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Everything posted by Sam&Ziggy

  1. Sorry to say, but that is the way they are. Personally, I've had no problems using mine in all conditions. I got used to the lighting real quick and I don't even think about it anymore. Actually, think of it this way..... it makes the batteries last longer????
  2. Here's a reprint of what I learned to do a ways back when I first got my Dakota 20. Should take care of your problem! It did mine!
  3. Sam&Ziggy

    Garmin Nuvi 255W

    With the nuvi 255W, use the regular Automotive Mode to get you in the vicinity. Once parked somewhere close, switch it to Pedestrian Mode and close in as close as you can. Next, go back to the Map/Where to? screen and touch the battery meter in the top left corner. This will bring you to the real-time sattelite screen. Find the co-ordinates in the top center and start moving until both co-ordinates coincide with the caches numbers. It really helps to have an idea of your N/S/E/W directions so you have an idea which way to move , but just watch the co-ordinates change as you move along and you should get as close as with a handheld unit. Also, watch the bottom right on the screen and you can see how accurate the unit is tracking. We started with the same GPSr and did OK for the first 30 or so!
  4. My vote goes to the new Dakota series, either the 10 or 20. Neat thing about the 20, at least, is that it's very good on roads, including routing. Paperless geocaching, ability to switch profiles on the fly and each mode is fully customizable too. Also, for those bikers out there, you can obtain several sensors that tie into the unit. I believe one ties in to the bike itself, maybe for speed, etc.; and the other is sensor to map your heart rate etc. Kinda cool, if you ask me. The Dakota 20 appears to be the best of all worlds right now.
  5. Glad what I learned helped you out! Yah, I hope this is not a warning of more problems to come, but at least it does seem to confirm that the "guts" of the Dakota's are the same as, or very similar to the Oregons! I forgot to mention that in my case the problem was in my Geocaching files and not in "current" file. At least it ceased when I just deleted all Geocaching files in the folder. But I too, had been out caching! I had just gotten back to the GeoElement and was getting ready to head to the next cache on my list when this happened. Instead of a dozen or so hopeful caches for the day, I got stopped after just 4. Mostly what was in the file I cleared out tempoarily was Caches.
  6. Glad what I learned helped you out! Yah, I hope this is not a warning of more problems to come, but at least it does seem to confirm that the "guts" of the Dakota's are the same as, or very similar to the Oregons!
  7. Splashy, the saving screen only came up AFTER I plugged into the car cord. The car was already started and therefore the cord was powered. It then locked up at 61% and sat there until I unplugged it again.
  8. Just had a very disconcerting time with my new Dakota 20. Had been out all morning having good success geocaching and after the last cache, I plugged the unit into the car power cable. Instead of the Dakota switching to car power, the screen went to a script stating that it was saving all waypoints, routes, etc. and it got stuck at 61%. After that, the screen went black and the Dakota turned off. No matter what I did to turn it back on, with car power or batteries, it would get to the welcome screen, then it would say it was loading maps and then turn off! Dang! Well, I got it home and tried plugging into the PC and it wouldn't even connect to the PC. Started to Panic! Knowing that the Dakota series is similar to the Oregon series, I made my way to the Oregon Wiki site and found how to get those units back on track under the same situation. (BTW..... of course there is NO help at all at Garmin's site! And no tech help on a Sunday, of course.) So what the heck, I'll give it a try. It came down to this: 1) Remove any micro/SD card from the Dakota, if you have one in the unit. 2) Connect the Dakota to the PC USB cable and hold down the power on button for about 30 seconds. At that point the Dakota should allow access to the PC and you can then go to the folders in the Dakota's USB mass storage. 3)Create a folder on your desktop to transfer files into temporarily. 4) Go back to the files in the Dakota and find the file labeled "GPX" and open it. COPY all files into the desktop folder. This includes the folder labeled "Current". Other than that file, the other items in that folder are your caches and waypoints. 5) Now copy the "Current" file back to the Dakota's USB mass storage and then open that file up and delete all items in there. (They are still backed up in the desktop folder, remember!) 6) Now unplug the Dakota from the USB cable and re-boot it. It should now start as normal. If it does, power it back down, re-install the micro/SD card, and restart the Dakota to insure it's still OK. 7) Reconnect the Dakota back to the PC USB cable. It should now recognize the Dakota as a USB mass storage device right away again. Open the storage and find the "GPX" file again. Open it. 8) Re-open the saved file on your desktop and copy back all the files. DO NOT copy back the "Current" file from the desktop. That will be used again when you start the unit again. The corrupt file was in that "Current" folder. 9) Disconnect from the PC and re-boot the Dakota. All should be back where you were with the exception of what you were doing when the unit corrupted itself!
  9. Sam&Ziggy

