Author Topic: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches  (Read 2624 times)

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Xira

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An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« on: November 21, 2015, 19:17:08 »
I am saddened by the archival of two more binthair caches.

There is much to say about this, and I will say it when I've calmed down.

However, I do have this to say now:

(1) Please, please do not archive any more of them.

(2) I offer to adopt them.

Xira aka Anne

Babushka_Qc

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2015, 19:25:26 »
Totally agree with Xira! No more Binthair's caches should be archived.

lotusfire

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2015, 19:29:13 »
I know a lot of people have a soft spot in their heart for these caches, and I will be the first to admit that I am NOT one of them.

The current adoptees are taking good care of the caches, and have done so out of the love of them. As we all know most of his caches would no longer fly today because of some sort of violation or the other that is grand-fathered in.  They were placed when the sport was still young. Any of his caches that have recently been archived have suffered that fate for a good reason.




kirok

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2015, 21:34:09 »
Being the FIRST to "adopt" the Binthair caches, and consider myself mostly responsible for the craze that followed thanks to my Binthair Challenge page, I most certainly have a huge soft spot for them.  Many fond memories of solving and finding them, as well as the influence they have had on other people's caching careers and even daily lives.  Heck, people have even met and been married because of these caches, and quite a few other caches have been inspired by them over the years.

However, I feel that as time has passed, and many of these caches have grown long in the tooth, it is time to reconsider their existance.  A few have morphed over the years to only be a shadow of their former selves, a few more violate guidelines that reviewers have turned a blind eye in order to keep them alive that much longer, and others still violate some proximity rules with other caches that were placed when the finals were not yet known to reviewers.  

Now, this is not to say they will all get archived.  Certainly not!  But as some of them start to age, many factors need to be taken into account to determine if they are really worth saving.  Let's take the latest example, The Secret Garden.  

1) This is the third time (that we know of), the cache has been muggled from that location.
2) The spot is a KNOWN hangout for questionable characters that we have had complaints about over the years.
3) WP3, while fun to find, has also generated much grief (that cachers don't see) for the COs about "why are you sending me to the middle of the road"?  Plenty of n00bs on the scene are playing the game, and with the added element of danger with the busy road there, it is not a desirable spot.

So, what do we do?  Move the final?  Well, then it's not "The Secret Garden" anymore, is it?  Do we remove WP3?  That was the best part of this cache IMO back in the day.  (and that "tag" has been replaced once already). The easiest and most responsible thing to do as COs is to archive the cache and open the area up for new placements.

Now, what about Bonnie & Clyde?  Well, as I'm sure we all know and have turned a huge blind eye to over the years, it was always on private property.  It wasn't really a concern back in the day when binthair placed it, but those roads and trails see a lot more traffic now, and with a private property sign posted 30 meters from "the truck", it was due to die.  What should we have done there?  Put the cache elsewhere?  The whole point of it was to bring people to Mr. Wilson's truck, which had a direct correlation to the cache theme.  No truck, no Bonnie & Clyde.

Trust me when I say that it does pain me to see them go, but as someone who has see one go in the past before ever having found it, I just sucked it up and placed a TRIBUTE cache in honour of it.   Binthair's Triangle.  
I extend the challenge to any of the previous finders of the caches being archived, to place a new cache in tribute of the old one, if you can.  Any new cache getting published would at least guarantee the guidelines would be followed, and we get to find it all over again except with your added flare!

As for adopting them out, the same reasoning applies now as it did when this first came around.  Keeping the caches in the hands of a few, preserves their history as best they can be to the original layout.  Having the caches in the hands of too many, and the history slowly dissolves and becomes lost forever.   Better to archive them in the state they can be remembered, and let others place new ones and modify them the way they see fit.

While there are a few others that are on our watch list for signs of "aging", there are none on the immediate horizon that are in danger of being archived.  That said, there are no guarantees.  

My $0.02
« Last Edit: November 21, 2015, 21:42:26 by kirok »

model12

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2015, 21:37:29 »
Thanks for the offer, but I think we have a good handle on the situation with the remaining binthair caches. As All Finders we have knowledge of each of the caches since their infancy, and are well versed in all their intricacies as well as their flaws and outright faults. As each cache matures we keep a close eye on the changing landscape(s), area usages and development, and will act accordingly to preserve as many as we can without changing their original design and intent.

But some situations are out of our control, both man-made and natural, so, sad as it may be, there well may be some that have aged out to the point where salvaging them is impossible.

