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Washington Delorme Challenge


Moun10Bike
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From the looks of it, our discussion of the Washington DeLorme Challenge in the thread that LazyBoy started about the Oregon DC led him to lock it. So, I thought I'd start this one so that we Washingtonians could talk about our pursuit of the "goal"!

 

For anyone who owns a copy of DeLorme Street Atlas, I have provided a file to help you track the borders of the DeLorme Atlas pages:

 

DeLorme Atlas page boundaries for use in DeLorme Street Atlas

 

Simply download the text file to your local machine, launch Street Atlas, select the "Draw" tab, click the "File..." button, then click "Import..." and select the downloaded file. This will then create a grid on the map showing the boundaries of the DeLorme Atlas pages:

 

wdcsa9do.jpg

 

You can then import a list of caches exported in the proper format (something GSAK or GBSBabel can do for you) as another draw layer to see where the caches fall with regard to page boundaries.

 

Even if you don't use Street Atlas, the text file provides the coordinates for the page boundaries in decimal degrees.

 

I am working on providing the same thing for Microsoft Street Atlas, but that requires more manual labor so it will take a bit longer.

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XY told me how I could grid a WA State map the same as the DeLorme pages. That way I have it all on a map instead of pages. Of course this way it is much smaller and harder figure out borders. But for now I am estimateting I have 51 pages done. I need to do my queries and send it in so I will know for sure.

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I am working on providing the same thing for Microsoft Street Atlas, but that requires more manual labor so it will take a bit longer.

How does this look? Blue dots represent Delorme pages (Corners), and red dots are my finds (on MS Streets and Trips). I know what you mean by manual labor. That took me a while to do. I didn't even bother trying to connect the dots due to the curvature of the latitude lines. Looking forward to your solution, and thanks for your hard work in providing mapping solutions for the rest of us. Looks like I've got a lot of driving ahead in the next few months to complete this challenge. :ph34r:

 

954e440d-cba7-4fca-9705-8fd0e343d116.jpg

Edited by The Navigatorz
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Your image above is essentially what I started with - using a couple of tools including GSAK, I could export the coordinates for the corners of the pages and import them into SnT.

 

The time-consuming manual part was then drawing the boundaries and adding the page numbers. This is easy in DeLorme Street Atlas because you can make drawn polygons snap to waypoints and can automatically label each polygon. In SnT, however, there is no snapping, so you must zoom in closely at each waypoint and manually place it. In addition, the labels must be added sepately.

 

In any case, I am finished and the results look like this:

 

wdcsnt0sl.jpg

 

You can download the .est file here:

 

DeLorme Atlas page boundaries for use in Microsoft Streets and Trips

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I thought people might be interested in this - a list of DeLorme Atlas pages in descending order of the number of caches in each (as of October 7):

 

Page 79........1000

Page 63.........485

Page 62.........409

Page 89.........305

Page 80.........275

Page 78.........254

Page 67.........191

Page 94.........182

Page 22.........180

Page 95.........162

Page 64.........133

Page 109........117

Page 50.........113

Page 108........106

Page 46.........103

Page 44..........93

Page 65..........87

Page 49..........81

Page 23..........78

Page 61..........75

Page 66..........72

Page 45..........69

Page 82..........68

Page 88..........66

Page 41..........65

Page 81..........60

Page 83..........60

Page 39..........57

Page 96..........52

Page 51..........51

Page 47..........45

Page 93..........45

Page 32..........44

Page 68..........43

Page 58A.........37

Page 105.........36

Page 25..........34

Page 110.........33

Page 107.........32

Page 24..........32

Page 48..........31

Page 118.........28

Page 42..........27

Page 33..........25

Page 77..........24

Page 119.........22

Page 43..........22

Page 37..........21

Page 57..........21

Page 60..........21

Page 53..........20

Page 104.........19

Page 85..........19

Page 99..........19

Page 38..........18

Page 73..........18

Page 100.........17

Page 40..........17

Page 69..........17

Page 52..........16

Page 30..........14

Page 34..........14

Page 72..........14

Page 113.........12

Page 26..........12

Page 84..........12

Page 92..........12

Page 98..........12

Page 114.........10

Page 112..........9

Page 31...........9

Page 55...........9

Page 59...........9

Page 97...........9

Page 71...........8

Page 87...........8

Page 117..........7

Page 86...........7

Page 54...........6

Page 70...........6

Page 90...........5

Page 91...........5

Page 103..........4

Page 115..........4

Page 75...........4

Page 35...........3

Page 36...........2

Page 56...........2

Page 76...........2

Page 101..........1

Page 102..........1

Page 111..........1

Page 116..........1

Page 27...........1

Page 28...........1

Page 74...........1

Page 29A..........0

Page 29B..........0

!

