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Everything posted by andylphoto

  1. Great replies already here. I have seen a number of stations reset due to road construction. Several sections of highway have been widened in my area over the last 15 years. In these areas, there were a number of bench marks set in rock outcroppings along the roadway. In these cases, marks were reset, because plans called for the destruction of the original marks. Because I was actively searching at the time and kept my eyes open, I found a number of the resets. In one construction project, there were several marks reset where plans changed. Instead of blasting the rock outcroppings back from the edge of the roadway, guard rails were instead installed. In these cases, there is an original mark, intact and in the database, and also a reset mark. The resets have not witness post, and (last I bothered to check) were not in the database. An example would be K 329: http://www.geocaching.com/mark/details.aspx?PID=RK0460 The reset mark still exists, but the original was preserved when a guard rail was installed. In this area, as memory serves, resets were placed for RK0457, RK0458, RK0460, and RK0464. Of these, RK0458 was the only one actually destroyed. The rest (along with RK0459, which I don't believe was reset) were preserved when guardrails were installed. The destruction has been noted in the datasheet for RK0458: http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=RK0458 But none of the reset marks have been added to the database. Conversely, two construction projects west of this area saw a number of marks destroyed as rock outcroppings were blasted back from the roadway in the 2000s. Several, if not all, were reset, but the resets have not made their way into the database. There are datasheets for the original marks, but the original marks have been destroyed. The Reset marks exist, but the database does not contain datasheets for them. An example is RL1462: http://www.geocaching.com/mark/details.aspx?PID=RL1462
  2. Thanks...just tried it out and had no problems. I have put my benchmarking activities on a temporary hold while taking care of other things in life. Looking forward to the day when I can resume and devote more time to it. Meanwhile, I visit here from time to time, and do some "armchair benchmarking"--poking around in monkeykat's benchmark viewer, planning trips in my head to execute when time allows, and checking out logs posted by others. The only "problem" I experienced in Firefox was one of habit--I don't recall now if the previous viewer had this behavior, or if I'm used to it from other web sites. After clicking on a mark and getting the pop-up balloon, I kept trying to clear the balloon by clicking elsewhere on the page (outside the balloon,) rather than using the X in the corner. Personally, I like that better, since it gives a much bigger clickable area--less mouse movement to make sure you get it on the X. Don't have any idea how difficult that would be to change even. Like I said though--it's not a problem, just a habit to break. And again, THANK YOU for your efforts in making this available to the community! Your work on the viewer makes choosing marks to search for so much easier!
  3. I would highly recommend sending Deb an email with the pertinent information so she can intervene. I had an unfortunate experience with a destroyed mark. I had submitted a destroyed mark back in 2008 I believe. Had all the correct documentation, but made a typo in the PID in the email subject line. That typo led to the wrong station being marked destroyed. I subsequently visited the "destroyed" mark and submitted a recovery report, then emailed Deb with an explanation about what had happened. It's been over two years, and the station hasn't "recovered" yet. I've been assured that Deb has it in her queue of things to do, but it looks like manual intervention is required. To see the datasheet on this glaring error of mine, go to http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_pid.prl and search destroyed marks for RK0515.
  4. Is it safe to assume they took the elevation of the base of the LOT on the topo map, and didn't add the 80 foot to it......and/or does the term orthometric tie it to the surface of the earth? Thanks It's probably safe to assume on this station, given the replies (I didn't look.) However, don't necessarily assume this is a safe assumption for every intersection station. In Michigan's top 10 by elevation, there are several towers. Highest stations number 7 and 8 are a (now destroyed) lookout tower and a nearby triangulation station disk, (RL1514 and RL1515) both published with identical altitudes, at ground level. Same with stations number 9 and 10 (RL1652 and RL1653). However, highest station number 2 is a different story. It is a TV mast, AH5424. It also contains the same line: AH5424.The orthometric height was scaled from a topographic map. The scaled elevation is 1886 feet, but the topo map shows the tower positioned near the 750 foot contour. The ASR data for this particular tower shows the structure height at 343 meters, with the overall tower height above sea level at 573 meters, or 1880 feet. Not sure where the 1886 came from, but it's not ground level in any case.
  5. Just did some more checking, and both DaveD and the Michigan Department of Transportation have been busy! I had a file on my computer with eight marks I recovered in the fall of 2009. All were scaled marks where I had averaged coordinates for submission, but hadn't sent them in yet. Of those eight, four had been occupied by M-DOT and now have adjusted coordinates, and two have been upgraded to HH1 by Dave. Wow. Interestingly, all of the now-adjusted marks I recovered in September-November and submitted recoveries. M-DOT actually occupied the marks in June, but didn't submit recovery reports until much later, but their recoveries are listed before mine because of the dates. I think PFF had that happen once on a string of marks down his way too.
