You've heard me say, over and over, that
we are ALL ambassadors of our sport.
Every single one of us has to put a
friendly and law abiding face on the game -- especially for the non-cachers we
I read a log from one of the cerango
series caches where a local told Glen and Iris that some cachers had gotten
"smart with him" at 3 a.m. when he inquired what the heck they were
Now, it's likely both sides made that
o-dark-thirty meeting into an argument... I wasn't there. But someone getting
smart with me at 3 a.m. isn't going to endear me to your sport. I do believe
Glenn & Iris smoothed those ruffled feathers.
The Head Alien series out in
requests that you walk the 'head. But many people drive it. So many, we were
able to follow tracks in the dark (ok, nearly full moon) to each of the 51
caches back in October. On the one hand, "it's just desert" (t hough
there is no 'just' about that ecosystem), on the other, the land being defaced
doesn't belong to us, AND, several of the caches have been destroyed by people
running over them. Yes.
Anyway, while I'm in the
Silver State .
Many of you know about the ET series of over 1000 caches out in
Apparently some cachers had been
practicing unsafe caching -- pulling out in front of trucks, not pulling
completely off the road, and, according to one of the Cache Owners (who
WERE negotiating a safe solution to NDoT's issues) "the final
straw was a close call with a cacher and a snow plow." [I'm sure no favors
were done by people replacing the caches as quickly as NDot was taking them
down, either -- if I were NDoT, this would be 'blowing me off' on my own turf.
Compromise is two-way.] Anyway, when push came to shove, Nevada DOT actually
filed a law suit through the NV General Atty's office to have the run
deactivated. No, let' s work something out, but Court. The series is ARCHIVED.
Never mind that we were GREAT for local
businesses. Never mind a lot of people are out a lot of $$ from
booked travel plans -- though, yes, there are other caches in
Never mind that 90% of the folks coming
through were law abiding and even had the blessings of local law enforcement.
What is troublesome -- and yet to be
determined -- is how the short-thinking actions of a few may affect roadside
caching throughout Nevada 's
highway system. And if it goes down against GC there, you know it won't
But that's speculation. The archiving may
be the end of it. Though it doesn't help to have NDoT feeling antagonistic
The thing is, the actions of a few
cachers who got carried away from safe roadside sense has wrecked, at the very
least, the series for everyone.
We should be reminded that we are ALL
Cache placement should take into
consideration access (How many caches have you hopped out to get on a blind
curve? I've passed on placing caches in more than one GREAT spot because
there's no safe place to pull off. It may be quiet at 2 am, most cachers will
be by during high-traffic of midday. Telling cachers to be muggle savvy but
putting it in plain sight of a business' security cameras and/or access... um.
Well.), locals, and what unintented consequenses (casual trails, enthusiastic
cachers taking GZ apart (I've seen historical rock walls get trashed)),
permission (for example, many parks and national forests require specific
permits; if a park has signage, "Stay on Trail," placing the cache 40
feet off the trail is, well, rude at the least, and asking to get people, and
caching in general in a world of trouble)... Warnings can be placed on
cache pages -- but all most folk s have are a GC number and coordinates. So don't
rely on them reading it. [Heck, most don't read 'em EVER. On the
Sunburned Zebra I cache page we discuss the fact that the barriers are trashed
-- but 9 of 10 logs mention the fact as if we didn't know. Someone even posted
a maintenance log, though there it is, in writing: cache is still there. Makes
a cache owner wonder why they write a cache page... but I digress.]
And CACHERS need to take the same care:
following safe road behavior, not tossing GZ, being kind to the locals (as much
fun as it is to play super spy, with adults, an honest answer of what we're up
to will get the best response -- being sneaky just makes people defensive),
being kind to ground zeros...
We're all sinners. Me, too.
But being geocachers does not give us any
special rights of access. And we'll have all our rights stripped if we abuse
It's up to every one of us to play nice,
to be on guest behavior, and not to spook or piss off our hosts, the
locals and local authorities who we share the space with.
Be SAFE out there -- and courteous, too.
BarbJ "the ET trail thing makes
me really sad" Tygress
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