 

Note that Page 28 now has a cache and, thanks to blindleader, so does Page 74

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I'm a bit behind in getting caught up on this new cache, but it looks great. I'm currently using National Geographic Topo software on my laptop. Does anyone have an over lay for this software or is it possible to import either of the 2 files M10 posted and use those on Topo??? I'm thinking probably not, because they all seem to have proprietory file formats and I have no idea what Topo allows.

 

My second question. Barnabirdy (Al), was that Microsoft Streets and Trips you had on your laptop at the campout? That had some interesting features that I liked, so maybe I'll shell out the $ for that one. I see the 2006 version just came out, so is that worth getting the new version or should I go with the cheaper 2005 version?

 

I have GSAK that Jester was kind enough to download on my laptop, but I haven't cached much since the campout, so I'm lost when it comes to the usability of this program. Sounds like I need to get with the program and get busy......:laughing:

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Thanks, I'll have to check in to that. We have a fancy new Costco in Woodinville that I need to check out. Maybe I'll drop by there tomorrow on the way back from soccer.

I wonder why they would delete roads on a newer edition?......I see 2005 for about $25, so that's not too bad.

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I'm a bit behind in getting caught up on this new cache, but it looks great. I'm currently using National Geographic Topo software on my laptop. Does anyone have an over lay for this software or is it possible to import either of the 2 files M10 posted and use those on Topo??? I'm thinking probably not, because they all seem to have proprietory file formats and I have no idea what Topo allows.

I actually imported the Delorme text file directly into NG Topo!. All it gives you is the waypoints at the corner of each page - lines and page numbers would have to loaded by hand.

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I'm currently using National Geographic Topo software on my laptop. Does anyone have an over lay for this software or is it possible to import either of the 2 files M10 posted and use those on Topo??? I'm thinking probably not, because they all seem to have proprietory file formats and I have no idea what Topo allows.

You're in luck! :ph34r: I just finished posting a .tpo file for use in TOPO!:

 

DeLorme Atlas page boundaries for use in National Geographic TOPO!

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I'm rarin to do an Oly run. Just not sure when. 500 plus miles (an that's starting in Olympia) and over 48 caches might take a couple of days. From Wenatchee round trip thats nearly 900 miles. $$ gas ouch $$ lodging ouch.

 

Olympic Run

I'd love to do an Oly run as well! Maybe we can organize a group effort in the next few weeks. My only thought though is to add one additional cache - the virtual in Neah Bay. I've never been there and would like to hit it too.

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I wonder why they would delete roads on a newer edition?

It's not that they (we?) delete roads, but that the data is delivered by a third party (Navteq). For whatever reason, they dropped a bunch of rural/forest roads recently. It's probably related to something like moving to a new means of getting their data (such as shifting from the government's TIGER data to data they have produced themselves) and less-treveled roads will take some time to be added. In any case, it has been annoying for me since the area around our cabin in Idaho is now useless on the maps!

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I'm all for going with others. I will be in the area Thu-Fri (Oct 21-22) and can do it then. I checked online and there are camping cabins at La Push, WA for as low as $30 a night. Thats about 1/2 way around the peninsula. The virtual at Neah bay can be added, but that will add more miles/time to the trip. Looks like possibly a 3 mile hike? The caches on Page 76 are few and far between.

Edited by The Navigatorz
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You're in luck!  I just finished posting a .tpo file for use in TOPO!:

Thanks M10 you're my hero!......Works great, now I need to drop my finds on the map and figure out what I've done.

 

I picked up Microsoft Streets and Trips 2005 yesterday at Staples. If they've dropped some forest roads then maybe I'll take it back.

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Let me jump on the "Praising M10B" bandwagon. I've recently made a couple of runs just to bag Delorme pages, and both the maps and the page polygons turned out to be indispensable in planning.

 

Some of those pages are going to be a real challenge to get, especially as winter approaches. If you don't have page 112, there isn't much time. There's only one cache, and getting to it involves the North Cascades Highway, which seems to be under constant attack from falling mountainsides. Believe me, this road is nothing to take lightly. My car is recovering today from a close encounter of the granite kind that nearly ended the trip Thursday night.

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Ok call me stupid, but I have a question about Pocket Queries. I have over 500 finds, so how do you seperate that on the PQ page??? I've been using the Placed date section, but doesn't that go by when the cache was placed??? not my found caches???? I can get my first 500 cache finds, but how do I get the remaining 300???? Or does the date you put in go off your found caches if you check that???

