I thought it would be nice to add a Hints and Tips page where ideas can be passed on from Cacher to Cacher.

I'm starting off with a few of my own hints and tips...  if YOU have any ideas, Hints, Tips, Techniques you think
other Cachers will find useful please email details to me. I will include suitable ideas and give you the Credit.


Adding "Moss" to a Cache
If you intend hiding a cache in a woodland location where moss is present the addition of Moss to your Cache will help make it harder to find.
To add Real Moss quickly (though this will still take several weeks) simply wipe some yoghurt to the outside of the container.
Leave the container out in the open and let nature take effect. A covering of Moss will grow on the container as if by magic... the longer you
leave it in the open the better will be the effect. Don't keep it in bright sunlight... you dont find Moss in bright sunlight.. just make sure its in the shade and keep it damp.
You can speed things up by adding moss to the yoghurt covered container if you wish.


Drilling Holes for Caches
Its always best to use a Drill press or suitably large electric drill where possible.... a Brace and Auger Bit is fine for drilling Wood.
For Holes in Wood.. use to appropriate drill bit and ensure the object being drilled is securely held.
Larger holes can be difficult to drill so it's preferred to drill a Pilot Hole first.... but remember "Flat Bits" need a solid wood face
to create their own Pilot... you cannot pre-drill a pilot when using Flat Wood Bits or Auger Bits.
If you have access to Forstner bits use these for larger holes... the end result will be much cleaner....
Don't try to use a Forstner Bit in a hand held Drill...they are dangerous to use if not held secure !
Auger Bits are useful where you can use a Brace and Bit and where deeper holes are required.

In Stone, Concrete or Masonry always use a Masonry Bit at a slower speed.
If using a hand held electric drill don't exert too much downward pressure and don't use the Hammer function at first.
Too much force, high speeds and Hammer action will frequently shatter the object being drilled.

No matter what material you are drilling always take it easy and remove the cut waste periodically.


Natural Camouflage
There is no better way to camouflage a cache than to copy its surroundings !
I remember several instances where the cache was well hidden in a Silver Birch log placed in woodland....
Normally a very good way of disguising the container.... BUT...
DON'T place a Silver Birch log in a wood devoid of Silver Birch trees !!!
I know is should be obvious.. but its surprising how many Cachers forget this point.
DON'T hide a cache in a sandstone rock where the surrounding rocks are Limestone !!... and Visa Versa !
Don't place a large Log cache under a neatly trimmed hedgerow !!

LOOK around your intended Hiding spot before constructing the Cache.
Look at what trees are present... the Rock types... is the area Mossy.. are there Moss covered Rocks ?

If possible take a rock / branch away with you and use this to disguise your cache.
DON'T cause damage to the area though !!
Take a Photo of the surroundings... close up's too.. so you have something to jog your memory when you get home.

Want to suspend a Cache from a Tree ?
When you want to hang a Cache from a tree branch or similar please don't use the first Nylon Fishing line that you find.
OK.. Thin Mono Filament line is difficult to spot but it is also very weak when stressed and will degrade after exposure to sunlight.
If you visit a Fishing Tackle shop... or eBay... try to get hold of some "Braid" fishing line.
It's Much stronger than Nylon and doesn't degrade.
You don't need "Hi Tech braid".. cheap braid will be fine... and usually Green in Colour.
OK it's a little more expensive but the extra cost is worth it in the end... 20-30lb braid is ideal and wont break easily...
and you won't have to replace the cache when someone pulls a little too hard to retrieve the Cache !

Another use for Fishing Braid....
If your hide location is prone to flooding... the bank of a stream for example it's always a good idea to
tether the container to a firm structure , tree or bush with Fishing Braid.
If the area floods the tether will hold your cache instead of it being swept downstream and lost.
It's also useful tethering your cache to ensure it doesn't "grow legs" and move all by itself !
(Funny how some Cachers simply cannot put the cache back where they found it !)



Stuff to have in your Caching Bag...
Recently there have been a few postings on the Geocaching forums regarding the items you take with you
in your Caching Bag. Here are some of my personal MUST HAVE'S !
A Strong Reliable Torch is a Must.. preferably a LED Torch.
The batteries last much longer than "bulb torches" and the light from a LED Torch makes Nylon fishing line
fluoresce...  yep, its glows under LED light... another reason NOT to use Nylon Line
Hand Wipes or Hand Cleaner
Another essential in your Cache Bag. Most seasoned cachers have had the "YUCK.. what's that ?" experience.
Dog Poo... Tree Resin... Mud... Goo... ????
If you have a pack of moist hand wipes or hand cleaner ... you can quickly
clean your hands, Boots whatever and continue smiling ! without the need to carry water around with you.
And you won't get your GPS covered in the Muck !!
Telescopic Magnetic Tool
There are plenty of low cost Magnetic telescopic tools out there that will help retrieval of any ferrous object / cache.
If you drop a Mag nano by accident its surprisingly easy to retrieve it with such a tool.
Mine saved me a very embarrassing "FTF-FTL" a couple of years ago... (FTL = First to LOOSE by the way)
I was hunting a Mag nano located on a bridge over a stream at 11pm one November evening... FTF of course !!
It was craftily placed on the head of a bolt on the underside of the wooden bridge...
Not visible from above I decided to use the "Touchy feely" Method...
My "Touchy Feel" was a little too strong and the nano dropped off landing 3 feet below me amidst the Bankside vegetation !
Luckily my "TeleMag Tool" allowed me to reach and retrieve it saving a very slippy decent down the steep bank
and possible Splash into the Cold Water !!
I got the FTF !!! instead of an FTL !!
Tweezers to get the log out of a nano
A MUST have for sure... nearly as important as a good reliable spare pen or two.
Remember.. No signature in the Log = NO FIND !
Spare Logs and Pencils so you can replace cache contents to help the CO
Nice if you remember them... !!
First Aid Stuff
Plasters, Bandage etc... a small low cost basic First Aid kit is surprisingly useful in your Cache Bag.
Spare Batteries for your GPS and Torch.
Obvious Really ! but most of us forget the Obvious till it's too late and your GPS or Torch fails !!

OK.. that's me done for now...
What Ideas, Tip's etc do YOU HAVE ?
eMail me with your ideas for inclusion on this page.



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