How many hides is too many?

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Happy Chappies
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How many hides is too many?

Post by Happy Chappies » 17 February 11 10:11 am

I know this is a 'how long is a piece of string' type question...

Read the Latitude 45 blog (http://blog.geocaching.com/2011/02/geoc ... he-hiders/) today about the team who have hidden 1500 geocaches - Perhaps I should have been impressed and awestruck, but I couldn't help but wonder if so many is just too many for one team. Both in terms of maintenance, but it also makes me feel that the area they live in must be swarming with geocaches and no space left for any new players to place... (i acknowledge I've done zero research on the team so this could all be assumptions). Indeed, they seem to place one hide for every 2 caches they find, or one cache for every two days they've been geocachers.

We've got some pretty big hiders here - I think Freddo's in the lead? But when I look at his numbers it still seems 'manageable'. And with a country as big as ours (and with a lot of big hiders seeming to travel a lot) I don't worry as much about them being "Oh, look, a park - I'll toss an eclipse tin in it" caches.

However I remember finding another Melbourne (fairly ordinary it must be admitted) cache by a hider who had hidden almost 400, and then I discovered that he was living in NZ! And no indication of a local maintainer...

I can sort of see how those numbers might creep up. I never planned to have many caches but then I keep coming up with new ideas and want to try them out, and the number is slowly getting bigger.

So a question for those big hiders amongst us - When would you stop? And how do you keep tabs on so many?

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caughtatwork
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by caughtatwork » 17 February 11 10:31 am

Slight digression, but very related.
If a cache is gone and the cacher is no longer around, why do people feel the need to "keep it going"?
Log a NA (SBA) and let it go. Sheesh! It's not granny's ashes y'know.

Too many is very subjective.
I keep looking at my caches (which the majority are still there) and think, hmmm, I think I should archive them and free the location up for someone else to hide a cache. I think I'll instigate my own policy of hiding a cache, let it stay for 12 months, then archive it. That will then free up some space for others to hide caches.

For goodness sake, look at the Melbourne. 410 caches within a 10km radius from the CBD. People get very precious about their caches and their ability to maintain their precious and simply do not see that too many caches spoil the broth.

This weekend for me is archive time.

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Happy Chappies
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by Happy Chappies » 17 February 11 10:51 am

caughtatwork wrote: I keep looking at my caches (which the majority are still there) and think, hmmm, I think I should archive them and free the location up for someone else to hide a cache. I think I'll instigate my own policy of hiding a cache, let it stay for 12 months, then archive it. That will then free up some space for others to hide caches.
I'm a bit the same (albeit with only 16 caches out there) - and keep monitoring to see when I think they've run their course. ie: fewer finds, people don't get all that excited about it, etc. Some of my caches I'm very attached to (either due to the effort in setting up and/or the wonderful logs I continue to receive on them), but I must admit there are probably 3-4 that are just plodding along after the initial few months of activity.

Mind you, one thing that keeps haunting me is the thought of archiving some decent, thoughtful caches and have them be replaced by a newbie's eclipse tin in a grass plant. Not that we can do much about that!

Back on the original topic, it's kind of interesting that GC make you find so many caches for your 'favorite' points, but no such rule in regards to your own hides - Guess that would open up huge cans of annelids.

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Zalgariath
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by Zalgariath » 17 February 11 10:56 am

Over here in Ireland there are a few big hiders in what appears to be a fairly tight-knit caching community. Co. Kilkenny / Wexford / Waterford are dominated by 1 hider with nearly 150 hides I think. I have done about 30 of his caches and chatted to him when I found probably 1/2 were in need of attention. He's a nice bloke and goes to some great effort with the location and hides but it simply seems there is not enough time to look after them all. It does beg the question if GS are serious about "Quality Caches" this year as their theme how do you draw a limit of such things as "so many hides cant possibly maintain them" scenarios such as this?

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fluffyfish
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by fluffyfish » 17 February 11 10:59 am

Happy Chappies wrote:
caughtatwork wrote: I keep looking at my caches (which the majority are still there) and think, hmmm, I think I should archive them and free the location up for someone else to hide a cache. I think I'll instigate my own policy of hiding a cache, let it stay for 12 months, then archive it. That will then free up some space for others to hide caches.
I'm a bit the same (albeit with only 16 caches out there) - and keep monitoring to see when I think they've run their course. ie: fewer finds, people don't get all that excited about it, etc. Some of my caches I'm very attached to (either due to the effort in setting up and/or the wonderful logs I continue to receive on them), but I must admit there are probably 3-4 that are just plodding along after the initial few months of activity.

