View Full Version : What Can A Simple Shortcut Mean - AKA When You Don't Read The Cache Page What Happens



hollora
08-31-2008, 09:22 PM
After spending considerable time to foster relationships and build trust with a wildlife refuge, earlier this year, I obtained permission to place 2 Geocaches on the land of Hirundo Wildlife Refuge in Alton Maine. This is an expansive of over 2400 acres which includes woods, trails, fields, ponds, streams, and yes, even Maine's national bird the mosquitos and black flies:eek:. But in all that, this area is open through all seasons and we all know the bugs will eventually go.:)

Hirundo had not welcomed Geocaching with open arms. There was concern for folks not adhering to the rules. The caretakers were willing to listen, accept my presentation, believed in what I said (that most would adher to the rules as long as they were posted) and then they convenienced the Board of Directors to give us a chance. I was delighted when I was invited to place some caches.:cool:

We (meaning the caretakers and myself) decided to take a cautious approach. One on a trail near their home (on the grounds) and near the proper parking for all access to the trails and the other near the refuge's first sign on Rt. 43 (this being a swift park and grab). Both cache pages defined clearly the rules of the refuge and clearly stated there was one - and only one place to park (parking at Gate 2). Now to stop and grab the "gas saver" near the big sign on Rt. 43 is fine but it is not fine to park there and leave your car. In fact, there are NO PARKING signs and it states cars will be towed.

The third cache placed (and what may be last cache) was placed further in on their land and near a very pretty little pond. Yes, the coords are nearly straight in from the "Gas Saver" cache. It is just NOT OK to park here folks! Parking is at Gate 2 and there is a parking lot. Gate 1 is clearly marked NO PARKING! So why, would anyone park there for a 1/4 to 1/2 mile hike?:confused:

Now, I don't know why folks do it - maybe they think it won't take that long, or no one is watching - or something - but Lac D'OR (the 3rd cache placed) is being accessed by folks parking at Gate #1, stepping across the cable and walking down the road. In fact, the caretaker called me today about people parking at Gate #1:mad:.

This will seriously compromise the ability to put any more caches out here and/or we may loose these few. There are so many more lovely places to put caches ~ more futher in on trails ~ to be accessed by snowshoes or skis, ones to be accesses by kayak or canoe, one at several boat launch sites - and they have acreage with potential for events.:p

Why don't people read the cache pages?:( Or do they and just ignore what it says on them? I was very careful to post parking coordinates on the cache pages. They have very clearly marked NO PARKING signs at Gate #1.

So - will there be future caches at Hirundo Wildlife Refuge? Will there be kayak caches there? Will they welcome us this winter? I guess it all remains to be seen.

If people continue to take shortcuts - and they don't read the cache pages and follow the rules - No, we probably will loose the opportunity to enjoy putting more caches out on 2400 acres of gorgeous land in Alton Maine.:mad:

And to those who parked in the parking lot at Gate #2 - thank you!:D I am hopeful from a discussion here on this page, people will be more attentive - not only for Hirundo - but for all places where the cache page offers you clear directions of where to park. I know I will be paying more attention from now on.

Cache Maine
08-31-2008, 09:40 PM
It's unfortunate that some are choosing to park in the wrong spot. I've done the first two at Hirundo and it is an awesome place and hopefully we can continue to enjoy it. Hope everything works out.

dí76
08-31-2008, 10:14 PM
I can say with a heavey heart that some of the Geocachers will screw this up. I have seen it done time and again. Its only a matter of time before the land owner gets fed up. While many cachers are very conscious of what they are doing and when and how but I feel that it only takes a few to screw it up for the rest of us. It will be someone that thinks it will only take a minute or its 2 am whos gonna see me, The cache pages often say no access after dark or stay on trail or what ever and it never fails people still do it. I did the first 2 caches and have grown up in this area and its wonderful. I hope that everything works out but its happened before. The cache pages tell every last detail but those that will not read the cache pages or not care about the contents will be the ones to screw it up for everyone else. Good luck Hollora.

brdad
09-01-2008, 05:49 AM
There have been many times when I myself have not read the cache page or paid attention to parking coordinates when I have read it. It's natural to drive until you get close, and if you see a place that looks like a parking area ,you assume that is the right place. I don't think you can change that habit much in most cachers.