If at some point in the future we decide to divest ourselves of the ownership of the caches it's nice to know that we have concerned fans to pass the torch to.
Steve

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model12

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2015, 21:47:15 »
Ah! I posted my note before reading Mike's, and as usual, he puts things much more eloquently than I ever could. Well said! <bowing>
Steve

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Xira

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2015, 12:40:22 »
The points of view expressed by Mike are valid but they are far from the only ones. There are many ways that the Binthairs could be maintained that would keep their spirit alive without diminishing their history. The recent and irrevocable action of archiving two more, without notice, speaks to the unwillingness to listen to other possibilities.

I find myself unable to express my sadness and frustration at the refusal of the CCC to give the local geocaching community an opportunity to contribute to the preservation of this unique geocaching resource without being accusatory and probably hurtful. I cannot do that.

It was a battle, one that most people are not aware of, to keep "Sooner or Later - A Maze" alive. I do not have the energy to repeat that battle.

I will not pursue this further.

kirok

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2015, 14:36:44 »
While your efforts to keep "Sooner or Later - A Maze" were grateful, they actually partially reinforce the original point.   "Sooner or Later - A Maze" is only a shadow of it's formal self, and some of us were actually against it being "fixed".  The cache is now just a tag hunt, with no real possibility of ever "skipping ahead" like the original cache placement intended.   "Let's see who arrives at the cache using the least number of waypoints after the checkerboard!"  Well, that'll take a while now that they have to hunt trees for tags, and not just skip ahead to every sign in the field.  There is no longer any real possibility of skipping ahead and/or cutting corners as originally intended.  

As I said in my post, I am mostly to blame for all the hoopla surrounding these caches, but ultimately they are not in the public domain, they still belong to one CO and should be treated no differently than any of your caches.  Should I start a petition to adopt one of your caches?  I heard people quite enjoyed "GAG17 - How far? Which way?", but I never got the chance to go find it.  If you don't want to maintain it, perhaps I could?  No?  Well that's your choice isn't it.

All we ask is that you respect the decisions we make with our caches the same way you do yours.  We could just as easily end all this and archive them all, but we don't want to do that, we want to preserve them as best we can, the way they were intended to be found.

I'm curious, what would you have done to preserve Bonnie and Clyde?  The Secret Garden?  

« Last Edit: November 23, 2015, 19:34:45 by kirok »

kirok

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #8 on: November 23, 2015, 16:15:50 »
The more I think about it, the less any of this makes sense.    Ask yourself,

"What makes a binthair cache 'A binthair cache'?

- Is it his unique brand of cache page description?  Well, no, that has changed on many of them since the original publication of the caches.
- Is it his special kind of container?  Nope.  Most of the containers out in the wild are not the original at all.  Thank goodness we fixed them, at our expense, or they would have been archived long ago.
- Is it his unique tags?  Heck no, his tags sucked, and still do.  We've had to replace so many over the years, at our expense, it is mind boggling.
- Is it all those special locations he places his caches in?  Yeah, I didn't think so either.
- Is it that they are all owned by one unique CO?  Can't be that, since there are already two of them now being considered "official".  His original account, and the CCC.

So what it really boils down to, is FOUR CHARACTERS.  GC####.  Seriously?  Is that what everyone gives a crap about when they think of binthair caches?  I can't even remember one GC code, and I've been staring at them for the past 10 years.  What *I* remember fondly, is the joy I had in solving the puzzles, learning new tricks about my GPS, and enjoying his unique twist of humour when getting out in the field and trying to find the cache, only to be "binthaired" on many occasions.  No geochecker, Google street view or EXIF data in those days kids.

So, how do we go about "preserving them"?  If it is the spirit of the cache you want to preserve, that's easy.  

1) Pick an archived cache that you really liked and want to preserve.
2) Create a new cache page.
3) Copy and paste, verbatim if you can, the cache you want to save.
4) Be sure to add the word 'binthair' in the "Placed By" box.
5) Put a new container out at the original GZ, if you can.  You can keep the leftover tags if there are any, and be prepared to start replacing them all.
6) Publish the cache.
7) Start tracking the new GC# as well as the old on whatever AFC, stats page, leader-board, whatever page you want.

That's it!  Every new cacher can enjoy a classic binthair, possibly slightly modified to conform to guidelines etc.., and the memory lives on.  As a bonus, I get to find it again!

Short of that, I'm not really sure what there is left to discuss.  People should just be thankful we've maintained them this long and get back to finding the other 1,000,000 caches out there.  

« Last Edit: November 23, 2015, 17:49:32 by kirok »

bluelamb03

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2015, 16:49:45 »
I don't want to stir this pot any further, but I have to admit that I'm not a total binthair fan-boy.