Mind you, one thing that keeps haunting me is the thought of archiving some decent, thoughtful caches and have them be replaced by a newbie's eclipse tin in a grass plant. Not that we can do much about that!

Back on the original topic, it's kind of interesting that GC make you find so many caches for your 'favorite' points, but no such rule in regards to your own hides - Guess that would open up huge cans of annelids.
Yeah I wonder what would happen if you could only place a cache for every 10 you find?

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by caughtatwork » 17 February 11 11:16 am

fluffyfish wrote:
Happy Chappies wrote:
caughtatwork wrote: I keep looking at my caches (which the majority are still there) and think, hmmm, I think I should archive them and free the location up for someone else to hide a cache. I think I'll instigate my own policy of hiding a cache, let it stay for 12 months, then archive it. That will then free up some space for others to hide caches.
I'm a bit the same (albeit with only 16 caches out there) - and keep monitoring to see when I think they've run their course. ie: fewer finds, people don't get all that excited about it, etc. Some of my caches I'm very attached to (either due to the effort in setting up and/or the wonderful logs I continue to receive on them), but I must admit there are probably 3-4 that are just plodding along after the initial few months of activity.

Mind you, one thing that keeps haunting me is the thought of archiving some decent, thoughtful caches and have them be replaced by a newbie's eclipse tin in a grass plant. Not that we can do much about that!

Back on the original topic, it's kind of interesting that GC make you find so many caches for your 'favorite' points, but no such rule in regards to your own hides - Guess that would open up huge cans of annelids.
Yeah I wonder what would happen if you could only place a cache for every 10 you find?
Holy moly.
I've found 2,000+ so I could hide 200 caches.
Wheeeeeeeee!
Now where are those nano caches I bought 200 of?

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fluffyfish
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by fluffyfish » 17 February 11 11:22 am

caughtatwork wrote:
fluffyfish wrote:
Happy Chappies wrote:
caughtatwork wrote: I keep looking at my caches (which the majority are still there) and think, hmmm, I think I should archive them and free the location up for someone else to hide a cache. I think I'll instigate my own policy of hiding a cache, let it stay for 12 months, then archive it. That will then free up some space for others to hide caches.
I'm a bit the same (albeit with only 16 caches out there) - and keep monitoring to see when I think they've run their course. ie: fewer finds, people don't get all that excited about it, etc. Some of my caches I'm very attached to (either due to the effort in setting up and/or the wonderful logs I continue to receive on them), but I must admit there are probably 3-4 that are just plodding along after the initial few months of activity.

Mind you, one thing that keeps haunting me is the thought of archiving some decent, thoughtful caches and have them be replaced by a newbie's eclipse tin in a grass plant. Not that we can do much about that!

Back on the original topic, it's kind of interesting that GC make you find so many caches for your 'favorite' points, but no such rule in regards to your own hides - Guess that would open up huge cans of annelids.
Yeah I wonder what would happen if you could only place a cache for every 10 you find?
Holy moly.
I've found 2,000+ so I could hide 200 caches.
Wheeeeeeeee!
Now where are those nano caches I bought 200 of?
Just imagine how many times you will need to change the log sheet. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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Happy Chappies
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by Happy Chappies » 17 February 11 11:23 am

caughtatwork wrote:Slight digression, but very related.
If a cache is gone and the cacher is no longer around, why do people feel the need to "keep it going"?
Log a NA (SBA) and let it go. Sheesh! It's not granny's ashes y'know.

...and dammit!! now I've got the idea stuck in my head to design a cache called 'granny's ashes' :-k :D

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Yurt
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by Yurt » 17 February 11 11:29 am

I do wonder about this. I'm up to about 20 GC/GCA combined and I reckon that's about near the limit of what I can manage without more spare time. However my last few caches have all been ammo cans or other robust forms which need little maintenance (I don't place in stumps or at the base of trees subject to bushfires) so I've potentially reduced the maintenance burden. The 'imaginative' hides of the smaller variety are the easiest to set up (no SWAG) but are subject to the most wear and tear so I don't fancy too many more of those.