 

Everytime I do this I see I have caches missing. This is the first time I've messed with PQ's other than pulling up caches for my PDA.

 

I think I'm missing something really simple with this, but my brain is dead. I'm not a GSAK user and that program has been driving me bug eyed too! I have the most up to date version and it's crashed a number of times, so I've been pulling my hair out. I'm sure it's a fine program once you figure out all the little doo dads on using it. I hope I still have hair left when I do!......<_<

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Having over 1300 caches I divided the caches up with when they were placed. I did 5 queries. You probably could do it it 2 queries. I pulled a query on my found caches of the caches placed in from Jan 1, 2000 through December 2001. Then one for each year after that. You could do the same. Just go from Jan 1, 20000 - Dec 31 - 2003 then do another one for 2004 - Oct. 10, 2005. That should get all of your caches except the ones that have been archieved.

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Ok call me stupid, but I have a question about Pocket Queries.  I have over 500 finds, so how do you seperate that on the PQ page???

Patudles is right GeoRoo, just separate your finds by dividing them into a year or two segments.

 

<and nope, I surely would never call anybody the "S" word...>

 

  Everytime I do this I see I have caches missing...

Likely those are caches that you've found that have been archived - PQ's never capture archived caches. If you have a thousand or two finds, the archiveds can add up to quite a goodly number. Unfortunately, you'll have to grab these GPX files individually - see link below, for how to do it.

 

  I think I'm missing something really simple with this, but my brain is dead.  I'm not a GSAK user and that program has been driving me bug eyed too! ...

Can't help ya with a crashing GSAK, but it is indeed a purely wondrous program. Point izzz... in this case, you don't fiddle in GSAK much at all - mainly only to import and export your finds/hides as a LOC file to send to M10B so he can whittle you a WADC Progress Map.

 

Do check out the link on the WADC cache page to my step-by-step instructions:

 

WADC Cache Glean Primer

 

Give a holler is you have any questions.

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Thanks, that makes clearer sense. I kept seeing that there were missing caches and it finally clicked that I wasn't running them as placed, but as found. Wouldn't that be a nice addition to the PQ to have a date rather than placed? Or just eliminate the 5 PQ, 500 cache limit altogether. I'm sure this is discussed all over the forum as a future update.

 

So how do I get the archived caches? I thought I saw them show up on GSAK??? I do so many caches all over the state I'd like to get an accurate file I can send M10Bike, but this is taxing my feeble brain. Just wait till I start asking questions about GSAK!.......:unsure:

 

Edit: GG, thanks for expanding on what Tudles said. I tried your primer yesterday and just now and I get a broken link????? Is your website down?

 

Edit: I found it. Extra stuff in the link. Not sure what is wrong with the link on the WSGA page. I have it now. Thanks

 

Edit Again!....Opps M10's website. I'm looking at your primer and thanks, I think that makes it doable. I was wondering how to merge the different GPX files and your primer answers that. Now I think I burned up PQ's for the day, so will have to wait till 12am. Oh I hate that 5 PQ limit!........:unsure:

Edited by GeoRoo
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I wonder why they would delete roads on a newer edition?

It's not that they (we?) delete roads, but that the data is delivered by a third party (Navteq). For whatever reason, they dropped a bunch of rural/forest roads recently. It's probably related to something like moving to a new means of getting their data (such as shifting from the government's TIGER data to data they have produced themselves) and less-treveled roads will take some time to be added. In any case, it has been annoying for me since the area around our cabin in Idaho is now useless on the maps!

I just noticed that Microsoft Streets & Trips 2006 has been released. Has anyone taken a look at the maps to see if any of the missing forest roads are back?

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I noticed a few missing roads on 04 this weekend while doing some caching. On two in particular Wellington and the Yakima River RNR dosn't show the roads to get in to them. The Grids worked great in conjunction with this I separate each page in GSAK and then color coded the marks. Did a few great caches and picked up 5 new map sections. Great work MB

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Well I just checked our Washington finds and we are a long ways away from getting this one done.

 

Unless I can talk Red into taking a week off and getting out the checkbook.

 

We have 23 sections done so far. (Edit after looking a little closer at everything.)

 

Anyone looked at the Atlas for Alaska yet? That would have some bragging rights for whomever completes it first. Or second. Or at all.

 

Thanks for the TOPO! map M10B. It saved me a lot of time and effort.

 

Are you going to set up a challange for Idaho as well?

 

Seems to me that you placed the first cache in Idaho, Right? Wrong?

 

Camels Hump or Prairie or Elbow? (And in a Devil's Club patch as well?) :rolleyes:

 

Logscaler.

