Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

For all your general chit chat, caching or not.

Should Power Trails be allowed in Australia?

Poll ended at 31 March 10 11:45 pm

Yes, definitely. The game is poorer without them.
12
18%
Yes, but they should be worthy caches in their own right.
13
20%
Maybe, but it depends on how well they are put together.
18
27%
No, I not a fan of this idea. It's not about the numbers.
13
20%
No way, never. Power Trails will ruin geocaching.
10
15%
 
Total votes: 66

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Mr Emu
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Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Mr Emu » 15 March 10 11:45 pm

Troll alert... at the end :evil:

I have just listened to the latest episode of the Podcacher podcast (#260) where they discussed the "controversial topic" of "Power Trails", and specifically the 600+ cache Power Trail recently placed in California/Nevada, USA. There's a bit of discussion about it both on Podcacher's forum's http://bit.ly/c3aOXN and the groundspeak forum http://bit.ly/ajijbb & http://bit.ly/aJpm2w.

I remember the "old" guidelines of 2007 were specific about Power Trails:
Cache Listing Requirements/Guidelines
Guidelines last updated February 21, 2007
(Courtesy of Wayback Machine Internet archive: http://bit.ly/9CrFll)
"... On the same note, don't go cache crazy and hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. If you want to create a series of caches (sometimes called a “Power Trail”), the reviewer may require you to create a multi-cache, if the waypoints are close together. A series of caches that are generally intended to be found as a group are good candidates for submission as a single multicache."

However the current guidelines have specifically toned this down:

Cache Listing Requirements / Guidelines
Guidelines last updated February 17, 2010.

... Please don't hide a cache every 600 feet just because you can. The ultimate goals of the saturation guideline are to encourage you to seek out new places to hide caches rather than putting them in areas where caches already exist and to limit the number of caches hidden in a particular area, especially by the same hider. Groundspeak may further restrict cache listings in areas where cache saturation becomes a concern."

i.e. it now appears that Power Trails are no longer banned.



(Okay, here's the Troll bit... you were warned :wink:)

I'm still a bit miffed with the recent ban on caching in National Parks in Victoria, and have some unfulfilled geocache-placing energy to spare.

What do you think of the idea creating a 1000-cache power trail in Australia?

Here's my rationale: We have some long, straight, desolate roads in Australia that could be ideal for a world caches-in-a-day record. I'm thinking motorcycle ride-up, with hinge-covered Rite-in-the-rain logs on trees, posts, whatever - every 161 metres or so. If you have a pre-dated stamp, it will take <1 minute per cache. That's 1000 caches in less that 17 hours, and a road trip of only 161 km would be required. So it would be not too tiring, safe, and environmentally friendly too! From an efficiency point of view, if I publish the caches as a sock puppet (a.k.a "Team", as it's known in the USA), I could also "find" them as I place them, even if I can't get the speed record.

The only problem is that I might need two reviewers to autopublish them (I believe the limit is 500 per week), but hey - that's what "Team Australia" is all about :) Thanks for your help!

This could change geocaching in Australia as we know it!

Your comments please...

Mr Emu dons flame-proof suit... :-#

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Damo. » 16 March 10 12:14 am

:lol: =D>
Part of me loves the idea if only the fact that it is taking to the extreme the aspect of caching that I feel brings nothing to the game ie the placing of caches with no effort or thought but to allow someone else a "find".

And you know that there would be a 1001 cache power trail elsewhere within days.....

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mtrax
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by mtrax » 16 March 10 8:00 am

600 caches thats crazy how did the reviewer approve them.. I think its reasonable for a dozen or more but this is psycho .

http://www.geocaching.com/map/default.a ... -115.76065

just a note this will make a mockery of the 24hr cache runs...

Having said this it would be worth it just to go there for the weekend ..

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La Kedi
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by La Kedi » 16 March 10 8:17 am

Wouldn't be my cuppa tea, but nor would be it be any skin off my nose if someone chose to do this and others wanted to participate. It might even lead to some geocaching tourism as competitive international cachers wanting to overtake their country's leading cacher fly over for a visit. And I do know some cachers who are pretty much all about the numbers. It's a different niche, is all.

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Camstal » 16 March 10 8:23 am

I just had a look at the link that mtrax provided and that many caches is just ridiculous. Geocaching should be about the location and challenge....not just number runs.

Camstal

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Happy Chappies
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Happy Chappies » 16 March 10 9:27 am

As always, each to their own I guess...

Personally I can't see the point... Seems like a chore, stopping the bike/car every 161 metres down a long boring stretch of road to sign an identical log. But if the numbers are that important to you I can't see how it diminishes geocaching.... Apart from cluttering up the map! :shock:

To me, Power Trails would be interesting when there's a 'point' to it... Where each stop on a trail means something, shows you something. A bit like those national park information signs you get on some walks... Give me a reason to stop and I'll do it :D

The existing Nullarbor Links (http://www.nullarborlinks.com/) is a great inspiration though - If a powertrail existed like that I'd be more inclined.

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Yurt
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Yurt » 16 March 10 11:07 am

Good topic - I was going to ask about this a while back when I found one in South Carolina or Florida or somewhere down there (EDIT - I found it on the GC website not in person!). Was wondering if similar existed here. I think this was one that was on a walking trail and there were about 170 caches but all micros. At first it was intriguing as it might take you somewhere new but I can't imagine worse than caching becoming a routine chore, pull up, find it (easily which takes 90% of the fun out), sign with pointless comment 'TFTC', move on, repeat ad nauseam.

