Maine Geocaching and State Parks
:)As an original member of GeocacachingMaine.org I was wondering if you guys have any endorsements from the state parks and thus have begun any correspondence with them regarding policies on placing caches within state parks? I know when I was a member we were talking about working with all landowners and parks and such regarding this but haven't heard any talk recently of anything regarding this. I think working with them and being proactive can only help geocaching in the state.
I have enclosed a short video about one of the state parks involved with the Georgia State Parks geo challenge and thought you would enjoy what is going on here in Georgia.
Maine Geocaching and State Parks
Perhaps at the same time the board could develop an approach in reference to the essentially off limits attitude to geocaching of TNC (The Nature Conservancy) in negotiating a lttle more access to the lands they oversee. I don't know if it's a primarilly Southern Maine thing or statewide but they have a very negative attitude towards geocaching in general as referenced to me by their Land Steward, Daniel Grenier, in a request to place a cache on land they control. The Nature Conservancies mission is “to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people”. The last time I checked all of the Geocachers I’ve met are people.
Mr. Grenier stated in an email response to me “As a policy, The Nature Conservancy in Maine does not allow geocaching on our preserves.” a check of the TNC Web Site for Maine states “Geocaching – Placing of geocaches is generally discouraged because of the disturbance to areas off-trail.” This statement pretty much shows that Mr. Grenier has taken it on himself to enforce a policy that he has made up himself. The words “in Maine” in this statement made me curious if all TNC states are created equally so I checked on TNC policies in other states and immediately found that TNC in Maine is more or less anti geocaching state – probably due to Mr. Grenier’s aversion to Geocaching unlike states such as New York: They even offer geocaching introductory training. http://www.nature.org/wherewework/no...vents5227.html
and Virginia which publishes easy guidelines to placing caches on their lands: http://www.novago.org/forum/viewtopi...t=1765&start=0
Many TNC web sites of many other states provide easy to use guide lines and forms for Geocachers to establish caches on their properties. I personally sent three email requests to Mr. Grenier last year requesting to place caches on one of TNC properties and finally gave up on the quest after never receiving a single response.
I don't know if any of you realize it or not but TNC is rapidly signing up small woodlot owners to place their land under TNC control in York and Cumberland Counties and perhaps in even more areas statewide. When this land is placed under TNC control it immediately become off limits to geocaching. If you watch the new cache placements in New Hampshire ( a state with relatively little TNC land holdings) vs new cache placements in southern Maine you will see a very large number of placements in New Hampshire compared to a nearly stagnant number in Southern Maine over the past year. I believe a large number of cachers are just not placing caches in Maine due to a large amount of the land under TNC control - thus most of our newer caches are light skirt and guard rail hides. I urge the board to work on a negotiation with TNC to show them that geocaching is not as destructive to the land as Mr. Grenier believes it is. See my prior post dated 1-5-11 http://www.geocachingmaine.org/forum...ght=#post72322