Edited by logscaler & Red
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Camels Hump or Prairie or Elbow? (And in a Devil's Club patch as well?) :ph34r:

HEY! Camels Prairie is nowhere near Devils Club, you whiner! :rolleyes:

 

(Now, I'm not saying anything about Roosevelt Grove! :()

 

Yes, check out idtimberwolf's Idaho Challenge. I'm helping out with mapping on that for participants, so if you want to send me your file, I can generate your map for you.

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In the past few days I have posted caches submitted for the sole purpose of clearing pages on the DeLorme Challenge. Normally that wouldn't be an issue, but I have been concerned with these because they are "just" roadside micros hidden in an area in which the hider has never cached before and for all I know will never go again once the Challenge is complete. Also, while in one case the cache placed a cache in a previously cache-free page, in the other the cache seemed to be placed simply because other options on that page were deemed too difficult or limiting.

 

I bring this up because I want to get a group/community consensus on how we want to handle this. Obviously, all caches hidden need to meet Geocaching.com's criteria, but I also want to be sure we are meeting the spirit of the guidelines and are acting appropriately. Should we consider hides like this a concern and should we add guidelines to the Challenge to address them, or do people think that this is okay and that as a community we want these options and will care for them. I'm not making a judgment either way until I know what you all think.

 

Thanks!

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Some rambling's from "South of the Border".

 

Myself, I do not see how your going to be able to set a minimum "limit" on the caches used for the challange. If you say "caches must be rated 2/2 or better" then you will exclude people with limited mobilty, something you would not want to do.

 

You as the cache owner, should be able to allow a "Found it" smiley by the merits of the caches found/hidden and cachers who submitts a request for a "found it".

 

Dropping off "junk" caches to fill a requirement to claim a section on this cache should not be allowed. Yes, the "junk" cache "meets" the Geocaching.com requirements, but does it meet the "Spirit" of the challange as you envisioned it? If not, then don't allow the claim until the cachers meet the challange at what ever standard you want to set.

 

I know you (and I) will get screamed at by people who want to get a smiley for completing it by virtue of throwing out several "WH?" (Why Here?) driveby micros to fill in sections that are too tough for them to complete with the existing caches. Tough.

 

Myself, I would judge the merits of the claim based on the caches in the sections and the ability of the cacher submitting a completion request.

 

If there are already a lot of caches in the section, simply hiding a WH? cache to claim a section would not do at all.

 

This type of challange is ment to have high standards. Not everyone will be able to complete it. Thems the breaks.

 

You wanna set a real high standard and get people screaming?

 

Set a "minimum of 10% caches in each section must be found for sections containing 20 or more caches. Any caches hidden and claimed for the purpose to fill a section must meet MY standards, not geocaching.com's." requirement to claim a section.

 

I already hear people out there calling me names over this posting. When you say something I have not already heard, I'll tell you.

 

My nickels worth. If you want change, meet me on the trail.

 

Logscaler.

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The biggest problem will be who will police any policy that we decided on. I have a suggestion that may or may not work for placing a cache that has only very difficult caches. Let some one that all ready has a find or a placement in that area, they should still be in what geocaching.com considers there normal area. Take for instance area 111 that is a difficult cache that not many will be able to do, and even the ones that can will be limited but the amount of time that it is available. I had thought of placing a new cache there with a little less difficulty and with a little more seasonable availability. It’s not going to be a drive by and should still require some amount of effort to get.

Edited by Square Bear
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The cache owner should be free to use whatever guidelines he wants. If he wants to use subjective criteria, that is fine. We can all choose to take the challenge or not.

 

Does it make sense to hide a "junk" cache in Seattle to avoid having to find something? Probably not (at least to me.) Does it make sense to hide a roadside micro in an area that has no caches at all (or only one cache at the end of a 4 mile trail to a mountaintop)? To me, that one makes sense. Would you rather have a less than spectacular micro than none at all? I sure would. What really matters though is what the owner wants to do.

 

It really is up to M10B. Let's not hagle over this so much that it makes him regret having made the effort to give us an outstanding challenge as well as a whole load of tools to make our task easier.

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I understand the concerns, however the three to four month wait time does not seem fair. I don't have to wait that long for a regular cache to be declared okay. I am planning on hiding a cache on a page that at this time has only one cache. The cache would be a wonderful cache to visit but my body is not in the condition for this hike right now. Where I plan on placing the cache has a wonderful view and there has been a cache near there in the past. This area has seasonal conditions and will soon not be available to anyone until spring that is why we are going there this weekend.

 

Unfortunately I can't make the long treks in to some of the areas some caches might be. Should I be punished for this? Granted I will not get the challenge done in three months but neither do I want to wait three months for my smilie. There must be some way to work around this. I do understand that this is an issue.