Don't get me wrong, I like most of his caches, some more than others as you'll read in a moment, and I appreciate the older caches in an area, but some of the classic binthair caches were not very good at all:

By the time I found 'Private Shaheen' the inukshuk and the box were long gone! Only a few years after publication and you could not find the cache as originally designed!

'Hypernav' was poorly hidden, far too close to a trail system, it keeps disappearing.

'Jock's Trap' was poorly hidden, in a far too obvious spot, and I was lucky to be able to find a nearby hide for it.

And I think we had to replace every cache container he placed! Too much recycling bin garbage.

So while I appreciate his contribution to the community, a real pioneer in our area, I think we have to be objective about these caches. Some of them are impossible to "fix" without changing them entirely. 'In the Square' is probably going to be in play for ever, I can't see any construction or development in that area, but 'Far Out' may be impossible to find right now because of construction, and the redirect may have to be moved....... change is the only constant.

Blue -
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Xira

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2015, 22:26:40 »
Short of that, I'm not really sure what there is left to discuss.  

You've laid out what you think about the Binthairs. Now, instead of assuming there's nothing left to discuss,  how about you ask if anyone has anything they'd like to say about this? That's how a discussion happens.

I'm going to treat these recent posts as the opening of a discussion. No, I'm not going to push for any change. But I am going to try to articulate what makes the Binthairs special, why it is I care so much about them, what I hope for them.

But that won't happen tonight. Soon, though. I may seem wordy but it doesn't come easily. It will take me some time to be sure that what I write expresses what I mean.

Xira

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2015, 13:39:54 »
Kirok took a stab at speculating what makes a Binthair special: description, container, tags, locations, unique CO, GC code. As he argues, it’s none of those. I agree.

Taken simply as caches, that's all they are - just a bunch of caches. Some of them have good puzzles. Some have a fun story. Some are nice hikes. Some of them are nothing special. Brain Cramp is in a somewhat icky location. Bonnie and Clyde is a long drive for what is essentially a PnG. The low favourite points on a few of them reflect just how unspecial some are.

So, there’s something else that makes them special, something intangible.

I believe that the uniqueness of these caches comes from the shared experience with other geocachers, the continuity they offer with several generations of cachers, where a generation is a small number of years, perhaps 2 or 3.

Would sports be as exciting if you were the only person in the stands? There's a group effect in play. I don't begin to understand how it works but I can see it happening. The Binthair caches are a unifying set of caches for local geocachers. We connect with those who have already found them, reading their adventures, struggles, and successes, then dream of doing the same ourselves. We connect with others in our generation of geocachers by working on these with them. The Binthair were a huge factor into strengthening my participation in the local geocaching community. And we connect yet again with newer geocachers by reading their adventures, which remind us of our own.

It takes time to build the sort of reputation, mystique, whatever  it is that these caches have. There's no way any of us could choose a set of caches and have them develop in the same way. Perhaps you didn’t intend for that to happen but it did. It’s such a shame to let it wither away.

I believe with care and nurturing, these caches could become truly legendary. Wouldn’t it be great to look back in another 10, even 20, years and see how many more cachers have undertaken the same quest that we all enjoyed so much? That’s when we relive the experience, when others remind us of it.

Xira

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #12 on: November 26, 2015, 13:44:01 »
Will you tell us the story of how the CCC finally came to own these caches?

The logs make it clear that they were maintained informally for quite a while before that happened. Some of them were even archived, and then resurrected.

Why did it take so long for the transfer to happen and what happened to finally trigger the transfer? Did Binthair himself get involved?

bluelamb03

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Re: An offer to adopt the Binthair caches
« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2015, 20:29:37 »
Binthair, that grand old man of geocaching in the National Capital Region, one of the pioneers of the hobby, just up and left without so much as a note to the listserv maintained by Malak at the time, or a goodbye at an event.

He left and abandoned all his caches and would not reply to any emails to his account. There was some contact with him now and again, some cachers know him personally, but for all we think so highly of him and his achievements he abandoned all his caches as geo-trash and ignored the caching community for years. Some caches were threatened and we cajoled reviewers into leaving them be, some were archived and we browbeat reviewers into reinstating them, all the time trying to maintain them as best we could. Never a word from the great man....

Some of the cache descriptions and co-ordinates were getting more and more "wrong" but we couldn't edit the cache pages to update the caches. No help at all from the pioneer....

When the adoption requests starting arriving in the CCC inbox I was as surprise as anyone, I presumed he had died or left the country or just didn't give a damn. Someone must have finally gotten through.

When you consider how "special" these caches are to you, remember that they meant nothing to him and only constant badgering and maintenance kept them alive this long.

Blue -
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