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Ellteejak

Route Caches - Perfected!

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I think I have been able to perfect using Microsoft Streets & Trips (S&T), and the Geocaching Swiss Army Knife (GSAK) applications to optimize caches along a route. This is all based on the discussions discussed here in various message threads, and the ST2GPX application.

 

I have a route of about 160 miles along the interstates (highways) that was "worked" to decrease hours driven, while increasing the amount of caches driven to.

 

Still working this, so I welcome tips!! I did not include instruction sets other have created here, as they have done a great job, so study them first.

 

Here are the tips:

 

1) Start with S&T. Create a route. Add EXITS as stops (this takes a little practice, but is possible in S&T). Save the map as an S&T map. Close S&T.

 

2) Convert the saved S&T map to a GPX file, via the ST2GPX application.

 

3) Open GSAK (make sure it is loaded with all the possible waypoints in the area). Open the filter function/ ARC-POLY page (you might wish to select only waypoints with low difficulty). Import the saved GPX file in the previous step.

 

4) Select POINTS not the ARC function. Also select a small distance from list of points (I selected 0.5 mile). Run the filter.

 

5) Export the waypoints to a S&T PUSHPINS list (aka *.CSV file) from GSAK. Close GSAK.

 

6) Open S&T and create your directions from your point A to point B. Then import your PUSHPINS as STOPS. Run directions again.

 

If you can practice the above, you should have an optimized directions to your waypoints. This would be all along your pre-planned travel route.

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I have found that you can also use the POICONVERTER application to change the STOPS in a saved STREETS & TRIPS into a list of waypoints (via *.GPX file). This effectively gives you a skeleton route that GSAK can use to plot nearby caches.

 

This is working great!!

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