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Purpose of Registers?

 
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jasonbx



Joined: 07 Feb 2006
Posts: 60
Location: SLC, Utah

PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 10:18 pm    Post subject: Purpose of Registers? Reply with quote

I brought this topic up generally at Wasatch meeting last night, would like to see a discussion generated among all the Utah cavers. Many questions and thoughts, feel free to break it out into other sub-threads if we get too complicated.

What purpose do cave registers serve? Which caves deserve to have them, and why? How do we maintain them, and what do we do with the logs/feedback from the registers?

Answers and thoughts appreciated, add your own questions if I missed something important.

PS Ralph, you had been heading this one up before you moved. If you have any information regarding which caves have registers, data, etc you can send me an off thread email so we have the info here in Utah as well.


Last edited by jasonbx on Tue Sep 11, 2007 10:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jasonbx



Joined: 07 Feb 2006
Posts: 60
Location: SLC, Utah

PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My initial thoughts on my own topic:

Registers serve as one way to collect data on a cave. Who visits, when, and why? I thought the datalogger at Nutty Putty that showed half the summer visits were in the middle of the night was interesting. Provides some interesting data for those setting up management plan--if I recall correctly there is a specific provision for daytime only trips now. Registers are obviously a bit more voluntary, but can give a general feel for data.

As a general theory, I think all caves should have a register--but only if we are going to use the information somehow. What can the data be used for? I think even general knowledge and gee-whiz statistics are a valid reason to start with.

What are the best designs, best materials, etc? How do we fund making new registers? Arrange to have them placed? And data retrieved/stored?

Enlighten me!
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deb



Joined: 07 Dec 2005
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2007 4:43 pm    Post subject: could it be of historic value? Reply with quote

I think it would be interesting to have the information, just to see whose been there, how far away people have come from to visit, which caves are popular now, versus in the past, etc.

The biggest problem I've found is that often registers are in a spot that's hard to find, dissolved to mush, or both. I think it would be good not only to work on organizing the data from existing registers into some sort of database, but also to try and come up with a way to make them more waterproof in general, and visible so visitors can make note of their visit.
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jonjasper



Joined: 09 Dec 2005
Posts: 54
Location: St. George, UT

PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2007 9:41 pm    Post subject: Registers Reply with quote

Registers can be a gimicky thing and sometimes be a useful thing.

The data can be used to use the cave's use - how many folks are visiting, when they are visiting, why they are visit, and where did they come from? They get show simple details, however, in practice many times they visitation data is not used. However if you look on the Timpanogos Grotto web you can see the (now historic) data collected on Nutty Putty, Bloomington Cave, Little Brush Creek Cave, and Crystal Cave. These datasets were used in helping manage these caves in some form usually before gating.

The other usefully thing of a register is an outlet for folks to leave their mark without leaving a permanent marks. I believe the register can help reduce graffiti by allowing folks a place to write their comments.

I have also seen register used for posting messages. Scouts occasionally have used them to indicted who's left the cave and when. Folks have also writing comments towards needed action like rope needing replacement or usual sightings.

Most people however like looking through the registers to see who was the last ones there. I weird need to see how special our visits are.

I, however, think the true reason to have a register is to have a solid alibi for when I get wrongfully accused for some awesome crime. "I mean really babe, I was caving on the other side of the state!"


Registers, in general, are easy to make. Get 4 inch or 6 inch ABS or PVC pipe. Hacksaw into about 2 ft sections. Then buy end cap and a screw-on end. Get the blue pipe glue. Then install in a way to keep out of water. In trouble caves, past a coated 1/4 to 3/8 wire through the top and hang from a natural hole in the cave or wedge a piece of the pipe into a ceiling crack. Then place notebook and pencils. Start the page showing other how you want the page to be filled out.

I would pick the caves that motivate your interest. If the register is not maintained, it's just trash. Low visitation caves are easy if dry. High visitation probably serve more use, but most cavers would lose interest with the amount of required work.

Well there's my 2 cents or more...
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jasonbx



Joined: 07 Feb 2006
Posts: 60
Location: SLC, Utah

PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another question on information collection and use. How often should information be retrieved? Obviously a highly visited cave will need to have that data retrieved more often. Any general thoughts on retrieval? Once a year?

What can/should be done with the information? Certainly a database of sorts can be created with it for the specific cave. But should there be a public record made anywhere? The technology is certainly available to do so now---similar to the geocaching sites where people can post their own comments on the cache after they have found it.
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