View Full Version : Does anybody ask for permission anymore?

04-20-2011, 11:54 AM
In lite of recent posts and activity I have to ask this question again... Does anybody ask for permission before putting a cache out anymore?

I realize the recently archived caches at the campground in Eddington were just abandoned caches by the last owner of the property. The thing is he also placed numerous caches on obvious private property with out permission. I know because I was contacted by the cops asking what I was doing.

I work with a couple of different organizations and the first thing they ask is, aren't people supposed to ask for permission before putting a cache out when they find them. I tell them yes and there is a reminder in the Groundspeak operating procedures but there doesn't seem to be any rules.

There has been a lot of animosity raised recently because people are just assuming permission. One example is the state parks. Last year there was an effort to ban all caches at all state parks even earth caches. Certain officials got really ticked off because people were just putting caches out without any regard for the property or those entrusted to care for it.

So I have to ask again, does anybody get permission to put a cache out? I know there are some places that the question is moot.

If you don't own the land what gives people the idea they can just do as they please on someone else's property. Would anybody raise a stink if people just came along and placed a dumpster on your front lawn and posted on a site somewhere to stop by and use it anytime they see fit?

I asked this question to a new cacher to the area after looking for a cache he placed on someones front lawn. This cacher has a ton of finds and has been in the game for many years, caching in several different states. My point is he has experience. His answer was, it had never occurred to him to seek permission.

I for one am getting tired defending and trying to explain the actions of others in this game that I am involved with.

Rant over.

04-20-2011, 12:20 PM
I think this is a great topic. I agree and I will admit that I have assumed permission in certain areas before and I learned the hard way on a couple. I think one of the issues is that people don't know where to go to get permission for placing a cache. Who do you contact for permission to a state park? Who owns the property that has the snowmobile trail? The more we educate our players the better the game is for it!

04-20-2011, 04:32 PM
Most of our caches are on public access paper company lands (and no, I don't think I need to ask permission). We have no caches on private (individually owned) property, and would never think of placing one without permission. We have one cache on State property, and while we did not get permission from the state, the property is administered by the Old Canada Rod Scenic Byway Committee, and we did get permission from them. Years ago, when the first light-post caches in central Maine showed up (among the first was one in a Wendy's parking lot), everyone asked "did they get permission to place a cache there?" The answer was "no", and I don't think anyone ever worried about private property again. Once the door was opened...

A lot of people think that a highway right-of-way is public property. NOT!! It is PRIVATE property, and the state/community has the RIGHT to maintain a road. The land is still private property.

04-20-2011, 05:43 PM
I think we all are guilty of placing a cache without permission be it on state land or public land or even private land at one time or another. This is a great topic and think it will be a good fundamental lesson for everyone to heed the GC com guidelines and at least try to get permission in hiding caches unless of course you own the land. I have placed caches on town lands and state lands and public lands and got permission for all those instances but have also placed caches on public lands without permission as well. Sinced living here in Georgia I haven't place any caches yet but plan to in the near future,chirp.chirp....LOL at a cool place that I found out just the other day. It is on state land at a proposed state park and have gotten the proper permission from the park personnel to place it. I placed one cache at a local state park to me when I lived in SC and got permission from the park personnel as well. They encourage the placement of caches there as well. Here in Georgia they have a great Geo Challenge endorsed by the state parks themselves and placed caches in over 45 of Georgia's state parks and also will be unvailing a history challenge for their historics sites as well. The GGA has been working with them for years and they have been responsible for generating lots of money for the state parks in this time of great economic hardships for all. I think with the price of gas increasing as well the parks and historic sites will be getting more visitors as people tend to stay closer to home. Here is a link to the State Park challenge.

Sorry for the long rant but I think working with all the local agencies and getting permissions is a good start in putting geocaching on a good light .Be proactive and not reactive and things can only get better.

Remember the geocachers creed.......

04-20-2011, 05:44 PM
Does anybody ask for permission before putting a cache out anymore?

"Anymore" doesn't really come into the equation. Caches have been hidden since day one without permission, even without the assumed permission required by the guidelines. I'd bet at least 50-60% of all the archived 2001 caches were archived due to not having permission. I could identify over five just glancing at my GSAK list.

The difference is that as time goes on, people seem to be in more of a hurry to hide caches and more and more of those caches are near public areas and residences. Also, there are so many more cachers now and our presence is visible to a greater number of people.

Assumed permission is too vague in many cases. Too many people assume if they can stand at a given point, they have permission to hide a cache there. I don't think permission should ever be assumed at a place of business or at a private residence. That being said, all but one of my caches was placed with assumed permission, one was placed with a "ya, whatever...." permission. I'd be happy if they made everyone get permission. I think it would promote quality over quantity.

04-20-2011, 07:43 PM
Good discussion. Some of us older cachers on here, I am sure, can remember many occasions where permission was not obtained and it created issues. Easy to recount more occasions around my are than you can count on your fingers and toes. This isn't a perfect world but we could try to work hard to get better on obtaining permission before placing.

