Cache Maintenance – Should We Share the Responsibility?

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    Avatar photoDartmoor Dave

    I now have almost 150 active caches in the National Park and I fully accept that their maintenance is my responsibility.  When you place a cache you have to realise that the maintenance responsibility comes with cache ownership.  However, it is possible to share that responsibility with other cachers, many who have never placed a cache, for whatever reason (and that’s another topic for thought!)

    When a cache goes missing or is damaged then it clearly should be the CO who gets out there and sorts it out.  But what if the log book is full or has got saturated and cannot be signed – can’t we all help out?

    In addition to my cache finding, opening and log extraction kit (which I will detail elsewhere) I now always carry a supply of kitchen roll paper and spare logs.  Many caches become saturated and need drying out and many logs are either full or are so wet it is impossible to sign them.  In these cases I suggest that any of us should be prepared to dry out caches and replace log books, but obviously let the CO know what you have done.  Incidently, this does NOT, without prior agreement, include replacing a missing cache.

    I am certainly happy for anybody to replace any of my logs which can no longer be signed, and I suggest that everybody should be prepared to do so.

    Avatar photodartymoor

    With my CO hat on I agree. Several cachers have replaced damp logs on mine and I’ve always been grateful (but perhaps less so to the previous cachers who left lids off, or signed with wet hands, etc…)

    As a cacher – there’s a dilemma. Earlier on I didn’t want to, and the first time I did (the brook by Holwell) I replaced the container too, dried and scanned in the logsheets and emailed them to the CO. I got no response or thanks and that disappointed me. I have no doubt that CO has left geocaching for good so in a way I’ve only delayed the inevitable.

    And that’s something I see repeated quite often – the CO has vanished and caches are maintained by the cachers themselves. At what point does a cache stop being owned and maintained and is just listed litter?

    I continue to replace logs and the odd container, but not every time. I mostly do it for owners I know are active to save them a trip, as I would like done for mine – but if it’s an unknown name, or a cache placed by somebody with a low find count (sorry, but that range is responsible for most abandoned caches) I think I may be more inclined to file a NM and if no response, follow up with a Needs Archived to free the spot for another cache that stands a chance of being cared for.

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