Thursday, March 03, 2016

What is Caching Mojo?

What is Caching Mojo?
By Bert Marshall (BaytownBert)
Southeast Texas Representative Texas Geocaching Association

Caching mojo, to put it simply is how well-rounded you are as a geocacher concerning finding versus hiding geocaches.  For instance, say you have found 2243 caches and have hidden 115.  Simple math concludes that for every 20 caches you’ve found, you’ve hidden 1 for other people to find.   You have a lot of mojo!  A well-rounded geocacher has more than just a large amount of finds.

Note:  This may not be the most pleasant of primers concerning geocaching, but I think if you keep an open mind, you will see the logic here.

Sure, I know everyone who looks for geocaches doesn’t have time to hide them and keep them maintained – or is this simply an excuse? You look at your numbers, crunch them to heck and back in GSAK, endlessly running filters and macros until your digits are numb and then look at your finds and grin like a possum eating persimmons.

You are a rock star!  Right?

Recently, someone posed the question of where they could find the statistics for a world scale ranking of how many caches have been found by a geocacher.  Of course I had to look at “Texas” and I found my name somewhere in the 150’s.  So, I am “ranked” as the 150-something geocacher in the great big state of Texas, USA as to how many geocaches I’ve found.  Cool beans – I guess.  I’m going to throw that number at the guy behind the donut shop counter and see if I can get a free cup of Joe.

Now, how to work that tidbit into a conversation, right?  “Hey, did you know I am the blah, blah, blah?”  The reaction would probably be met with less than enthusiasm, but the truth is, if a person has found 5000+ caches and hasn’t hidden but a handful, then what would happen if everyone took this path?

At some point, shouldn’t you be contributing to the game instead of letting everyone else do the work?  “Gee, BB, that is insensitive!  You’re a creep and a self-appointed idiot, dude!”

Harsh words are never accepted as pleasant, but imagine where geocaching would be right now, if nobody hid caches.  Do you suppose you would have all those finds if this was the case?  A hard truth is some people hide a lot of caches for other cachers pleasure and some hide a few or none at all.  I place this second group in the low caching mojo category (and to me); this clouds how successful they are as a cacher.

Yea, I’m a caching snob.  It’s okay to say that and label me as such.  I can take it, but in the meantime, I’ll keep hiding caches, hosting events, buying trackables and sending them out to be probably become lost.

“So, BB, you faux-humble servant of the geocaching community, what is the solution, Mr. Wise guy, know it all?  Let’s say I don’t want to have bad caching mojo.  What do I do to change my status and get some?”

For starters, divide your total cache find number by 100.  That’s your goal.  Now, go hide that many caches.  This will raise your caching mojo considerably and guess what?  Everyone will notice!  “Wow, did you see that WartHogBillNasty8 hid a cache?  I mean he started hiding them like nobody’s business!”

“Wow, he’s a legend!  I thought he only found them.  Want to team up and go look for them?  I’d be willing to bet his cords are dead-on!”

Want more mojo?  Divide your find number by 50.  You will feel good about yourself and so will everyone you know.  Remember geocaching is a game and not everyone gets to whack a home run every inning.  Sometimes you have to be a spectator.

A good place to start is by going here:  Now suck it up and go out and get yourself some mojo and remember to have a good time! Or you can write me and tell me what a spoil sport I am.


Anonymous said...

Ed Wisenbaler: Good article.

Mark said...

A good article, but you forgot not to criticize other cachers for the placement of their caches. In my first few years of caching, I didn't hide any because I was a truck driver and not in one place. One back in Florida permanently, I started hiding caches. After about a dozen hides I wanted to make one a little harder and placed a nano within the bark of a huge oak tree. Within hours of it being published, one of the FTF hunters complained about the cache and got it archived that same day. "I was harming the tree" From that day on, I only held events and stopped placing caches.

I know of another cacher back in Florida who had this one person constantly criticizing her caches, so she archived them all and stopped hiding them also. So as finders we need to be careful of our logs and not discourage new cachers who start hiding.

Just a thought...

Unknown said...

Appreciate your perspective, especially in that, you appear to be directing your blog to those that have more than a few caches under their belt. I take issue with the individual that has found 2 caches and decides immediately to put one out. Then after 12 caches, they are never heard from again and then they are no longer around to maintain the cache that they put out. Or the same individual decides that the real purpose of geocaching is to hide caches for the sole purpose of making them as difficult as possible to find by hiding them at a roadside dumpsite or creating puzzles that can only be found if you have the first edition of Moby Dick and can decipher the page codes. As inferred from a previous comment, these are the same individuals that will complain because log pages are wet and the cache hunter is not willing to perform cache repair but wants the cache archived. Excellent blog! Thank you!

Kris & Brian said...

I agree... sort of. If you mean that you shouldn't hide any caches before you reach 100 finds, yes. If you should hide 1 for EVERY 100 finds, no. Do the math. There are 1000 hides within 19 miles of my house that I haven't found. The radius is 8 miles for all hides around my house. That includes part of Galveston Bay. It would take quite a while to find all of those caches if I wanted to. Do we need more caches in my area? Luckily, many of the new ones have been quality caches, with some thought put into them.

The idea of "Caching Karma" makes more sense to me. Place caches according to the number of people that find YOUR caches. If you have found 100 caches, you should have hides that have been found 100 times - 1 with 100 finds, 4 with 25 each, etc.

Right now, there are 2.8 million active geocaches worldwide. The official website says there are 15 million cachers. About 370,000 cachers worldwide have found over 200 caches. That is about 7.5 caches for each of those 'active cachers'. Considering the fact that the most prolific 'finder' has 130,000 finds, there are plenty of caches to be found.

Using your mojo logic, should you open a restaurant once you have been to 100 different restaurants?

I think we should look for QUALITY, not QUANTITY.

Let's not get into favorite points.

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