IMHO the best way to cure the highest percentage of that is to make a multi. Have the posted coordinates be the parking, and then have the final coordinates marked or hidden at that location.

You'll just wear yourself out trying to change individual cacher's habits. Instead, steer them to go where you want them to go.

kayakerinme
09-01-2008, 08:56 AM
It took me a while to figure out, but the older Palm versions of Cachemate do not have child waypoints. In the cache description you reference Gate #1 and Gate #2. As a Cachemate user, I would read that but still not know the coordinates in the field. Perhaps adding the coordinates to the cache description for both Gate #1 and Gate #2 will help.

Perhaps a laminated sign at the gate with a geocaching symbol and No Parking along with the correct parking coordinates could be placed on the cable?

chief613
09-01-2008, 08:58 AM
its just like any thing, the guy that leaves worm containers behind, the one who has to go off the trail into the big mud hole or short cut across the unmowed pasture or the person who runs across someones front yard instead of the 100yrds down the path to the cache. just one bad apple........., maybe there needs to be some consequences a game camera and a parking ticket:rolleyes: the word would get around

EvilHomer
09-01-2008, 09:49 AM
Maybe if there is this much confusion, land owner trepidation, and lack of following the rules, then maybe these caches should be removed. Personally I dont like caching in areas where I feel that A.) my every move could be construed as a "violation" of something, or B.) I am pissing off someone, or C.) there are rules for this and for that and ETC. Seems like all the fun is taken out of it. If the land owners are this jumpy then I would say abandon ship, because you know that sometime soon someone is going to do something to anger that land owner. These people don't sound like the forgiving types. In my Snowmobile Club dealings with landowners there is always a "LINE" that could be crossed if people don't stay on the marked trail, and usually that line is always crossed. We have lost some trails this way. I am glad that we have very patient and understanding landowners that understand the nature of snowsledding and that someone will be a jerk. However if the area is that sensitive and the land managers are that sensitive then maybe it is not a good idea to put caches out in these areas. Just my 2 cents worth :)

darterkitfox
09-01-2008, 09:55 AM
Well unfortunately all of us don't have those $3000 GPS and GSAK programs with so many included maps, it even downloads what the Mars rover is sending back to Earth. It usually takes me an hour to an hour and a half to write down all the information I need for a dozen caches. I quickly read through most of the info but can't retain every little note. Whenever there is parking coordinates, it is written down and noted just are the cache coordinates. I don't write down the hints either. Yesterday we went to Eliot to cache. We did one called Douglas Memorial woods. There were no parking coordinates listed. We drove twice around an approximate 5 mile block of woods trying to find where it was closest to get to the cache which was located out in the middle somewhere. The second time around, we noticed a very small sign hidden next to a grange building. I marked the spot on my GPS to suggest to the cache owner to put these in for parking. When I got home to log I reread the whole page and saw they had suggested parking across from the library which is where the trail started. Publishing a simple coordinate would have saved gas, time, and possible landowner irritation if we had finally bushwacked. Last weekend we did a cache near the Mt Washington base lodge. No parking coordinates listed. We drove up the road until we got next to the coordinates, parked, got out and looked for a path by walking up and down the road for aways, and then just headed in. We had to cross a very cold stream and then came to a path. The first sign we came to on the path said not to go into the woods on the side we just came from as they were reclaiming the vegetation. We followed the path back out after. Reading the cache description at home then said that the trail had started directly across from Mt Washington. Why not put in coordinates saying that? Except for Hollora, nobody on here tried to help me out with the problem I had with Geocaching.com taking away my ability to even get maps of the caches anymore. The best thing everyone can do is if you go to a cache and all the coordinates aren't listed, write the owner and suggest they do it. I did that to someone who placed one on Streaked mountain, a local, hiking spot. If you were from away, you would never find the trail up. It sure would be a long, dangerous hike if you bushwacked from the closest point from a road. Lots of times the people that put out local caches assume that everyone in the country or world even, know where the local cow path is on Dirtsville Road in Jerkwater, USA.

Sabby
09-01-2008, 10:03 AM
There have been many times when I myself have not read the cache page or paid attention to parking coordinates when I have read it. It's natural to drive until you get close, and if you see a place that looks like a parking area ,you assume that is the right place. I don't think you can change that habit much in most cachers.

IMHO the best way to cure the highest percentage of that is to make a multi. Have the posted coordinates be the parking, and then have the final coordinates marked or hidden at that location.

