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Everything posted by WhistlingWind

  1. My oldest find, and I think the oldest actual (original and not reset) mark found in CA is the 1851 chiseled cross Santa Cruz Astro Station It was a thrill to see the actual stone and chiseled cross that was set 154 years ago. I looked up the history of the CGS and found out quite a bit about the surveyor, Davidson. He was an early and prominent figure in the first West Coast surveys (And I now know where Mount Davidson and Davidson Seamount here got their names!). Whistling Wind
  2. Yow! I admire Mr. Magoo's persistence! W. Wind
  3. Jeremy -- The gallery page is a step backwards. Many of us had asked for more info on the picture labels such as county and state automatically added. Here is what I'd like to see (in order of 'usefulness'/priority) - PID, County, State (highest) - found by whoever - date (lowest) Thanks! WhistlingWind
  4. Hello...testing, testing 1,2,3....Is this thing on? W. Wind
  5. Can't post to Benchmarking Forum...and there have been no new posts for 3 days. What's up? W. Wind
  6. What is an 'astro station'? I have seen that name used in several 19th century benchmarks. (There is one nearby I want to visit) My guess is that some sort of astromomical observation was done to determine the precise location rather than (or maybe in addition to) the usual geodetic techniques. W. Wind
  7. Benchmarking in paradise...aahhh! Visited this interesting benchmark, TU1964,while vacationing on Kauai. The orignal drill hole in the red brick pier dates from 1910 -- making it a 93 year old benchmark -- my oldest find to date! Also found 4 geocaches. Geocaching and benchmarking are nice additions to a vacation as they lead to interesting places that I would not otherwise see.
  8. I went to the BMGPX and read the BMGPX thread and I still have NO clue as to what it does. I downloaded ExpertGPS and its not what I am looking for either -- though close. I'd like to: - download a whole pile of benchmarks locations and descriptions - display the locations on a topo map on my laptop - be able to do that when offline, so that I can take the laptop with me when on the road - be able to lookup the benchmark data (to reach description etc) offline ExpertGPS will display BM waypoints on cached topomaps offline, but (unless I am missing something) it does not have a way to get the benchmark data pages and save them for offline use. Is this what BMGPX does? Or is there some SW that does all this? Thanks, W. Wind
  9. Jeremy - Is it possible to add the county and state to the (existing) PID above the photos in the benchmark gallery? The data (county and state) is available in the database -- so you should be able to grab it. Many of us benchmarkers like to peruse the benchmarking photo gallery to see what finds look interesting. If something has been logged in our locale, neighboring counties or state, it is that much more interesting. Currently, The photo is automatically captioned with the PID above the photo, and user supplied comments below... but typically the user comments do not include *ANY* reference to the physical location (despite many urgings on the benchmarking discussion board that people include the county and state in the comments -- instead what people do is title the photo 'closeup' or overview or 'the benchmark' :-( Having the county and state automatically added after the PID would sure be nice! Many Thanks for the terrific site, Whistling Wind
  10. This seems obvious...but I'll ask anyway: What is the URL for my particular My Cache Page? I'd like to provide a link to My Cache Page that I can email other people to see my finds etc. Thanks, Whistling Wind
  11. Beer. I think it takes beer (and a sense of humor): A number of years ago I hired a local surveyor to find an important property corner... which was off in the forest and down the side of a hill. He was an older gentlemen with a 20-something assistant. Starting at an iron pipe on one end of the line, they traversed about 700' over difficult terrain and arrived at where the pipe marking that corner should be. But no iron pipe, the area was at the foot of a small slide and the area looked generally unstable. He had his assistant dig down 2 feet but still nothing. They fired up the metal detector and a few minutes later he had a strong indication a few feet away. The assistant dug again -- nothing at 1' down -- nothing at 2 feet and then he hit something -- a Hamms beer can. "Sorry, man" , I said. "No, it's good," the surveyor said, "that means a surveyor has been here. We're close!" We eventually did the pipe a few feet away, displaced by the slide. Whistling Wind
  12. Mr. Kewaneh and Ms. Shark -- -- thought you'd keep it quiet, eh? It did not escape notice that you hit find number 100 last week.;-) Well, congrats! And many thanks for the great info and insight into the surveying profession you provide by participating in this forum -- I have learned a lot. as you say -- Keep on cachin'! Whisting Wind (regular visitor to rural Fresno and San Joaquin counties)
  13. quote: There are accessory monuments described (that I was unable to search for) and there is a good chance that they still exist. If they do, the true location for the benchmark monument could be re-established from them. Kewanah -- So how 'valuable' are the old triangulation-station marks to the modern surveyor, anyway? These days with GPS/WAAS survey instruments he'd just set a new one rather than re-establish a missing mark from the reference/azimuth/underground marks? Here's the reason I ask: I logged a 1940's tri-station on a local ridge. The owner said he will soon start construction of his new home on the site, but would try to work around the station mark if at all possible. (He didn't know he had one up there and was quite interested when we found it!) It got me thinking about how valuable or useful these tri-station marks are now that surveyors use GPS. Thanks, W. Wind.
