Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Before you place, make sure where nearby caches are

The 528 ft. rule
This evening I had to post a note to the owner of a cache who placed it too close to an existing cache. The geocaching.com guidelines say that new caches should be at least 528 ft. (0.1 mile) from existing caches. If it's not, the owner should let the reviewer know a pretty darn good reason why it should be allowed. For example, if one cache were on top of a bluff and the other at the bottom of the bluff, it's possible that they could be allowed to be closer than .1 mile apart.

A geocacher once asked me how much leeway I allow on the 528 ft. rule. My answer was, unless there are special circumstances that the cache owner can describe, I stick to 528 ft. Why? First of all, I don't make the rules. Second, if caches were allowed to be closer, there's a chance geocachers could find the wrong one if it's a difficult hide. Besides, if geocaching is about bringing people to new locations, what's the point of bringing them to 3 different spots in the same park that are only 200 feet apart? Also, if you are the owner of the existing cache, wouldn't you like to think that you have some "claim" over that location, as long as you maintain the cache? Otherwise, furture geocachers could hijack your coordinates and, conceivably, place theirs right next to yours.


welch said...

If the reasoning is to keep seekers from finding the wrong cache, and 'protecting' someones location. Does letterboxing and other geocaching sites should be consulted?
I was under the impression that gc.com does not require the reviwers check other sites, likely a minor risk I know. However the reasoning would seem to apply to more than just gc.com caches. Is there offical answer to this?

IowaAdmin said...

If there's an official answer, I'm not aware of it. You're right that we don't check other sites because we have no control over other geocaching site placements. You can imagine the complexity of trying to check a potentially unlimited number of other geocaching sites for each new listing on geocachingl.com.

drtmn said...

Does the 528' rule apply to multi's and mystery caches?

IowaAdmin said...

Yes, it does. Individual waypoints of multis need to be at least 528' from each other and from other caches. Finals for mystery caches also need the proper spacing.