You'll just wear yourself out trying to change individual cacher's habits. Instead, steer them to go where you want them to go.


In the interest of good relations with the property owners it might be best to change the aspects of the cache than expect the finders to "follow the instructions". Too often searchers have to "grab and go" and cannot be bothered to walk a half mile when a quarter mile will do. I like the idea of the multi with the first part at or near the proper gate. This forces the parking to be OK and probably leads to a very nice walk in the woods.

As a suggestion. If they were my caches I wouls immediately archive the park and grab and make the other a multi. This I think would show the landowner that as a hider I was really concerned about their feelings and go a long was towards promoting good relations.

brdad
09-01-2008, 10:27 AM
Sometimes cachers intentionally leave parking coords out to make the hunt more interesting. And that is fine if it's in an area that is safe to do so. In more sensitive areas, you have to do all you can to make sure cachers will take the route intended.

Darterkitfox: Check your PMs regarding maps. I almost posted here, but was afraid of veering this topic too far.

EMSDanel
09-01-2008, 10:41 AM
These are all good comments. I just pulled up the Lac D'OR cache pages and see that the cache description is quite lengthy and describe all of the info that cachers need to know about this cache. The only possibility that I can add to these other comments is perhaps to make the very first paragraph read.... Attention: Do NOT park at Gate#1 for this cache! Doing so will risk our losing the ability to have caches here. Park only at Gate#2 Then go from there. Maybe having that right up front might help? I don't know. Losing this great property would be a shame after all of the work you have put into it.

fins2right
09-01-2008, 02:21 PM
It maybe inexperience as well. My Delorme GPSr will send me onto the interstate where there are no exits, or send me into the woods in places that are not intended. :confused: If I do not know the area, I will end up in the wrong spot. I'm not saying that there are not lazy people out there who will do anything to shorten a trip, but there are people out there, like me that are still learning and given the chance, will screw up every once in a while. I guess that you have to make it really clear when you write up the cache where to park and what to do. I just did a cache today (Down in the valley GC1330E) that took me two times to find the right parking spot. The first time I chose not to do the cache, because I knew that I was wrong. I find that the cachers I speak with are much more aware of private property, trash and other basic rules than the general populace. Maybe I'm a little more trusting (odd, considering my chosen vocation), but I don't see to many cachers intending to trespass or go where they shouldn't.

hollora
09-01-2008, 06:41 PM
There have been many times when I myself have not read the cache page or paid attention to parking coordinates when I have read it. It's natural to drive until you get close, and if you see a place that looks like a parking area ,you assume that is the right place. I don't think you can change that habit much in most cachers.

IMHO the best way to cure the highest percentage of that is to make a multi. Have the posted coordinates be the parking, and then have the final coordinates marked or hidden at that location.

You'll just wear yourself out trying to change individual cacher's habits. Instead, steer them to go where you want them to go.

A good point and I will gladly do it this way if someone will describe to me how do do it. Does this then become one of the ? caches? Or what. Guide me through it as a PM and hopefully I can change this one.

I don't know why, however, cachers do not pay attention to NO PARKING (which this area has) and NO TRESPASSING signs. Respectfully, that is not trying to change habits!

Medawisla
09-01-2008, 07:22 PM
A good point and I will gladly do it this way if someone will describe to me how do do it. Does this then become one of the ? caches? Or what. Guide me through it as a PM and hopefully I can cache this one.

I don't know why, however, cachers do not pay attention to NO PARKING (which this area has) and NO TRESPASSING signs. Respectfully, that is not trying to change habits!

Hopefully, re-working the type of cache can eliminate these issues. Another idea, though I know it's not what you want probably, is to remove the park n grab all together and see if that stops folks from parking there to get the other cache.

While cachers should obey no parking and no trespassing signs, some cachers think that they are exempt because the cache hider must have gotten permission to access the location by parking and trespassing. poor judgement, but i've seen it happen.

ltlindian
09-01-2008, 08:39 PM
I like the idea of the multi-cache. That should solve the problem. I'm sure that most people don't even realize that they are breaking rules but there will always be one or two that do know and just try to get away with something.

hollora
09-01-2008, 09:01 PM
I like the idea of the multi-cache. That should solve the problem. I'm sure that most people don't even realize that they are breaking rules but there will always be one or two that do know and just try to get away with something.

