapped geocachers look for in caches ?

 

Almost all of the 80 I've done (apart from a few virtuals) would be almost impossible for a handicpped cacher. I realise that there are degrees of handicap so do you think that a series of level, easy access caches would go down well ??

A group of people who were involved with the site are currently working on a guide to hiding more accessible caches. If you want to get involved with this effort, please visit the relevent section of the handicaching.com discussion forum and join in! ;)

 

Groover

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When I first found the link (before reading this thread) I thought that the site was for grading a cache by 'handicap' - as in a golf type scoring system.

 

This is a great idea but...

 

As an able bodied person, I don't feel that I am qualified to rate a cache for handicap accessibility - especially when you consider the possible range and severity of a handicap balanced against the ability and determination of any individual to overcome their particular difficulty.

 

Boneychest

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When I first found the link (before reading this thread) I thought that the site was for grading a cache by 'handicap' - as in a golf type scoring system.

 

This is a great idea but...

 

As an able bodied person, I don't feel that I am qualified to rate a cache for handicap accessibility - especially when you consider the possible range and severity of a handicap balanced against the ability and determination of any individual to overcome their particular difficulty.

 

Boneychest

That is why the system is designed like it is. You don't need to assess it's accessibility. Instead you rate a cache on various aspects. A handicapped person can then look at your rating and compare it against their abilities to see if they can do it. There is a section of the site where a handicapped person can find their "maximum" rating - i.e. the hardest cache they can do. All they need to do that is check that the number on a cache's rating are at or below their own. They can have several "maximum" ratings depending on the different phases in their handicap that they go through.

 

It is impossible to rate a cache as handicap accessible, because handicaps vary so wildly that what is accessible for one person is not for another. The mistake I see so often is that handicap accessible refers only to people in wheelchairs, which is not true.

 

Groover

Edited by Team Spike
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What a great site, I will get mine on there soon.

 

One suggestion for thoses who run the site is to add a section where you can enter your own personal capability and be presented with a list of all rated caches that are within your capability. A distance search would be even better.

 

Whilst I am able bodied myself, I have always maintained that geocaching should be for everybody, and in placing my caches, I have tried to keep a certain number accessible by those with physical limitations

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One suggestion for thoses who run the site is to add a section where you can enter your own personal capability and be presented with a list of all rated caches that are within your capability. A distance search would be even better.

The problem is that we do not have the ability to crawl the geocaching.com web site for coords of caches. Without that information we cannot give local search results or distances. We could add this feature, but unfortunately geocaching.com does not appear to support such crawlers and periodically changes their html, which results in breaking them.

 

Instead we decided to offer a utility called HandiGPX - which you can download from the site on the Find a Rating page. This will add in the handicap ratings to your GPX file. This allows you to combine handicap ratings with the great pocket queries search feature.

 

Groover

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Hi All,

 

For my 2 Pence worth. When we started geocaching 6 months ago, I could barely walk .05 of a mile due to arthritis in the hips and osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia (arthritis of the muscles is easiest way to explain). After going after some easier caches (but still strenuous to me) I wound up in the hospital with a severe angina attack. (I was totally unaware of the condition prior to this) To have had some idea of what I was up against before I got to the cache site might have helped. I do download maps and check out sites to the best of my ability but there are some that just say 1/2 mile easy walk....if you are a mountain climber maybe.....LOL

 

Since I had the attack, I now go prepared with appropriate prescribed medication which has been needed on some of these easy walks. I have worked very hard over the last 4 months to up my abilities on these caches and am very proud to say that I have had a lot of successes. To climb a hill is easy for a lot of people, not so easy for some and impossible for others. There was a particular one that comes to mind that I did finish (I never thought I would) on my hands and knees and several shots of the GTN spray. It was not rated as extremely hard but now that I know I can rate it as such, I surely will.

 

Determination has played an extremely hard part in all the caches I have done. I am now proud to say that a 1 mile walk to a cahe is within my limits but 1 mile up hill requires the support of both a caching partner (usually my hubby) and lots of rests to recuperate. The only good part, is knowing that the 1 mile back is downhill [:o] I should mention that hubby works away for 2-3 weeks at a time so I often cache alone.

 

I can on a good day do several caches averaging 6 miles over the course of several caches. Not bad considering what I could do 6 months ago. It does howecer help before I start the day to know what I am up against.

 

I would strongly urge all cachers to use this system to let others know what they are up against and whether or not it is within their limits.

 

6 months ago I considered getting a blue badge...yesterday my hubby and I completed our 100th cache. We probably could have done it sooner had I /we known what some caches were like (drive 40 miles to find out it was unobtainable).

 

I have mentioned this hobby to my cardiac rehab nurses and have offered to explain it in more detail and give short courses in the walking aspects with a goal at the other end (that makes a big difference) to encourage more slightly disabled people to join in this great hobby. But I certainly would not want to be responsible for a heart attack half way up a hill that a physically fit person rated an easy walk.

 

Not all physically disabled people are in a wheelchair. Please take this into consideration when rating caches and use the rating that is now available

 

Thank you

 

Lynn (part of Mady)

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Thought I would add a note that it only took 15 minutes the other day to rate the meagre 25 caches that we have done so far. It will now be a regular part of our "logging" process for the future as I believe this resource is invaluable to the caching community regardless of their dis/ability.

 

It really is simple and very worthwhile!

 

The Hokesters...

Edited by The Hokesters
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Thanks for the link, and brilliant.... I started rating mine, but I do have a problem with the rating system. How do I as non disabled choose.

 

Can we have some sort of guidance on the levels 1-5, or have I missed a page somewhere.

 

I was out placing a new cache box today, so I paid attention to access.....

 

"Parking good, level walk along the side of two fields.... fairly flat ground, no lumps (well cow pats !) but Oh a style ! "

 

This is a typical example, how do I grade this ? I am not disabled.....Everyone else is saying "I have just rated mine"

 

PLEASE HELP .... What am I missing ? <_<

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Hi,

 

We designed the system so you don't have to be disabled to rate caches. Simply choose the item from each list that matches your cache the closest. Then a handicapped person can look through the description for each item that you choose and see if they can do it.

 

If you still are unsure, send me an Email through this site or through the contact link (top right) on the handicaching site and I'll be happy to walk you through it.

 

Groover

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Ok, I just read your post a little more carefully and I understand now what the problem is. A style would be regarded as an obstruction, and if you look under route obstructions, the one that is the best fit is number 5 - climbing/crawling required. If you think that this choice seems a little severe for one style (which I don't think it is BTW) then on the next page you can enter the comment:

 

"Climbing is only required for one style"

 

Then a handicapped person can decided if they can do that.

 

Basically, if in doubt, pick the closest items from the list and then add some comments on the next page.

 

If we tried to add in all possible obstructions the list would be huge and put people off from bothering, so we went with the approach of giving general examples and let people choose the best match.

 

Groover

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I think this is a really good idea, but (why is there always a but?) I have only one cache at the moment, more planned, which is a puzzle cache with a micro to find. The micro is quite hard to find and if I rated the cache it would give too much of a hint as to the location.

 

Can't think of a solution to this, sorry.

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