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A Character Of Our Own, An Update


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This is a continuation of my series where I look at the general statistical behavior of fellow geocachers in this part of the world. Eighteen months ago, I reviewed the characteristics of hiding caches where we had 83 sites. (http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=37231&hl=).

With 123 caches to date, I now offer an update of that analysis to see how we evolved over time.


Pic 1: shows the number of caches hidden versus total score:



In my last analysis, we had two well defined peaks at total scores 4 & 7 in addition to a third one at low rating of 3. The general behavior today is not very much different than it was 18 months ago. We still have the peak in the middle but it is now better defined with two adjacent highs at 4 & 4.5. The peak at 7 is still there (some like that challenging edge) but the numbers on the high side of the scale (above score of 6) have gone down from 23.5% to 17% caches over the last 18 months. We are also introducing a little more caches on the low side of the scale (less than 4) .. where we have 21% caches compared to 18.5% few months ago.


Pic 2: same as Pic1 but including old data (pink)



I concluded before that we were seeing a change towards lower end of the scale which means we were paying attention to 2WD and families. This trend is even clearer now as the main peak tries to establish itself in the middle. The trend is probably following a normal (Gaussian) distribution.


Here are the numbers:


17% of the caches score a total of 6.5 points or more (compared to 23.5% before)

62% of the caches score total points between 4 & 6 (compared to 58% before)

21% of the caches score total points equal or less than 3.5 (compared to 18.5%)


Pic 2: shows the number of caches for each of the categories (Difficulty & terrain)



If we look at the two ratings individually, we get the same picture we had before, i.e., we have all types of terrain (square) that are distributed somewhat evenly among the caches hidden. This is good since this means we like to try all types of terrain. The difficulty rating (diamond) is still concentrated at the lower end of the scale (peaks at 2) and decreases as expected when we go down the scale. The rating of 2 for difficulty stands out and looks to be a special number we like to associate with when judging difficulty of caches hidden in this land. It constitutes 48% of all caches hidden.


Pic 3



I included a cross-plot between the two main attributes before hoping to see a correlation at the 45 degree line. In an ideal world, I would associate high rating of terrain with lower rating of difficulty (hard to reach area with easy to find treasure) or low rating of terrain with high rating of difficulty (easy to reach area but hard to find treasure). This would correspond to quadrants 2 & 3 on the picture above.

Quadrant 1 would correspond to beginner's caches while quadrant 4 is for the extreme geocachers.


Pic 4



The world however, is not that perfect, and so we have the scatter shown above. The population of pairs fills mostly quadrant 1 & 3 (beginners to mediocre) with some pairs in the 4th harsh quadrant. There are very few pairs in quadrant 2 (high difficulty and low terrain ratings). Is it that we don't consider raising the difficulty of the cache when the terrain is very accessible?


Pic 5



Finally, I show here an update of the time history of our caches. As I concluded before, we seem to go in some kind of hibernation around the summer months and the activity picks up during the winter months.


Before closing, below are some notes:

Although we have some good variation on the number of cache sites, we can't say the same about the setters. Almost half of the caches are hidden by one team (a lot of effort by M&M) and about 74% of the caches are hidden by 3 setters. We may be looking at the hiding characteristics of those three individuals rather than a large aggregate of teams.


This update reflects very much the geocacher hiding characteristics already observed in my last analysis. There are no major changes and it only confirms the previous findings with the extra data collected. We are not seeing new changes because we are not seeing new comers to the game.


Most of the cache sites are concentrated around Riyadh area reflecting the whereabouts of the setters.


This review of our geocaching characteristics would be more interesting if it can be compared to other parts of the world.


Happy geocaching.

Edited by mhfares
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Wow!! Nice stats...

I have no idea how my two main areas compare, but I did find this interesting:

Where I am now, four of the first five multis I found involved writing coordinates on something. Two of them were not even subtle. Just highly visible graffiti in a public location. In the area I came from, I never saw this at all.


The fifth multi was well hidden, but the first stage contained nothing but the coords to a final stage which had been stolen a year previously and never replaced!

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B) Wow! You need to get out Geocaching more often...


Seriously...very interesting statistical review on the Geocaches in KSA. Wish I knew how many Geocachers are active in the Kingdom today. Prior to the May 2003 and again the April/May/June 2004 terrorist attacks I suspect the number of active Geocachers was significantly higher than today. I hope as the security situation matures we will see increasing numbers of folks back out on the trails.


As the number of Geocachers increases so will the experience level and so will the number of cache placers. The group of folks I go out searching with has gathered the necessary material and is ready to place a number of caches as soon as we discover interesting spots in which to hide a cache. Will start carrying this prepared cache with us next time we are out in hopes of locating a worthy location.


Thanks for the topic and thanks for starting the photo contest. Will add my photos this weekend.


B) cheers...saber6


"Team Recon in Force"

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:D Great stats... once again. Thank you very much. As you might guess, we are pleased to the see totals dropping a little to provide broader appeal though we have yet to encourage more families to set off in pursuit. Interestingly Quadrant 3 looks a little sparse probably because setters think that diffcult travel should be rewarded by a bit of a hunt.


We are standing here with our faces screwed up wondering whether we will see combination stats for indivdual setters!


M of M&Ms

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