The Geocaching Blog


Lamp Post Cache Makeovers

Eric Schudiske on November 3, 2010, 12:29 pm

31 Comments | Permalink

Milestones

 

Lamp Post Cache Makeover

Underneath lamp posts skirts simmers a geocaching controversy.  Lamp post caches (LPCs) polarize opinions. A LPC is typically a small nondescript container placed under the metal skirt of a lamp post.   Some geocachers believe that LPCs are unimaginative hides and all too easy finds.

Other geocachers see LPCs as part of the spectrum of geocaches that provides accessibility for all players.  The ease of finding LPCs also offers geocachers the ability to string together dozens or hundreds of finds a day.

Julie Husting "IWillFindIt!!"

Geocachers like Julie Husting, IWillFindIt!!, see the base of lamp posts as a canvas for adding more creativity to geocaching.  She believes that lifting the metal skirt on a lamp post should be more like lifting a curtain on stage.  Julie creates scenes to surprise and entertain cachers looking for a quick LPC grab.

She adapted the idea from an LPC she discovered. Julie says, “I went to Fotomat GC17R5G by FishfulThinking which had a bunch of film canisters under it.  I thought that was really fun.  I got some cool tins at Disneyland.  One had the little green men from Toy Story on it.  I had a bunch of swag that had action figure toys so I put them on boards and put them in the Toys R Us parking lot and wrote a little story about them.  That was my first one — The Search for the Little Green Men  GC1D5FW. ”

Julie now has nearly twenty themed LPCs in the Southern California area.  She says her craft has evolved: “I started with the Disney tins (Nemo, pirates, princesses, Mickey Mouse, Toy Story), then I moved on to holidays.  Now it is whatever we find that we like.  My boyfriend, Bob, does the majority of the work on them now.  He has gotten much more elaborate with them than when we first started.”

A LPC by IWillFindIt!!

Their motivation comes from reading the logs as more and more geoachers seek out caches by IWillFindIt!! Julie says, “Most people appreciate the effort that goes into them and they write really nice logs.  One person even brought a girl scout troop to Find Nemo to teach them about caching.”

More geocachers will have a chance to discover LPCs like these.  Julie says, “My cousin, Sue aka $$tracker, also has some themed LPCs in the Santa Barbara area.  I will be sending one to be published in Texas pretty soon!”

What do you think?  Do you know other geocachers who are reinventing LPCs?

 

A LPC by IWillFindIt!!

  • http://www.hippiespelunker.com Lisa Marie Mary

    I would be so excited if I found one of these – what an AWESOME idea!! :D

  • http://twitter.com/brovie96 Seth Riedel

    Looks cool! I always liked lamp post caches, although I’ve only found one. And that was on my first day ever geocaching!

  • Mayberryman

    Anything that can make LPCs better. Not a fan of them, but I know my kids would love to find a “Toy Story” LPC.

  • Annie’nBill

    I would love to find a LPC like that. We’ve found many LPCs as we travel from state to state, but they are all very dull and boring. Maybe we’ll get back to CA in the future and head south – and maybe the idea will catch on in other states.

  • tvchick

    I’m relatively new to caching, and the LPC thing was sort of odd to me… and then i found my first IWillFindIt! hide — it’s actually the one with the African safari pics above! (GC1W4E7) It was the perfect timing for a find like hers. My friends were asking me what I find when I cache, and there was one in the parking lot, and when we lifted the lamp post skirt, we were all surprised! A great way to make an otherwise routine find a real discovery. Great job, IWFI!

  • Monterey Company Blog

    Don’t know others that are doing this but I love the accessibility offered by LPCs. Makes geocaching easy for those that are more urban friendly and can’t manage to get out into more rural areas for whatever reason.

  • John C Schuck

    I’m personally not a fan of LPC’s, but I understand that their easy access allows some people the ability to Geo-cache that don’t have the ability or mobility to find more difficult cache’s. The creativity shared by IWillFIndIt!! does make them more appealing. To bad you don’t have any in the upstate NY area.

  • JMarsh

    Very cool idea! This is a great way to make those lamp posts a little more interesting.

  • Lissus

    I LOVE finding IWFI’s LPC’s. They always bring a smile to my face when I lift the skirt. You just never know what cuteness awaits you under there :D

  • http://gordon.dewis.ca Keeper of Maps

    While these are very creative, in general we shouldn’t be encouraging this type of geocache. Most of them are placed on private property without permission from the landowner and they are potentially quite dangerous due to the wires most of them contain.

  • mhm39

    We’ve only ever found one LPC and we had never heard of it termed that way before. I know my kids get tired of hard to find nanos. More LPC’s like this would be fun for them.