  6. Thanks for that information Dave, and a big thank you for hanging out here and answering our questions! That's very interesting--that's got to be a huge project for you! I get overwhelmed sometimes just looking at the marks in my county that I haven't recovered, not to mention the other 82 counties in michigan and 49 other states! Even as an amateur benchmark hunter, this will make my job easier when I do get the opportunity to go out and do some serious searching. Like I mentioned above, I've been in the habit of adjusting my own coordinates with some topo map research on my computer, and using NGS Forward for reference marks. Looking forward to the time when I've got a lot more time to go hunting! I, for one, appreciate the work that you're doing, and your dedication to keeping things up to date and easy to use!
  7. Interesting...thanks for that info. I came across another good example of what I'm talking about... Here is the "original" geocaching copy of the datasheet for RK0138. It shows the station as a scaled mark, a Not Found by Alger County, and another Not Found by a former Michigan NGS advisor, who recovered most of the marks in this string back in 1998 before they removed the rail line. The current datasheet for RK0138 shows no additional recoveries, but upgraded coordinates, slightly different than the scaled coordinates.
  8. No, I must have missed the memo! These were all scaled marks. The "adjustment" was my own--adjusting the scaled coordinates in my GPS software to match the location of the mark on USGS topo maps--I've had good success getting to existing marks when old references have been removed. The ones I found, I had submitted HH2 coordinates for. Ones I didn't find still had the scaled coordinates in the NGS database, but have now been upgraded to HH1, with two decimal places in the seconds. That even eliminates the possibility of my accidentally submitting coordinates in error--coordinates I submit only have one decimal place. It just struck me as odd that if someone actually did find some of these old ones with no recoveries and no current references and took the time to take GPS observations, they wouldn't have submitted a recovery report.
  9. I haven't been very active benchmarking for the past year or so due to life circumstances--spending a lot of time expanding a business, buying & improving a house, etc. One day I will get back into it when I have more time, but for now, I have very limited time to devote to it. I have been doing some "drive-by" benchmarking, where I'll pick out a single mark very close to a road where I'll be driving by anyway, and try to find it. My other activity is "armchair benchmarking," which for my purposes consists of perusing datasheets & maps while at work, to facilitate the "drive by" activities, look for potential targets, and check in on previously recovered marks. I found two things of interest this morning I thought I'd share. The first is that I discovered several stations where I had previously submitted HH2 coordinates for scaled marks. The Michigan DOT has since done GPS observations on at least three stations, and NGS has now published adjusted coordinates. Two are along a major highway, but RL0211 got my attention as it is a bit off the beaten path. Set in 1934, then my 2007 recovery, M-DOT in 2009, then adjusted earlier this year. This was an older recovery, where I had included the coordinates in the description. I was pleased to see my posted coordinates were within a tenth of a degree each way, and its nice to see these older marks getting used and upgraded. The other thing I noted really has me scratching my head though. I looked at a number of marks that I had previously searched for. I found several with no recent recovery reports, but whose coordinates had been upgraded. For example, here's one I recovered two years ago, and had submitted HH2 coordinates. Those have now been upgraded to HH1, but there is no recovery report since mine: RK0248 Even more puzzling are several with NO recovery reports. Several of these marks I have spent time searching unsuccessfully for. I did not report, wanting to go back with time to do a more exhaustive search before submitting a not found report to NGS. For example, RL0213 has no recoveries since 1934, and I was not able to find it based on the description, even with the added tool of having "adjusted" the coordinates based on the topo map location. There are several like this with no recent recoveries (or only a couple of not founds) whose coordinates have been upgraded to HH1. I haven't gone back to look to see if someone actually went out and found these marks that I couldn't, but it just seems odd that there would be this slew of coordinate upgrades with no recovery reports. Any thoughts?
  10. I'd say credit is always welcome, but given the circumstances, I (personally) think not necessary. Consider... -The photos have been posted publicly on the internet in the first place. -The photos have been posted with the specific intention of making the station easier to find. -The NGS, through George, Dave, Deb, and perhaps others, has joined OUR community, offering assistance at great length to help US in OUR hobby. I think having photos used by the NGS in the official data sheet is an honor. I've got several linked to datasheets...RJ0383 and TY7765 are ones I know of off the top of my head. As a professional photographer, I understand copyright restrictions. However, the simple fact that the NGS has copied the photographs to their own server (as opposed to direct linking) and made them available free of charge (just like geocaching.com) to both professionals and amateur benchmark hunters like ourselves doesn't seem to be anything to get worked up about. Just my $.02 Andy
  11. Did they want the correction noted in the datasheet, even with it being an intersection station? My favorite USPSQD "not found" was RL1597--similar situation. I logged it here, but did not log with NGS since it was an intersection station. Almost as good as the lighthouse. And not just a generic "not found." Here was the 2004 recovery: Well, not exactly...
