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Is a newbie rant permitted?? - Caches IN Poison Ivy?


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#21 HoustonControl

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 12:05 PM

Avoid the Baytown cache "Poison Ivy" for obvious reasons. I'm very sensitive to PI and watch for it and still got 3 bad cases last year. A steroid dosepak from the doctor knocks out the worst case in four days and greatly improves your baseball and football skills. ::)

The "Poison Ivy" cache in Baytown referred to the Superheroine "Poison Ivy", and the way the cache was camouflaged, more so that the flora in the area where it was hidden.  I found it with no issues and I'm allergic to P.I.  Early in my caching career, I unknowingly hid a cache in poison ivy.  After reading a few complaints in the cache logs, I moved it to a better spot.
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#22 Cherokeecacher

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 12:10 PM

We need to bring back that "beating a dead horse" smiley. This comes up EVERY Spring, and every Spring the same statements are made. >:D

#23 HoustonControl

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 12:21 PM

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Here's a good website with pictures of P.I. and lots of look-alike plants, like Box Elder.  I was confronted with a field of Box Elder once, but was still able to get the cache because I could tell the difference.  I still degreased myself when I got back to the cachemobile, just to be on the safe side. :o



Box Elder leaves:

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#24 gsguru

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 12:23 PM


And while we're on the topic, I'll add this piece of advice I found in a Chemistry Lab:
  "A Good Chemist washes his hands BEFORE and AFTER using the restroom."
If you catch my drift...


That is soooo true. My now 19 YO soldier son is highly reactive to PI and was always putting calomine lotion THERE!!! heehee. What is it with boys and trees in the woods.... LOL

#25 bbqbob2

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 12:28 PM

I appreciated the PI reminder, the pictures and the information about jewelweed. I was about ready to call for a refresher class on snakes, after reading about the cottonmouths and coral snakes recently and knowing there are moccasins and rattlers out there too. TMI, maybe, but a reminder doesn't hurt that much.

And, HC, the first time I looked for supervillain Poison Ivy I saw the leaflets three and let her be.

#26 Mredria

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 01:44 PM

I have no idea what PI looks like, and I'm totally crap at identifying plants and things unless they're edible... I depend on my brother (the boyscout) to tell me. According to him I am often standing/laying/sitting in it without knowing, so evidently I'm not sensitive to it. If I ever place a cache in the middle of a patch of pretty plants (PI) I'm sorry. :(

#27 The Hazelnuts

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 04:04 PM

I once placed a cache in PI and didn't realize it. A cacher pointed it out and I moved it. PI isn't always easy to identify - especially when it is a young plant. I doubt if someone purposely placed it in the middle of PI. 

#28 skyfire97

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 05:12 PM

Maybe we should all take a bottle of Roundup with us and spray the stuff when we find it. After numerous applications it should die out next to the caches we visit most often.


Roundup wouldn't do the job anyway.  PI grows from the roots.  Roundup only really kills the tops and generally doesn't do anything for the roots. 

We have been caching for 2 years now and Random still doesn't recognize the stuff most of the time.  The girls are constantly reminding him what it looks like.

#29 Benttandem

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 05:54 PM

If its got three leaves and is green, I try to stay out of it.  If a vine is fuzzy, I try not to touch it.  This seems to work pretty good.

#30 FamilieRyan

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 07:27 PM

I would want someone to tell us if one of our caches was in PI.  We would never put it there on purpose (at least 2 of us are VERY allergic) but sometimes in the winter it can be overlooked.  I would just put it in the log and let the owner know.

#31 jackrock

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 05:20 AM

Don't worry about it.  I find many caches in PI.  Some I can get to safely and some I pass on.  I'll mention it in my log  but whether or not the owner moves it is up to them. 

Many many many people have no idea what it looks like.  Where I work, we receive multiple complaints about PI every summer.  From time to time it's a new batch that just showed up and wasn't seen yet.  We take care of those.  But 99.9 percent of the time it's Virginia creeper, trumpet vine or some other plant.  People will stand there and argue that it is PI when it's not.  Then there are those that don't know what it looks like and so don't ever see it anywhere.  I am convinced that the majority of people cannot identify PI. 

