If you found a cache, what would you do?

Discussion in 'General Preparedness Discussion' started by gypsysue, Jul 23, 2011.

  1. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    Our son was on a Search & Rescue call, combing an area of National Forest with his team, looking for a missing boy.

    He spotted something that looked out of place and went to investigate, and it was someone's cache of emergency food, ax, rain poncho, etc. Our son covered it back up and left it. Growing up in a prepper family he knew that the life of whoever put the cache there might depend on those supplies being there when he/she needs them.

    We've spent a lot of time speculating about the person who made the cache. Are they a good guy or a bad guy? Another prepper? Someone on the run? Someone who hikes or horsebacks in the area? How long has it been there? How many more are out there? This was near Glacier park, just a few weeks ago. It's a very remote area and there are people who hike or horseback through the area, sometimes 25 to 50 miles from a town or other people. So it's feasible it's one of those 'regulars'. The weather can turn nasty up there without warning.

    I'm glad he left the cache alone. If nothing else, he knows it's possible it'll still be there if HE needs it out in the wilderness some time.

    It's been food for thought here in our house, both about how we'd feel and act if we found a cache, and about what others would do if they found something we'd cached.

    PS: Boy was found, boy was fine.
  2. tugboats

    tugboats Well-Known Member

    This is both an ethical and moral problem. Schools no longer teach ethics and are barred from teaching morals. My ethics dictate that if it is not yours leave it alone. Considering your other premise of to whom it belongs "a good guy or a bad guy" creates several questions for me. I have never pondered such a situation. This is a great thread. It has given me food for thought and will be the subject of our evening meal tonight.

    I believe that we all have a basic goodness but this can be over-ridden easily by greed or by a feeling of entitlement. My first inclination would be to leave the stash alone and deal with the ramifacations later. I prefer not to judge others only on circumstance. But, on the other hand, am I opening myself up to serious problems in the future?

    This is why I prefer this site over similar ones. Great posts and food for thought. It will be interesting to see the responses of the rest of the folks.

    Great subject.

  3. weedygarden

    weedygarden Well-Known Member

    I would do exactly as your son did. I would cover it back up and leave it alone. I have read on some blogs that people are putting caches in various places. In one area, many people have 5 acre plots. They buy the shipping containers, fill them up and leave them on their land. The problem is that there are people who "work" these areas, and these containers are ravaged and robbed, and then left to the elements.

    When I read this, I thought that I had considered doing this very thing: having some land and putting something like a shipping container there to prepare. To read that these are pillaged helped me to realize the need to either leave a cache that is well hidden, or not leave a cache at all, but to plan to have all of my stuff with me so that I can protect my preps.
  4. Barfife

    Barfife Member

    My father used to have a saying, "If it is not yours son...leave it alone". It served me well.

    In my 60 plus years, I added another phrase that I came to use with both my children and with employees when I was in banking. "Honesty is like pregnancy.....either you are or you're not."
  5. kyhoti

    kyhoti Member

    I have to wonder: how well or poorly was this stuff hidden? If it was an important back-up location for me, it wouldn't where anyone, SAR or otherwise, would spot anything "out of place".

    Now onto the ethical/moral bit. I would take note of the cache, "just in case". That's me not kidding myself. But would I take stuff? Under the most dire of circumstances, yes. I would hope that things haven't gotten that far down the pike, because at that point I would have to be out of my primary location, out of my secondary location and on foot. Hell-in-a-hand-basket wouldn't even begin to describe it. I wish I would be staunch enough to not touch stuff that's not mine, but in the situation I envision, all bets are off.

    As a flip-side of the coin thought, if I was feeling really altruistic at the point when I found the cache (pre-fan, that is), I would leave a dated note with an e-mail address, something like 'Hey, I found your stuff. You can move it if it freaks you out, or if you're a prepper, find me at this e-mail and let's chat."
  6. Frugal_Farmers

    Frugal_Farmers Good ole country folk

    Your son certainly did the right thing.

    Fortunately for the cacher, you son had the right moral character. Others may have taken the goodies.

    Regaurdless of who left the cache, it belongs to them and should be left alone.
  7. mdmountainman

    mdmountainman New Member

    It could also be a backcountry hunter. I know a guy who leaves caches in backcountry locations where he has to hike long distances to get to his spot.
  8. Magus

    Magus Scavenger deluxe

    Found money.

    as long as its not on private property or has his name on it.
  9. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

    My first thought was "it wasn't hidden very well"!!:rolleyes:
  10. BillS

    BillS Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't take it because it doesn't belong to me. I'd cover it back up.
  11. IrritatedWithUS

    IrritatedWithUS Well-Known Member

    I walked into a field of marijuana one time. I immediately walked out!!
    I let it be. I see on the news that it's "drug cartels" planting
    marijuana here of late but honestly, how do they know
    without doing surveillance? It's easy to say it's a drug cartel
    I just think it was a local's stash. It was a field but nowhere
    near the size that you see drug cartels use.
  12. tsrwivey

    tsrwivey Supporting Member

    I would leave it alone, perhaps leave a note letting them know they need to hide it better.
  13. Tirediron

    Tirediron RockyMountainCanadian

    A lot of good points so far, Without a dire need I i would leave it alone, but also think that a note pointing out the poor camo job would be in order. If you want your cache there when you need it it needs to be hard for you to find, when you know where it is.I HATE locks :gaah: and those who make them nessicary are not my favorite sort of people either.
  14. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    My son left it alone because his first thought was that someone who depended on it being there might die if he needed it and it was gone.

