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superc_53
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When I see pictures of caches disguised as pinecones and placed on or under a pine tree full of pinecones or similar nonsense I wonder if the hider is being fair. Likewise those who place the cache 12 feet off the ground in a tree. Perhaps such a cacher has lost sight of the point of the game.

 

Is geocaching an exercise in GPS usage for the family including the kids, or is it supposed to be a mental challange between the hider and the seeker?

 

Should a cache in wooded area be hidden so as to be invisible from four feet away? What is the point of that if the area is not often frequented by humans?

 

If this is desirable, then why not simply bury the cache 10 feet down and don't tell them that. Perhaps cast it inside a block of cement? Wouldn't that be fun? Imagine the joy for such a hider if the cache is never found. Almost as good as posting a cache that doesn't exist.

 

Please use some common sense and remember it is intended that someone someday find the cache.

Edited by superc_53
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I think it depends on how the cache is rated. If the cache is rated difficulty 1, I'd expect to be able to walk up to it, stick my hand into the obvious spot, and come up with a cache. If the cache is rated difficulty 5, I'd expect it to be very well camouflaged.

Keep in mind, that not all cachers are the same, and the variation in caches should reflect that. There will always be those who for whom an easy find is appropriate. There will also be those looking for a more challenging hunt. I have no problem with either one, as long as the cache rating reflects the true difficulty of finding the cache.

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both! i love a mental challenge once i get to the cache spot. i don't appreciate a micro film canister in a forest. that makes no sense to me. a pine cone is a challange and makes me think outside of the box. i see by your stats that you have found 1 cache so far. find some more. there is a kick i get when i find one that other seasoned cachers can't.

 

if you don't want the challenge stick with the 1/1's.

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If the hider gives a high difficulty rating - then sneaky/unusual is ok - the hider has disclosed that it should be difficult to find.

 

This is the point of the terain/difficulty ratings.

 

Some cachers enjoy the challenge of not seeing the cache from 10 feet away.

 

review the ratings and hunt ones that meet your interest.

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If every cache was "park. walk 300ft. Spot cache within 30 seconds." I would have quit years ago. I happen to appreciate the challenge high terrain and high dificulty caches present. While 1/1's have their place, 800 of them in a row would sure be boring. According to your profile you've only found 1 cache. Trust me on this, after a while the ones that now have you searching for hours you will learn to spot in minutes.

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If every cache was "park. walk 300ft. Spot cache within 30 seconds." I would have quit years ago. I happen to appreciate the challenge high terrain and high dificulty caches present. While 1/1's have their place, 800 of them in a row would sure be boring. According to your profile you've only found 1 cache. Trust me on this, after a while the ones that now have you searching for hours you will learn to spot in minutes.

What Mopar said! Those easy ones are a dime a dozen and it wouldnt take long at all before it got pretty boring. Read the description and the difficulty ratings then pick the ones you like best, but dont criticize anyone for hiding a challenging cache!

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...Is geocaching an exercise in GPS usage for the family including the kids, or is it supposed to be a mental challange between the hider and the seeker? ...

Yes. There is room for both in the game. If you only like one variety it's up to you to excercise a little discression and prepair for your cache trip by picking and choosing which caches fit your own criteria.

 

Ever seen a pinecone in a birtch forest? Sometimes something out of place though natural is a good hide, and yet not as hard as you would have though. Sometimes though you are right, it's a micro in a field of rocks and not a lot of fun.

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When I see pictures of caches disguised as pine-cones and placed on or under a pine tree full of pine-cones or similar nonsense I wonder if the hider is being fair.

Life doesn't have to be fair.

On the other hand, doing a needle-in-a-haystack hide where you have to turn over every rock in a rock field, of search every pine-cone when there are hundreds, seems more of a task than a game.

 

Likewise those who place the cache 12 feet off the ground in a tree. Perhaps such a cacher has lost sight of the point of the game.