 

I know I will be putting a lot of dollars in the gas tank this weekend to go to some caches that are out of the way for me to get to and yet they are accessable by me so I will fill find them for the smilie instead of just putting a cache in a more convenient place. But there are times a new cache needs to be put out.

 

For the most part I will cover the miles it takes to do this challenge. The only times I would want to put out a cache is if there is none, or the ones that are out there are to difficult for my body to acheive, or I come across something spectacular, or unusual that I would like to share with the caching community. Isn't that the main pupose of the game anyway? Sharing cool spots with the rest.

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From the start, I have wondered about using placed caches to meet the goal. Why not exclude "owned caches" from the pot. Folks might still place for each other thus some sort of time after placing is also desirable. Maybe a FTF other than those in attendance placing the cache is need to bring people back to the cache after it has been published?

 

Sounds like a lot of work to referee but at least the owner (M10B) can take some pride in the challenge offered.

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Anyone looked at the Atlas for Alaska yet?  That would have some bragging rights for whomever completes it first. Or second.  Or at all.

An absolutely insane quest... However, if I ever win the Powerball Lottery I'll finance an expedition to complete Alaska... if I can hire M10B to do the planning and navigation! What a trip that would be! With caches scattered from Shemya Island (near Russia) to Prudhoe Bay to Ketchikan, it's an area about 1/5 the size of the contiguous 48 states. From Anchorage, Shemya Island's about a 4-hour ride in a C130 Hercules one-way (if the weather lets you land when you arrive - about 2/3 of the time) - now THERE's a fuel bill!

 

However, a quest for Southcentral Alaska could be very very interesting! :unsure:

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My vote is to not include hides, just finds. I have over 80 hides but did not include them for the Delorme challenge. Including hides only invites some to throw out the easy roadside caches for credit, as already noted. That sort of cheapens the whole "challenge" idea. If one page only has one cache in it, so be it, all the more challenging. If however, someone happens to hide a cache in a section short on caches, and it happens to be within their normal hide area (say within 30 or 50 miles from where they live), then great for the rest of us. I don't think someone should be allowed to place a cache 200 miles from home so they can complete another page on their Delorme map. By eliminating hides from the challenge, I think the problem will go away.

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Should we consider hides like this a concern and should we add guidelines to the Challenge to address them, or do people think that this is okay and that as a community we want these options and will care for them. I'm not making a judgment either way until I know what you all think.

I vote to keep your life simple and let what happens happen.

 

There can't be too many pages without caches. I'd be surprised if there are even ten bare pages. Ten junk caches is nothing new. Perhaps some will take the Challenge one step further and place a higher quality cache in those nearly naked pages.

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I have only be watching this thread from afar. I'm not planning on attempting this challenge myself. I think if grids are identified that have a 'need' for a cache or a more accessible cache it should be addressed. But the answer isn't always going to be a drive by micro. This challenge isn't going to be completed tomorrow, there is time for a well thought out hide in those areas.

 

From a reviewer stand point I definitely do not want to see people putting caches outside their maintainable distance just for this challenge. Caches shouldn't be placed just to fill a void on some map. That being said, any cache placed that meets the listing guidelines will be published.

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From a reviewer stand point I definitely do not want to see people putting caches outside their maintainable distance just for this challenge. Caches shouldn't be placed just to fill a void on some map. That being said, any cache placed that meets the listing guidelines will be published.

Agreed.

 

The Northern California DC has one particularly small and remote page (the Dreaded Page 62). The area approver would not let the hider place the cache until a local maintainer was identified (that would be me).

 

Hope that one doesn't need much maintenance - especially during the Rosevelt Elk rutting season. The bull elk sometimes think cachers want to steal their harem and sometimes appear to be trying incorporate cachers into the harem.

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As for the "hide a cache for a section" part, IF it is a problem, drop that part out and make it so that ONLY caches you have placed before the date this cache was published count towards completing this challenge. Problem solved and other problems prevented. IE: drive by WH? caches to fill a spot.

 

Reds ride gets somewhere around 38 MPG and I do have some vacation time to burn . . . . . :P But could I take a week of living out of the backseat? I'll have to think about it somewhat.

 

FTF on three challenge cache's? :P

 

Logscaler.

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From a reviewer stand point I definitely do not want to see people putting caches outside their maintainable distance just for this challenge.

Then approve or deny them under the GC guidelines independent of whether they were placed for this challenge or not. Problem solved.

 

Some of the last few posts have again demonstrated to me how people have an amazing need to take a simple concept start heaping rules and regulations on it.

Edited by Bull Moose
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