Central Oregon Cache Placement Guidelines

Discussion of hiding caches in Oregon. Containers, techniques, permission issues, etc.

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Central Oregon Cache Placement Guidelines

Postby Mr. Snazz on Thu Feb 17, 2005 9:34 am

This document is a work in progress. The guidelines presented here are not enforced by cogeo.org or the site administration of cogeo.org. If you find a cache in violation of the policies of the appropriate land management agency, please contact the cache owner directly.

General Guidelines
Please become familiar with the guidelines at http://www.geocaching.com prior to placement of any geocaches.

    * Find out who owns or manages the land before you place a cache, and get their permission first!
    * Consider that geocachers might take shortcuts. Are there obvious shortcuts that could damage the area?

Bend Metro Park and Recreation District
No restrictions although we should avoid riparian areas next to the Deschutes River and Tumalo Creek. (bigeddy)


Roundabouts
Do not place caches on the center island of roundabouts. As directed by the Oregon Department of Transportation, pedestrians should: "Proceed around the roundabout on the sidewalk and in the designated crosswalks. Never walk in the roundabout or to the central island." (See Roundabouts - General Information & Step-by-Step Instruction, a pamphlet in PDF.)

Central Oregon and Bend in particular have many roundabouts. Theses circular intersections replace traffic signals or stop signs. The center island is one feature of a roundabout that is attractive to would-be cache placers. Do not be tempted because the island is not designed for pedestrians and will put cache hunters in a dangerous, unpredictable traffic situation.

Even though we have had roundabouts locally for over a decade, there are still myths and misunderstandings about these fascinating intersections. If you want to talk about them or want help in placing a cache nearby one, please contact me. (added 8/26/10 by bigeddy)


Newberry National Volcanic Monument
The monument is administered by the Deschutes National Forest as a multi-use recreation area and is not restricted like a wilderness. I was told that geocaches are generally permitted. In special areas like Lava River Cave, Lava Cast Forest and Lava Butte we should call the Visitor Center for permission or just avoid the areas. (bigeddy)


Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Public Lands
The BLM supports geocaching on most of the land it administers except for specific areas that have been identified as sensitive (such as archaeological sites, caves, stock and wildlife waterers, and endangered species habitat). Its policies are mostly contained in area management plans. For much of Central Oregon the Upper Deschutes Resource Management Plan provides guidance. Many BLM Special Management Areas have restrictions including Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC), Research Natural Areas (RNA), Wild and Scenic Rivers (WSR), Wilderness Study Areas (WSA) and caves. Of special interest to us are the Badlands WSA (17 cache limit) and Steelhead Falls WSA (3 cache limit).

Note that the Plan defines geocaching as "leaving any items on BLM administered lands for the purposes of posting or advertising the approximate location of those items for others to find." So, the policy by definition includes TerraCaches, letterboxes and similar physical containers but not virtual caches. The Plan implies that if either WSA is designated as a wilderness then caches will be banned.

Another document of interest is this March 2005 memo from the BLM regarding geocaching that expired in 2006 but is the last known general policy and appears to still be in use.

GovBigDawg (aka Gavin Hoban, BLM Recreation Planner) also posts on a regular basis with information regarding seasonal closures of various BLM areas. Click here for a list of his posts.


State Parks
The following information is directly from central oregon state parks management (thanks to logscaler):
    * None in/on Pilot Butte State Park in Bend, Oregon;
    * None in Fort Rock State Park in Fort Rock, Oregon;
    * Any placed in the “Fee” parks they would like to know about as certain areas are out and they would like some input as for placement;
    * As always, NO DIGGING;
    * La Pine State parks has 9 miles of trails and it is open for caching;
    * Cline Falls State Park is open for caching;
    * Undeveloped State Parks grounds are open for caching;
    * Certain areas are monitored and security measures are in place;
    * Where Park grounds are close to private property, Please indicate a parking spot so as not to have cachers crossing onto private grounds;
    * Other issues will be dealt with on a one on one basis as the occur;

Wilderness Areas
The following information is from the local Forest Service wilderness ranger, for the South Sister area (thanks to bigeddy):

Short version: No physical caches in the wilderness
Posted by bigeddy:

I had a chance to talk to the local Deschutes National Forest Service wilderness ranger for the South Sister area about geocaching. We just talked in general, not about specific caches.

