Updated December 5, 2019


  1.  The purpose of the Great Travel Bug Race of 2020 is to have fun. No grumbling or complaining allowed.

  2. The foundational premise of this race is that once you drop off your Race Bug at the start of the race, you no longer have any control over where the bug goes. It is completely at the mercy of the strangers who pick it up and move it along. It may disappear or it may travel far and wide.

  3. The rules are here simply to insure that everyone has an equally fair chance of winning.

  4. The Race officially starts at 12:00 noon on Sunday, January 11, 2020 and ends at midnight on December 31, 2020.

  5. After the race ends, at a Race Awards Event, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place awards (trophies and/or medals) will be awarded to the top three finishers in each the following three categories: Greatest Distance Traveled, Most USA States Visited, Most Countries Visited.

  6. For Race purposes, the Distance used will be that given on the Race Bugs’ trackable page.

  7. For Race purposes, we will count all 50 United States of America and all current USA territories listed at:

  8. For Race purposes, we will count all countries (sovereign nation states) and their territories listed at:

  9. A geocacher may enter up to 3 Race Bugs, of which they are the owner, in this Race. Travel Bugs tend to go missing, so the more bugs you have in the Race the better your chance of winning a trophy at the end of the year.

  10. All Race Bugs must be registered by the owner, have 0 distance logged, and contain no drop off log entries prior to dropping it off in its starting geocache.

  11. All Race Bugs must be trackable on, all activities must be logged on and these logs will be the only source of information for the race.

  12. Please take a good close up photo of your Race Bug and upload it to its page and make it the default image for your Travel Bug (We will be using hypertext links to to automatically display on our race website the photo of your Race Bug, its current mileage, and its current location.)

  13. A note about your Race Bugs participation in this race and your racing goals must be placed on your Travel Bug’s page along with a link to this Race website..

  14. All Race Bugs and their owners (or a proxy) must be present at the geocaching lunch get-together which will be held on Saturday, January 11, 2020, to complete race registration and have their Race Bugs viewed and photographed

  15. All Race Bugs owners must follow the Registration procedures and Race Schedule.

  16. All Race Bugs will be identified with the official Great Travel Bug Race racing ID tag, so that geocachers will know your Travel Bug is in a race. This ID tag will be given to you by the Race Director on January 11, 2020 at the lunch get-together.

  17. The Race Bug is the property of the owner. The owner takes responsibility for securely attaching the racing ID tag (provided by the Race Director) and the TB tag (which the owner purchased from his favorite geocaching store) to the traveler.

  18. Race Bugs reported missing, muggled, etc are the responsibility of their owner. The owner will assume responsibility for any potential theft or mishandling during the race.

  19. If a Race Bug goes missing, owners may NOT release a new traveler with a copy travel bug tag. (Only the original traveler is in this race)

  20. All Race Bugs and their owners must be on the starting line at the designated time on Saturday, January 11, 2020..
  1. Before 2:00 pm on Sunday, January 12, 2020 the owner must place all of his Race Bugs in their first geocache, log their drop off online, and he may not touch them again until after the race has ended. Race Bugs may be placed in a Travel Bug Hotel or any other geocache container large enough to hold them. Their starting cache must be located in Mississippi. If the owner has more than one Race Bug he may place them all in one cache or he may place them in different caches (Placing them in different caches maximizes their safety if one of the starting caches gets muggled). Here is a list of Mississippi Travel Bug Hotels:

    CaneMaster's List of Mississippi Travel Bug Hotels

  2. Race Bug Owners are NOT permitted to move their own Race Bugs. If they do, then all of the Race Bugs they have entered in the race will be disqualified from the event.

  3. Relatives (spouses, sons, daughters, parents, grand parents, grandsons, granddaughters, aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces, cousins, etc...) are NOT permitted to move their relatives' Race Bugs. If they do, then all of the Race Bugs their relative has entered in the race will be disqualified from the event.

  4. Race Bug Owners are NOT permitted to touch or move any of the other competitors’ Race Bugs. If they do, then all of the Race Bugs they have entered in the race will be disqualified from the event.

  5. All cache type visits and drops count toward a Race Bug’s mileage. Non-Racing Geocachers who pick up Race Bugs competing in this event may drop them off in other actual physical caches. They may also dip them (visiting) in and out of any and all official types of geocaches that they find between picking the Race Bug up and dropping it off. (Dipping/Visiting might increase a Race Bugs mileage).

  6. Owners may contact the geocacher who is currently in possession of their Race Bug in an attempt to influence or promote their Race Bug’s movement and race goals (distance, states, countries, photos) for this race.

  7. Owners MAY NOT contact persons (geocachers and non-geocachers) who do not currently have possession of their Race Bug in an attempt to influence or promote their Race Bug’s movement.

  8. If a bug gets stuck in a cache for over 30 days, on the 31st day the owner may contact the cache owner where the bug is stuck and ask him to check to see if his Race Bug is still there or has gone missing.

  9. Before traveling to other countries, Race Bugs must be dropped off (and logged) by the first finder into at least one other cache in the United States after the initial release cache.

  10. Race Bugs may not travel by mail at any stage of the race or be mailed directly back to the United States. They must travel with/on real persons.

  11. Race Bug owners are encouraged to visit the NEWS page on this Race Website to view the latest mileage and location of each of the Race Bugs in this race. Additionally, an official Race Report will be posted to the NEWS page on the first day of every month.

