Sunday, September 15, 2019

Offset Geocaches and how to do them

This week we are discussing Offset Geocaches

An "OFFSET" or Projection Geocache is where you:
1) go to the posted coordinates on the cache page,
2) get some information either from something at the coordinates
or from information on the cache page,
3) do some MATH {OH NO!, not THAT!!!} and then,
4) determine your next place to search.

Ideally, this "next place to search" would mean going to the new
coordinates and looking for the cache container but...
it could be a multi-staged geocache meaning, you  you start over at step 2 above
and continue until you reach the place where the container is!

Is an offset cache a multi or a puzzle????
There is quite a lot of discussion on this topic.
Here are some exerts from the Geocaching Forums

Offset caches are a variation on multi-caches. They are listed as a multi-cache
when selecting a cache type. They are not found by simply going to some
coordinates and finding a cache there. With the offset cache the published
coordinates could be of an existing historical monument, plaque, or even a
benchmark that you would like to have your cache hunter visit. At this spot,
the hunter looks for numbers or information already appearing on the marker
or on some part of the marker or site (geocachers NEVER deface public or
private property). The geocacher is then able to manipulate these numbers
using instructions posted on the cache page to continue the hunt.

For instance, the official designation of "multi" is actually "multi-cache." In
an offset, there is only one cache with multiple stages. Virt cache stages aside,
if there are multiple stops it's considered a multi. Where's the caches?
Further, if you have an offset where your don't have to visit the anchor coords
it is a puzzle, if you do it's a multi. What if visiting the anchor is optional,
say to get a hint is you're having problems solving the puzzle?

In my humble opinion, if there is such a thing...

If you have to visit the coordinates on the cache page, find some
information there, then do some MATH (Oh No Again!), then go
find the container - it is a Multi - even if there is more than one place to
get information.

Am I correct - I think so!

Now the MATH portion of the geocache!!!

To do an Offset or projection, you need 3 things

1) your starting point - lucky for us - it is usually right where you are!  I have seen
and actually own a couple of geocaches where you go to the coordinates on the page
and then search for something (in my cases, usually a particular sign) and then that
point is your actual starting point.

2) A direction - this is sometimes called a bearing.  Bearings are usually expressed
in degrees but I have seen more than one cache that listed the bearing in an odd
unit of measurement which we then had to convert to degrees.  Just like a circle,
a compass has 360 degrees with 0 degrees being North, 90 degrees East, 180 degrees
South and 270 degrees is West.

3) The last item you need is a distance - or how far you are to travel
in the particular direction you were given in #2 above.  Now some cache
owners make it easy on you and simple tell you to go XX number of feet East.  Then again
you could be told to go YYYYYYYY number of inches West.  Make sure you convert
those inches, feet, centimeters, etc to the correct type before doing your calculations!
No! - you do not need the paper and pencil - APPs are our friend!!!

There are numerous ways of calculating the bearing and distance but
here are 2 easy ways that I know of.  I repeat - there ARE other ways of doing this!

using the c:geo app
from the main menu, look for "Go To"

At the top is Coordinates.  You can either enter your own coords OR
press "My Coordinates" and your current coords will be entered

Below that is "From the position"

Enter the Bearing in DEGREES
Enter the Distance
you have several choices for distance (meters, kilometers, feet, yards, or miles)

Then press the Compass symbol (4th from right at top)

follow the compass all the way to GZ!!!

using my Garmin eTrex Touch
from the main menu, look for and press "Sight 'N Go"

A compass pops up.  Rotate until the correct bearing
is obtained and press LOCK DIRECTION.

Press Project Waypoint.  Select your distance units (Miles, Yards,
Feet, Kilometers, Meters or Nautical Miles) then enter the amount.
Click on the checkmark - press save and your compass will come up!!!

follow the compass all the way to GZ!!!

As I said above - there are numerous tools and
apps out there to do your projection.

You can try the steps above or find another app you like
and search for how to do a projection!!!

That is all for now
Till next time...

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Stay Safe & Keep Caching!!!

Suffolk Nana & Papa
 - - - or just plain ol' - - -






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