I agree if there was something to it like a multi where you picked up clues along the way or learned something about the area or even something as esoteric as a story that has nothing to do with the area, it could be good.

The numbers shouldn't come into it. While it's nice to give the tally a big boost I'd think that in the future it will be looked upon like runs against Zimbabwe or Bangladesh, they don't really count.

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blossom*
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by blossom* » 16 March 10 12:45 pm

Personally, I think it's a stupid idea. 8-[

I'm all for a run that has a lot of caches along it IF each spot is of interest. If you took a long boring drive and put a cache quite often along it at worthwhile points , I think that's a legitimate power trail (note little letters, not capitals). But to just put a log book evey 161m for no real reason seems totally useless.

If there was a long bicycle ride, such as a rail trail, it would be great to get off the saddle after 30 minutes for a quick stretch. But somewhere worth stopping and 30 minutes of riding would be a lot further than 161m. And I guess you wouldn't get too many in a day's ride, nowhere near 100 even.

Anyway, that's what I reckon, even though it is about the numbers for me sometimes. It's never THAT much about the numbers

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by gypsycacher » 16 March 10 12:46 pm

yeah, whatever either way really..... if there were something like that I'd be inclinded to do it in stages... say every 5th (or whatever) cache on each trip so that the caches last several journeys, assuming a highway power trail.... doing it all in one hit wouldn't really appeal..... particularly if it was just cache after cache situation.....

if it was a bush walk type setup, I'd be concerned with the impact of that many caches and cachers has on the environment, particularly if it did prove to be an attraction for cachers and overseas cachers also as someone mentioned....

interesting concept though....

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Big Matt and Shell » 16 March 10 3:10 pm

Yurt wrote:The numbers shouldn't come into it. While it's nice to give the tally a big boost I'd think that in the future it will be looked upon like runs against Zimbabwe or Bangladesh, they don't really count.
I suppose as one of the current Australian record holders I feel compelled to wade into this one... BTW Yurt, I'm not directing my response at you, I just thought you had the best quote...

[flame suit]
I'll start by saying that numbers run's have their place BUT even I wouldn't be in a hurry to have a crack at this one. After finding 210 different caches in different areas in a single day, you are sick of finding caches...
Can you imagine what it would be like after finding 100 caches hidden in largely the same way with the same view as the last one? I can assure you that you would get sick of this very quickly...

I have seen some powertrails done well and some very poorly. I myself have a series of 14 caches on the Hume Highway that could be refered to as a power trail. You can drive from Canberra to Sydney and stop at each one. The difference is that I was very particular in making each of the caches a learning experience, some get it and leave great logs, others don't and we get a TFTC.

Can you imagine what the logs would be like? I'm a person that trys to write a nice log for each cache.

I wouldn't like to see a trail like this here...
[/flame suit]

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blossom*
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by blossom* » 16 March 10 3:46 pm

Big Matt and Shell wrote:[
I have seen some powertrails done well and some very poorly. I myself have a series of 14 caches on the Hume Highway that could be refered to as a power trail. You can drive from Canberra to Sydney and stop at each one.
I would have to say that your Hume Highway series couldn't be considered a Power Trail at all in any way. Every cache is unique and has a really interesting story behind it. =D> It's a great set of caches and I learnt a lot of history from doing them. In fact, I haven't quite done them all yet but am hoping to look for a few of the remianders in a few weeks.

I don't think there's anything wrong with going out to find as many caches as you can in a day (or week or whatever). But the caches found on these runs have each been placed because the spot has some merit for some reason. Not just becasue it's 161m since the last cache on the road.

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Hoojar » 16 March 10 5:16 pm

I would be interested to see if people who are against the idea would actually place the caches on their ignore list or not. Would you walk the walk after talking the talk, or would the irresistible desire for some quick numbers become too strong?

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Happy Chappies
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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by Happy Chappies » 16 March 10 6:44 pm

Hoojar wrote:I would be interested to see if people who are against the idea would actually place the caches on their ignore list or not. Would you walk the walk after talking the talk, or would the irresistible desire for some quick numbers become too strong?
If I happened to be driving down the road I might do a few - But seriously, I couldn't be bothered getting out of the car every 200metres or so... Maybe whenever I wanted a rest from driving every hour!

But to be honest, it probably would've ended up on my ignore list pretty quickly - if for nothing else than to stop it cluttering up my PQs.

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by SecretSquirrel-BJC » 16 March 10 6:53 pm

<flame suit>
common sense isn't in the rules - if someone wants to do it and it's legal according to the latest guidelines, then it will get approved, even if the reviewer doesn't personally agree.

it doesn't diminish the game much more than carpet bombing with unrelated easy traditionals

I would only be inclined to collect the powertrail if it was in the ACT - I have a personal mission to keep the infestation down.
</flame suit>

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Re: Power Trails: an (ammo) can of worms

Post by listmaker » 16 March 10 7:27 pm

Stopping every 161 metres doesn't appeal to me, but I'd be happy to do a cache at every roadside rest stop/rest area I pass in Australia.

Actually, that would make a great series - 1000 caches that circumnavigate Australia.

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