Actually, I liked that one.

 

Is geocaching an exercise in GPS usage for the family including the kids, or is it supposed to be a mental challenge between the hider and the seeker?

Both. I don't take the family to difficulty 3.5 and up.

 

Should a cache in wooded area be hidden so as to be invisible from four feet away?

Absolutely

 

What is the point of that if the area is not often frequented by humans?

Someone will eventually be by and muggle it.

 

If this is desirable, then why not simply bury the cache 10 feet down and don't tell them that. Perhaps cast it inside a block of cement? Wouldn't that be fun? Imagine the joy for such a hider if the cache is never found. Almost as good as posting a cache that doesn't exist.

Well, it sounds like you had a bad day. I've searched for 2 caches that were merely a matter of turning over every rock in a rock-pile, and another pill-bottle micro under 10" of leaves in another rock pile in the forest. I didn't like any of those, but I don't let them get to me.

 

Perhaps reading previous logs and the difficulty rating would give you a clue as to weather you would enjoy hunting a particular cache or not.

Edited by DustyJacket
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I have a cache in mind that will be a multi cache and will require both intense searching for a very well hidden urban micro and several more small hides in high angle enviroments......or very steep places. The cache will reqire quite a bit of finese and cunning.....at least I hope it will. ;)

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The best part of caching is the different dynamics of every cache.

 

I live with a non-cacher and don't have a regular cache partner. Because of that, I like urban micros so I can grab a quick one when I go out shopping. I don't like them all the time.

 

Honestly, my favorite kinds are the straightforeward that eventually take you to a full sized container, but I like mixing it up, too.

 

If you don't like the hard ones, don't do 'em.

I have friends who have hidden a hollowed out acorn in a tree. Betcha you don't like that cache either.

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I've just returned from a cache where the difficulty was a 3 and the terrain 1 1/2. IMO, it should have been terrain of 2 1/2-4. I didn't find it either. <.<

Well, if it's rated right, you should be prepared to spend several hours just searching for a 3 difficulty hide.

*** Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon.

 

A 1.5 star terrain should be probably be under 2 miles hike on fairly level, well maintained trails. A 4 star terrain like you suggested it might be would be:

**** Experienced outdoor enthusiasts only. (Terrain is probably off-trail. Will have one or more of the following: very heavy overgrowth, very steep elevation (requiring use of hands), or more than a 10 mile hike. May require an overnight stay.)

Was the terrain really that extreme?

Edited by Mopar
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Dear superc53, welcome to the wonderful world of geocaching. I see from your profile that you are pretty new to this so I'll be especially kind and gentle.

One of the best aspects of this game/sport/hobby/addiction is the ability of everyone to play at soooo many different levels. There are caches hidden in all sorts of manners to suit seekers of all types and minds and abilities.

The important thing is that you, and everyone else is having FUN in the great outdoors. Please come back after several (hundred) more finds and tell us if you still feel the same way. Happy Trails.

 

PS the same goes for hiding. I have a few traditional hides, but now I get some real grins from reading my fellow players DNF logs, or even better the "found it after a serious search. Wow, where did you get this idea for a hide? " logs.

Edited by wimseyguy
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I've just returned from a cache where the difficulty was a 3 and the terrain 1 1/2. IMO, it should have been terrain of 2 1/2-4. I didn't find it either. <.<

Well, if it's rated right, you should be prepared to spend several hours just searching for a 3 difficulty hide.

*** Challenging. An experienced cache hunter will find this challenging, and it could take up a good portion of an afternoon.

 

A 1.5 star terrain should be probably be under 2 miles hike on fairly level, well maintained trails. A 4 star terrain like you suggested it might be would be:

**** Experienced outdoor enthusiasts only. (Terrain is probably off-trail. Will have one or more of the following: very heavy overgrowth, very steep elevation (requiring use of hands), or more than a 10 mile hike. May require an overnight stay.)

Was the terrain really that extreme?