    You have to understand my son. He grew up in a prepping family, and he's spent a great deal of his life in remote places where your life can depend on the supplies you carry or on what you can find. This cache had firemaking supplies in it, along with the othe rthings. He would have felt responsible if his act of taking it led to someone else's death. An average person would not have stumbled across this cache. A person who's spent a lot of time in the woods and has caching experience might have. With geo-caching as a hobby (in the west anyway) more and more people are doing it.

    The main thing that came out of his finding the cache is the speculation and discussion in our family since then. I've spent time searching my own thoughts, both regarding that cache, and some I've made. I wouldn't have used the things from that cache my son found unless my own life was on the line. I would expect that if someone found mine and needed the things to survive, that they would use them. Same with our home, which is a cabin in a remote place. If we're gone and some lost person stumbles out of the woods, I hope they come in, make a fire, and start some tea or coffee. If they leave before we get back, they better not take anything with them they don't need to survive, and it would be nice if they rinsed the coffee cup! :D

    My son spends half his summer out with SAR looking for lost or missing people, usually hikers, or kids who wandered away from camp. They just got called out again about 15 minutes ago, but I don't have details yet, just the location of where the search is starting from.
  15. headhunter

    headhunter Member

    It looks like there are two basic assumptions than could be made: 1) The person who built the cache is evil and may do harm, or 2) the person is likely like me, a good person just trying to get by. From the tone of what has been the responses, although we gather here perhaps a little worried about our futures, most replies are tending to view this unknown cache builder as a person lile themselves trying to get by. It is good to see we are still positive people!
  16. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    Every now and then there are people running from the law (or an ex-wife or something) and they take to the woods.

    But I'm thinking it was made by someone who hikes, hunts, or rides horses through the area and wanted to be prepared in case of bad weather or injury. Rain or snow can move in over a mountain top literally out of the blue, and you can be trapped in one place for a while. At least that's what we've more or less decided the situation is.

    It's been nice to get input and thoughts from all of you.
  17. Sourdough

    Sourdough ExCommunicated

    Wow.......I have got the impression that some of you do NOT have several hidden caches.......Very interesting.

    Just for information, I leave easy to find (semi-cache) mostly things like gold pans, tools, coats packed in moth-balls, about 200 yards from the real cache. This is a decoy, and if disturbed, is a clear warning to me.

    I just do not understand why everyone does not have several caches...:scratch
  18. mmszbi

    mmszbi Junior Member

    Unfortunately, some of us are just getting started and the home front is the priority at this time.
    Eventually a cashe or hundred is on the list, but getting the woodstove put in, the food canned, bagged, bucketed, firewood split and stacked, BOB's purchased, packed, repacked, repacked again, lots of extra clothes for family found, purchased, packed away, first aid supplies purchased and organized, water storage set up, ammo reloaded and stocked, garden planted, tended and harvested, chicken coop built and the million other things for buggin in situated with very little disposible income......well, it's down the list a ways.:cool:
  19. TimB

    TimB Member

    I think he did the right thing by leaving it alone. I would tend to believe it belongs to someone who uses the area regularly (as you said, hunter, hiker, etc.). Usually, someone on the run hasn't planned that far ahead as to make caches. IF it was on my property, I would note the location and discreetly keep an eye on it. I wouldn't take it, especially if it was in my BOL, so as not to alert the owner that someone was in the area. But to be brutally honest, if push came to shove on down the road, I most likely would take it. :ignore:

  20. tugboats

    tugboats Well-Known Member

    We had our family discussion on this last evening. These were our first impressions of the cache. Because it was not extremely well hidden it was cached to be there only for a short time. It was an emergency cache. The person(s) that cached it did so only for insurance. As a family, when they were young, we would cache items about halfway from our base camp(usually a campground) and our intended point of interest. Our caches were never needed. However, if they were we would have been up "manure creek without any means of locomotion" if some one helped themselves to our equipment.

    We never went to extreme lengths to hide our supplies. We always assumed (yeah....I know) that others did the same thing and would honor our stash, as we respected thier equipment. We also discussed the various situations that would force us to take advantage of others equipment. It would be a dire and life threatening situation. I know that I would not begrudge anyone that was in a true life or death situation. Use my equipment, do not take it for yours.

    Another issue that came up was: "Does lack of planning on your part constitute an emergeny on my end?". No it does not! We can not plan and have everything in all situations. However, there are so many that do not need think that they do not have to plan for tommorow. Compassion and kindness can only go so far.

    Today I stopped for gas on my way home from church. I saw a guy buy 1 pack of cigarettes, 1 coffee and $4.00 in gas. I, jokingly, said to the clerk: " how far can you go on four bucks of gas?" His reply was that this guy does the same thing every day. This is the kind of "failure to plan ahead" that has me concerned the most. Can you get anymore short term in your planning?

    I thought I had this all reasoned out......WRONG. Observing this idiot has now made me think. How long would a numb n*ts like this last before banging on someones door, or even worse, smash it in for his basic needs. This has messed up my normal charitable nature. A person like this needs to be " drop kicked through the goal posts of life".

    On all of our camping trips we had people help us out, as well as our helping them out. Ever go camping and leave the salt at home? Cooking oil? Matches? Marshmellows? Something? We all have helped out those that omitted something as many times as we have been helped out. I will always help those that are willing to help themselves. Just don't help yourself to my goods without asking .

    I want my Country back!