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Everything posted by admo1972

  1. I don't quite follow (I'll have to recheck my manual to see later). If I read that correctly, it would seem an argument against having it on. Having WAAS off saver battery life. How much, I don't know. WAAS originates from ground stations in North America, but the WAAS signal comes from 2 dedicated satellites in geostationary oribt, one over the Atlantic and one over the Pacific. Most GPSr with WAAS capability have that option turned off by default. So if you didn't know you runit could be turned off, it is probably off now, and you need to go and turn it on.
  2. Recently, I've always turned on WAAS hoping that my position would be more accurate. But on closer investigation, I don't think my Vista has ever actually acquired a WAAS sattellite (never seen a bar on sats 33 or higher, the WAAS satellites, if I recall the numbers correctly). I'm guessing that being at roughly 40 degrees latitude, the WAAS geostationary satellites are just too far south for my receiver to get them, unless I sit out on a big lake or a cornfield. Has anyone actuially acquired WAAS satellites from this latitude in wooded areas and such?
  3. They all pretty much are waterproof and will survive a fall from hand height or higher. Carry lots of extra batteries, and no amount of batterylife should be a problem. They all can. Well taking all that into account, you are probably looking at the Garmin Venture Cx. I bought my Vista at Tigergps.com. The Venture cx is currently about $190 there.
  4. I bought a GPSr (the Garmin Vista), and having an electronic Compass was on the top of my must have list. I wanted that over expandable memory and color screen. Having done one cache without, and the rest with, I find the electronic compass invaluable. It's nice to be in a heavily wooded area, and move slowly and still be assured that the bering to the cache remains accurate, also a lifesaver when tryin gto triangulate the position without being able to move quickly in a straight line. The compass isn't essential, but makes life a lot easier when you get within 300 feet or so of the cache.
  5. Here's one more tip I thought of to make multi's a bit more streamlined. If you know ho wmany stages there are, create waypoints before youhead out. For example, I am going to do a multi soon, so I created a waypoint called BS One, which is the first stage, with all the Long / Lat info I got from the cache page. I also greated a waypoing BS Two, which will have the coordinates for the final stage. Since I don't know what they are yet, I change the long / lat numbers to all zeros. This way, if/when I find stage 1, I doin't have to go through the trouble of marking/naming/changing the coordinates, I jsut find BS Two and change the coordinates. If you aren't anal like me and don't mind generic waypoint symbol and generic waypont names (005, for example), then this doesn't really save time. But I like to give each cache the geocache symbol, and a name I come up with that I like.
  6. One tip is to learn the shortcuts to frequently used things (just got my Vista a few weeks ago and love it). Pressing the zoom in / out buttons on the satellite screen changes contrast. This is good since the satellite screen is the first one to come up, and you will want to change the contrast for the lighting you are currently in. On the compass screen (called Navigate IIRC), pressing and holding the page button will toggle the electonic compass on and off. It's nice to leave off while you are able to move at a good clip (thereby saving batteries), and turning it on when getting closer to the cache, so it will point towards the cache even while you stop and check out the surroundings. And very important, something I just figured out today when I was sure there must be a way to do it: press and hold the joystick switch to mark your current location. Until today (about 3 weeks or so), I've been going to the main menu, then selecting mark. This is a lot easier.
  7. Last weekend I took my soon-to-be 3 year old out to find two caches. The first one had some toys in it (which is why I took him), and the second one was more traditional (some bugs, golf balls, etc). That was the only time I took him. Just yesterday, in our kitchen, he emptied out a domino tin, put some toy trains in it, brought it over to his mom, and said, "I'm geocaching" and proceeded to open the tin and act excited and surprised at what he "found". Just thought I'd share...
  8. I may be attending an event in a few weeks, and I believe that people often trade travel bugs amongst each other. So I am assuming that the answer to the topic question is yes. So how is it logged? Do I log as a note that I gave it to a member? Do I log that I "deposited" it at the event, and then who picked it up logs it that they "discovered" it at the event? Or is there some other method how we log that it was traded directly to another person? Just curious...
  9. Hmm. I could argue that I am cultivating potential future revenue to Groundspeak. Not giving the guy anything, and he may just never go caching. Giving him this to get him started may entice him to become a member, and perhaps even a premium member. But, I agree that this is for Groundspeak to determine, not me. And the Licence agreement clearly say that we can't share the info "whatsoever". But this would clearly prohibit a case where a member is out geocaching with a non-member, and the member lets the non-member put cache coordinates into his GPS. Obviously I think while to the letter of the agreement we shouldn't do this, we can all agree that there is nothing wron gwith this situation. It is all a matter of degrees.
  10. LOL. I work in healthcare too (fundraising), and I would probably see TB as Tracking Bug. Yesterday, on my drive home, licenceplates looked like cache waypoint names to me.
  11. This brings up an important discussion. That there is legalese to protect Groundspeak. However, you can also take into account the intent of why they want to protect their data. For example, I have a buddy who is just about to start geocaching. If I download a .gpx file (a premium member only thing) and send him a list of, say 10 or 20 geocaches in his area to get him started, I would clearly be violating the permitted use that I agreed to (not that I or anyone actually reads all that, but that is another topic entirely). Now, the intent of why the legalese is there. Obviously, Groundspeak doesn't want me to be downloading hundreds of waypoints every day and posting them in newsgroups, emailing mass amounts to friends and groups who are not members, premium or otherwise, to Groundspeak. Clearly, that would be a loss of revenue to Groundspeak. I don't think that legalese is there to prohibit me sending a non-member a few waypoints to get him started (even though it does prohibit it). IMO: Downloading hundreds of of waypoints and disseminating it for profit or not: illegal and unethical. Downloading a few and sharing with 1 or 2 people: illegal but ethical. Opinions on this? No flames, please.
