Hiding your very first Geocache
by: Larry Sullivan (localbiz)
Once you have gotten some cache finds under your belt, it might be time to hide some geocaches. I would not recommend hiding any caches until you have found a good variation of caches, so that you understand the game pretty well and understand the time and responsibility requirements.
Hiding caches is not as easy as you might think. There are a number of factors to take into account. Remember you are placing geocaches for others to find, so you want to make sure everything is good to go before publishing the new cache. Before I go any further, you need to make sure you read and understand Groundspeak’s rules on hiding caches.
So what do you need to take into account when hiding a cache?
Location: “location is everything” they say. As I drive around, I am always looking for new places to hide a cache. When evaluating a location, I ask myself:
• Where would/could geocachers park?
• Is this a high muggle area?
• Are there too many houses/businesses around?
• Where are the nearest caches in the area?
• How much bushwhacking or stealth would be required?
• What unique features or reasons do I have to put a cache hear?
Permission: Getting permission is very important. If the cache location is on private property, then it is critical to make sure the owner knows what geocaching involves, where the cache is located, and if there are any special instructions. There are tons of stories out there about geocachers getting into trouble because the property owner knew nothing about geocaching.
Cache type: There are a variety of sizes of caches. Pick a cache that will fit well into your environment-one you can hide and hopefully find. The possibilities are almost endless. Be creative, it does not always have to be an ammo can.
Coordinates:You need to make sure the coordinates are fairly accurate. It has been amazing to see how many caches there are
out there with coordinates that are drastically off. It is very frustrating to the geocacher who has to figure out where the cache is vs. where it should be. Take multiple readings, approach from different angles, use multiple gps devices are all options.
Swag/prizes: Should you provide first to find prizes? It is really up to you but I usually will provide a prize for caches that take some effort or the geocacher needs to work to find it.
Maintenance: Remember if you hide a cache, you are responsible for it. Sounds basic but it is amazing how many cache owners seem to go MIA after they hide a cache. Periodically check on your cache, respond in a timely manner when a geocacher has a question or thinks the cache needs some help. If you can’t maintain the cache or have decided to stop geocaching, allow a fellow geocacher to take it over or archive the listing.
I hope these points are helpful. Overall hiding caches is just as fun as finding them, so I encourage everyone to try it out and help the hobby of geocaching grow.
img credit: nio_nl