Help us understand Trackables?
We are new to geocaching and loving it, but my Cub Scouts and I need your help to understand the culture here with regard to trackables. Are we taking it too seriously?
We took great care to select a trackable in inventory at a nearby travel bug hotel to be sure we could advance the bug toward its goal. We moved it some 800 miles closer, with only about 90 miles left to go. Then it was grabbed by a very experienced, uber-cacher in the destination state and later dropped a hundred-fifteen miles away from its goal on the other side of the heavens.
He bounced it all around the vicinity of the Bug's goal, then drove it out and dropped it farther away from where the child-owner of the tired Bug wanted it to go.
We don't get it. Do bugs just want to log miles and not ever reach the stated objective of their journeys? Help?
Regardless, we will be logging a couple of finds and dropping our own first travel bug today. We hope he gets where he's going. Groundspeak tells us it's International Geocaching Day on 8/20/11!
Thanks much, Go Hogs and best wishes to all,
First, thanks for volunteering with the Cub Scouts. That's a great program and I'm glad you are investing your time with them. You are helping them build great memories!
As for travel bugs, I'm afraid I've lost more travelers than I care to think about. They will be traveling all over and then suddenly they just stop and are gone forever. I've also had travelers that are still bouncing around after 3 years. So its kind of a hit-and-miss process.
Something I've found that has really helped is to print out the travel bug sheet from the website, laminate it and include it in a baggie with the traveler. It includes the goal so anyone who finds it knows immediately what the goal is. They don't have to check their smart phone or wait until they get home and check the page to find out what direction it's going. Its really great when your bug is found by a traveling geocacher near an interstate, so they can decide immediately whether they should take it or not. Alternatively, just print your traveler's goal on a slip of paper, take it and have it laminated and punch a hole in it and put it right on the chain.
Also, don't be afraid to email a cacher that has had your bug for a while. Honestly, I find some cachers are excited to pick up a bug but not in a big hurry to get it back out on the road again. Be sure and let them know about the traveler's goal.
Hope that helps a little. Maybe some others will chime in as well. Good luck with your travel bug!
Welcome to the addiction!!!
I have many bugs out there and many missing and I honestly just like to see where they go. I don't expect mine to ever get to their goal (and so most just want to travel). It's neat to see how a trackable can go one place and sit and then the next week hit like ten different places.
I am also one of those people that doesn't really care if you hold onto the bug for a bit until you can either 1) take it far or 2) take it somewhere neat.
Those are both just my ideas, so take them as a grain of salt.
I have gone to caches looking for TB's and found nothing. The other day I caught some cachers at one of my hides. Didn't think much about it at the time. They were working off a trial ap on their phone. They went to one of my caches that listed a TB. They have never logged a visit at any of my caches that they signed the log sheet so they may not have sighed up as a cacher. I went a few days later and there was no TB there and no one has loged it going anywhere. This might not be what happened but I'm thinking they didn't know that this was a TB not a trade item they could keep. Just a thought.
I met someone geocaching once that had the app on their phone and just went to caches and just wrote their actual first names on the log. Not knowing anything about logging on the website. These types of geocachers could easily pick up a trackable and never know to log it.
We just bought a trackable for each member of the family and sent them on their way, but I made sure to tell the kids that they may not get to where they want them to go, and that they may get lost. We know its hit and miss, but we think its worth the risk. You definetely want to print out the travel bug sheet and send it with the trackable.
I like the sheets that are printed out, but at the end of the day, I just want my bugs to MOVE. I am a TB hound and I will drive out of my way a good distance to get them. I always prefer a cache with them over one without. Of course, I also just like big caches.
I have many out; some are in Australia, Europe and the states. It's amazing to watch how certain places will move it quickly. One of mine was in central park and next it was in the Czech Republic. Cool stuff.