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Everything posted by Buzzygirl

  1. I've found garter and bull snakes in my area while out caching (Minnesota). There are eastern timber rattlers a bit south and east of me, but not where I live. When I find a snake, it usually darts away as fast as it can. I like snakes though, so they don't bother me at all-- at least not the ones around here. Last time I was caching in AZ though, I was *very* careful not to put my hand anyplace without first poking around with a stick. There, you've got to worry about scorpions too...
  2. Got my GPSr from www.tigergps.com. Very fast service, excellent prices.
  3. I might be chiming in a bit late on this thread, but I thought I would add my two cents worth anyway, in case someone has similar questions in the future while searching through these threads. I own the eXplorist 100. I've used it since last summer. Before that, I owned a yellow eTrex. I am very happy with the eXplorist 100. It is very user-friendly, accurate and holds a signal very well. There are many who wouldn't consider buying any of the eXplorist units (the series 100-300) because of the lack of a computer interface, which is understandable. That being said, there are some who really don't require it. I've never had any use for a GPS with advanced mapping software, an altimeter or any number of other bells and whistles. I needed a GPSr strictly for geocaching and didn't have a lot of money to spend. Now that I've had some experience with the eXplorist 100, here is an admittedly-subjective view of the type of person that I think might be quite happy with this unit: - Has less than $100 to spend. - Has no need for advanced mapping capabilities. - Doesn't typically enter more than 5-10 waypoints at a time. - Is an "occasional" geocacher; hasn't a lot of spare time to devote to the sport, cannot possibly hit 20-30 caches in a weekend, but can get out for a few hours here and there every other week or so (that's me). - Wants a simple to use, intuitive and user-friendly interface. - Wants an "extra" GPSr for the kids or for use as a spare. - Wants a GPSr that you won't be too sad over if it gets lost, crushed or drowned. Most of my geocaching buds have receivers like the Garmin 76 and 60CS units. These guys have more time to devote to geocaching than I do and often do two dozen or more caches in a single weekend. They require being able to download many waypoints at once. For me, an average month of caching sees me visiting maybe 5-6 caches every other weekend. I can always print out maps to the cache area from Mapquest. I just couldn't justify spending several hundred dollars more for a GPS that has a computer interface, when I don't have a need for it. If you can be happy with fewer features yet still want an accurate GPSr for very little money, the eXplorist series is one to consider. YMMV.
  4. I have had both units and have used them both extensively, so perhaps I'm qualified to answer. First, let me state that this report is based on my experience only, and I'm not affiliated in any way with either Garmin or Thales. For me, the Magellan wins out over the eTrex in terms of accuracy and holding signal lock. I was always frustrated by how much my eTrex's signal reports "jumped around", especially under heavy tree cover (where I spend most of my geocaching time!) and my Magellan eXplorist 100 simply does not do this. I'm not sure if it has to do with the 14 vs. 12 channels or WAAS in the Magellan; all I know is that I no longer use the eTrex for geocaching.
  5. Having used both of these units, I can tell you of my experience with their accuracy. The eXplorist seems to be far better at holding a signal-- my eTrex's readings used to "jump around" quite a bit, and the eXplorist simply doesn't do that. I don't know if the WAAS has anything to do with it. I understand there is much variance between units, so my experience is probably just that, my experience. I would see if you can borrow one of each and then compare them. But they are approximately the same price, and no, the eXplorist has no computer interface. This is a make-or-break feature for some. I enter waypoints manually and don't care if my GPSr has a computer interface.
  6. I have the eXplorist 100 and it's a very nice little unit. The display is clear and clean, with adjustable contrast and a soothing amber backlight. It's tough and quite accurate too-- I'm very impressed so far with its performance. As another poster mentioned, the largest drawback is that it has no computer interface for downloading waypoints-- however, I don't have any use for that myself, as I download waypoints by hand, and usually only a few at a time, so the lack of computer interface isn't an issue for me. But it will be for some. YMMV.
  7. I've got the Magellan eXplorist 100 and it's been really awesome. Highly accurate, holds the signal lock very well. Also priced <$100 if you look around. This unit is not suitable for people who prefer to download waypoints off a computer, as it has no computer interface. However, for folks like me who don't care about that (I usually only enter a few waypoints at a time by hand) this is a nice little starter unit. It doesn't have fancy mapping capabilities either, but not everyone needs/wants that anyway.
  8. I am an odd one, alright. PI grows all over the place here (MN). I see it all the time when I am 'caching. I know lots of people who've gotten nasty rashes from the stuff. I don't know what's up with the likes of me, but I have had a lot of contact with this stuff- broken-off leaves, plant stems, etc. in contact with my clothes and skin - and I have yet to break out in a rash. I don't get it.
