August 13th, 2012

gps

South Jersey and Lehigh Valley

Saturday this weekend was cloudy with a bit of rain but Sunday was sunny. There was one geocaching event I knew of that I could have attended but I opted to just do my own thing. On Saturday, I went geocaching in South Jersey but closer to the Delaware River side of it, from Oaklyn through Cinnaminson to Delran. I hadn't been up that way in a while, so there were some new geocaches. (and also a bunch of older ones I didn't visit on previous trips) I thought the most interesting landmark of the day was the Haddonfield Hadrosaurus sculpture. I didn't find the cache that was near the sculpture though; recent logs indicate that this tiny cache has fallen to the ground and so it could have gotten washed away. Nevertheless, I thought it was a neat location. There's always next time!

On Sunday, I went to Lehigh Valley, intending to do the Checkmate series of geocaches in Macungie. I also wanted to do a puzzle cache in Quakertown that I'd recently solved. So I took a route that was new to me. I went from Quakertown, west to Pennsburg, and then north to Macungie. That brought me close to the Blommer chocolate factory in Pennsburg. It's amazing that I could smell chocolate all over that part of town, especially when I stopped to look for the two "Chocolate Guard" caches. No samples, unfortunately. :) I wonder if people who live there get used to it and stop smelling chocolate after a while.

I encountered more problems with caches on private property on Saturday. Sadly, that's not so rare but what made it worse was the cache owner's reaction when I brought up the issues. The first one was GC2YGHW "Army Ducks - The 115mm Howitzer". It's a camo-colored Easter egg hidden on a cannon outside of an Amvets office. I started looking for this cache but someone from inside the Amvets building came out and asked me what was going on. After I explained geocaching, he told me that it is private property and no permission had been given to place a cache there. The second cache was GC2YGAN "Griffith Morgan House", which is in the front yard of a historical building. This property is surrounded by a wooden fence. However, only the side of the fence has a "No Trespassing" sign. There is no sign on the front portion of the fence by the road, so anyone who enters via the front gate may not even realize that there is a "No Trespassing" sign. I mentioned these two problems in my cache logs. Just an hour later, I got a nasty email from the cache owner telling me to edit my logs and threatening to delete my logs if I didn't remove what I'd written about private property. Reluctantly, I edited my logs.

The next day, I talked to a few geocachers about this problem and the consensus was I should inform someone, preferably the cache reviewer, anyway. If a cache is on private property without permission but there's nothing on the cache page about that, other geocachers may unintentionally trespass and that will give the geocaching community a bad name. Therefore, it's more important to warn everyone about the problem than to protect the cache owner's feelings. So I wrote a lengthy email to the cache reviewer for the two geocaches explaining what had happened and he took care of those caches. (Groundspeak volunteer cache reviewers can archive or disable geocache listings if necessary.) I wish I didn't have to go above someone to deal with a problem but sometimes it is necessary.

The caches...Collapse )