Jump to content

Cache Degredation?


ibycus
Followers 1

Recommended Posts

Was reading in another thread about concern over cache degredation. Would have posted there, but that seems to have degenerated in to a shouting match, and I'd rather not take part.

One person though did bring up a good point that was largely ignored. I was just wondering how many of you keep items that you take from caches? I know there are maybe one or two items that I've kept, not because they were of any particular value, or anything but more because I had a specific use for them at the time (I'm thinking of some post-it flags that I took once), or in one case, I just haven't gotten around to returning it to a cache (funky little halloween bear), but generally speaking, anything I take from a cache eventually goes back in another cache somewhere else.

To be honest I generally don't take anything, or leave anything, but when I do, I generally don't trade for keeps.

I am curious if this is the general practice or if it is just something that I do, or if it is only practiced in certain areas or what.

When I set up a new cache, generally I go out to a dollar store, and pick up some things that I would like to find in a cache, and might bring for a ride somewhere if I were to find them, or might have an immediate need for. Generally I put about $10 canadian in to one of my caches (although I did have a recent cache (GCKRF2) filled with almost nothing but plastic bags, but that had a specific purpose).

 

So I guess my point in a roundabout way is, if other people generally speaking follow the same kind of practices, if one cache degrades, won't it generally help out another cache? I know there is nothing i like more than seeing one of my old trade items show up in another cache, it's kinda neat.

More than anything for me, as far as trading goes, it all depends on what the next trade is.

 

Like for example, if you trade a golf tee for a geocoin, you'd better not take anything better than a golf tee when you place the geocoin somewhere else. This kind of thing is of course much harder to see, but really does have a major impact on how I would view the situation.

 

Also of issue, is if things should be traded for travel bugs/geocoins at all. Personally, if I see one of these items in a cache, I take it, bearing in mind that the owner of the bug/coin would want to see it move on as quickly as possible, but if at all possible, I leave something, no matter how small in its place. This again, overall increases the number of items up for trade. When I replace the bug/coin I tend to take nothing for it (except perhaps another bug).

 

What do other people do?

Link to comment

I rarely trade, but when I find something unique, or useful, I will keep it.

 

I try to stock my caches with useful items and have been surprised to find items that I'm pretty sure I placed in my cache,moved on to others, but when you consider the total number of items I've placed in my caches vs. the ones that turned up in other caches, its a pretty small percentage.

 

If your theory was true, then eventually all area caches would eventually reach a certain level where they were equally full of nice things and junk. Rather, it seems that all caches, even those that start full of nice items, eventually get filled with junk.

Link to comment

What do I do? Exactly as you do. Ultimately that means I leave more than I take.

 

There is rarely anything in a cache that I can't get on my own, but I'm happy to leave trade items I bought at a store. (especially when the cache needs restocking)

 

I do like signature items so I make sure to leave something of value in return.

 

I figure most stuff is for the kids anyway, so I tend to leave something that might interest them.

Edited by 11 After
Link to comment

It seems pointless to hope that people will mend their caching ways, so I just try to leave each cache in better shape after me than it was before I visited it.

 

I clean out junk and trash, leave a variety of trade items along with my sig-item, and replace ziplocks and pencils and logbooks when needed.

 

Will this change the world, improve caching worldwide, or make people stop leaving broken toys...no. It will make things a little better for the next person to visit that particular cache, and that's enough (for me).

 

nfa-jamie

Link to comment

When I first started caching I traded at every cache. Now I always leave something and rarely take anything. If I take something I usually turn it into a travel bug (7 of my 19 TBs are things I've taken from a cache).

 

As far as leaving something for a TB or geocoin, I don't. If there's a TB in the cache that I want to take I take it and move on to the next cache.