  12. I found one (intersection) station where I believe the adjusted coordinates are in error. This also is a third-order station. http://www.geocaching.com/mark/details.aspx?PID=RL1588 Being that it is an intersection station and unlikely ever to be used, I posted a log with my findings and left it at that--I didn't think it was worth putting a whole lot of time into research to prove that this was the tower described. To my knowledge, there was only one company in the 70s providing microwave services (for TV) in the Upper Peninsula, and this tower certainly dates from that era or before, and is (or at least was) owned by that company. Obviously I can't say with certainty that there wasn't another tower, also with three microwave reflectors, there 35 years ago. It doesn't seem likely though.
  13. I think your idea here is right on. I've got a few that I logged nearby (4, I think) where resets were set in anticipation of an upcoming highway project. M-DOT was going through as a part of the project and blasting back rock outcroppings so they were further from the road. Of the four, only one of the originals was destroyed. (On the remaining ones, rather than blast, they placed guardrails.) Interestingly, in one case, they ran along the top of the outcropping and bored holes for blasting, then placed the guardrail, leaving the rock in place. So evidently, the original plan called for blasting. Anyway, the point is...there are now four newly-set (2006 or 2007) stations that may or may not ever be added to the database. All were set prior to the start of the road work. Of those four, three of the original stations are intact. If the paperwork gets submitted to the NGS, you'd have the same situation.
  14. The USGS link is interesting. I would be curious about the methodology used to determine those points (yes, I did read the follow-up post on that!). Looking at the point for Michigan Michigan Wexford 5 miles north-northwest of Cadillac it would seem that the calculation factored in land area rather than simple distances. Some states there wouldn't be much difference in the calculations.
  15. Paul, No, you do not give up your copyright to a photo by posting it. You still own the rights to any work you have done. However, by posting it, you ARE making it readily available, and easy to use. Given what we do and the reason for doing it, it would seem to me that the whole reason for posting photos is to aid others in locating the station. If someone at the NGS pulled photos from gc.com and included them in NGS datasheets, personally I'd be honored. They're a government agency, and aren't profiting from the use--just widening the scope of the use expected when they were posted. If professionals can use my photos instead of just us amateurs, I'm all for it. Actually, I submit photos of all my recoveries to Deb anyway. I don't know if that would fall under "fair use" or not, or if it would be technically a copyright violation, and I'm certainly not going to go research it. Given who is using it (NGS) and why (education and public service) I wouldn't be worried about it. If they wanted to take one of my photos and start selling commemorative prints, then I might contact them to work out a deal. I know at least two of my photos has made it into a datasheet link: TT7765, set by the U.S. Lake Survey back in 1869, and RJ0383, another USLS mark from the early 1900s. These are the only two I know of...seems like the ones making it in first are the more "interesting" stations. I've never referenced gc.com in my logs, but it's good to know that the NGS prefers that we don't.
  16. Looks like datasheets have been updated. I had several recoveries in November that I didn't log due to my personal backlog) until December 25th. Those recoveries now show up in the datasheets. Looking forward to January statistics!
  17. Here are a few from this year... RL0206 QM0003 SG0084
  18. Wow...you learn something new every day. I've been posting on this board for almost 4 years, and I never paid attention to the icons up there. I've just always typed in the UBB code manually when playing with quotes or adding images or links. He he. Guess I've just been polishing my typing skills instead. Thanks for the explanation Papa Bear!
  19. Here is a good example of one that could very easily be confusing to someone new, with two stations having the same designation, and monumentation dates only a year apart. RL0742 GREENLAND is set in bedrock 24 inches below ground level. RL0743 GREENLAND is set just 37 feet away, also in bedrock. RL0742 was set by the USC&GS in 1939. RL0743 was set by the USGS in 1938. The datasheet for RL0743 has scaled coordinates with an adjusted elevation. Another datasheet, RL1598 exists for the same disk, but with adjusted coordinates, and a designation of GREENLAND USGS 1939 (but stamped GREENLAND 1938.) Both datasheets describe the disk as being directly under the center of the lookout tower, with a stamping of GREENLAND 1938. While the designations for this disk are "GREENLAND" AND "GREENLAND USGS 1939," the datasheet for RL0742 (the USC&GS TRI station) refers to the USGS disk by its stamping, "GREENLAND 1938." These can take a few reads before the confusion wears off! I haven't gone after these, only because of the one 24 inches below ground level--they're about 2 hours from home. One day I'll get up there and recover all of them. Or both of them. There are also two GREENLAND reference marks to add to the fun. I wonder if the datasheets for those two stations (RL0743 and RL1598) could be merged? But that's getting off the original topic... EDIT: to say that a careful reading of the datasheets would clear up any confusion on these stations. But we all know that many "drive-by" benchmarkers do no such thing. I'll refer further comment to my rant about ARVON.