I found the rating system you copied and pasted from, and I rated the cache IMHO. The difficulty it gave was 3, so that was right. The terrain, however, should be 2 1/2-3, whereas the cache was actually rated by the owner as a 1 1/2.

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Easy caches are fun. Challenging caches are fun. I like some of each. Instant gratification from the easy ones. A mental and/or physical challenge from the more difficult ones. I do enjoy a long hike in the park sometimes. There are some that I've gone back to saying "I will solve this". There are some that I still have to go back to again. Sometimes I give up. Oh, well. If they were all park and grabs, I would have given up this sport a long time ago.

Like anything else in life, what you get rom it is what you are willing to put into it.

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I want to try my hand at EVERY TYPE of hide. I've hidden the thoughtful and generous hides. I wanted to hide some evil ones that would make people give up, or marvel at the simplicity when they find it. It's all a matter of perspective.

 

I think that the title of this hide says it all. The cache is a bit over valued on terrain for summer, but in winter it's a 5/5 because you'd need a snowmobile to get there.

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I like it when the owner hides the cache from the muggles, but not from someone with a cacher's eye. Unless the cache has a high difficulty rating - - so that you know what you are getting into - - I don't want to spend an hour circling the same 50 feet of ground.

 

A number of the caches in my area are in wooded areas, so it is difficult to get really good signal near the cache. As a result, the posted coordinates for the cache always seem different from what my GPS reads when I find it. But that is ok. For me getting within 30 to 40 feet of the cache and then using an experienced eye to find the correct spot is fun.

 

I did a cache where the clue was "leave no stone unturned." I took a reading, got within 3 feet of ground zero and started turning over the rocks that made up a "dry creek" drainage path. I then moved out in a circle 10 feet, then 20 feet, turning over large rocks as I went. After a while I became concerned that I was doing much more than just leaving foot prints behind through my searching. At some point I thought to myself, if I owned the cache I would have looked for a spot in that old stone wall about 50 feet away. And eventually I decided to take a look at the wall. I came back to the wall two times before noticing a bit of Tupperware peaking out from within the wall. I was delighted to make the find. ;) My point is that getting a good GPS signal can make a level 2 hide into a level 3 (other posters have also noted problems with getting a signal in the area and I believe the DNF rate is about 25%). I didn’t mind that the coordinates seemed to be off or even that the clue led me astray because the cache was in a place that, while not obvious. had a cacher’s logic to it. Of course I was tempted to post something in my log such as, "just before giving up I moved to the east and wall I'll be darned if I did not find it."

 

If I have to do a needle in a haystack search, I would want that pile of pinecones to be at ground zero.

 

[Edited to correct a font error].

Edited by Baxter-MD
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I am sorry, I did not mean to yell.

 

I work with someone who has a vision disability, so I have gotten into the habit of enlarging fonts and typing in bold for e-mails and the like as an accomodation. I changed the font out of habit.

No apology needed. I was just being a bit obnoxious.....

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Is geocaching an exercise in GPS usage for the family including the kids, or is it supposed to be a mental challange between the hider and the seeker?

 

yep.

 

while it is an activity that is family firendly, it's not expressly for children. not all caches will be appropriate for children, and it's up to you and your kids to know the difference.

 

i know people with kids who enjoy both easy caches meant for kids and serious challenges. they know which kids to bring to which caches, mostly. they do their homework.

 

one of the great things about the sport is that it provides an opportunity for children to play on the same playing field with adults, and as equals. a kid with outdoor skills or good puzzle skills or good vision can beat a grownup on a challenging cache and that means a lot to them.

 

so no, it's not an exercise FOR the family. it's one you can take the family on a lot of the time. your family might not enjoy every kind of cache.

 

and no, it's not about the challenge between hider and seeker. unless the hider wants it to be and the seeker takes up the challenge.