  12. Race Bug owners who want up-to-the-minute emails whenever their competitors’ Race Bugs move are encouraged to place their competitors’ TBs on their “watch list.”

  13. The owner of a Race Bug entered into this race will be assumed to have read, understood and accepted all of the race rules.

  14. Should an issue arise not covered by these Racing Rules, the competitors in the race will vote on a decision to recommend to the Race Director. The Race Director’s decisions and judgments are final and no correspondence will be entered into.

  15. A donation of $6 per Race Bug entered will be required of each person entering Travel Bugs in this race. ($4 if Pre Registered by Email) All monies obtained will be used to purchase the awards (trophies/medals) which will be given at the end of the race.

  16. Race Bugs and their owners may be disqualified if foul play is suspected.

  17. By registering a Travel Bug in this race you are acknowledging that you have read and agree to abide by these race rules and by any Race decisions made by the Race Officials, and that you have given permission to have your photo and your Race Bug's photo taken and posted on and on this Race website.

  • Sock Puppets may not be used to move your Travel Bug. Some Cheaters have been known to obtain and use another geocaching account with a different screen name pretending to be a different person. They then use the Sock Puppet screen name to move and log their own Travel Bug during the race. These kinds of geocachers think they are being smart, but are quickly found out because the geocaching paper trail is so easy to follow both online and offline making it easy to determine who is doing this. The Race Officials in conjunction with the Geocaching Reviewer are carefully studying all of the logs associated with your Travel Bug, your geocaching account, and comparing them to those of others caching in the same area as you and your bug. When you get caught we will embarrass you by letting everyone know you were booted from the race for cheating!

  • Drive-By-Geocachers and Arm-Chair-Geocachers: These are the polite names for those despised scoundrels who lie about finding geocaches which they have never actually found. Why do they do it? The only reason I can think of is to boost their number of finds and gain some sort of perceived fame or glory among the geocaching community. Under normal circumstances, these sad souls are only cheating themselves, because they know that their geocaching statistics are falsified and mean absolutely nothing. Their temporary glory soon turns to shame, because word quickly spreads throughout the geocaching community about these kinds of cheaters, and they lose all credibility.

  • Under normal circumstances they are only cheating themselves (and the Cache Owners whom they lie to). However, when such a person picks up a Travel Bug that is in a race, and falsely claims to have dipped it in caches which that person has never visited, then that person is cheating every single person who is in the race. He is cheating them of a fair chance to win, because that Race Bug's mileage, states visited, and countries visited have all become grossly exaggerated through the falsified records.

  • (I'm NOT talking about honest players who cant open a container because it is stuck, or cant sign a log sheet because it is too wet, or the logsheet is missing, or their pen just ran out of ink. Those things happen to all of us sooner or later. And I'm NOT talking about folks who are hunting with a group and see the cache container, but never actually touch it because one of their teammates signed the paper log with the group name on behalf of the group. I am ONLY talking about liars who claim that they found a cache which they did not find. Those that log a cache online which they never found.)

  • Fortunately, it is easy to catch people who cheat like this, simply by visiting each of the geocaches they have logged online and looking for their physical signature on the paper log. The odds eventually begin stacking up against them and become a preponderance of proof.

  • The Race Director will accept as proof of such cheating the following: Photographs of all of the pages of the logsheets at 30 different geocaches in which the alleged cheater logged that he dipped a Race Bug in this race, in which the log was not physically signed by the alleged cheater. Additionally, those photographs must clearly and legibly show the physical signatures of the persons who logged online the cache as found immediately before and immediately after the alleged cheater's online log. Additionally, the person checking up on the logs and sending in the photos must verify that they have thoroughly investigated these geocache logs, never saw the alleged cheater's signature, and are formally accusing the alleged cheater of cheating.

  • If you are notified by the Race Director that the geocacher who is carrying your Race Bug has met the above proof of cheating, then you must contact that Geocacher within 24 hours using email and ask them to drop off your Race Bug in the closest suitable geocache container. After they do so, you must delete all of the logs that geocacher made with your Race Bug and then click on the Recalculate Distance button. Failure to do so will cause your Race Bug to be disqualified from the race and removed from the race website.

  • 37. By registering a Travel Bug in this race you are acknowledging that you have read and agree to abide by all of these race rules, by any Race decisions made by the Race Officials, and that you have given permission to have your photo and your Race Bug's photo taken and posted on and on this Race website.

  • 38. RULE ADDED BY VOTE AT THE RACE START EVENT ON JANUARY 12, 2020: Race Bug Owners may have their proxy (another person acting on their behalf) drop off their bug for them at its initial starting cache and that could be any geocache in Mississippi or Louisiana. This spur of the moment new rule later presented a problem the next day, wherein a number of bugs belonging to non-premium geocachers were dropped off by their proxies (who were premium members) into premium caches. Subsequently, their owners were not able to acces the premium cache pages to log the official "drop" online. To fix this problem, we allowed those bugs to be temporarily logged as "grabbed" by premium members (friends/relatives) who could log them as "dropped" into the premium cache on their behalf. This work around seemed fair to us, because the "grabbing" and "dropping" were all done online and it was necessary to get the bugs logged into the cache containers which they were already physically placed in by their proxies.

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