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Fellow Geocacher Dies While Hunting For Cach


rickbrk
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This is in the news headline section of the website for the SA Fox affiliate.

A local man dies while on a scavenger hunt. Search teams found the 63-year old's body this morning in Eisenhaur Park. Police say, the man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet. He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body. Police say, it appears the man fell into a revine.

That's awful. My thoughts and prayers go to relatives, friends, and area cachers.

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The cacher just started, only 3 finds. This was the bonus cache of 2 of the other caches he found. His geocaching name was Smokey Stover

 

The hider is a bit of a mystery since he has not logged in Since Feb 17, 2004 and only has the 3 caches this guy was attempting. He mentions that this cache idea was taken from a cache in Houston by all his finds under the owner account are in San Antonio over a 3 month period last fall/winter. The cache owner also mentioned that he planned to move to San Antonio in the Spring of 2004. The best I can tell that never happend or he never got back into geocaching after he moved.

 

The local discussion is taking place at:

SATX geocachers Yahoo Group

Edited by WAAS-up
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The cacher just started, only 3 finds. This was the bonus cache of 2 of the other caches he found. His geocaching name was Smokey Stover

 

The hider is a bit of a mystery since he has not logged in Since Feb 17, 2004 and only has the 3 caches this guy was attempting. He mentions that this cache idea was taken from a cache in Houston by all his finds under the owner account are in San Antonio over a 3 month period last fall/winter. The cache owner also mentioned that he planned to move to San Antonio in the Spring of 2004. The best I can tell that never happend or he never got back into geocaching after he moved.

 

The local discussion is taking place at:

SATX geocachers Yahoo Group

Bummer. A 10 day geocaching career. :unsure:

 

Thanks for doing the foot work.

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Here's what the Express says:

 

Scavenger Hunt Turns Deadly

LAST UPDATE: 12/12/2004 10:27:08 PM

Posted By: Carly Miller

 

A man out on a scavenger hunt, ends up dying while searching for the treasure.

 

Police say it looks like 64-year-old James Max Chamberlain fell off a small cliff at Eisenhauer Park, off Northwest Military Highway.

 

Chamberlain went on the scavenger hunt Saturday morning using a hi-tech GPS system he had just bought.

 

His wife called police Saturday night after he didn't come home.

 

Chamberlain's body was found Sunday morning after an all-night search in the park.

 

"From the evidence, just leads us to believe right now, that he was walking along the trails, got to his destination, and he either slipped and fell down the ravine, or was trying to walk back up the little incline and slipped back," said Lieutenant Rosie Vasquez.

 

Chamberlain's death appears to be an accident.

 

He found the scavenger hunt online and was alone when he died.

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In a way, it's good that the hider of the cache is missing, or not contactable. Hopefully, it will stay that way. It certainly would not be the hider's fault, and the terriain rating was set high - it's best that there is no guilt felt by this person.

 

Condolences to family and friends.

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Its moments like this when I know I should make more of an effort to find someone to go caching with. Most of the caches I find are about 2 star or so terrain ratings. Its the one with the higher ratings I'd like to have a partner with just in case.

Absolutely. I usually have to cache by myself, but I don't have a moment's hesitation about turning back if I have any question about being able to negotiate the terrain safely. I turned back from Door Bluff Headlands, for example, as soon as I realized I would have to head down and then back up some steep bluffs.

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I know i'am new to this, but from what the news said this morning, they act like it was the hiders wrong doing. They showed this site on there and said they would look into it. We all know how the media can and most of the time turn things around. I hope they don't do this with us. I love this sport and my family loves it as well. I know they can't take away this site, or fine anybody. But they can try to scare, or have us banned from hiding caches in state parks, or city parks.

 

Sorry, just scared, they took away our rivers, and over 1,000,000 acers of riding land. Just don't want to lose this too.

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It might not be a bad idea to get someone to remove his log from the log book, before the media gets their hands on it.

I don't see why that would matter. Besides, as I understand it, he was looking for the 3rd stage in a multi. Apparently he found 2 statges days earlier and was heading back from the 3rd stage when he fell (assuming he fell).