    Garmin Dakota 20

    I've had my Dakota 20 for 2 days and the only real complaint I have is the backlight is too dim. If one is wearing sunglasses, as in driving a car, it's really hard to see that screen very well. I also wish that when the unit is in routing mode, the data you can put at the top in either 2 boxes or 4 boxes (especially the 4!) takes up too much precious screen space. The data boxes should be smaller. I know car travel is not what it was made for, and it sure beats my eTrex Venture HC, but is bad compared to my wife's nuvi 255W. The good thing is is that each data box can be changed to whatever data you want to show.... and the list is long!
  10. There's a CD that comes with the Etrex units that contain the drivers for your PC to interact and recognize it. It also loads the program that lets you update the software and maps off the Garmin Website. If one did not come with your unit, you may need to get a Mini-USB cable to hook up between your Etrex and a standard USB port on your PC. If you don't have the CD, all the programs and drivers can be downloaded from the Garmin site too. Once you have the software loaded on the PC, hook your GPS up via the cable and turn it on. Then go to Geocaching.com, log in, find the site(s) you want to load and fire away! From the individual cache pages there is a button near the top that says "Load to GPS". If you are looking at a list of caches from your location page, you can put checks in all the ones on the page at the far right hand side and load that page en masse, OR individually with the other button at the far right. Once you hit any of the load buttons, a small box comes up from the Garmin loading program. Make sure it "finds" your particular unit (it MUST be ON). When it "sees" your GPS, hit the "Write" button and you're good to go!
  11. We love ours! Does everything we need it to do. We started with just using our Nuvi 255W and even did fairly well with that. Once we got the "bug" though, we felt the need for a more portable, water-proof and durable unit for the actual hiking parts. We got ours for about $124 a couple months ago through Amazon.com, but at that time, they were also available for around the same price through Walmart, both online and in the stores. Until I saw the new GeoMate, Jr. that's just becoming available, the Venture was the smallest and least expensive hand-held available that had geocaching functions built in. This new GeoMate, Jr. looks very interesting for families on a budget. Basic in funtion, but comes with 250,000 caches PRE-PROGRAMMED! And all for only $69.99! Coming available soon from Groundspeak store.
  12. Trying to make our first cache. Wanted to do something a bit different on a lot we own. Does it seem OK to make an initial waypoint and then have that one provide NOT co-ordinates, but a specific compass heading and distance in feet or paces? Considering doing this as a 3 step find with a full size cache at the end. The web site states that it needs all points of a multi as co-ordinates, and that could be done with the second two logged in as "hidden", I suppose? Just not sure how this should be logged into Geocaching.com. Advice?
  13. Thanks for all the advice and encouragement everyone!
  14. Thanks for clarification, gang! I now understand................ Sam will be thrilled that she can wear it and it's still an active trackable.
  15. Thanks for the quick answer, but I still need to know how they are logged in when they are not actually in another's possession.
  16. Hope I' m not out of line, but have to ask this. Just obtained 2 of the Honu coins. Got them for my wife because of her love for sea turtles. May send one out, but I was thinking of one as part of a necklace. Question is this: I have seen the decals for vehicles and shirts for toddlers that are trackable. Can the same be done for a geocoin or, for that matter, a TB dogtag? For example, if one comes across other cachers, can they claim these type of items as "found" and log them? How exactly should this be done if the item does not change hands?
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