"When you go to hide a cache, think of the reason you are bringing people to that spot.
If the only reason is for the cache, then find a better spot."
.... Briansnat


Saturday, August 22, 2015

The Problem With Favorites

One third of all the finders of this cache gave it a favorite nod. It's very creative and very novel, but it doesn't meet the guidelines. If even a few of the finders take this buried cache idea back home and copy it in their area, that's a few more potential unhappy land managers. With logs like this it is bound to happen.

"Wow fricking awesome container had my hand on it several times before I decided to just check. You make the membership worth having for premium caches tftc."

"Omg nice hide."

"I'm in town from Boston for the holidays and finally had some time to go for a walk down the towpath this morning. What an awesome container."

Geocaches are never buried, neither partially nor completely. If one has to dig or create a hole in the ground when placing or finding a geocache, it is not allowed.
Geocaching.com Cache Listing Guidelines

It takes a profoundly creative person to make a super creative container that also meets the guidelines. Most of us aren't that creative. It is the reason why the best hiders are so special.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Goodbye Opie, We Never Knew You

In case you missed it, Garmin has pulled the plug on Opencaching.com. The "free" geocaching website which came alive in December 2010 expired quietly without a whimper. I signed up for the site to protect my player names, but never saw a reason to take a look for any of the few exclusive caches listed on the site.

To me, one of the biggest plus points of Geocaching.com is the Volunteer Reviewers who work to protect land managers as a big part of the review process. Opencaching.com was never able to provide that service. It tried to crowd-source the review process, but it irritated me to see the site admins ignore caches listed without permits in areas like Medina Parks and Geauga Park Disrict. They lost me early when one of their first seed hides placed for the launch of the site was placed in Medina Parks. It told me there was no concern for land managers. Like Munzees, it was a site that effectively supported caches placed in restricted areas with no effective infrastructure to prevent improper placements. I wonder what will happen to all the geo-litter.

The site had its supporters, but they were few. We were surprised in 2011 to see the North Country Trail GeoTrail NCTGT) placed with containers covered with Opencaching stickers and stocked with Opencaching pins (the image above).

Hopefully Garmin can get back to making a decent gps again. It was during their foray into geocaching website management that my trash Oregon broke. I gave in and switched to Magellan and haven't looked back. I stood by and sadly watched hundreds of dollars spent on a Garmin 62S that never worked properly. Ali finally gave up and lost a City Navigator license to that piece of trash. Maybe the company can concentrate on saving what's left of the hand-held market.

I won't miss Opencaching and Opie the Squirrel, but I do think competition makes all products better. Geocaching.com made some nice improvements during the Opencaching challenge.