Well, I just got off the phone with the caretakers and a multi-cache is not the point here folks. Respect for a NO PARKING sign is! How can you say this is "most people don't realize" absolutely not ~ there are at least 2 signs clearly visable at the location.

MODERATOR - PLEASE CLOSE THIS THREAD! The discussion has brought suggestions and now serves no purpose!

hollora
09-01-2008, 09:53 PM
My last comment on this thread - if you think shooting 2400 acres or potential geoacacing land with permission, out of the geocaching arena is ok - humm. Caching on land with the permission is the goal isn't it????

I for one VALUE landowner/trust/refuge and landowners permsision to cache along with any of their caveat or restrictions. You have seriously misunderstood my post.

For this and other reasons I am asking the moderator to close this tread!

I also am very unhappy about the accusations made against the landmanagers and custodians which are unfounded and untrue! There have been some very serious allegations, without contacting me for all the details.

If you have any further questions, comments or concerns about the caches placed at Hirundo, by me - please PM or email me directly.

Thank you!

Again - to the moderator - PLEASE CLOSE THIS THREAD!


Maybe if there is this much confusion, land owner trepidation, and lack of following the rules, then maybe these caches should be removed. Personally I dont like caching in areas where I feel that A.) my every move could be construed as a "violation" of something, or B.) I am pissing off someone, or C.) there are rules for this and for that and ETC. Seems like all the fun is taken out of it. If the land owners are this jumpy then I would say abandon ship, because you know that sometime soon someone is going to do something to anger that land owner. These people don't sound like the forgiving types. In my Snowmobile Club dealings with landowners there is always a "LINE" that could be crossed if people don't stay on the marked trail, and usually that line is always crossed. We have lost some trails this way. I am glad that we have very patient and understanding landowners that understand the nature of snowsledding and that someone will be a jerk. However if the area is that sensitive and the land managers are that sensitive then maybe it is not a good idea to put caches out in these areas. Just my 2 cents worth :)

firefighterjake
09-02-2008, 07:45 AM
There have been many times when I myself have not read the cache page or paid attention to parking coordinates when I have read it. It's natural to drive until you get close, and if you see a place that looks like a parking area ,you assume that is the right place. I don't think you can change that habit much in most cachers.

IMHO the best way to cure the highest percentage of that is to make a multi. Have the posted coordinates be the parking, and then have the final coordinates marked or hidden at that location.

You'll just wear yourself out trying to change individual cacher's habits. Instead, steer them to go where you want them to go.

Ditto . . . I've noticed that by going paper-less for some reason I sometimes don't catch every detail (i.e. last week there was a cache that asked for folks only to write in their initials . . . I wrote out FFJake). While I usually pick up on these things, sometimes I miss them.

As Brdad mentioned having the posted coords be the parking has always worked well for me and I've thought it's a good idea (even though at some caches I've thought "What the heck . . . the cache can't be right here can it?") -- this seems to be a good way of moving folks to the appropriate parking when this could be missed in the description.

firefighterjake
09-02-2008, 07:51 AM
These are all good comments. I just pulled up the Lac D'OR cache pages and see that the cache description is quite lengthy and describe all of the info that cachers need to know about this cache. The only possibility that I can add to these other comments is perhaps to make the very first paragraph read.... Attention: Do NOT park at Gate#1 for this cache! Doing so will risk our losing the ability to have caches here. Park only at Gate#2 Then go from there. Maybe having that right up front might help? I don't know. Losing this great property would be a shame after all of the work you have put into it.

This would be a good idea . . . especially for folks who may tend to scan cache descriptions. If memory serves me correctly I did something similar to this on an interstate rest area cache . . . right up front I asked folks to keep away from a certain area . . . and then for good measure included it in the clue since I figured a lot of folks read the clues.

firefighterjake
09-02-2008, 07:54 AM
It maybe inexperience as well. My Delorme GPSr will send me onto the interstate where there are no exits, or send me into the woods in places that are not intended. :confused: If I do not know the area, I will end up in the wrong spot. I'm not saying that there are not lazy people out there who will do anything to shorten a trip, but there are people out there, like me that are still learning and given the chance, will screw up every once in a while. I guess that you have to make it really clear when you write up the cache where to park and what to do. I just did a cache today (Down in the valley GC1330E) that took me two times to find the right parking spot. The first time I chose not to do the cache, because I knew that I was wrong. I find that the cachers I speak with are much more aware of private property, trash and other basic rules than the general populace. Maybe I'm a little more trusting (odd, considering my chosen vocation), but I don't see to many cachers intending to trespass or go where they shouldn't.

