GeoPath

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GeoPath is a collection of Geocaches grouped to form a special project.

General Information

A GeoPath must contain a minimum of 5 caches to be published. The user who publishes a GeoPath is called its mentor. Other users (founders) may later add caches to an existing Geopath.

When a geocacher finds a cache and logs it as Found, it is also automatically marked as Found in the GeoPath. Once the user has found a defined number of geocaches in a GeoPath, he/she may log the GeoPath as Completed.

GeoPath types

  • Geopath-sketch.png Geo-sketch - caches form a shape on the map (star, letter, etc)
  • Geopath-touristic.png Touristic - caches near tourist attractions: monuments, scenic viewpoints, etc.
  • Geopath-nature.png Nature - caches placed in nature
  • Geopath-thematic.png Thematic - series of caches all dedicated to a specific theme (e.g. castles, abandoned railway, etc)

Location

The GeoPath module is available from the main menu (left side of the page).

Display Options

The GeoPath main page shows all existing GeoPaths both as a list and on the map. Additionally you can adjust display options such as the types of GeoPaths to display and several filtering and sorting options. By default, the map shows the entire country.

  • Display selected GeoPath type - can display all or only a specific type of GeoPaths.
  • Sort by - Sort the various parameters
  • Sort direction - ascending or descending
  • Hide completed - this option hides completed GeoPaths
  • Hide my own - hide your own GeoPaths from the list
  • Hide miniGeoPaths - hides GeoPaths with less then 25 caches

Click on a GeoPath name to show it's caches (as map and list), parameters and description. On the right side of the map there is a button that will display these caches on the full screen Map v3.

GeoPaths list

GeoPaths listed here are shown in a table that contains the following information:

  • Name - name of the GeoPath
  • Type - type of GeoPath (see above)
  • Scoring - the maximum points available for that Geopath
  • Publication date - when the GeoPath was published
  • Number of caches - is the number of caches in the project (this is not the minimum number of caches required to complete the GeoPath)
  • Completed - how many geocachers have completed the GeoPath (i.e. found the minimum number of caches and also logged the GeoPath as completed)

Categories

The system applies a simple categorization rule according to the number of caches in a Geopath:

  • GeoPath - a project consisting of 25 or more caches
  • MiniGeoPath - a small project with at least 5 caches, but less then 25

Managing GeoPaths

Requirements

A GeoPath project can be created by experienced users, thus a user must have at least 50 finds (of any type) to create a GeoPath.

This limit is specific to each Opencaching node and may change in the future, depending on how Opencaching and GeoPaths evolve.

GeoPath founders (owners)

A GeoPath may only be created (mentored) by a user that fullfils the requirement above.

Once a GeoPath exists, any user, regardless of the number of finds to his record, may add caches to that GeoPath. If your found count hasn't reached 50 but you have a great idea for a Geopath, you may ask a fellow geocacher with more than 50 finds for help, and set up the GeoPath together.

The user who creates the GeoPath has the ability to add (or remove) other users as founders of the GeoPath. After this, each founder has the same rights on the GeoPath, which allows them to work together on it.

Create a new GeoPath

  1. Click GeoPaths on the left menu. All visible GeoPaths will be shown.
  2. Click Create a new GeoPath on the top menu-bar.
  3. Give your GeoPath a name
  4. Select the type of your GeoPath
  5. Select whether it should be visible right away. You may keep your GeoPath invisible while still working on it and publish it later by making it visible.
  6. Choose the % required to complete this GeoPath as the minimum percentage of caches from this path that must be found before a user can log the GeoPath as Completed.
  7. Write a description for your GeoPath using the visual editor. (allows formatting, changing of text color, add images, create tables).
  8. When everything is done, click on Save new GeoPath.

GeoPath Description

Besides the basic description of your GeoPath project, you should include all necessary information about what is required of a geocacher to properly complete the GeoPath. (e.g. equipment, tools, distances, schedules, lodging, etc). If the GeoPath has a final cache itself (physical box) as a completion bonus and not listed as a standalone cache, the description must also contain all info on how to calculate/obtain it's coordinates. (an existing cache can be nominated as final/bonus cache of the GeoPath).

Adding and deleting geocaches

After defining a GeoPath you must add at least 5 geocaches to it.

Upon saving the GeoPath you will see the list of your own caches. Select the caches to add to the GeoPath. You can also add geocaches that are not yet published (status = not yet available).

The recommended method is to create an invisible GeoPath, work on it to describe it properly, add all relevant geocaches and when you are finished, publish the GeoPath (i.e. make it visible).

Make your GeoPath as a whole project. Adding caches later, after some people completed it, changes things and may not impact well on other prospective finders.

At the bottom of the list of geocaches it is possible to select a cache to be the final (or bonus) cache.

Adding founders

When a GeoPath project involves several people, they can be set as founders of the GeoPath and have the same rights as the mentor. Each one can then add their own caches to the GeoPath, add other fellow geocachers and also delete and edit the GeoPath.