 

Zack

Link to comment

I only have about 100 finds, but it didn't take long for me to change what I trade. I rarey take anything from caches anymore. I usually will just trade sig cards, or if there are no other sig cards in the cache, I'll just leave mine. Occaisionally, I'll drop a few foreign coins or my sig boot carabiner. I have a few things from some of the caches I have visited, but for the most part I only take sig cards, and I do keep those. I have a little notebook where I keep track of which sig cards I have so I know whether to take one or not. It's like collecting baseball cards. :)

 

I still haven't placed my first ammo can cache (i have had an ammo can sitting in my office for about a month and half), but I'm considering having a sig exchange theme cache because that's what I enjoy trading. How do you stock that??

 

I'm glad to hear about the TB exchange feedback. I am never sure what to leave in exchange if I don't have a TB in hand.

Link to comment
a sig exchange theme cache because that's what I enjoy trading. How do you stock that??

 

I have a couple of caches that require more time or effort. I have a loop series of 6 caches called the Africa Loop (a 4 mile loop hike) where I placed 40 custom buttons in the final cache. I found that people took a button and left a signature item of their own.

 

I only leave my signature coin in a cache that I really enjoyed. So I guess people have different views on sig items.

 

Setting up a travel bug, sig item, WG$ exchange is also a possibility. Try to pick an easy spot (though well concealed) where travellers can stop off and trade.

Link to comment

I often take the crappiest item, and throw it away when I get home. I did stockpile a couple of things I removed from various caches, and placed them in someone else's new cache that was empty. Whether I take something also depends on whether the container is full or not.

 

I don't recall ever removing something that I really wanted for myself.

 

-Bob

Link to comment

Ye gotta STOP this trading up stuff! It's not a good idea. Either trade DOWN or take something and leave NOTHING!

 

If everyone trades up all the time then we will soon be trading up for stuff that has already been traded up and so it will go on. That means that, eventually, on some VERY POPULAR cache the only way to trade up will be to put the whole universe into a small metal box. Now, if you have never actually tried to do that, let me tell ya, it's NOT easy and it sure ain't fun. Not for you or for the people in the universe either!

 

This trading up MUST STOP NOW before it's too late.

 

Don't say you weren't warned.....

 

When the only thing you can see in front of you is yer own posterior backing towards you it will be too late. You and everything you know is in the ammo box - YOU HAVE BECOME SOME SUPERIOR CACHERS TRADE ITEM! TOO LATE!

 

Oh, and have a GREAT Thanksgiving by the way.

Link to comment
a sig exchange theme cache because that's what I enjoy trading. How do you stock that??

 

I have a couple of caches that require more time or effort. I have a loop series of 6 caches called the Africa Loop (a 4 mile loop hike) where I placed 40 custom buttons in the final cache. I found that people took a button and left a signature item of their own.

 

I only leave my signature coin in a cache that I really enjoyed. So I guess people have different views on sig items.

 

Setting up a travel bug, sig item, WG$ exchange is also a possibility. Try to pick an easy spot (though well concealed) where travellers can stop off and trade.

So where could a guy buy these sig coins?? Ive looked around, but I guess Im missing the link. Or is this something homemade?

Link to comment

i have kind of a collection of signature items. with the exception of those tedious business cards, there is nothing i treasure more than somebody's signature. so i take those and keep them. sometimes i find a cool toy that i keep.

 

keeping things means i have ro replenish my stock.

 

i have a cache where the finder must make a detailed inventory of the contents in oder to claim a find. it's kind of an experiment to see how the contents change over time, and whether people leave junk if they havve to own up to it. they have to take a picture, so there's no cheating.

Link to comment
i have a cache where the finder must make a detailed inventory of the contents in oder to claim a find. it's kind of an experiment to see how the contents change over time, and whether people leave junk if they havve to own up to it. they have to take a picture, so there's no cheating.

That is completely brilliant. I love the idea! How is it working out?

Link to comment
i have a cache where the finder must make a detailed inventory of the contents in oder to claim a find. it's kind of an experiment to see how the contents change over time, and whether people leave junk if they havve to own up to it. they have to take a picture, so there's no cheating.

That is completely brilliant. I love the idea! How is it working out?

I have a similar cache. I started it with one nice item (a new Petzel headlamp). The idea was for there to always be one nice item in the cache and the finder was required to note the item they took in their log, but not mention what they left , making it a surprise for the next person.