  12. You can download the waypoint file (the .loc file) by clickong on it and chosing save as... and save it wherever you like. Then you need to convert that file to something your GPS understands. I use a mac, and the program I use is called MacCM Convert. There is an equivelent for Windows, but I forget what it is. I believe that if you download the application CacheMate (a program to store cache information on Palm and PocketPC devices), the windows version is included. Anyway, once you have converted your .loc file, you simply upload that to your GPS device.
  13. Add 1680 X 1050 please! Just got a widescreen monitor, and just love it!
  14. Spot on. If my gps is accurate to 15' and the cache hider's GPS is accurate to 15', then that is still a large area to search. I had only one cache where my GPS brought me right to it. It said I was 4 feet away, and I was stepping on it (a micro that had fallen from a tree). Some more than others. A topo map will help yo determine if a cache is at the base or top of a cliff. But most caches you will want to start with will probably just be in a wooded area. Using maps.google.com, past the coordinates and bam, you can see a satellite view of where the cache is. Then plan your driving, approach from that.
  15. Hmm. looks like that link may only convert among various GPS notation formats, not this drop calculation. And it also seems that the GPSr only works in reverse. I don't know. I like this one, but I don't think I will be of any help. I'll keep poking at it though...
  16. Not to worry. I would never post the answer here (wouldn't want anyone to google the answer). My posts were very poorly worded. I guess what I really meant is that I would try and solve it myself, and let the OP know if I had figured it out or not. Then we would move on to how much or how little info he may need. The cache page does have a link to a calculator for this puzzle, there's the first bit of help...
  17. Ahh. Never mind. I found the cache page you speak of. If I get some time, I will see what my GPS does. Hopefully later today if you still need it... But I don't think I will post drop coordinates here. We'll see.
  18. What GPSr do you have? I have a Garmin Vista, and it has an accessory called "Jumpmaster", which sounds like what you need. If you have the data, I can try for you. Looks like I'd need the following info (never used this before). Jump type: (it must be HAHO, HALO, or Static) Desired impact point: (I am assumming GPS coordinates) Drop altitude: (in feet) Forward throw: Course to HARP: Not sure what else. I'm willing to give this a shot.
  19. I'm kinda new to this (5 finds, 1 DNF), and all but 1 were secluded enough that I never felt self concious. My most recent find was a multi. Stage 1 was very secluded, no problem. Stage two turned out to be up an embankment to a bridge that is part of Amtraks NE Corridor AND was right next to a jogging path. I felt like a terrorist as well as very visible to geomuggles. It was kind of funny when people would walk or jog past, and there I was about 5 feet out and 15 feet up, and then never knew I was there. I was wearing a bright blue jacket but I guess people just don't look up. I did do the cell phone thing, but that felt wron gbeing up a train embankment. I'm bringing a clipboard next time. That was the only cache were I felt a little odd, but I say just do it!
  20. Well, uploaded a bunch of caches to cachemate last night. My database has about 2,200 entries, all of which I have included all the info and the 10 most recent logs. I did a search for nearest caches using cordinates o fmy parent's house in NC, and it took maybe 1 minute or less to build the list, compute the distance, apply filters, and display the results. Nothing appeared at all what you described. All my items are in the unfiled category, except for the 5 caches that I have in the found category, and the 1 cache that is in the not found category. Sorry I can't be of more help. I guess the only other info I can give is that the database is on the onboard memory (71MB free), and I have a 2GB card that is empty.
  21. Isn't this issue just normal for not having an electronic compass? Since once you stop, it has no idea which way you are facing, so it sounds like the garmin is doing it's best to orient the map to what it *thinks* is the direction you are facing. I guess it should lust leave the map alone when stopped, just because this sounds incredible annoying to have the map spin around if you are not moving.
  22. Hmmm. Not sure. I also use cachemate on a TX, but I only have about 525 caches on it, and it is blazing when searching for nearest. I've got a few more pocket queries in mind that I need to run which will bring the total up to 2,000 or so shortly. I'll keep an eye on it's speed as I get more info in it's database
  23. I use the eTrex Vista (the grayscale version, no C or cx versions), and it is great for geocaching. The electronic compass is a real timesaver, especially when in areas where you can't move too fast and it's a micro cache. Several times now, even when the "accuracy" read as 15' or 20', it led me right to the cache, no searching required. When it said I was 3 feet from the cache, there it was! Maybe luck, I don't know.
  24. Well, I can tell you that the compass was higher on my priority list than others. Which is why I got the Vista (the grayscal version, not the cx). The Vista cx was too expensive. The Venture cx and Vista was in my price range. So, compare the specs of those two or three models on garmin.com and just see where your priorities lie. To me, expandable memory and color screen would have been nice, but I really wanted that electronic compass. I also was concerned about battery life. The vista is 12 hours. But after 5 or six caches and I'm on the same pair of AA batteries, I don't think the battery life is much of a problem. By the way, the "12 hour" battery life time,according to the manual, is using the GPS with compass off, WAAS off, and GPS navigation off (i.e. receiving no satellite signal). What is the point of that? I have 12 hours to enter waypoints and such? I guess there are too may variables to give any "real-world" times, but still, saying a unit has 12 hours or 35 hours is pretty pointless. Just a rant.
  25. LOL! Tell me about it. This weekend I bushwacked through prickers and jsut overgrown bushes to get to a cache (that was a DNF anyway). Once I gave up, there was a clear and easy way to get back to the clearing and park where I had come from. So while I don't really add another tip, I second this one.
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