Canadian Experiment An Event In Itself

The rules are clear: Event caches “should not be set up for the sole purpose of drawing together geocachers for an organised geocache search” – unless you live in Ontario, Canada that is.

Until December 31st, geocachers in the province (shown below in red) can hold an event just to find other caches as part of a trial organised by their local Groundspeak reviewers.

At the end of the two months, the listing service will then decide whether to make this concept a permanent, worldwide feature.

Trial spokesman CacheDrone announced the experiment via GC.com’s forums on October 28th, saying it “should be viewed as a one-time opportunity to explore a new way to be social with fellow geocachers”, rather than “an indicator of future developments”.

“Recently the reviewers of Ontario approached Groundspeak with a request. We asked if Ontario could be used for a two-month period to test the idea of allowing an event to be listed for the sole purpose of group caching (an organised cache hunt). We are pleased to announce that they agreed.

“We are very interested to see what the community creates during this period and how these events are received. This test is exclusive to Ontario and will end on December 31st.

“With the exception of allowing group hunts, all other guidelines still apply to the review process, like the 14 days’ advance notice. It should go without saying that each of these events, the logs posted on them and any forum feedback will be tracked for discussion with Groundspeak at the end of the test. We look forward to this study and your feedback.”

Reaction online was mostly positive, as best summed up by this comment from Zor of New Brunswick: “To be perfectly blunt, it’s about time.”

But later, Ontario’s Gregory Pleau (GC handle: northernpenguin) queried on the Toronto Area Geocachers website whether the experiment would mean a new social dynamic – “with regular caching events bringing more cachers together” – or if it could mean losing sight of bigger gatherings as they are “drowned out by a sea of ‘Lamp Post Micro Events’”.

“Is this another quantity over quality concession from Groundspeak – power trails for event cachers? Time will tell – at the end of the day, how Ontario geocachers respond to this experiment could define the future of events for everyone.”

Among the first trial events listed was GC36T6J GHMGC – Orangeville – November 12 (Group Caching) by res2100 for the “26th monthly outing of the Golden Horseshoe Monthly Geocaching Club“. And it is regular gatherings such as these that will likely receive the most attention from Groundspeak at the experiment’s conclusion.

Community relations manager Sandy Barker told It’s Not About The Numbers that the company had been keen to support the idea “as the request for organising cache hunts on Geocaching.com is one that we have fielded more frequently in recent times”.

Groundspeak lackeys would discuss the trial’s findings in the new year, though Barker said the company had “no specific timeframe for implementing this cache types, should we decide to go ahead”.

“Importantly, we will want to ensure that it is a positive contribution to the game.”

In the meantime, kjwx will be keeping her fingers crossed. Check back early next year for an update.

* Do you agree with Groundspeak’s event cache trial? Let us know below.



  1. kjwx

    UPDATE: A savvy INATN reader has pointed out a handy work-around for those of us not living in Ontario. Apparently, you too can hold a group ‘cache hunt’ if you promote the event as a walking tour.
    “An organised tramp or walk event is acceptable (unless things have changed since 2008), as long as caching isn’t mentioned,” they write.

  2. AndrewRJ

    In my neck of the woods the event is a dinner and the cache page just happens to mention that a bunch of us will be caching along a predefined route for the entire day. With links to the route, start times etc…

  3. Bluelamb03

    I hosted one of these new event caches this weekend, “The geoMob goes forth….” GC36YXG" rel="nofollow">http://coord.info /GC36YXG
    The Saturday Morning Caching Club, aka the ‘geoMob’, gets together every Saturday morning for a group cache hunt. This last Saturday was no different, only this time we got another find just for showing up for breakfast. I’m not sure if it added anything to our day, except to bring out an number of people other than the regulars. It was a novelty though…

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