Sometimes it may be inexperience . . . although I can't use that as an excuse -- maybe I'm just plain dumb. ;):D I also concur with you . . . I think as a rule many geocachers are a little more aware of tresspassing and following the rules of the various cache hides and landowners.

EvilHomer
09-02-2008, 11:35 AM
I also am very unhappy about the accusations made against the landmanagers and custodians which are unfounded and untrue! There have been some very serious allegations, without contacting me for all the details.


I wasnt making accusations or allegations about anyone. I simply observed that if people are making the land managers angry by not following the rules then maybe this area is TOO sensitive for geocaching. If I misunderstood something then I apologize, but that is what I took away from the postings, and what was said. My point is if the landowners/caretakers are unhappy/upset then maybe this is not a good place for geocaching.

EMSDanel
09-02-2008, 02:20 PM
Hmmmmm..... I have to disagree. If prison guards don't like riots we don't do away with prisons, we clamp down on the offenders. This is a gorgeous tract of land that has opened its doors to geocaching. We need to clamp down on the offenders, not the geocaching sites. I have to be honest here....I don't, for one second, believe this is a case of not reading the cache descriptions or any misunderstandings. I truly believe this is a case of: look at the map, see the shortest route, and go there. That we can fix.

Haffy
09-02-2008, 06:43 PM
All I can say from "down here" is for everyone to read their cache pages thoroughly and to adhere to what is written. Please keep this thread going. There are many new cachers that frequent this site and to just have the moderator close this thread would create more confusion than it is worth. Those "newbies" need all the help that they can get.

team teebow
09-02-2008, 07:08 PM
It is a NO PARKING sign or signs, how hard is that to understand? Whether it is a Geocacher or not it says NO PARKING. Why does that need to be on the cache page????? SO in this case you don't have to read the cache page READ THE SIGNS

Am I missing something here? Seems simple to me.

hollora
09-02-2008, 07:51 PM
It is a NO PARKING sign or signs, how hard is that to understand? Whether it is a Geocacher or not it says NO PARKING. Why does that need to be on the cache page????? SO in this case you don't have to read the cache page READ THE SIGNS

Am I missing something here? Seems simple to me.

No - missing nothing. Thank you for your comment.

dubord207
09-02-2008, 09:36 PM
This is like the "posted or not posted" debate the some of the deer hunting folks argue every year. Property rights are not to be abridged by anybody, including our group. Deer hunters will trespass saying the posted signs weren't posted close enough. Geo cachers, especially lazy geocachers will take the shortcuts. Hollora has made a very important point: If you have a doubt about whether your route to a cache is appropriate, don't take it. Go back and read the entire description.

And you don't need high end and expensive caching equipment to do this without causing hate and discontent among landowners, just a bit of preparation. Some of the gear saves time, some requires a little time on the computer before striking out.

As an attorney, I spend a lot of time taking on people who intentionallly and sometimes unintentionally trespass on other folk's property. I hope that we all use the kind of restraint and respect for other's property that avoids not only this type of landowner issue but that rather nasty tone some of the posts on this topic have taken. I agree with Hollora, the point has been made and let's move on!

hollora
09-02-2008, 09:46 PM
Thank you Dubord and yes, it is time for this to be pinned or closed. Enough discussion and debate. If this had been posted on the Geocaching.com forums a request by the OP to close it would be respected and done in a very timely and rapid fashion.

So for those reading here - the summary is - read the cache page thoroughly before going on a hunt (don't just grab coords and go for it); if there are parking coordinates use them; be aware of your surroundings and obey signage - like NO PARKING; and I was the original Poster (OP) so I can say again - Moderator - please close or pin this thread.

Anything that should be or is educational to a new cacher has already been said, hashed, rehashed and doesn't need to be debated or chewed up again. Thank you to all who have posted!

EvilHomer
09-03-2008, 10:50 AM
Hmmmmm..... I have to disagree. If prison guards don't like riots we don't do away with prisons, we clamp down on the offenders.

This analogy doesnt work. Apples and Oranges. :)