  • dragon flyer

    Cute, but would never work here in BC; they’d have to be waterproof!

  • Geocache

    TOS !!!! electric 120v or even up tp 277v!

  • Doug4E

    I am not necessarily a big fan of LPC’s but I see the need as well. As for the electricity, these poles are usually powered by 208v or 277v. the wiring is not usually accessible from the lamp post skirt. The power is most often inside a cover plate about a foot up the pole. The skirt covers the bolts that hold the pole up, and these take a larger wrench than most geocachers carry with them.

  • guest

    I think those imaginative caches are so cute! Yes, lamppost caches are usually pretty easy and boring, but they are useful when you are short on time or trying to find a lot in one day. Also, they are less often muggled, so they are a good alternative to traditional caches in high-traffic areas. Furthermore, I never see any wires under most lamp skirts, just big bolts, so there is little danger of electrocuting anyone. I would be excited to find a LPC like those above in my area. However, I think they would get ruined by the rainstorms we have in Texas, as many lamppost skirts still let water in.

  • Grey Wolfe

    These type of caches if no wire exposed does not pose a risk. We need caches that are wheel chair friendly and for those who have problems walking. If they are made more interesting this way what a good idea.

  • http://gordon.dewis.ca Keeper of Maps

    You’re right. But it’s a Catch 22 situation: how do you tell if there are exposed or damaged wires unless you reach in, which can put you at risk? A quick virual inspection won’t necessarily reveal a problem. Best to leave them alone and put the caches somewhere else.

  • RocksNMud

    One of my local cache-hiders likes to put them under the metal skirt… “the usual guess: with a twist” as we say…. she uses either magnets or velcro to hid it up IN the skirt… this way when you find the cache, you lift it up, you look, put it down, continue searching until you think “Hmm. It HAS to be there somewhere…”

  • WADJED

    IMHO any cache that is hid properly with permission is a good cache weather it be LPC or 70mm ammo container it gets you out of the house and away from the television

  • Crz4gd

    We found some fun ones in the Santa Barbara area apparently $$tracker’s (very cute). It gave us the Idea to do one In our neck of the woods (N.Calif. My Hubby’s LPC is called the eyes have it and it has eyeballs looking up and the cache is a magnetic tin attached to the inside of the lifted skirt.

  • The_brown_duke

    I have no problem with LPC’s personally. They are real easy ways to get a quick find, and a great way to ease people into the sport. I haven’t found THAT many caches yet (only 70), but I’m way past the LPC’s as far as the difficulty I like to strive for. However, it’s a nice little warm up to start off a night, or finish a day of more creative and challenging geocaching.

    As far as the danger element goes… I have to disagree about the ever-looming danger. Granted, yes, every ONCE in a while I will lift a Lamp Post skirt and find wiring, but typically, there is a secondary panel bolted over the access hole to GET to the wires. I have yet to have found an LPC in the skirt of a post in which exposed wiring is present. It doesn’t take a genius to tell whether or not there are wires in the open! RULE OF THUMB: If there’s wires present on ANY side of the lamp, then move on to the next lamp before placing a cache!

  • goodtimin

    We enjoy the creativity of crafted LPS’s. Most caches are interesting. It’s nice to have a variety for all level of cachers. We are experienced cachers but, would find these caches fun.

  • EPMN

    Over the years in the many lpc hides I’ve found, I’ve never found exposed wires or a dangerous situation. You must live in an area that has a different style of lpc’s than I’ve run across in the states I’ve cached in.

  • Alanrrt

    I’ve found some of Julie’s caches, and think they’re great. True, LPC’s are not challenging, but look around when you go to an event. Many of the cachers are elderly, and are not physically able to go for a 5/5 cache on top of a mountain. That, and maybe I don’t want to go up to the mountains and spend the day looking for one 5/5 cache, and will go for the urban LPC’s for an hour or two. There’s enough caches for everyone, if you don’t like LPC’s, don’t go for them.

  • $$tracker

    Wonderful, we were hoping people would enjoy the idea and spread it to other areas!

  • Meeksboy

    Personally don’t see anything wrong with easy….some hard to find and some easy, what’s the problem?

  • Nate Danenberg

    I have to agree with Keeper of Maps. Private property. 277 Volts (usually). Skirts are made of sharp-edged sheet metal. LPCs are too easy. They shouldn’t be encouraged.

  • ventura_kids

    We love all lampost hides! We especially love those with pretty little scenery in them.
    We even partially like those that pour out crickets, beetles, or bugs…… just partially.

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