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California Bear

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Everything posted by California Bear

  1. I noticed while submitting a recovery today that GEOCAC now has a radio button like US Power Squad. That should make it easier to enter than before (not that typing GEOCAC in the box was really hard. )
  2. I found this one in the description for FT0114 - MARS. This one is located near NASA's Golstone radio tracking station. This is one of the Deep Space Network stations around the world that NASA uses to communicate with its various space probes flying around the Solar system. PICKERING ROAD IS NOW NASA ROAD There are a TON of stations located along the roads out there as well as around the dishes. I would love to go out and recover all of those but due to the nature of the facility and the fact that it is on a military reservation, individuals are not allowed to go wandering without an escort.
  3. If you didn't find it on the Geocaching site, it won't be loggable. This appears to be a county mark. You can check with the county to see if they have their benchmark data available for public consumption. Start with their website and see what you can find there.
  4. Cool! Next time I head out to Joshua Tree NP I'll drop you a line! There are some marks off the beaten path out there and I didn't think it was a good idea to go wandering off into the desert alone.
  5. I don't think you'll get a lot of arguments with your viewpoint around here. The inaccuracy of many of the USPS reports has long been a point of contention with the geocaching gang.
  6. I found a way to emulate a Pocket Query using the various datasheet retrieval options on the NGS site. You can select the radial search option (maximum 30 miles) and enter your center coords. Clicking the submit button will give a list of all the stations that are within that range. On the station select page, click the Select All button to highlight all of the retrieved stations. Note that selecting too many stations can result in the NGS server timing out so if you live in the middle of a dense urban area, don't select 30 miles or you will never be able to retrieve your stations. After the retrieval is complete, you will get a web page with all of the data sheets you requested. Click on the datasheet and do a CTRL-A to select all of the datasheet text. (Note: The page will begin to display before the download of all the data is complete so make sure your browser has finished loading the page before doing CTRL-A.) Do a CTRL-C to copy the datasheets. Now open Notepad (or your favorite text editor) and do a CTRL-V to paste the data sheets into your text editor. You need to edit out a couple of things in order to run this through BMGPX successfully. First, remove the following from the top of the text: The NGS Data Sheet See file dsdata.txt for more information about the datasheet. DATABASE = Sybase ,PROGRAM = datasheet, VERSION = 7.13 The page should now start with : 1 National Geodetic Survey, Retrieval Date = date of retrival Now scroll all the way to the bottom of the text and remove the following: *** retrieval complete. Elapsed Time = 00:00:01 There may be additional text below this relating to destroyed stations that were retrieved with the good data sheets. Delete this text as well. Your text should now end with the last line of a station listing. For example: JM0534'SANDSTONE 1937 RECOVERED GOOD. Save the file as a .txt file. You should now be able to drag and drop the text file you just created onto BMGPX and it should generate a GPX file based on the coords you specified. I have also discovered that using the above method and selecting "Any Horizontal Control" from the Data Type Desired list will return only Adjusted stations. This might be a good option for those who are new to benchmarking and would like to get their feet wet with easier to find stations before moving on to the scaled stations that require following the TO REACH instructions over the coordinates. Hopefully, this will be helpful to those who are looking for a Pocket Query for benchmarks.
  7. My initials are EDP. APC: ArtMan BDH: Bill93 BMC: BuckBrooke Buckner Miller Creel V CB: GEO*TRAILBLAZER 1 EDP: California Bear GH: GH55 GJA: 299792458 Gerard Ashton GRR: gnbrotz JRI: holograph MHB: Embra MPR or MR: elcamino PFW: Patty Winter (wintertime) RCB: rogbarn TAK: Black Dog Trackers WD: seventhings
  8. How about a safety vest with the NGS logo on it as a giveaway! Not only is a great gift we can wear to show off the pride we do in our work for the NGS, but it can save our lives and keeps us alive to submit more recoveries!
  9. I would be very careful about getting too close to a sinkhole. We had a civil engineer get swallowed and killed by one he was inspecting a couple of days ago near Los Angeles.
  10. After many years of lingering in obscurity in a link somewhere on the landing page of geocaching.com site, we now have a link for benchmarking in the left navigation of geocaching.com! Let's pop that champagne!!!
