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Everything posted by Blaidd-Drwg

  1. TEAM MADOG, Mike and Karen during our trip to a well known location. We definitely weren't in Oklahoma!
  2. Didn't find any today. We were flying back from Phoenix, where on Saturday and Sunday during a trip up to the Grand Canyon, we found 9 regular caches and 15 virtuals. This made for a great trip.
  3. A micro which we found in England (Steps in the Wall) contained a logbook that consisted of a rolled strip of paper about 1/4 inch wide and about 4 foot long. It was quite the chore to unroll the used portion to sign the log. This is definitely a case to be FTF.
  4. Like MrPeabody said, use EasyMPS. I've been using it for several weeks and it works quite well.
  5. Hmm. I guess I don't understand that. Here's a simple problem. How would you do it using UTM? Starting at UTM coords 16T E 737152 N 4949950 (it's in Michigan): Go due north exactly 15 km. What are your new coords in UTM? Tell you what: I'll make it interesting. I'll send a custom-made magnetic Bison micro cache container (worth about $10) to the first person who can solve this correctly by hand using only UTM. No using projection on your GPS units; you have to show your work. Using a calculator is fine, of course. Let the contest begin! Oh, and NO USING GeoCalc!!! OK, here goes. You said that you want to go due north 15KM. The thing to realize about using UTM is that it is oriented to grid-north, which due to the fact that you are to the eastern edge of the gridzone, means that it would not be the same. If you were on the center line of the gridzone (E 500000), then grid-north and true-north would be the same. Now assuming you wanted to go grid-north 15km from your starting point, you would simply add 15000 to the northing portion of the UTM grid. So 4949950 + 15000 = 4964950. The easting would remain the same (737152). That being said, if you are at the extreme right edge of gridzone 16T, then you might cross into gridzone 17. If that happens, then your UTM easting might be in the area of 280000. If you are wanting to go north in some standard other than grid-north, you will have to use some trig to compute the new grid.
  6. All of the above advice is great. I especially agree about keeping your feet warm, as I too suffer from cold feet equals cold me. Another important variable is wearing a hat. Something like a stocking cap (tuke) works good. It is a fact of life that about 90% of your body heat is lost through your head. So, even though you may get a bad case of 'hat hair', you'll stay a lot warmer. I also believe that a good windproof layer on the outside is critical. I actually use a Goretex jacket and pants, which also have the benifit of being waterproof, but breathable.
  7. As another US Army retiree, I worked with UTM in the artillery all of the time. Like was mentioned earlier, I too find it easier to use when I have a paper map. Although I now have a Vista, I don't have a Mapsource topo data yet, so I still rely on paper maps. As for distortion, when using UTM, there is an associated speriod that is used to flatten the small portion of the earths surface sor that the grids do not distort the locations. The closer one is to the center of the Grid Zone (for instance 14S is in Oklahoma), the less the distortion. Even out on the fringes, I have not found it to be a problem.
  8. Another method would be to input the grids into Easy GPS and select one of the points as the orientation point. The distance to the other point will be given. This may be a bit too much trouble for a single set of points but if you have a lot of points and want to see which one is closest to a single point, it is a good method.
  9. Started out with a Garmin 12 that I had bought in 1999 or there abouts for exploring my own plot of land. Then in 2002, I bought an Etrex yellow because they were on sale. My office provided me with another Etrex yellow, when we deployed to the desert . And most recently, my wife gave me a Vista for our anniversary I still carry then all in my bag and when a non-caching muggle wants to try a cache, I have a GPSr for them to use. Also, having multiple GPSrs allows my wife to have one, when the team is hard at it. I like the inputs of the Vista best, but it seems to jump around more than the Etrex yellow. All in all, I use the Vista the most.
  10. I work for the US Army as a Information Specialist. That's a fancy way of saying that I serve as a subject matter expert on numerous tactical systems, both when interfacing with soldiers in the field or when working with software engineers during the development process. I do most of my caching on weekends, but sometimes I get to locate some during my official travel days.
  11. This is a test to see if I can add a poor quality picture of my signature coins to the forums.
  12. Let me rephrase your question. I believe your question is which format to use from those listed on the individual cache pages. Here is a quasi technical answer. WGS-84 and UTM are two entirely different items. WGS-84 is a datum, while UTM denotes a method for depicting the earths surface (a spherical shape) on a flat map. A datum is a starting point from which other points are referenced. It includes easting, northing and altitude information or for those more mathmatically inclined, a X,Y and Z. The WGS-84 next to the lat/long coords on a cache page denotes the reference point being used for that position. UTM, which is the universal tranverse mercator divides the world up into 60 grid zones. By making these divisions, it is possible to flatten out the individual grid zones without distorting, significantly, that part of the world. There is an excellent description of this on the garmin site. Both of these entries, you'll find are two separate settings in your GPSr. The final choice betweeen using lat/long or UTM is your call, but WGS84 datum, must be set in your GPSr or you will be off by some amount of distance, sometimes 100s of meters. Bottom line is that it as for cache location format, it doesn't matter. Both are the same location. Enjoy your caching.
