What Are Your DNF Logging Practices?

Given that there is a discussion about DNF (did not find) practices currently going on, I thought I would lay out my approach.

As I have established already, I do not usually log anything on Groundspeak and have taken to doing the same on the other sites more recently. So, my DNF logging practice is pretty much nonexistent.

I do, however, account for my DNFs in my databases.

A DNF, for me, is to be in the vicinity of the cache, to be actively seeking it, and not find it. I do not agree with those who state once the coordinates are activated in the GPS if the cache is not found, it is a DNF. BrianSnat states it this way:

If I put the coordinates into my GPS, hit go to and end up without signing the logbook, its a DNF in my book.

This does not work for me as far too many times as soon as I use a Go To, I realize there is another cache that is closer and makes more sense to seek. That may take me away from the area of the other cache so I do not seek it. For me, I hadn’t sought the first cache, I just hit a button on the GPS.

DNFs used to indicate that the cache may be missing. While a new type of log has since been introduced that outdates it, that log type came about after I ceased logging on Groundspeak. I still hold onto the older use of DNF.

With that in mind, there are times when I have been at ground zero and searched but came up empty, but still do not consider it a DNF. Sometimes I know I have not exhausted my search in an area but need to get going. For instance, I see a cache recently published and I go out and look for it immediately and then the sun sets before I really exhausted my search. I am not under the impression that the cache is missing, but rather I need more time to find it.

Unlike many other issues in this game, my DNF practices do not have clear criteria; it is far more of a feel.

When I have exhausted a search for a cache and feel it is missing or that I cannot locate it based on the information available to me, I log a DNF in my database. At that point, depending on whose cache it is, I will either contact the cache owner or wait patiently until more logs come through. This is definitely one instance that online logs can be helpful.

I still enjoy clearing DNFs. Recently I had the pleasure of clearing a DNF from five years ago. That felt very good to do.

In my database I flag the log as to the reason for the DNF. Many times my DNFs are because the cache was MIA. Yet, I have plenty that are described as being blind. Hey, it’s a fact of the game.

It is interesting as I look at my DNF logs, there seem to be far fewer of them in the last few years despite the increase in caching activity. There are a couple explanations for that phenomenon. My last DNF was with Ski in March. It sure looks the DNF can be attributed to the cache being MIA, eh? After all, “seasoned cachers” couldn’t find it. 🙂

Also blogged on this date . . .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.