 

Not one person has complied yet even though I have the rules in bold on the page.

Link to comment
i have a cache where the finder must make a detailed inventory of the contents in oder to claim a find. it's kind of an experiment to see how the contents change over time, and whether people leave junk if they havve to own up to it. they have to take a picture, so there's no cheating.

That is completely brilliant. I love the idea! How is it working out?

When I placed my first cache I made a list of everything that I put in it. Then, as finders logged their find (since most of them noted what they left and took), I would adjust the list. Great idea, right? Yeah, until I hit an unforeseen problem. People called items by different names. One person's keychain flashlight became anothers Volkswagon Beetle (that was what the flashlight looked like). Some of the stuff I had no idea what they were talking about. So I gave up in confusion.

 

More on topic, I have almost everything that I've ever traded out of a cache. Right now it's in several clear plastic cookie jars, but I hope to make a nice display case someday. And to save you from checking, so far I've found 565 caches. Even figuring the lack of swag from virtuals, events, and some micros, that's a lot of relatively useless stuff. But it's the way I play the game.

Link to comment

I do need to come up with a 'signature item'.

What do I take? Mostly only stuff that I've been too lazy to get for myself. First aid kit from Hiking the Hudson. Compass from Fluffy Pink Bunnies.

Or stuff to make room in the cache. Hotel Schianno Moved! was bulging and hard to close. Blairstown Airport had a lot of soggy stuff. (Since washed away in the floods from Hurricane Ivan.) I needed to put a TB in Cache for a Queen. I had to remove a few things to make room.

Other than that, and approaching 200 finds (counting Locationless caches), I seldom take or leave anything other than Travel Bugs.

Link to comment

We tend to try to trade evenly. Everything that we've taken out has already been placed in another cache or is waiting to be placed. We just really try to have fun with the whole game and not get to hung up about the value of items. If we have a TB to place, we might take out something extra if it won't fit. We love to find the TB's and always take them so that we can move them on to another place. We've placed several TB's of our own and it's kind of dissapointing to see them sitting in one place when they really "want" to travel. I guess we were hoping that they'd head south for the winter so they'd have a chance to keep moving (traveling). The whole idea of trading to gain things (to keep) never entered our minds until we read the threads containing the complaints about the kind of stuff left. Sure do hope we haven't been part of the dissapointment.

Link to comment
i have a cache where the finder must make a detailed inventory of the contents in oder to claim a find. it's kind of an experiment to see how the contents change over time, and whether people leave junk if they havve to own up to it. they have to take a picture, so there's no cheating.

That is completely brilliant. I love the idea! How is it working out?

so far it's working out well. there was a variety of interesting stuff in there to start with of varying value and so far it hadn't degraded.

 

locally our cachers tend to trade fairly though, so caches around here don're degrade terribly fast. sometimes people from away come and leave leenex for something good, but we point and laugh at them after they leave. besides, they probably leave tourist dollars here, so it's probably all right in the end.

Link to comment

I find this very interesting. It seems to me there are a couple of schools of thought on the issue.

 

First, and what is seems like most people follow, is that whatever you take, generally speaking ends up back in a cache (with the exception of a few minor, oh I need one of those items). What is kept isn't generally related to actual value of the item, but rather on the utility of the item to the person at the time. Generally it seems like that at least the people here who trade try to leave something of equal or greater value in the cache. Of course this creates the problem that as it isn't actually the monetary value of the item that makes it a good item to get, so finding something of equal value can be difficult.

At least for me, as I rarely actually trade, I do end up sometimes at a cache where there is something I want to take, and have to find something on me that I happen to have that I could trade for it (Canadian Tire Money and Stamps come to mind). Although these instances are rare for me, some might view it as trading down.

 

Then there is the practice that seems to be followed by those who cache with kids. For them the treasure hunt part is very important. After all, that is why they go, to find treasure. The trade is very important to them. Presumably they tend to trade equally. Or at least equal in their own eyes. Now again this could present a problem, what is equal for me, isn't necessarily equal for you (especially if I'm just little). Also it is very hard to tell a kid that they can't have the item they want, because they don't have anything *quite* good enough to trade for it. This probably also leads to some degredation. Presumably for them though, McCaching isn't really an issue. I mean the toys were designed with the kids in mind right?