The altruistic caching community does keep many caches going where the owner has long since fled the scene. Often though that's only down to replacing a logbook. If a container is always wet inside then it needs to go though.

Distance from home must also be a factor. All mine are within 20km with the majority within 5km.

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by iamapom » 17 February 11 1:43 pm

Happy Chappies wrote: ...and dammit!! now I've got the idea stuck in my head to design a cache called 'granny's ashes' :-k :D
Now, to find a cheap funeral urn..... and a graveyard to hide it in..... :P

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by blossom* » 17 February 11 1:46 pm

caughtatwork wrote: Sheesh! It's not granny's ashes y'know.
Good thought C@W. And I have to agree what a great name for a cache \:D/

I reckon there are 2 types of caches, those that are in a location that will always get a turnover of new people to find them and those that are in a spot that only the locals are likely to find. The first locations would be where tourists and travellers are likely to visit and I think if you have a good quality cache in a location that gets "wow, thanks for showing me this spot" type logs, there is no need to retire it. (and run the risk that the next hider will put a nano there instead where there's no room to write anything in the log book)

The second spot will be in the suburbs and these caches might be open to being retired after all the normal suspects have visited. Of course, it seems there are so many new cachers these days that it's hard to pick a time to make that decision!

But back on the original thread, I reckon you should not hide more caches than you can maintain. Most people would probably agree that this is a pretty good criterion to use for the numbers limit. If you hide the type that doesn't require a lot of maintenance for one reason or another, then it's ok to hide more than average. Which all means that if you're retired and love travelling about, it's quite ok to hide a lot of caches - as long as they're in great spots :D . For the rest of us, just one on the way to work is maybe the (time) limit :-k

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Bewilderbeest
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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by Bewilderbeest » 17 February 11 2:24 pm

The answer is 4. :shock:

When I began there were about 200 caches in Canberra and < 100 active cachers. I remember thinking around that time that if we had 100 cachers and everybody hid 3 caches, that would be 300 caches to find, which seemed like plenty at the time. :D

There are now > 500 caches within 10km and 1,000 within 20km of my place (just out of the CBD) which is a bonanza numbers-wise. But IMHO I think it has led to the situation here at least, where there arent the "wow" locations for new cachers to hide caches. So wanting to give something back, they hide a few caches in ordinary spots which then increasingly makes this seem like the norm to other newcomers. i.e. a downward spiral on the quality of the location, if not the hide itself.

Sometimes, less is more.

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by rogerw3 » 17 February 11 3:21 pm

:twisted: :?:

Actually I have been thinking about this for some time now. I do have a substantial number of caches, both GCA and GC and I have come to the conclusion that I will archive any cache that has not been found for 18 to 24 months.
I figure that all the local likely suspects will have found the cache by then and if no one else has come to it in that time frame, the spot (or nearby spot blocked by my cache) should be left for somebody else to use if they wish.

:( :-k

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by blossom* » 17 February 11 3:27 pm

rogerw3 wrote::twisted: :?:

Actually I have been thinking about this for some time now. I do have a substantial number of caches, both GCA and GC and I have come to the conclusion that I will archive any cache that has not been found for 18 to 24 months.
I figure that all the local likely suspects will have found the cache by then and if no one else has come to it in that time frame, the spot (or nearby spot blocked by my cache) should be left for somebody else to use if they wish.

:( :-k
You need to wait for me to find them first! Perhaps I need a concerted effort (and some suggestions as to the best approach to some of the more remote ones) You don't have any of your "VIEW" series near cliff tops do you!! 8-[

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Re: How many hides is too many?

Post by maccamob » 17 February 11 3:38 pm

We've hidden 133 caches over the years, of which around 90 remain. Cache maintenance wasn't uppermost in our minds when we began hiding, but has progressively assumed greater importance. Although circumstances vary, we try to conduct maintenance when recent logs indicate a problem. Naturally, our more distant caches involve more effort to maintain. Even so, if we think a cache location is particularly deserving, we'll replace missing caches in more or less the same place. However, repeated muggling will see us archiving the cache. Our present inventory of 90 caches is manageable, but we sometimes have to remind ourselves that our task would be much harder if all our caches were still active.

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