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Everything posted by Geoides

  1. My Garmin Colorado 400T is the easiest, direct connect to a Mac via USB. Drag-n-drop pocket query (GPX) files from Mac, drag-n-drop track GPX file from the device. DeLorme PN-40 - Use 'Cache Register' to sync pocket queries to the device (Cache Register is a Mac 'Dashboard Widget'). Satellite imagery can be loaded to the device using DeLorme's on-line map cutting tool.
  2. I forgot to add: When you disconnect your Colorado from your computer, you will need to restart it as it automatically powers-down upon disconnect. This reboot allows the GPS to load in the new GPX file. Have fun out there!
  3. Loading a PQ into the Colorado is a simple drag-n-drop task. Connect your Colorado to your Mac and wait for the device's folder to appear on the desktop. Open that folder and navigate to the "GPX" folder within it. Drag-n-drop your PQ into the GPX folder. Close all windows and eject the device. Done. Garmin Colorado Wiki Reference
  4. I agree that the badge requirements should include finding at least one of each type of geocache...a well-rounded Scout. As for counciling of this new merit badge, IMHO, a well prepared Geocaching Counselor should be able to guide a Scout in all aspects of this merit badge (planning, construction, placement and maintenance) so that a scout can produce a well executed cache container using scout skills, e.g., those learned from other merit badges (there are over 100!). If one were to plan out a scout's activity in this merit badge well enough, a scout going for this merit badge could learn/use skills that can be applied to/from other merit badges (e.g., geology, woodworking, drafting, forestry, hiking surveying). The possibilities for engaging a scout in this hobby are as various as the merit badges themselves. I'm thinking of becoming a counselor for my son's troop.
  5. Having a background in R/C that type of plane most likely belonged to a beginner...sad news for that person(s). In keeping with the 'bomb-drop' idea, you can easily rig a sailboat 'winch' servo to lower a container/log to the ground using a single channel on the Tx/Rx system. Depending upon what receiver type was installed you could pick up a used transmitter (cheap if 72 MHz), power the plane's electronics with a small NiMh pack (and keep it charged with a small solar cell) and hide the TX somewhere on the ground.
  6. George, The postman delivered your parcel today and my son and I were barely able to contain ourselves as we opened it. We are quite elated to have received this beautiful award. Thank You Very Much! The Geoides Benchmarking Crew
  7. George, your contest award announcement reminded me that I needed to follow-up with a measurement of the Station Mendell mark. I had re-visited the station with a steel ruler in hand a short while back but had neglected to post my findings in this thread, here's what I found out with regards to the mark's dimensions: 1 3/4" (w) x 1 3/4" (h) Thickness was not measureable The font size comes out to 0.16" (h)
  8. George, I'd like to extend my sincerest appreciation to you for setting up this contest. It was an education in the variety of benchmark settings that certainly piqued my interest in searching for those pictured in the contest thread, I most certainly would like to 'recover' any of those staions...especially a cupped-style and magnetic stations My congratulations to all of the contestants.
  9. George, You are quite welcome to use my photograph in your survey marks paper. All that I ask in return is the privilege of reading that paper when it's published. If you require a higher resolution image (the posted image is only 72 dpi @ 480x438) I can certainly e-mail a TIFF (or whatever format you require) to you. As for the mark itself, I did not take an actual measurement but the log by BThomas back in Dec. 2003 states ~1.25 sq. in. and that is very close based upon what I could tell at the time. I plan on returning to obtain more information about the surrounding area as I've uncovered some additional 'historical' information about this mark and will take exact measurements at that time. And thank you for the additional resource material (links). That will keep me in reading material for some time! -Roger
  10. (Arrrggh, I had to retype this reply as the original vanished when I hit the submit button!!!!) Hi George, The station mark is a stamped plate set flush within the bottom of the concrete well and appears to be some type of alloy, definitely metal. The color of that plate did not come out very well in the image due to the late day flat light condition (foggy) but the plate's color appeared to my naked eye as a golden hue-silver in color. The plate's 'texture' was coarse, very granular in structure, Admiralty Brass Alloy perhaps? Also, when I first observed the mark, the surface of the mark was quite black from oxidation and when I cleaned the mark using water and a paper towel (due to the mark's age, I did not use my brushes in my benchmark hunting kit-steel, brass and nylon-for fear of damaging the mark itself) the residue on the paper towel also reminded me of what you see when polishing brass using 'Brasso' compound. What I find most interesting about this station, aside that it's quite possibly the oldest station in the San Francisco Bay Area, is the center punch mark which is inside a classic 'triangulation' station mark? If this station is a real triangulation mark then what/where are the Reference and Azimuth marks? The top of the triangle, when viewed in the posted image, points towards the centerline of the Golden Gate Bridge. But, the bridge was not constructed when this station was occupied. That leaves the possiblity of the Fort Point's Lighthouse Finial (first observed/declared a "Main Scheme Station" in 1916 but prior to that dating it was an intersection point). From the crude research into the surrounding stations in this immediate area, I could not detemine if any other stations have references back to this particular station. Most of the stations around here come after the 1926 timeline. Other than researching the current NGS archives, would there be any other way to research into station records that predate the 1892 timeframe? -Roger
  11. HT0688 DESIGNATION - MENDELL HT0688 PID - HT0688 HT0688 STATE/COUNTY- CA/SAN FRANCISCO HT0688 USGS QUAD - SAN FRANCISCO NORTH (1995) HT0688 HISTORY - Date Condition Recov. By HT0688 HISTORY - 1892 MONUMENTED CGS Flat, square-shaped benchmark. Very unusual? I've never seen this shape before.
  12. Hmmm, I can't edit my Water Tower post so here's a correction to include the PID information of this mark. HS2776
  13. Searching for HT3673, instead found a cache and did some birding... Who's who?...
  14. Caching and benchmarking on the coast... Found it...
  15. While hunting for a pair of marks (HT3042) on top of Twin Peaks, San Francisco. Both marks are visible in this shot and are aligned just east of the BofA Building in the distance... And after the sunset, HT3091, the dome of San Francisco's City Hall...
  16. Old Water Tower and the oldest benchmark that I've found to date in this area. Found it...
  17. Searching for HT1346 on a 120 plus year-old college campus. Found it...
  18. While this benchmark is not stamped as a USC&GS, I did find it unique for a triangulation station to have a raised center mark. This is the only 'flat-topped' mark that I've found to date. I'll have to keep searching this immediate area but all of the marks I've recovered so far, ranging in dates as far back as 1919 forward are all convex in shape...some more than others which makes me wonder just how much variability there is to the disk shapes?
  19. In our part of the state, its my understanding that certain benchmarks with PIDs that begin with an "A" (e.g., AC9891) will refer you to benchmarks which have been "occupied as part of a California HPGN Densification Survey". Data generated from those types of 'stations' were processed in such a way as to "obtain the highest precision possible" and the coordinate data were obtained by satellite observations. The HPGN benchmark disks that I've recovered (discovered) have all been of Aluminum construction instead of the ubiquitous "brass" type. Here is an example image of such a disk... Here is an example of one geocache that utilizes such a survey station, note all of the log entries include individual GPS readings so that you can see how our 'general purpose' GPS devices compare to the 'professional grade' systems.
  20. HT3452 (DAVIS) situated on the top of Gun Placement No.1 of the former Army's gun battery casemate at Fort Funston. HT3042 (SOUTH TWIN 2) situated on the south peak of Twin Peaks in San Francisco.
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