 

Very sad. I feel for his family.

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This is from the Geocaching Safety thread. Please forgive me for reposting it here.

 

The importance of these safety issues can not be stressed enough!

 

There is ample information on this forum or on Today's Cacher for everyone to review or use to teach others. There is no excuse for being unprepared!

 

My prayers go out to James Chamberlain's family.

 

My personal request:

If you need information on safety or just have questions, please post them in the forums or email me personally. No one should have to die while geocaching! Ever!

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It might not be a bad idea to get someone to remove his log from the log book, before the media gets their hands on it.

This is, in fact, a very bad idea.

I'm only suggesting this for a short time and then it would be returned to the cache, until the media frenzy dies down. Many local "investigative" news teams are working with the principle of "if it bleeds, it leads". I'd hate to see the log be used to as a part of a story that slams the Geocacher involved and Geocaching community.

Edited by magellan315
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I would not imagine that there would be anything he would say in the logbook that would create such a problem. I read his online logs and it looks like he was having fun. I would hope that no one would go out and tear my logs out of logbooks if I slipped and fell while finding a cache.

 

That is a beautiful park. I enjoyed finding a few caches there.

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It might not be a bad idea to get someone to remove his log from the log book, before the media gets their hands on it.

This is, in fact, a very bad idea.

I'm only suggesting this for a short time and then it would be returned to the cache, until the media frenzy dies down. Many local "investigative" news teams are working with the principle of "if it bleeds, it leads". I'd hate to see the log be used to as a part of a story that slams the Geocacher involved and Geocaching community.

What and find page after page of "Found it with the wife and kids. Had a wonderful time. Thanks for bringing me to this beautiful area. Took Matchbox car and left a flashlight"?

 

That's going to make us look really bad.

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A local man dies while on a scavenger hunt. Search teams found the 63-year old's body this morning in Eisenhaur Park. Police say, the man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet. He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body. Police say, it appears the man fell into a revine.

I find this quoted line interesting. Are we being led to think that the police can trace GPS units (Since they can not for the record)?

 

Very sad situation. I hope the cache hider never finds out.

:grin:

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My condolences to Mr. Chamberlain's family. I hope they can take some comfort in knowing that he was doing something that he enjoyed at the time of his accident.

 

I have learned a lesson from this experience. My husband and I usually cache together, but we have a tendency to not tell anyone else where we plan to go for the day-- mostly so the teenagers left at home won't know exactly how much time they have to not get into trouble. After reading these notes, I realize that we should leave behind an itinerary of some sort, in the event that we would run into some kind of trouble that affected both of us (Like a freak winter storm caching us unaware).

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A local man dies while on a scavenger hunt. Search teams found the 63-year old's body this morning in Eisenhaur Park. Police say, the man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet. He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body. Police say, it appears the man fell into a revine.

I find this quoted line interesting. Are we being led to think that the police can trace GPS units (Since they can not for the record)?

 

Very sad situation. I hope the cache hider never finds out.

:grin:

Either the reporter was confused about what a GPS does or the cacher might have had a Personal Locator Beacon(PLB). When you turn it on it sends out a signal telling the people who operate these that you are in trouble, need help, and your location.

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Very sad news for the cacher and his family/friends.:grin:

 

But I hope my wife doesn't find this story. Or I could be on "lockdown".:grin:

My wife knows each time when I go out where I'll be and when to expect a call from me. She also has a map of the intended hike with the trail marked along with the cache page for details of the hunt.

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Update: The local radio news reported this hour that prelimary reports are pointing to a heart attack as the cause of death. It will probably be awhile before that shows up on the web and for a link to be posted.

 

Considering the man's age, plus we do not know his fitness/health level, it does sound like it could be partially due to "natural causes". I realize that is no consolation, but this could be a good reminder for us all. Anyone seeking hides at higher terrain levels should know if they are physically up to the attempt. By the way.... why is it many men are so resistant to going to the doctor? I have been trying to get my hubby (he is 53) in for a physical for SEVERAL years... I finally called and made the appointment for him! (It is next week... my Christmas present!) I go in for an annual exam every year... why are men so resistant to that idea? (Sorry if that is off topic... but I think it is a good reminder to those out caching to be aware of their physical capabilities.)

