Geocaching is an exciting outdoor recreational activity, akin to a treasure hunt, that involves participants using a GPS or mobile device to hide and seek containers, called “geocaches” or “caches,” at specific locations marked by coordinates all over the world. As geocaching has grown in popularity, more enthusiasts are looking to create their own caches. However, before you can join the ranks of these creative individuals, you must first understand the process of getting your geocache approved. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the typical timeline for geocache approval and offer tips to ensure your submission goes smoothly.


Understanding the Geocache Approval Process

The approval process is crucial to ensure that all geocaches meet specific guidelines which maintain the integrity and spirit of geocaching. These guidelines are set by Geocaching.com, the primary platform for geocachers around the globe, and are enforced by volunteer reviewers. The process is designed to ensure that caches are safe, legal, and in line with environmentally responsible practices.

 


Step-by-Step Timeline for Geocache Approval

  1. Submission: The first step is to submit your geocache for review. This includes filling out a detailed form on Geocaching.com, where you’ll provide information about the location, container, and any hints or puzzles involved in finding the cache.
  2. Initial Review: Once submitted, your cache will undergo an initial review by a volunteer reviewer. Reviewers aim to assess your submission within about 7 days, but this can vary depending on the reviewer’s workload and the complexity of your cache.
  3. Clarifications and Modifications: If there are any issues with your geocache, such as proximity to other caches or accessibility concerns, the reviewer will contact you for clarification or to request modifications. This step can add additional time to the approval process.
  4. Approval: Once any issues have been resolved and your cache meets all the necessary guidelines, the reviewer will approve your geocache. You will receive a notification, and your cache will go live on Geocaching.com for others to find.

Factors Influencing Approval Time

  • Cache Density: In areas with many existing geocaches, approval might take longer as reviewers ensure that new submissions are not too close to existing ones.
  • Legal Permissions: Some locations require permission from local authorities or landowners. Having these permissions in place beforehand can speed up the approval process.
  • Reviewer Availability: Geocache reviewers are volunteers, so their availability can affect how quickly your cache is reviewed.

Tips to Speed Up Your Geocache Approval

  • Read the Guidelines: Familiarize yourself with the geocaching guidelines before submitting your cache. This can reduce the need for modifications and speed up approval.
  • Prepare Documentation: If your cache requires permission from landowners or local authorities, have all the necessary documentation ready and included in your submission.
  • Check for Geocache Saturation: Avoid placing your cache in an area dense with other caches. Use the map tool on Geocaching.com to find less crowded locations.
  • Communicate Efficiently: If a reviewer contacts you with questions or requests for modifications, responding promptly can help expedite the process.

Conclusion

The time it takes for a geocache to be approved can vary widely, typically ranging from a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on a variety of factors. By understanding the approval process and preparing your submission thoughtfully, you can ensure a smoother and quicker review process. Whether you’re a seasoned geocacher or new to the game, creating and successfully getting your geocache approved is an incredibly rewarding experience that adds to the adventure and community spirit of geocaching.

Happy Geocaching!

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