  13. UTM Grids posted on USGS maps are always in meters. The normal grid square for a 1:50000 map is 1Km square Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  14. It's been a while since I purchased a USGS map, but the last ones I bought did not have the UTM grid system superimposed on them. Each map does however have tickmarks on the edge that would allow the owner to draw their own grid. The tickmarks would be labeled with small numbers. For the gridlines denoting northing, the numbers would be somewhere near the range of 33-40, while the numbers for the gridlines denoting easting would mostlikely be between 2 and 7. Once you have the gridlines drawn, it is a simple matter to follow the instructions from all the above. Enjoy Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  15. I didn't make it to Iraq, but I spent February through July in Kuwait. There was a single cache there, but I was a little bit afraid of looking for it. I'm just not that trusting. I was afraid that it could have been tampered with and perhaps booby-trapped. As, I'm sure, many of the soldiers in Iraq will tell you, this is a constant fear when searching sites. As a DoD employee and retired US Army NCO, I will always support our troops, but I'm not too sure about placing the temptation to mess with unidentified items before the troops, or others in that part world. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  16. El Diablo, if you're still having trouble getting the clues, it could be because you have your Explorer security settings too high. The sight requires cookies. Try going to the tools memu, select internet options, and the click on the Privacy tab and move the selector bar to a medium setting. This may help Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  17. quote:The biggest problem I see is soldiers becoming PLGR dependant and losing their basic map reading skills. I know what you mean and I agree to a great extent. However, having been on the receiving end of following some 2LT who couldn't find his fouth point in the dark, I'm all for giving soldiers any aide that might help them. Ultimately, it's in the individuals best interest to become proficient in basic map reading skills, as well as becoming competent on their navigational aides such as the PLGR or GPSr Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  18. I tend to agree with most of 105mm Redleg's comments (Long Live the King of Battle - Field Artillery to you non-redlegs). I can't vouch for any comparisons between PLGRs and typical GPSr, not having used them side by side. I have used the PLGR in both Korea and in Kuwait though. It does work and is used many tactical military systems for reporting location. I'm currently in Kuwait and our group has a few different civilian GPSr that we use. We currently have Etrex, Etrex Summit and Magellan Sporttrack models. All work well, and arguements can be made about the advantages or disadvantages of each. Now for my only disagreement with 105mm Redleg. I'll start with a short story. While at the CONUS Replacement Center at Ft Benning, I set up a short course with 6 waypoints for teaching members of my group who were unfamiliar with operation of a GPSr, how to use a one. During this time, I commented that even should SA be turned on, the systems should work accurately enough to locate a unit location and even if accurracy was degraded to 100s of meters, we should still be able to locate our objectives. Well once we got on the ground in Kuwait, there were times when the sand was blowing so hard that you could not see 50 meters, let alone far enough to compare surrounding terrain to a map.( there is very little terrain in Kuwait, except for flat). So what is the bottom line of this ramble. Civilian GPSr worked fine for navigation in the military enviornment, but when it comes to positioning acquisition sources such as radar and shooters such as howitzers, I think folks are better off using the PLGR. I do agree with TeamBoonieHat that the PLGR is a bulky, heavy, unfriendly piece of equipment, that most non-mechanized unit personnel grown about having to carry. One last interesting tibit, when using a civilian GPSr, upon entering several of the forward camps, satellite lock would be lost. The GPSr would work up to the gate but not any further. I have no idea why this was, unless it was caused by the large number of generators, radios and other rf emitters. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169" You can't be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline - it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Source: Frank Zappa
  19. I like the idea, BUT I don't think this is something that can be tracked in a database. The tracking would be something like a travel bug tracking system, which requires entries by both placer and finders. Therefore, I think, (and maybe a techie out there will tell me I'm wrong) the best way to know that a signature item has been placed in a cache is to note it in the logs. As with travel bugs, there are going to be times when you reach a cache, marked as having a travel bug and it won't be there. Such is the nature of the game. Failure of people to log trades happens. Therefore, my final answer is 'none of the above' Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  20. Like Worldtraveler, my only FTF wasn't due to any special planning. I just happened to be in the area for a training course when I found this one, 616 miles from home. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  21. Information Technology Specialist with the US Army, currently deployed in Kuwait. The job title is a fancy way of saying that I tell operators of field artillery data systems how to run systems. I get to come home in July and I'm looking forward to doing some caching. Actually, I should get credit for several caches while here in Kuwait. The only way to drive in a sand storm is to follow the arrow on a GPSr towards a waypoint. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  22. Unless the manual has changed since I got my eTrex, it is not very clear on how to enter the first waypoint. I'm assuming you've not entered any waypoints to this point in time. The way to create a waypoint is to 'mark' a location and then edit that point. You can change the name, the location or any of the other parameters for the point. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  23. 1976-1995. The first four years were in the 2-504th IN, The remainder of the years were spent in the Artillery, 1 AD, 2ID, 101st AASLT, Drill Sergeant, Artillery Training Center. In a round about way, I'm still serving. I work as a civil service tech for artillery computer systems. I'm currently in Kuwait in support of the troops. Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  24. reply, just to see if my charter membership is good or if I should talk to my wife about not sending in my renewal check Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
  25. I agree with Luxom. Please specify grid/true/magnetic when specifying the azimuths. You state that there will be an identifiable turning point at the end of each leg. I don't know how you will implement this, but I think it would make it a better search. I tried to locate a cache in Alabama that had you find a tree stump as a starting point (only one of many in the area) and then had you go on a specified azimuth for a given distance, determine your new location and do a math problem to determine a new direction and distance to the final cache. Bottom line, is I had to mark this one as a big 'did not find' Madog "Discover of America, ca 1169"
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