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CS
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PostWed May 11, 2022 10:06 pm 
Just wondering what options there are for storing base camp type gear when on a trip and you might not be back for a few days. Do you just stash gear in a nearby town? Or, are there other reasonable options? Like a car trunk thatís really not accessible from inside the car, or locking covers for truck beds?

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Randito
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PostWed May 11, 2022 10:18 pm 
Stuff stored in a car, even in a trunk can be stolen from a trailhead.   In another thread someone posted images of newspaper clippings from the '70s about theives using crowbars and such to break into locked trunks to steal camping gear.

You might have better odds stashing your gear some distance up and off the approach trail.   But if the gear includes food , you'll need bear canisters and should separate the food cache from the gear cache so that a bruin does tear apart your gear sniffing after food.

Mice can also wreck havoc on stashed gear if it has any trace of food or even body oils on it.  Those sharp little teeth can slice through most fabrics with ease.

A motel in a nearby town you can often arrange for storing luggage for a fee.  Less convenient,  but more secure.

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PostWed May 11, 2022 11:02 pm 
Yeah I guess it doesnít take much to break into most things, thanks for the suggestions. I think stashing in the woods would probably be fine, I can secure food type things pretty well or a 10min drive might be about the same effort.

I used to not even think about security, leave my car for multiple days, or over a week and itíd be fine. Maybe Iíve always been luckyÖ

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Randito
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PostWed May 11, 2022 11:17 pm 
FWIW The 1st time I had a car broken into was over 4th of July 1975 at the Eightmile trailhead.

In 1976 we were car camping at Bridge Creek and Rock climbing various things in the Icicle and returned to our camp to find our Coleman stove and canvas Coleman tent and other gear stolen.

Trailhead/campground thieves aren't a recent thing.

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PostWed May 11, 2022 11:40 pm 
Yeah, Iíve probably just been lucky then. Though I had a pair of Swarovski binos stolen from me at a campsite once, I nodded off for 20mins and someone snuck by me and took them.

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PostFri May 13, 2022 1:40 pm 
You say you used to not even think about security but I remember back in the 70s my brother would always pull the coil wire and take it with him in his pack. These days I make sure not to leave registration or any address info and make sure to leave nothing of value. I have been lucky so far but figure that can't last forever. I used to leave the doors of my '88 pickup unlocked with signs saying they were unlocked and nothing of value but now that I drive nicer cars I lock the door. They will break the windows if they really want to get in but at least there is a little risk involved to do that. With craigslist and e-bay it is just too easy for thieves to get $$ out of what they take these days.

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PostFri May 13, 2022 2:19 pm 
It would depend on what you consider to be ďReasonableĒ. I drive a beater Astro van with a contractor box bolted to the floor. Iíve replaced a couple of windows over the years, but nobody has ever gotten inside of my Knack box. Recessed padlocks seem to effectively deter the kind of lazy, opportunistic criminals who support themselves with smash and grabs.

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PostFri May 13, 2022 7:11 pm 
Yeah thatís what I was wondering about, thereís some pretty high end truck bed covers, like DiamondBack. Maybe theyíre sufficient?

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Randito
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PostFri May 13, 2022 10:58 pm 
CS wrote:
Yeah thatís what I was wondering about, thereís some pretty high end truck bed covers, like DiamondBack. Maybe theyíre sufficient?

Any lock or strong box can be defeated.  It's a question of the level of professionalism of the thieves.   I suspect a contractor's toolbox securely attached to the truck bed and locked with a high security lock will keep out nearly off of the trailhead theives at work around here.

A battery powered angle grinder runs about $250 these days -- that will defeat any lock in a minute or two.

However unlike using an angle grinder to remove a U-Lock from a multi-kilobuck bicycle -- digging into a "mystery box" has a less certain payoff -- but if the trailhead theives also steal bikes -- perhaps they already have an angle grinder.

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contour5
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PostFri May 13, 2022 11:11 pm 
Angle grinder wonít touch the recessed padlocks on a knack box or a rigid box or a Greenlee box,There is a relatively easy way to break in, but for obvious reasons, Iíd rather not discuss it hereÖ itís noisy, time consuming and requires a small amount of very specific knowledge... I had to do it myself one time when a miscreant put super glue into my locks.

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PostSat May 14, 2022 5:45 pm 
contour5 wrote:
I had to do it myself one time when a miscreant put super glue into my locks.

Thatís insane, so they broke in and had a bottle of super glue handy?

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PostSat May 14, 2022 7:10 pm 
Regrettably, super gluing somebodyís locks is a fairly common form of revenge in the construction industry.

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Randito
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PostSat May 14, 2022 7:58 pm 
From a contractor's forum


Quote:

mathewson
Mar 01, 2008 03:05am
#4
With today's battery powered die grinders nothing is very safe. Had a jobbox on site & told the helper to lock the box and put away the key. He comes back and when asked about the key he said he put it away. IN the box. Went to the truck, got the grinder and had it open in under 5 minutes.


brisketbean
Mar 01, 2008 03:12am
#6
locked my keys in job box once, cordless drill 3/8" bit, less than a minute to get inside. The only way to make it safe is to weld a cover over the lock so that they cant get a direct line to drill the lock out. A buddy of mine kept getting his tools stole at the beer joint, he left a rattle snake in the box for a few days and cured the problem.

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davidhawks
Mar 01, 2008 03:16am
#7
My biggest concen has always been that the WHOLE BOX would grow legs.  I use a 20' logging chain laced through the handles, ladders, heaters, compressors, scaffold, etc.

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PostSat May 14, 2022 8:40 pm 
So basically trail head thieves are a cross between a bank heist movie villain and gonzo vandals.

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Randito
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PostSat May 14, 2022 9:04 pm 
I think the vast majority of trailhead thieves are unskilled idiots that are looking for easy pickings and even basic precautions are fairly effective.


However you never know when a well equipped,  knowledgeable thief might show up.

It also depends on the trailhead,   hyper popular trailheads get hit more frequently.   Inexperienced hikers tend to leave easy pickings in their cars.

Far off trailheads at the end of a terrible road are less likely to provide an easy score, even though they provide thieves lots of time to defeat any security measures.

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