I have, whenever possible, tried to get permission. On the GRC in my town, I actually obtained permission from the Public Works Foreman who maintains the roads in question. For my public lands caches, in my town they are administered by a Conservation Commission which has granted permission. Definitely the best policy to get permission. Have I hidden some without permission - of course. Luck has been with me on them so far. Practice is that I am being much more diligent.

Ekidokai, perhaps you could meet with the new campground owners and retrieve the travel bugs from the old hotel. I am sure the TB owners would appreciate it.

04-21-2011, 07:44 AM
I have to say I agree with Mike . . . there were a few caches owned by the person he refers to that seemed to be in some places that were most definitely on private property and some seemed a bit sketchy in terms of getting permission . . . more over it seemed as though the cache owner didn't respond very well to issues with the caches when folks mentioned that they may be missing.

On the topic of permission . . . as others have said . . . I am not perfect and cannot say that 100% of my caches have permission (and I suspect that most DOT folks really will not care if a guardrail has a film canister tucked into it -- pretty sure they have picked up and dealt with many other much nastier things in their guardrails) . . . but what I try to do is get landowner permission when possible . . . it's just the right thing to do.

04-23-2011, 12:27 PM
The thing that kind of angers me about this subject is that the one time I went through the process of asking for permission to place a cache on city owned land, another cacher placed a cache there a day or two before I could get my cache there. I went through the process of talking to the head parks and recreation department, I gave him the coordinates of where I was going to hide it, showed him the ammo box that I was going to use and he had the info ready for the local police department (in case someone thought my cache was a bomb). As soon as I tried to place the cache, I noticed that someone set up a little campsite within twenty feet of my chosen hiding spot (this was not an area approved for camping, the guy was a vagrant). As I was trying to clear that matter up, I got an alert saying that someone place a cache practically in the same spot that I chose (I got a bunch that day, the caches for one of the Geo-Rallys were being published en mass).

I told that story when I to another local and well known cacher when I encountered him on an FTF hunt and basically his attitude was "Well, you acted too slow."

This is not to say that I won't seek permission again in the same situation. I just wanted to bring to light a situation that I encountered(which,I'm guessing is pretty rare). I probably should have pressed the matter further, as I was the one that got permission to place my cache there and pressed to have the other archived, but the situation with the camper wasn't cleared up, so I kind of gave up on that one.

04-23-2011, 02:42 PM
NativeMainer, not long after I started caching several of us suggested to TPTB that caches get "pre-approval", whereby you could submit your cache for review, you would receive your GC number and be able to be confident your cache would be submitted before hiding the actual cache. Back then the reasoning was so you'd know the GCID of the cache to include it on the cache/logbook, as well as not having to go pick up a container from a location that was not approved. I can see where this would benefit cache hiders in your situation as well. The idea was never accepted, but at least you can actually write up a cache page now ahead of time. I think it would still do some good, even if they gave you a time limit like 2 weeks to hide the cache after pre-approval.

I often wonder how many caches are out there now that someone placed but never picked up when it was not approved...

04-24-2011, 01:32 PM
I wonder how many individual permissions Ekidokai had for the Stud Mill Road caches..... have anything in writing, Mike?:cool:

04-24-2011, 06:19 PM
The general tone here is that admittedly, those of us who place caches don't always have what we call in my business "express landowner permission." Does this mean we're common My feeling is that the real test of cache placer integrity comes when the landowner or land steward expresses concern. When that happens, it's almost imperative to not be confrontational and remove and archive the cache. If there's anybody that frequents this site that can honestly say they have express permission from the landowner for every cache they placed, speak up....we'd love to hear from you!

I wonder how many individual permissions Ekidokai had for the Stud Mill Road caches..... have anything in writing, Mike?:cool:

04-24-2011, 11:51 PM
The general tone here is that admittedly, those of us who place caches don't always have what we call in my business "express landowner permission."

You know what, Dan? I had no idea there was a drive through lane where I could go to get such permission. Leave it to you to know about these things. :-)

04-25-2011, 05:38 AM
I think there are some cachers who have a limited number of hides that do have permission for all their hides. We've discussed it several times without resolution, a search for the word permission shows that. I even posted a poll a few years back. I think very few people place a cache without assuming they have a right to hide a cache wherever they do.

Perhaps a more interesting question is: If there were an attribute available to caches which was applied only to caches in which provable permission was given (and assuming there were plenty of those caches around), would you actively filter and seek only those caches? I think I might - If a cache owner takes the extra effort to get provable permission, I think there is a good probability that it would be a better quality cache. Not to mention, you would not feel so weird caching in view of residences and businesses.

298 of all caches placed in Maine have permission in their description. I like it when it is stated in the description.

04-25-2011, 06:08 AM
You know what, Dan? I had no idea there was a drive through lane where I could go to get such permission. Leave it to you to know about these things. :-)

Dan is the only one with "express" permission. They know it's the only way to get him to stop talking and move on.

04-25-2011, 06:09 AM
Hey, talk is cheap!

04-25-2011, 06:10 AM
298 of all caches placed in Maine have permission in their description. I like it when it is stated in the description.

Yep, just like Prego. It's in there. :)