 

Also are the people who see it as a kind of collection. You're collecting momentos of your caching experiences as you go. Be it with sig cards, or an actual trade item. This probably leads to no significant degredation, as you come prepared to trade, and what you're looking for probably doesn't fit with what other people are looking for. Of course the problem here though, is that McToys, are probably the last thing you want to see in a cache, same goes for the same old dollar store junk. You're looking for that unique item, that you can save, and remember where it came from, or even to take and remember when you grabbed it if you see it in another cache.

 

The final group, not represented in the forums here are geo-gremlins. They travel with the specific purpose of making themselves a pain in the arse to other cachers. They likely don't sign any logs, or feel any remorse over trading a candy wrapper for a geocoin (probably ends up in the trash anyways). These people are especially destructive though, as one of them in an area can leave a sour taste for the whole community. They think they are being sneaky and clever.

 

The only other thing I can think of that might make things a little worse in general are the elements. I remember reading a post somewhere about finding a half eaten sucker stuffed back in the wrapper in a cache. Makes me wonder, was it actually a half eaten sucker, or was it a half disolved sucker? I'd prefer to think of it as disolved, but who knows. The other things that may happen, is items get wet, and are removed without logging them. One of my caches recently happend to be underwater (wasn't meant to be [<_<]), the log was fine, but I good number of the trade items were destroyed, wasn't expecting it to be underwater, so I didn't have anything with me to restock, and just thinking about it now, I'm not sure if I actually logged that I'd done anything to it. Now if this wasn't my cache, and I came across it, I imagine I might guess that someone had plundered it.

 

That about sums it up for me. Unless there is a particular need for me to, I don't think I'll post to this thread again. I've gotten what I wanted out of it. I'll keep reading it of course (I did start it after all) and I thank you all for your input. I personally think that there is very little new information to add, other than perhaps with the travel bug issue. Perhaps it would be worth summarizing this in kind of an FAQ, as it seems that every time I've been in to the forums someone one or other is talking about it, but no one ever seems to come to any conclusions or resolutions about it, rather they tend to get very upset about the ignorant clods out there, and we all know where that road leads.

 

Thanx again.

Link to comment
Also are the people who see it as a kind of collection. You're collecting momentos of your caching experiences as you go. Be it with sig cards, or an actual trade item. This probably leads to no significant degredation, as you come prepared to trade, and what you're looking for probably doesn't fit with what other people are looking for. Of course the problem here though, is that McToys, are probably the last thing you want to see in a cache, same goes for the same old dollar store junk. You're looking for that unique item, that you can save, and remember where it came from, or even to take and remember when you grabbed it if you see it in another cache.

On this part I feel qualified to take exception.

I am the only person I know who still has almost every item that he's gotten from a cache. Everyone else puts the items in other caches, or doesn't trade. The only exception is with signature items.

When I look in the cache, I am not looking for something that I can use. I am not looking for something unique. I actually like McToys and dollar store stuff, although I'm more likely to grab a plastic dinosaur, party favor, or other useless toy. I don't expect to find things in a cache that are worth more than half a dollar. I don't even want to find higher priced items in a cache. When you start to raise the dollar value, that becomes more important than the game.

And I've often wondered, if every item in a cache was worth five or six dollars wouldn't that increase the number of caches that get stolen or vandalised? It would be a more tempting target than something that has a total value of five or six dollars.

Link to comment
First, and what is seems like most people follow..... i

 

You're talking about the forums. Here we all "trade up or trade even". But somebody is out there taking Mini Mag Lites and leaving expired Sanka coupons and apparently they don't visit the forums.

Yes, or they get to the cache and realize they forgot to bring stuff for trade *but they really want that gadjet there* so they rationalize that the trade is OK.

May the Lord smite me if I ever do so....

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 1
×
×
  • Create New...