He said that geocaches fall under a general regulation that prohibits "storing equipment, personal property or supplies" for longer than 48 hours in a designated wilderness. The fine is $100. The regulation, which he believes is local or regional, was originally created because horse packers were storing equipment and supplies in the wilderness. The packers would even take over camp sites in preparation for hunting season, leaving gear unattended for long periods.

Technically, a geocache could exist in the wilderness for 48 hours if the owner removed it promptly! Obviously, the local Forest personnel aren't enforcing the removal of geocaches, yet. They have many problems to deal with and geocaching is barely noticeable. Not many hikers use a GPSr. That could change, of course. The Forest Service is even planning to provide the coordinates for approved campsites around South Sister.

There is no restriction on virtual caches. However, the metal tags that we use for multi-stage caches would be considered littering and would be removed if found, as is the flagging that cross-county skiers sometimes leave to mark their route.

Caches in the Forest outside a wilderness are permitted. Also, public roads that go through wilderness areas, such as McKenzie Pass Highway, generally have a buffer up to 200 feet on either side that is not wilderness.

So, there you have it from the source. No physical caches in the wilderness. Virtual caches are Ok, although I have to add that our own restrictive guidelines make them unlikely.

Cache restrictions also apply to wildernesses in the Willamette National Forest.
Last edited by Mr. Snazz on Wed Mar 16, 2005 9:30 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby logscaler on Wed Apr 20, 2005 9:11 am

Just a update for this topic.

I talked with Curtis Smith, our - my contact with the Oregon State Parks Highe Desert Unit here in Bend on Tuesday April 19th about caching on State park Grounds here in Central Oregon.

1) There have been zero complaints about caching in Central Oregon Parks passed on to them. Curtis said he was at a meeting in The Dallas and got to brag about how good the cachers in Central Oregon are. Keep up the good work people.

2) Still no physical caches on Pilot Butte or in Fort Rock. Caches in the Pay part of Tumalo have to be pre- approved so if you have one in mind, please contact me and I will go through the steps needed to deal with the Parks people.

3) We can still cache the heck out of LaPine State Park.

4) No buried caches allowed, per normal.

5) Cline Falls State Park runs to the fenceline upstream. Private property past there even though the fence has been breached and a trail leads upstream.

6) Curtis has asked that I handle any problems you might encounter with cacheing in the parks as he would like us to self police and leave them out of it as much as possible. Less reports to write was my understanding, therefore the less complaints the higher ups hear about.

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Postby chienblanc on Wed Apr 20, 2005 6:11 pm

What about a waypoint as part of a multi in a place that is Verbotten? One that requires nothing to be left there.
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Postby logscaler on Wed Apr 20, 2005 6:23 pm

chienblanc wrote:What about a waypoint as part of a multi in a place that is Verbotten? One that requires nothing to be left there.


Myself, I see nothing wrong with that. Not any different then a virtual as far as I can tell.

The problem you might have is at GC.com where even waypoints within the 0.10 mile limit of another cache seem to have problems being allowed at times.

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Postby Mr. Snazz on Fri Apr 22, 2005 9:12 am

Apparently you can put a waypoint anywhere. You can even burry one. 'cause, ya know, there's nothing in the guidelines against that sort of thing.
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Postby logscaler on Fri Apr 22, 2005 9:37 am

I found a spot where Geocaching is not welcome.

Downtown Redmond by the Smokeshop is a little park.
I asked the owner of the smokeshop if I could place a small pill bottle cache there and I was just about thrown out of the place.
Basicly he said no but he could have used a lot less words and a milder tone in doing so. Last time I ever go in there.
No it is not a public park, which is why I asked. He escorted me out to the sidewalk and started naming and point towards a lot of parks in the area but seemed to be getting more worked up all the time so I thanked him for his time and I left.

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Postby PMOGUY on Fri Apr 22, 2005 10:56 am

logscaler wrote:I found a spot where Geocaching is not welcome.

Downtown Redmond by the Smokeshop is a little park.
I asked the owner of the smokeshop if I could place a small pill bottle cache there and I was just about thrown out of the place.
Basicly he said no but he could have used a lot less words and a milder tone in doing so. Last time I ever go in there.
No it is not a public park, which is why I asked. He escorted me out to the sidewalk and started naming and point towards a lot of parks in the area but seemed to be getting more worked up all the time so I thanked him for his time and I left.