  11. First, you need to make sure that you select the ZIP option for downloading from the NGS. After you unzip, you will have file with a .DAT extension. In Windows Explorer (not Internet Explorer), just drag the DAT file and drop it onto the icon for bmgpx and it will automatically create the GPX file.
  12. I'm in Lakewood, CA (north of Long Beach). Since I drive 27 miles to work, I guess it wouldn't be much of a stretch to go out to 50 miles.
  13. Know the feeling. Ever try to answer the question "Why do you do this?" and then try to explain why survey marks are important to society? Fortunately (or unfortunately), I already have a reputation for odd hobbies so most of my friends just chalk it up as another one of things I do and little explanation is required.
  14. Unless it has been done in the past year, I report all my finds to the NGS for the following reasons: 1) I submit handheld coords with my finds 2) I send digital pics to Deb of the station and location. Both of these items are new to the NGS Datasheet so even if a station has been found in the past couple of years previous recoveries are unlikely to have either of these. As for the 100 benchmarks attempt, I don't think recovering them with the NGS should be included as a requirement. I feel that recovery for the NGS requires a level of care (e.g. confirming measurements to referece marks and witness posts, recording changes to description etc.) that can't be taken if the goal is speed.
  15. If the location isn't obvious, I have been using a bright colored circle around the mark.
  16. Nice article. That points up exactly what I have been doing. For some reason, wearing a bright vest just screams "I'm doing what I am supposed to be doing. Please ignore anything that may look unusual." The only times I have had people question me was before I started wearing the vest.
  17. I don't think most of the general public would know the difference. As I ususally don't have any obvious surveying equipment (beyond a 200' tape measure), I think that having someone think I am an engineer is fine as well. As long as they know that I am doing something I am supposed to tbe doing, everything is good in my book!
  18. I just tried it and the downloads work fine. Note that there have been a couple of updates to the program since the new year. The current version is 2.59. You might try downloading the update to see if that helps.
  19. Wow. I wonder if this runway even exists anymore considering this a WWII era benchmark. On a side note, there were battles with Japan in the Aleutian Islands during WWII. The proximity of these islands to Japan was probably the reason for the runway being built. The runway may have still been used during the Cold War but I would be willing to bet that it is no longer an active site. If you don't own a boat, you would probably have to charter one to get to this mark. It's just a little off the normal cruise ship routes.
  20. I also would like to see an NGS forum. Like Casey, I didn't have a chance to weigh in before the former topic was closed.
  21. I've found that kc2ixe's suggestions work very well. Since I started wearing a safety vest and carrying a clipboard, no one questions me about what I am doing. I also carry all of my hunting tools (brush for removing dust, rags, probe, water, stakes, hammer, tape measure, etc.) in a bright orange 5-gallon bucket. As for wearing boots and construction type clothes, I don't know if that is a neccesity as I do most of my hunting before or after work thus I am dressed business casual (i.e. dockers, polo or button up shirt) and have had no problems. The best camoflauge you can have is to look like you are doing something you are supposed to be doing. Be confident in what you are doing. If you look furtive, unsure or that you are trying to be sneaky that will draw peoples attention much more than if you did as kc2ixe suggested and boldly walk up and do your stuff. As opposed to a geocache, we don't care if someone from the general public finds what we were looking for. There's very little chance that someone would be able to take off with a mark...
  22. You are correct. It is impossible for Hubble to take photos of anything on Earth. See the following FAQ from the Hubble telescope site. FAQ - Can Hubble take photos of Earth? The Sun is the only object that is too bright for imaging by Hubble. The brightness of the Sun also rules out imaging of Venus and Mercury due to their proximity to the Sun.
  23. 167 total 125 of these were searched for 45 DNF (36 %) 70 F (56%) 10 Destroyed (8%) 42 Notes - These are marks that are within the boundaries of the Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station. I hold little hope of ever being able to search for these.
  24. I would say that a photo of the tower laying on the ground qualifies as proof that the tower is no longer standing. It is going to be odd to go by there and not see the 850+' tower standing there anymore. It could be seen from miles away, especially at night.
  25. In regards to the track guard, it could also be a reference to a guard rail. See this page for guard rail info: http://home.comcast.net/~daletherail/defin...sGuardRail.html
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