  9. I'm used to seeing caches tucked into all sorts of weird places... such as in partly-fallen-over trees over a dozen feet off the ground, to mucky swamp-grass three feet high, to rodent-eaten holes in large logs, where you're not sure what else may've made its home there just last month. I've gotten way dirty from digging through piles of logs, sticks, acorns, and swamp grass for the prize. However, I don't usually find caches truly "buried" in the ground. I always thought that was sort of against the rules of geocaching. Hiders are getting more clever in their choice of container, though. My rule of thumb is, if the potential hide area looks really gross, I first use a stick to ascertain if it really is a potential hiding spot... in my experience, it's usually not, if only because most of the hiders wouldn't want to stick their hands/arms into those areas either.
  10. I have an eXplorist 100, and I LOVE it. I find it to be very accurate. I have truly enjoyed using it. I have used a couple other GPSr's, and even though those were more costly than the eXplorist 100, they didn't work as well. The eXplorist 100 does not jump all over the place when in the vicinity of a cache. The other two GPSr's I used, did. This unit has a place in geocaching, as long as you don't mind the fact that you cannot download waypoints via a computer connection. However, if you are like me and only enter a few waypoints at a time, and don't mind doing it by hand (which, on this unit, is VERY easy) and if don't need any advanced mapping/barometric capabilities, this unit's for you. I am much more concerned with accuracy and ease of use than I am with computer connectivity. I understand Magellan's soon to be marketing other eXplorist units that have all the bells 'n whistles... I won't be buying those. I really like my eXplorist 100; it has everything I need.
  11. I often leave Mercury dimes (silver, from the 1920's-1940's) in my caches.
  12. This unit has been sold. Thanks!
  13. I have the eXplorist 100 and compared to my eTrex, it works much better under heavy tree cover. It's very simple to use, has an intuitive interface and is nice-looking. I don't care that it doesn't have a computer interface. I enter waypoints by hand and usually no more than a few at a time anyway. People who prefer downloading waypoints will not want this one, but I really like it. It consistently holds a good lock on the satellite signals and is more accurate in the vicinity of waypoints than my eTrex ever was. The eTrex's distance reading would bounce around from 15-55 ft. in the vicinity of a waypoint when I barely moved the thing. The eXplorist does not do this.
  14. I use an eTrex and rarely get better than 30-50 ft. accuracy. Most of the caches I've found have been located in wooded areas, some with heavy tree canopies, however. I rarely, if ever, nab a cache that is located with 10 ft. of the hider's coords.
  15. LOL to those last replies!!! I'm from Minnesota (albeit a relatively bear-free part of the state) but I have done my share of camping in the bear-rich parts of our state. I have come across black bears several times, one of those times about 100 feet away, just by happenstance. Without exception, they ran away at the first sight of me. I'm not ugly or anything, mind you; I'm just human, and I have found that black bears don't like being close to us UNLESS there is food nearby. Bears used to come sniffing around the places where we cleaned fish or were cooking outdoors, but only when people weren't nearby. But one look at a hollering human, and they ran away post-haste. My conclusion: black bears are very skittish around humans. On an slighty unrelated topic, I also saw a mountain lion (cougar) once when I was walking through a path in the woods of northern Minnesota about 20 years ago. I was walking through the woods, heard some rustling, looked ahead, and saw a cougar heading at a good clip through the woods about 50 yards away from me, headed roughly to the northeast. At that time, it was thought that cougars had left the state years before. No one believed me when I told them what I thought I saw; many suggested it was some other animal. I didn't have a camera with me at the time, so I can't prove it, but I KNOW what I saw was a cougar. Since that time, several of these secretive animals have been caught on camera, living fairly close to now-suburban neighborhoods. They too are extremely secretive animals.
  16. Think I hit it that time. I think.
  17. I'm pretty new to geocaching (started < 1 month ago) but I have planted two caches and have decided to make old coins my geocaching signature. I used to collect coins (before it got too expensive) but I still have quite a few old silver American dimes left, as well as foreign coins. Your average circulated American dime is still worth more than any coin in recent circulation, and I still run across old silver coins in my change now and then. I like turning other people on to coin collecting, so I have stocked my caches with old coins and foreign coins, and I usually leave old/foreign coins in other caches I have visited (yeah, all DOZEN of them as of 4/30/04 ). Looking forward to seeking (and hopefully FINDING) at least a half-dozen more caches this weekend. Buzzygirl
  18. I leave old silver dimes from the 1930's and 1940's!
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