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Thread: Wheelchair Accessible

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Eustis, Maine
    Posts
    378

    Default Wheelchair Accessible

    I have a question. Whenever I put out a new cache and it's wheelchair accessible, I rate the terrain as a 1. To me that means "wheelchair accessible". But then I get an e-mail back saying something like "If this cache is really wheelchair accessible please add the wheelchair icon to the attributes".

    But if you look at the attributes, they are grouped under headings: Permissions (like are dogs allowed); Special equipment (like will you need a boat to get to the cache); Conditions (wading, climbing etc.); Hazards (ticks, snakes, etc.) and last but not least Facilities. And the wheelchair accessible is listed under facilities. Now to me, but maybe to nobody else, that means are there facilities near the cache and are they wheelchair accessible, not that the cache is. It would make more sense to me if the wheelchair icon was under Conditions.....

    So if someone is in a wheelchair and I place a cache in the woods and there are no facilities within say 100 miles, do I use the icon? Or is that misleading the person? If they are looking for caches they can find wouldn't they just look for terrain "1" ratings??
    "There is nothing- absolutely nothing- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats". Wind In the Willows

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bangor, ME
    Posts
    6,059

    Default

    I think it's just a borderline bad category to be listed in. Another flaw in our language.

    Using your example, would say the "Stroller accessible" attribute implies stroller accessible rest rooms? I don't think most people would.

    When you add the wheelchair attribute to your cache and someone holds their mouse over it, no category is given - It simply states "Wheelchair Accessible".
    DNFTT! DNFTT! DNFTT!

    "The funniest thing about this particular signature is that by the time you realize it doesn't say anything it's to late to stop reading it..."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Hampden, ME
    Posts
    891

    Default

    I would consider the icon as it implies....accessible by wheelchair. In my mind a 1 terrain would indicate it's wheelchair accessible and a 1.5 with icon showing a cache that is wheelchair accessible but with caution (incline/decline, obstacles, etc). Both you and brdad make valid points. Some cache placers like Hollora (sorry to pick on you LoisAnn) clearly indicate what to expect should it be a borderline accessible cache. I think more of us should and given this discussion will alter the description for mine.
    And for those of us who minimize the importance of micros/nanos, GRC/LPC and urban caches, this allows many to enjoy this activitie who might otherwise not be able to.
    Everyone has the right to be an idiot at times. Just don't abuse the privilege.

  4. #4

    Default Might suggest

    I would also like to recognize Hollora on this matter as she has updated all if not almost all of her cache pages with the rating that links to www.handicaching.com. I'd like to think this assists with those who have restrictions that require a little more of a rating clarity. When it comes to hiding an LPC, GRC, or PNG, think about what it would be like if you were sitting in a chair. You might be hiding the cache 5 feet from pavement but is there a curbing or anything that might make it difficult for someone with a chair? Good thread...
    There is a very fine line between 'hobby' and ‘mental illness'. ---Dave Barry

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    ME
    Posts
    3,517

    Default

    Thanks MOTU - I do like the Handicaching site a lot. No site is perfect but the combination of a few - helps people to make an informed decision. I welcome people to email me if they have accessiblity questions about my caches.

    My early years in nursing were working with people who were in wheelchairs. I know what a trip to Cadillac used to be like - must say with awareness things have changed a lot (curb cuts, restrooms and much more). Hopefully we can get more handicapped folks caching.

    kayakingloon's question was a good one. I have always used that icon based on could you get the cache from a chair vs. restroom facilities.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Eustis, Maine
    Posts
    378

    Default Thanks

    Okay, I'll put the wheelchair icon on although there are no facilities.
    "There is nothing- absolutely nothing- half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats". Wind In the Willows

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bangor, ME
    Posts
    6,059

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pm28570 View Post
    ...And for those of us who minimize the importance of micros/nanos, GRC/LPC and urban caches, this allows many to enjoy this activitie who might otherwise not be able to.
    I don't want to start a battle here with anyone, I am just making a point, and it is related to Wheelchair caching. Being in a wheelchair does not validate the existence of any container or hiding style. It only validates the existence of proper terrain. Many people in a wheelchair could log an ammo can 30 feet in a tree, as long as there is a rope to lower it and the acess to the base of the tree is of proper terrain. Many GRCs and LPCs are just over curbs, inaccessible to many wheelchair bound cachers, no matter whether there was a micro there or a 5 gallon bucket. And nanos - I have done very few of them where I didn't have to have my neck wrapped around a beam 3 times or hanging upside down off a bridge in order to find it.

    Having said that, I will agree it would be hard to hang an ammo can 30 feet in a tree on Main Street in Bangor without causing problems, so that means the smaller caches are more suitable for urban settings, it does not mean the smaller caches are more suitable for wheelchair cachers. There are many wheelchair accessible spots which are not 5 feet from parking. Many parks and trails offer areas that are accessible, many of which could handle other size caches.

    I am all for hiding caches for those that can't hike or even walk. But that does not mean they don't deserve some variety in their hunts just like the rest of us. It would be nice if someone hid that ammo can 30 feet in a tree which was wheelchair accessible!

    And, I will also applaud hollora for her dedication to this cause.
    DNFTT! DNFTT! DNFTT!

    "The funniest thing about this particular signature is that by the time you realize it doesn't say anything it's to late to stop reading it..."

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Orlando, Florida
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I agree that I think just having the icon would imply that the cache is accessible and nothing else.

    I think it's great that people are so considerate about this. I want to take my parents caching when we go visit them this winter and knowing which caches are accessible will be extremely valuable to us. My dad has a very bad knee (he has needed knee replacement surgery for the past 2 years but is too scared) and walking distances or on uneven ground is difficult for him. It will be nice being able to plan a day where we know we are visiting caches that will work out for him.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Auburn
    Posts
    2,112

    Default

    The icon and the 1 rating are intended to be used by handicapped cacher to aid in searching for caches.

    The simplest way to search for caches is to go to the geocaching.com home page enter your zip code and search. If the second rating is a 1, the cacher can look at that cache and see if it is of interest and decide if it is within their capability.

    Premium members can search using icons. The handicapped icon lets handicapped cachers can search for caches they might want to find. Again, cachers, handicapped or not decide which caches are of interest.

    If a cache has a 1 terrain rating, it should also have the handicapped icon. If you think handicapped cachers should consider seeking your cache, use the 1 rating and handicapped accessible icon. Otherwise, the terrain rating should be greater than 1.
    The farmer gave permission to place the cache in the field, but the bull charges.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    So. China Maine
    Posts
    1,588

    Default Great Thread!

    This issue has played large on my mind and temperment since I started caching. I have a friend who fell out a tree stand about 15 years ago. He was a c-6, c-7 burst fracture and is confined to a wheelchair. He's been caching for about a year now after I intnroduced it to him. He doesn't post, just shares his logs with me and one other cacher...wants to remain ingognito as he puts it.

    I have made many comments to cache placers who call the terrain a "1" when I envision I clearly couldn't get the cache if I was in a chair. Many cache placers don't even respond, one deleted my find log after I pointed out a wheelchair person couldn't possibly get over the 20 odd blown down trees leading to the cache.

    So I say it's very simple: Could YOU get to the cache in a wheelchair? If so call it a "1" and add the wheelchair attribute...period. If it's questionable, mention that in your description..."Might be tough for somebody confined to a wheelchair." If you can't imagine a person in a chair getting to the cache, please, please, please, make it a 1.5. It's the only right thing to do.
    Sometimes the road less traveled is less traveled for a reason.

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