October 17, 2012 at 4:02 pm #1496Dartmoor DaveKeymaster
Hopefully many of you will have been following our account of our recent trip to complete the HALO series. If not you can follow it in my blog here. Our blog was intended as a subjective account of our HALO experiences, but I want to introduce this topic with a more objective description.
HALO – The Facts (as at 17/10/12)
- Total length – 23.0 miles
- On road – 12.6 miles
- Number of caches – 121
- Average distance between caches – 335 yards
- Average number of finds per cache – 161 (random sample of 10 caches)
- Total number of favourites awarded – 381 (3.1 per cache)
- Average percentage of favourites per find – 1.96%
The Pros (Pros to some might be cons to others!)
- Very popular series
- Lots of caches
- Closely spaced caches
- Very easy hides and finds
- Very easy walking – much on roads
- A very nice area to come to
The Cons (Cons to some might be pros to others!)
- Caches too close together
- Almost trivial finds
- Over half the trail on roads (and some dangerous ones)
- Very repetitive hides and caches
- Poor quality caches (as evidenced by very low favourites awarded)
- Encourages sloppy caching (caches not hidden properly, log books not written correctly, copy and paste logs, DNFs not logged)
- Very difficult to construct circular walks (except for northern loop)
- Need two cars to enable you to complete without circular walks
- Not child friendly (because of roads and lack of short circular walks)
First of all I must repeat what I said in my blog – yes, we were very pleased that we had come to this area, very pleased to have completed HALO (with only 2 DNFs) and very pleased to have visited the other local places of interest. So a big thank you for those responsible for placing and maintaining HALO.
Obviously this is a very popular series which attracts a lot of cachers. However, the very low number of favourites awarded would indicate that it was not as good as they hoped. As I wrote in the blog, I think one of the local cachers summed up HALO for us. When I indicated that I found it a little tedious, he replied “I know what you mean, but it has to be done”.
My last thoughts are once again “It’s all about the numbers!”, but what are your thoughts?October 17, 2012 at 7:28 pm #1503muddypuddlesParticipant
Everyone does this caching thing for different reasons, and if you want to get your numbers up, then the HALO series is just the ticket. But this isn’t why I cache.
I have spent my last two caching sessions doing the new Plym Challenge by the Tamerton Chocolates. This is more like it!
Personally, I get the most out of caches that I make some kind of personal investment in, whether that be time, mental battering or just a long walk. You get out what you put in. The Plym Challenge has got me walking many miles, and chewing my pencil to bits, but even though I got a DNF in the end, I would much rather there was this kind of cache out there (which has obviously taken time and planning to set) than your toss in a hedge micro.
But that’s only my opinion. If you’re after numbers – don’t do this kind of cache. Simples.
Thanks, TC. When’s the Tavy Challenge coming out???October 18, 2012 at 7:07 pm #1504red.roamingParticipant
Earlier today I posted a log re this Halo series but just received an email from Dave asking if I would resend it as it hadnt entered on to the site. Cant find where it has disappeared to so having a 2nd go which of course will be different from the 1st!
My pennyworth to this subject amounted something along the lines that initially Dartmoor Deliverer and I were immediately attracted to this series for the numbers to boost our numbers of caches found, and she duly organised that while DD and muggle Mr DD were on holiday camping at Mawganporth I could join them for some serious caching days walking this series. Planning was simplified by using both cars [one at the start of walking, and the other where we would get to approx mid-day] and therefore the walking was broken in 2 parts for the car reshuffle to the end of the day.
However it became apparent almost as soon as we started – there was certainly more than just cache numbers to savour. Companionship with each other, different scenery which varied from lanes, woods, sea views and through villages, and different walking terrains from footpaths, lanes and roads as well as meeting people on the way. A series like this is like a trip of discovery of new vistas and is a different type of challenge compared to, say, walking up to a mountain peak or walking across Dartmoor to a remote spot – each are a challenge, and with geocaching we have all types of challenges to tempt us saying “come and find me, you know you want to” !
I agree with the comment that many of the hides were similar, but that is TOTALLY overshadowed by my praise and gratitude to the geocachers who thought, financed and set out the walk, which then has its maintenance demands. Geocaching has a great variety of caches to find – some take hours to get to and some take great courage and some are on a trail like this – so everyone can find caches whatever their ability or available time. Brilliant series which I am very chuffed to have completed [well, apart from the couple of missing and one DNF which will be retried when next in the area hopefully].November 7, 2012 at 12:35 am #1505LympstoneBogtrottersParticipant
Enjoyed reading your blog Dave – Thanks! Great maps and photos too.
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