  14. I imagine there'd be a benchmark at 'ground zero'. If there is it'd be a cool one to log! WW
  15. Black Dog -- thanks for the info. I've found one tidal benchmark and have my eye on several others in my old hometown. This brings up a question I have been wanting to ask: exactly what is a 'tidal' benchmark, and how are they used? Whistling Wind
  16. Right, my topic would have been better phrased as "is the *practice* of setting RMs and underground marks obsolete?". So do you guys still use the 'old ways' much at all to set horizontal marks? My guess is that the old long-range triangulation techniques (long baselines, distant observations, precise measuring of angles, towers ,lights) are something that pretty soon only the old-timers will remember having used...(like older navigators remember sextant and chronometer, but love their GPS!). W. Wind. (ex-celestial navigator -- now GPS exclusively)
  17. I like finding the 1930's era triangulation stations in my area, for some reason they seem 'special'. A question regarding GPS and modern survey practices when setting a new horizontal stations: Given GPS and WAAS, do modern surveyors still set RM's and underground marks like they used to, or do they just set a surface mark? W. Wind
  18. Thanks for all the suggestions. I did ask for and get permission to search for the benchmark. It was a named triangulation mark that shows up on the local topo map. I drove up while and introduced myself to what turned out to be the new tenant as he was feeding his horses. I explained that he had a 'geodetic marker' on the top of the knoll some 100 yards away that was placed there in 1947, and would he mind if I looked for it and took a picture. I said it was a hobby and didn't mean that anyone was going to come surveying. One thing that really helped was to have the printed description and page from topozone on hand. I explained that a USCGS triangulation mark was pretty special and and important monument as demonstrated by the 3 reference marks just to help find the thing and they buried another disc 2.5' under the surface mark just in case. I offered to leave my info with him. He thought this was pretty cool and said he'd show the landlord who had a keen interest in the history of his property. I found the mark and emailed him the pics. I think what really helped: - having the description and topo-map - explained the signifigance and unique-ness (like someone said earlier the landowner can be proud of having a BM. - identifying myself by first and last name - it helped that I was local - offering to leave all the benchmark info W. Wind
  19. Any advice on securing permission from the landowner when looking for a BM on private property? I live in semi-rural area and nearby are couple of BMs I've been wanting to visit. The owners live on the property, so I don't want to just trapse over there (I'm not inclined to trespass anyway). What have people found works best, just knocking on the door, a letter? How does one explain benchmark hunting? Any advice on approaches is appreciated. W. Wind
  20. This one has been my favorite finds. The BM is at the base of the south cat: http://www.geocaching.com/mark/details.asp?PID=HS3150 Whistling Wind
  21. I ran over 2 (not 1 but 2!) Garmin 12XLs with a 26' motorhome. My buddies and I were packing up the motorhome after the BALLS High Power Rocket launch at Black Rock Desert in Nevada. I had my 12xl with me as did one of the other guys. We decided to compare readings so set them down side-by-side on the dry lake bed while packed up. Of course we didn't want to expose them to the searing heat and sun so we put them in the only shade around - under the motor home. Two hours later, after packing up we drove off. I made a big wide turn so we could see our campsite and make sure we didn't leave any trash under the vehicle. As we looked back, there wher the tire tracks going directly over the 2 units... we had run them over..oh NO! We piled out of the motorhome, expecting the worst -- they were pushed into dry hard clay about 1". To our amazement the were not only still working, but unscathed. It would have made a good commercial for Garmin! Whistling Wind.
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