  20. No, fortunately either someone else chiseled it out, or it was left visible when the rock facing was added to the building.
  21. I've recovered several of the later ones that I can think of, all from 1917. QL0164 QL0163 and RK0171, which I recovered about a foot underground with the metal detector, in two pieces: The last one is now marked in the database as destroyed, and I have the disk in my possession. I can post a better picture later with less dirt, though the face is kind of scarred. The face appears basically flat, though on careful inspection it is just slightly convex.
  22. This is a fun thread, and seeing some of the history is great. My first find was pretty ho hum as benchmarks go. In January 2006, I had just gotten my first GPS, and had been poking around the site for a couple months. I was interested in the benchmark thing, and being early February, pickings were limited because of the snowcover. In January, I did a couple of armchair notes and destroyed reports for marks on structures I was very familiar with and knew to be destroyed: RK0419 and RK0417. My first "real" find was on February 2, when I found two in the same series in my home town. The first was RK0127, set vertically in the side of a barber shop. From there, I started searching and printing out data sheets. I concentrated for that first summer at least on finding local marks that had not yet been logged on Geocaching. I even passed up a lot of easy ones, going after the ones where my log would be the first! Once those (the easier ones, anyway) were filled in, I went back and started picking up the rest, and concentrating on areas of special interest--a line of marks along an abandoned rail line, for example, and running lines along old county roads. Still at it.
  23. You've got a lot of good advice above. A couple other points I'll throw in. Not terribly relevant on this mark since the reference is simply "across from," but mileposts are also sometimes adjusted, so don't take measurements from mileposts as gospel. This one took me at least three visits... RL0006'2 MILES EAST ALONG THE DULUTH, SOUTH SHORE AND ATLANTIC RAILWAY RL0006'FROM THREE LAKES, BARAGA COUNTY, 116 FEET WEST OF MILEPOST RL0006'196, 28.5 FEET SOUTH OF A 10-INCH WHITE PINE TREE, 25.7 FEET RL0006'NORTH OF THE TRACK, 22.2 FEET SOUTH OF THE RIGHT-OF-WAY FENCE, RL0006'13.8 FEET WEST OF A POLE AND IN THE TOP OF A ROCK OUTCROP. A RL0006'STATE SURVEY STANDARD DISK. The tree, the fence and the pole were all gone. So the only "hard" measurements were the distance from the track, and the distance from the milepost. There is rock outcropping all along this area, so I spent a good deal of time hunting in the area of the described distance from the milepost. When I finally found the disk, the distance from the MP was off by about 50-75 feet. I don't recall exactly. I have also found other marks along this railroad where the distance from the MP or the distance from the track doesn't exactly check. Here is what I eventually found... RL0006 STATION RECOVERY (2008) RL0006 RL0006'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2008 (AJL) RL0006'MP196 APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN ADJUSTED, AS DISTANCE NO LONGER CHECKS. RL0006'WHITE PINE TREE, POLE AND FENCE HAVE BEEN REMOVED. STATION IS RL0006'APPROXIMATELY 195 FEET WEST ALONG THE TRACKS FROM THE CENTER OF A ROAD RL0006'CROSSING (BEAUFORT ROAD EAST), APPROXIMATELY 28 FEET NORTH OF THE RL0006'CENTER LINE OF THE TRACK, AND ABOUT 10 FEET ABOVE LEVEL WITH THE RL0006'TRACK.
  24. I took the question as did you try to run the app on an Intel Mac, or a PPC model.
  25. I've found a few typos, but nothing that struck me quite as funny as the copper coated road--none that I recall, anyway. Here was one interesting entry I recalled finding while perusing stations... QL0562'RECOVERY NOTE BY MI DEPT OF HIGHWAYS 1981 (BT) QL0562'SPALDING 1954 NOT RECOVERED. QL0562' QL0562'CREW WAS TOLD TO LEAVE PROPERTY BY IRATE FARM OWNER WHO SAID THE QL0562'MARK WAS IN HIS ROCK PILE. ANOTHER LOCATION IS SUGGESTED.
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