Also, it often shows up after the cache is placed and it grows quickly.   The bottom line is to use caution when caching if you're allergic or cache with someone that's not so they can make the grab.  I find that using handy wipes works great for cleaning the oils off after exposure.   

PI is so abundant in east texas that I don't see any way to cache and also avoid it.  So I will mention it as part of the adventure in getting the cache and if it's so bad that I have to pass on the cache I'll say so and why.

#32 Muddy Buddies

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 07:04 AM

I think that posting a needs maintenance for something that is in or near PI may be a little overboard.  It doesn't hurt to mention it in the logs though as a warning to those that are sensitive that may want to avoid it.  We did a cache that had Posion Ivy in the name with a small group of us and there were warnings all over the cache page about having to walk through a lot of it to get there.  We were a bit hesitant about doing it, but we tried to take precautions.  First, we were all wearing long pants and washed those pants as soon as we got home.  I also made the grab instead of Mr. Muddy Buddy and the others in the group since I was the only one that appears to be not sensitive to it currently (although that can change).  I also made sure and used wipes to wipe off the oils for just in case when I got back to the car. 

Not only do we look for the leaves of 3 that have the "one thumb on the outer 2 leaves and the 2 thumbs on the inner leaf", we also look for the hairy vines in the winter.  Not all hairy vines are poison ivy, but if you are unsure, why take the chance of messing with the vines?  It's best not to try to wedge caches in hairy vines. 

I do have a cache that when it was put out, there was no sign of PI, but it has been mentioned on some of the logs since.  However, the last person that mentioned it mentioned what I have also found, which is that it can be avoided when grabbing the cache, so we've chosen to leave it alone for now because there really are no close places to move the cache.  The only other alternative is to archive it and we'll just monitor it and see if the poison ivy becomes more of a problem.  If it does, we may have to archive it. 
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#33 cachestacker

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 07:09 AM

Don't archive it.... up the terrain rating & mention it in the cache description.  >:D >:D
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#34 freedom1st

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 09:35 AM

I'm not sure I understand the PI hoopla.  You can take precautions and largely avoid the potential hazards.  Besides i never hear anyone griping about cactus and green briar and I have found plenty of both on the caching trail.  It's pretty normal in west texas to find caches in or under a cactus.  That's why I now carry welding gloves with me when i cache.

#35 georeyna

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 09:43 AM

If its got three leaves and is green, I try to stay out of it.  If a vine is fuzzy, I try not to touch it.  This seems to work pretty good.


While out caching at GBP earlier this week I was laying my hand on every tree to balance myself while going over rough terrain.  When I would look at the tree, the furry vines would be wrapped around the tree.  I thought, oh great! Fendmar, who is highly sensative to the stuff pointed out tiny saplings of PI, preparing to grow.  I think there is no way you can get away from it no matter where you go.  

Fendmar actually had a spray bottle of alcohal to spray on our hands after we searched the wooded areas.  I guess it would be similar to hand wipes to, but it is a good way to wipe your hands of the PI that may have been accidently handled when out caching.  Also there is a PI lotion that Kirbydox introduced me to which you can apply to your hands and arms before caching in the woods.  It is a bit pricey but if you are highly sensitive, may be worth the investment.  I think it is from the makers of Off and it is called "Poison Ivy Defense", defense from the plant, not the evil villian HC was talking about earlier!!  :)


#36 GrangerFam

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 09:44 AM

This is how I cache in GBP...  True, it's a little tough in the Summer months...



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#37 georeyna

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 11:56 AM

This is how I cache in GBP...  True, it's a little tough in the Summer months...





:2funny: :2funny:

Are they sturdy against "ferrel pig" attacks and snake bites?  I think I saw one on ebay, starting bid 0.99.

#38 HoustonControl

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 01:16 PM

I've been doing that for years.  Here's a picture of me at the Down in the Boonies event in 2006...



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#39 bbqbob2

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 02:06 PM

The Level A is so comfortable, and you can bring your own air.
I'm trying to be more stealthy, looking for one in camo.

#40 SockPuppet

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 02:24 PM

Many times the PI is wrapped around a tree and dormant when the initiall cache was placed.  Once I commented on the possible PI by the cache and my findw as deleted.  Since I am currently not allergic to it I have no worried too much about it but I also do no rolled around in it either. ;D
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