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A local man dies while on a scavenger hunt. Search teams found the 63-year old's body this morning in Eisenhaur Park. Police say, the man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet. He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body. Police say, it appears the man fell into a revine.

I find this quoted line interesting. Are we being led to think that the police can trace GPS units (Since they can not for the record)?

 

Very sad situation. I hope the cache hider never finds out.

:grin:

Either the reporter was confused about what a GPS does or the cacher might have had a Personal Locator Beacon(PLB). When you turn it on it sends out a signal telling the people who operate these that you are in trouble, need help, and your location.

The reporter was confused, his wife supplied the police the coordinates to the cache.

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A local man dies while on a scavenger hunt. Search teams found the 63-year old's body this morning in Eisenhaur Park. Police say, the man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet. He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body. Police say, it appears the man fell into a revine.

I find this quoted line interesting. Are we being led to think that the police can trace GPS units (Since they can not for the record)?

I took note of that line also.

 

I can only think that the reporter meant to indicate that the "man heard about the scavenger hunt on the internet" was what led to his body. Implying that he'd told somebody where he was going.

 

Taking this even a step further. Perhaps he told his wife he was going geocaching. Probably she didn't know exactly where he was headed, but since she may have known which geocache he was hunting for, the police could have used a GPS to help find the man.

 

Jamie

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hmmm Wonder if he was 'Chasing the Arrow' on his gpsr. and not watching the trail or his footing?

 

There have been more than a few up in my neck of the woods that could happen.

 

Though most of my caches are partnered up with Dorothy McCaw.

 

So.. Cache with a partner as often as ya can.

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He even bought a GPS tracking device. That's what led police to his body.

I find this quoted line interesting. Are we being led to think that the police can trace GPS units (Since they can not for the record)?

As others have said, I thought it meant someone knew where he was going. I always leave someone the coordinates of the caches I'm going to when they're in more remote areas.

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It certainly would not be the hider's fault, and the terriain rating was set high - it's best that there is no guilt felt by this person.

 

Had it been MY cache, I would have no more remorse other than the natural fact that it was MY cache. I wouldn't feel responsible for his death.

 

I have a few caches that someone could easily get killed doing. I tend to over value my terrain and difficulty for that reason. I posted a thread about it earlier this year.

 

His death is very sad. I bet he would have been a great addition to our Texas cachin' family. Some of our best caches are placed by retired folks with time and money to do the job right. :grin:

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reading his logs, it was obvious that he was enjoying the new hobby - his last words were "this is fun"

My condolences and prayers for his family.

i saw that. also eery is the following log. he had found "multi-micro cache #1" and "multi-micro cache #2".... in the log for #2 he wrote:

 

It was getting late afternoon and I didn't want to fight rush hour traffic and the low sun so I'll wait until later to chase after #3.

 

i do feel for his family, we all do. he died doing something he enjoyed, hopefully he didn't suffer.

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Unknown to me when I posted the "Geocaching Safety" topic James Max Chamberlain had died while pursuing our hobby. What happened to him may have been a health issue instead of ignoring outdoors safety. (Yet, Caching with a partner may have saved him.)

 

I am taking what I view as safety hints from this topic and posting them over there.

 

I expect that 90% of the people here have a history in the outdoors and don't need a lot of training.

 

After Christmas, I expect that to no longer be true. Sale prices on new GPSrs are everywhere. EBAY has dozens of used ones, especially from members here that want to upgrade to the latest and greatest. :blink:

 

The first place they will go is to the internet and Google "GPS". IF they are lucky they will find Groundspeak and the safety discussion.

 

Our new friends needs our help. They don't know what they don't know.

 

Come post your safety suggestions over in "Geocaching Safety" topic. (<---Click )

Edited by rasntrumpet
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