An alternative geocaching glossary

I often get questions from new cachers about caching terminology, so let me introduce;

    ‘The Alternative Geocaching Glossary’

Ammo Can: mythical cache container rarely used these days, akin to finding the Holy Grail but that the previous finder couldn’t close properly.

Attribute Icons: buttons that COs press randomly when creating a cache to get to the submit button as quickly as possible resulting in skidoos being recommended for town centre nanos.

Bison: These shiny metallic caches come with a ring which rusts faster than any other metal known to man. They also mysteriously become ultra-camoed when you drop them in the undergrowth.

BoT: this is a very helpful hint that lets you know that you are deep in a forest and that your GPS signal might be a bit dodgy.

BYOP: this means the CO doesn’t live near an IKEA.

Caching Kit Bag: this should contain a multi-purpose tool (hammer), a loo roll, several film pots complete with logs for throw downs whenever you don’t find a cache after 30 seconds of searching, a spare multi-purpose tool (a bigger hammer) in case your primary tool gets damaged trying to extract the log from some pesky home-made container.

Challenge Cache: caches that require you to fiddle your stats a bit before signing them.

Dipping: this is what you do with a TB when you planned to drop it off at a cache but forgot to take it with you.

D/T Rating: a scale from 1-5 which some COs must think runs from 5-1.

DNF: a log used to let the CO know their coords are off and their hint is useless.

EarthCache: caches to do when you’ve forgotten your pen.

Event: a place you go to find out more information about the caches you couldn’t find.

FTF: a cache you do in your pyjamas and slippers at 1.30am using a pen torch with a fading battery. The one where you have to find a thorn to stab your thumb in order to sign the log in blood as you didn’t bring a pen but which no one else bothers to find for 2 days. Hint: used by the CO to perfectly describe a spot 6m from the cache on the other side of the path.

Lab Cache: a type of mobile cache because it’s currently in the mouth of a dog.

Letterbox: a magical type of cache that has the power to make your fingers turn blue.

Magnetic: the GZ will contain all of the following: metal fences and posts, wrought iron gates, drainpipes, lampposts, traffic signs, street signs, shop signs, a dog poo bin, an overfilled regular bin, two of those grey box thingies that you think might be something to do with phone lines or broadband but which no one ever seems to open, beer barrels, bus stops, giant metallic sculptures, cattle grids, a huge black anchor, drain covers and the Eiffel tower. The cache will have lost its magnet and will eventually be found in a tree.

Mega-Event: where you drive 700kms to buy a very expensive new type of cache container you’ve never seen before only to discover that dozens of them have been put out on your local patch while you’ve been away.

Mega-Event Caching: this is where you log 50 caches online without doing any searching. The key is to quickly determine which of the dozens of people at each GZ is the current keeper of the log and then shout your caching name at them louder than anyone else.

Moogled: When there’s a bull between you and the cache.

Personal Stamps: very popular at caches placed for events where these titanic devices are used to print caching names in font size 72 in a perpendicular fashion across 20 lines of the log thus rewarding the CO with a NM log within minutes of a cache being published.

Multi: a cache where the CO requires you to adopt the travel plans of a party leader the day before a general election before you eventually find a nano with a full log behind a hawthorn covered road sign 3m from the starting coords.

Nano: a cache with similar properties to a tent, when you get it out its damp and smells musty and then it’s impossible to get it back in again.

Needs Archived: this is the log type you use when you’ve failed to find a cache three times and you just want it to stop blighting your smiley face map.

Needs Maintenance: a helpful message to the CO to let them know they need to sharpen the cache pencil, that one side of the log is now full, and that there’s a slug they need to remove from the outside of the box.

Owner Maintenance: this is a log type you use to stop getting nag messages when you are about to submit a new cache in the hope that someone has sharpened the pencil for you, that some cachers realise you can sign the back of the log and that the slug has slithered off the box all by itself.

Park n Grab: a roadside cache with handy parking for fly tippers.

Pocket Query: this is where you pat yourself down wondering where you put your pen after signing the last cache.
Recycled Containers: as cachers we like to do our bit for the environment so don’t spend a couple of quid on a water-proof clip lock box when there’s a free Lidl’s coleslaw container in your recycling box.

Replaced as Found: a code used in a found it log to let the CO know that you put the cache back on top of the dog poo bin you found it on but you suspect a previous finder might have forgotten to put it back after signing.

Reviewer: the person who waits for you to get in the bath before publishing a cache outside your house.

Stealth Required: this attribute tells you that the muggle density at the GZ is so high that’s there’s no point waiting for the area to become muggle-free before starting your search.

Swaps: all caches should contain the following items: a golf ball no self-respecting golfer would ever use, a mini 7 of spades, a pink hair band, an earwig, a musty Mcdonalds toy from 2009, 3 woodlice, a used train ticket from Pontefract, a damp moldy card saying Heinrich and Gertrude from Dusseldorf found this cache, a liberal sprinkling of mouse droppings and not forgetting the pencil sharpener complete with non-functioning pen which you try to use anyway but it rips a big hole in the damp log.

TB: items that have been specifically designed to be slightly larger than the cache they’ve just been placed in. TB Hotel: a cache guaranteed not to contain a TB.

TFTC: Too Flabbergasted To Comment – the comment left when the experience of finding the cache, the view at GZ, the ingenuity of the container and the cleverness of the hide have rendered the finder utterly speechless, even by typing. This is the most prized of all logs to receive as CO.

Throw Down: Where you help the CO by replacing a cache before it been muggled with the added bonus that future finders now have a choice of two to find.

Tweezers Required: this is where the CO suggests you mash your biro nib into the end of the cache until you’ve left enough black streaks on the log to count as signing.

Virtual: another type of cache you do when you’ve forgotten your pen.

Write Note: a log used by those special cachers who never have a DNF.


I have been geocaching since Feb 2012 having lots of fun discovering new places that I may otherwise have missed.