Logscaler.


GEESH..what was his problem? Was he just having a bad day...or did he just not understand? Or maybe he is naturally nasty? You would think most business owners would welcome something that brings people to the area of their business...With that attitude his business will not make it...
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Help for a Newbie

Postby ladyroper73 on Thu May 19, 2005 7:33 pm

Hi,

My name is Krystal and I'm a long time resident of Central Oregon. I recently learned of geocaching and I'm eager to get involved in the adventure. My b/f and I are very familiar with land navigation, grid coordinates and using a GPS as we are both military and spent a year in Iraq where the handy GPS saved my butt several times. How can I go about getting actively involved? We have children and love to hike and would like to get outdoors more. Any hints or helpful ideas would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks!
Krystal
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Re: Help for a Newbie

Postby logscaler on Thu May 19, 2005 7:42 pm

ladyroper73 wrote:Hi,

My name is Krystal and I'm a long time resident of Central Oregon. I recently learned of geocaching and I'm eager to get involved in the adventure. My b/f and I are very familiar with land navigation, grid coordinates and using a GPS as we are both military and spent a year in Iraq where the handy GPS saved my butt several times. How can I go about getting actively involved? We have children and love to hike and would like to get outdoors more. Any hints or helpful ideas would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks!
Krystal
ladyroper73@yahoo.com


Welcome Krystal.



This may not have been the best thread to start your post in but it will work for now. I am sure Mr. Snaz can move it somewhere else to make a better fit for the subject.

Anyway, My suggestion would be to come up to the ine Mountain Star Party June 11th, 2005 and get swamped with ideas.

There are a lot of easy and kid friendly caches around the area. You could start out withy those caches having a 1/1 rating as those are the basic starters. This will give you an idea as to how things are being hidden, what we are useing for cache containers and a rough idea of trade items.

I would be more then willing to exchange e-mails with you if you have any more questions.

logscaler at yahoo.com

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Whose Park Am I?

Postby ladyroper73 on Fri Apr 11, 2008 1:09 pm

How do I find out who controls which parks in Bend? I am specifically referring to the Worrell Wayside which wraps around the areas by the state offices. I was planning a hide but not sure who I would need to clear it through.

Krystal

bigeddy wrote:Bend Metro Park and Recreation District
No restrictions although we should avoid riverbank and riparian areas next to the Deschutes River and Tumalo Creek.
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Re: Whose Park Am I?

Postby bigeddy on Fri Apr 11, 2008 4:27 pm

ladyroper73 wrote:How do I find out who controls which parks in Bend? I am specifically referring to the Worrell Wayside which wraps around the areas by the state offices. I was planning a hide but not sure who I would need to clear it through.

That's a good question and an interesting topic. In general, Central Oregon cachers do not bother to get permission unless the Groundspeak reviewer requires it which is rare. I often see caches published locally that are on private property or on sensitive public land for which I'm sure the cacher didn't get permission and the reviewer doesn't know or care about.

I can understand why in some cases. There's an intimidating number of federal, state, county and local agencies that own land. The agencies often have little or no understanding of geocaching. Answers can depend on who you talk to. I encourage cachers to research an area and to ask other cachers or property owners when in doubt. If there are no caches in an area there is probably a good reason. Bottom line is that it is your cache so do what you feel comfortable with.

I'm not sure where Worrell Wayside is located. Are you talking about the small park near the Bend & Deschutes County offices north of downtown? That land is owned by the County but there's already a cache there.

The Bend Metro Park & Recreation District lists their many parks and trails on-line, as does the smaller Redmond Area Park & Recreation District. For other properties I may check the County tax maps which are on-line but not easy for the layperson to interpret.

Wow, only 10 posts behind logscaler!
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Re: Whose Park Am I?

Postby ladyroper73 on Fri Apr 11, 2008 7:22 pm

bigeddy wrote:I'm not sure where Worrell Wayside is located. Are you talking about the small park near the Bend & Deschutes County offices north of downtown? That land is owned by the County but there's already a cache there.


oops, I thought I had checked the area for caches but I see that "Hill Cache" is actually a multi-cache that must end in that area. Well, drats, so much for that fabulous idea of mine, I'm a few years too late.

Krystal who is determined to place a physical cache besides The Big One she's planning
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