 

reading the description (we hope the rating is accurate) will go a long way toward making good choices for you and your family. as you get more experienced, you'll be able to tell more accurately and quickly.

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If every cache was a Tupperware container stuck under a pile of rocks right where I expect it to be, I'd have quit caching long ago.

 

What I love about geocaching is the broad variety of experiences that can be offered: spectacular hikes, hilariously in-your-face hides, grueling puzzles, deviously crafted containers.

 

Eventually you reach a point where you think you've seen every possible type of hide. Fake pinecone, fake sprinkler, fake dog poo, film can disguised to look like ivy, mint tin disguised to look like a brick. The ones that truly wow me now are the ones that make me really, truly work for them. I don't get the privilege of being able to do long hikes these days, so the search for spectacularly devious hides is what keeps me going.

 

To each his own. Fortunately, there's plenty to go around.

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I'm with most of the people here. A variety of difficulty makes the sport more fun, as long as the cache is rated properly. But there's the rub. There are far too many caches that are mis-rated. I've spent an hour looking for a 1 star difficulty cache and found 3 star difficulty caches in seconds. I've crossed streams, hopped over logs and slogged through swamps to find caches rated 1 star for terrain and found three star terrain caches within a few feet of a nicely maintained path.

 

Its possible that the OP encountered one of these, in which case I can see his beef.

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Don't pay too much attention to the number of finds posted. I have been doing this sort of stuff more or less since before PCs. Worked with surveyors back when I had hair. Try hunting for an iron pin or a wooden stake allegedly placed 10 years ago. Yes, I logged on here and actually reported a find. I didn't sign the logbook in the cache. I rarely bother. Since I was reporting it, I left a card with the cat's picture. Normally I take nothing and leave nothing. To me it's about land nav, not puzzles. I suspect the cache that inspired my post above has been muggled (decades ago we would call it stolen), as I note another has recorded they didn't find it either. I will wait a few posts and see. Perhaps it will return. Or perhaps it was just too well hidden. Not a fun way to spend a rainy day in any case.

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To me it's about land nav, not puzzles.

Noted. That's how you play YOUR game. Keep in mind that the hider is playing a game of their own and they don't owe you anything except to have placed the cache within the guidelines. (Assuming the cache isn't missing.)

 

Not a fun way to spend a rainy day in any case.

 

Everyone should accept responsibility for their own choices. No one forced you to look for a cache in the rain.

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When I see pictures of caches disguised as pinecones and placed on or under a pine tree full of pinecones or similar nonsense I wonder if the hider is being fair. Likewise those who place the cache 12 feet off the ground in a tree. Perhaps such a cacher has lost sight of the point of the game.

 

Is geocaching an exercise in GPS usage for the family including the kids, or is it supposed to be a mental challange between the hider and the seeker?

 

Should a cache in wooded area be hidden so as to be invisible from four feet away? What is the point of that if the area is not often frequented by humans?

 

If this is desirable, then why not simply bury the cache 10 feet down and don't tell them that. Perhaps cast it inside a block of cement? Wouldn't that be fun? Imagine the joy for such a hider if the cache is never found. Almost as good as posting a cache that doesn't exist.

 

Please use some common sense and remember it is intended that someone someday find the cache.

Like these?

Little Nasty

Little Nasty 2

Little Nasty 3

Little Nasty 4

 

While very tough to find, these caches provided a lot of fun to those searching for them, even though frustrating at times. We'd team up to find them, or meet other folks out there to help them find it. Grandpa and Grandma spent almost 80 hours for each of Little Nasty and Little Nasty 4. Probably less for the other two Little Nasty caches.

 

The ratings on the caches are/were very good, so looking at a 5-star difficulty, if you're not up for it, is not a good idea.

 

It's easy to weed these out of your search based on difficulty rating. You will not likely find any of these such caches listed at 1 or 2 star which is probably the type of cache you favor (as do a lot of people!) Lots of people like the tough ones for the challenge, everybody has their preferences.

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