  1. Click Your GeoPaths select the appropriate GeoPath.
  2. Click Add / Remove at the bottom.
  3. Enter the username of the founder to add and click Add.

From now on the new founder will see this GeoPath under Your GeoPaths and can add caches using Add your own caches.

Adding geocaches owned by other users (not founders)

It is possible to add geocaches owned by another user that is not among the founders.

Example: if someone mentored a GeoPath with 100 caches and some time later another user publishes a geocache that matches this GeoPath's idea, a founder can add such a cache using "Add other cache", entering its waypoint (e.g. OK0001).

Removing caches from a GeoPath

Geocaches can be removed from a GeoPath only up until it is completed for the first time. After that, the founder(s) cannot remove caches from the GeoPath, they can only add more.

A cache that is part of a GeoPath may be archived, this does not remove it from the GeoPath.

GeoPath founders must be careful to edit the GeoPath parameters if necessary (e.g. minimum percentage required) such that the GeoPath can still be completed. (avoid situations such as too many caches being archived so the minimum percentage can no longer be attained)

Under special circumstances only, a cache may be reported to the OC Team along with a request to remove it from the GeoPath. OC Team will then decide, on a case-by-case basis. OC Team members are the only ones with the right to remove a cache from a GeoPath after it's first completion, although the recommended method is archiving.

Minimum Required Finds % (MRF)

This is the percentage of found geocaches (out of the total number of geocaches in a GeoPath) that is required to log a GeoPath as Completed.

Please keep in mind that fewer geocachers will be able to find caches with high difficulty or terrain. You should set MRF to less than 100% and as a founder you should think carefully before setting this parameter.

OC Team requires MRF ≥ 67%.

The founder(s) must maintain MRF at a sufficient level such that the GeoPath can be completed. Bear in mind that some caches may go missing or be archived over time. The number of caches required to complete the path cannot be greater then the number of caches actually active (status = Ready to be found). Either decrease MRF or maintain missing caches to avoid this.

If the founder(s) do not take action for a prolonged period of time when a GeoPath can no longer be completed, OC Team may block that GeoPath.

Geocaches in a GeoPath

Each geocache that is part of a GeoPath will show a small icon on the geocache page indicating which GeoPath is it part of.

Statistics

Every founded GeoPath is counted in the user's statistics under GeoPaths founded.

Every completed GeoPath is counted in the user's statistics under GeoPaths completed.

Completing a GeoPath

GeoPath credit

To obtain credit for a GeoPath you must find caches belonging to it. This is the percentage of caches you found from the total number of caches belonging to that GeoPath.

You need to obtain at least MRF credit to be able to log the GeoPath as Completed.

Points

Each GeoPath is scored and points are awarded for each geocache find. Points for each cache are calculated according to several cache parameters, such as difficulty, terrain, etc.

This is an experimental feature, aiming to enable future user ranking in the GeoPath category. Each cache (part of a GeoPath) find earns a certain number of points. The geocache value in points is calculated automatically when a cache is added to a GeoPath. When a user finds at least MRF caches and logs the GeoPath as Completed, these points are added to the user's profile. Each additional cache from this GeoPath, if found later, will also add points to the user's profile.

GeoPaths not yet completed do not add points to the user's profile.

Example 1: GeoPath has 100 boxes, for a total amount of 720.12 points; MRF is 75%.

User found 81 caches and scores a total number of 543.48 points. The user receives 543.48 points for completing the GeoPath. After some time, the user may find another 10 caches from this GeoPath, whose total score is 71.50 points. These will be added to his profile, which now reads a total of 614.98 points.

Example 2: GeoPath has 100 boxes, for a total amount of 720.12 points; MRF is 75%.

User found 73 caches belonging to the GeoPath for a total amount of 380.05 points. Since the user has not reached the minimum required to complete the path, these points are not added to his profile.

Medals

Each Completed log entry adds a medal to the user's profile with the completed GeoPath.

These medals are shown in the order they were obtained.

Future

Planned functions

  • Ability to sort the caches in a GeoPath by the founder
  • User statistics (GeoPath completion)

Any ideas about the future of this module should be posted to the OCPL forum (Polish, English).

Please report bugs to the project's Issue Tracker.

FAQ

Q: Can a geocache be part of two different GeoPaths?

A: No. Such an option will never be implemented. You just have to decide to which GeoPath to assign it to.

Q: Center of the Geopath changes. Adding/removing a cache changes the center. Why?

A: There is a lot of computation required to calculate the center of a GeoPath, especially when it contains many caches. The software is optimized such that it only makes a minimum of calculations when each cache is added/removed (which results in larger/smaller deviations of the center) and only performs the full set of calculations when the Refresh button is pressed. It is recommended that you use the Refresh button once the GeoPath is complete (all caches have been added to it).

Authors

The creator of the GeoPath module is Łza.