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Hey Everyone,


I just thought I would take the time to remind us all that there is more than one set of rules to hunt Survey Markers with. Because this is the case, there is more than one forum, meant to support the players in the way that best matches the style of hunting you most prefer to enjoy.


The NGS Forum Is a great place for those who enjoy technical discussions, sometimes highly technical discussions, and more stringent, high integrity recovery rules that the NGS style recovery affords. In other words, If you like to recover Survey Markers to NGS standards, using strong rules which are held to very high standards by a disinterested, non competitive third party, whether you report them to NGS or are not ready to yet, this is a great place to chat about these things.


Sure there is the Geocaching Benchmark Hunting Game Forum, and if you prefer "just a game", and no tough standards, with loosely defined rules which are open to interpretation and creative license, and just to play the hobby that way, feel free to post there.


But there are options:


If you are looking for a more challenging way to play, with higher standards of accuracy, NGS rules which are controlled by non Geocachers, with emphasis on making as accurate, and detailed survey marker recovery as you can, This is your discussion forum. You don't have to report your finds to the NGS to use this version of the game. Some people just prefer clear succinct rules, and receive help in clarifying these rules from the NGS rule makers.


If you like looking for esoteric errors and incongruencies in the NGS Database, and want to discuss the confusing details which are often found, This is your discussion Forum.


Do you have technical questions for geodesists from NGS and visiting Surveyors? This is your discussion forum.


If you have been playing the game but are stuck finding a tough station and want to talk about the technicalities of your tough find, this is a great place to do that.


Are you thinking of Volunteering, by contributing some of your time to Public Service for the NGS in helping recover Survey markers to their database, and would like some tutoring to help you do this the best you can? This is a great place to learn how, as there are many who do, and will love to help.


There is no pressure to compete, but you can amongst your friends if they agree. Mostly this is about topping your own personal bests. The biggest contest is between you and the survey marker.


There has been some recent concern over the integrity of the rules the game is played. This is not unusual, but there is a work around. You have a choice and alternatives, even if you don't want to do official recoveries to NGS, you can still follow their rules of marker recovery (hunting) and we have members who will help keep track of your find statistics at NGS if you want to let them know who you are.


Play the way you like, but remember, this alternative is here. Know that some here will take this game very seriously and some will want to perform a public service. It is going on at the same time this way of the game is being played. Know that there are players who will openly advocate in favor of reporting Survey marker finds to the NGS. Please do not be offended if this is discussed.


Play either way you like, or both ways. Chime in any time, and feel free to use this forum too. There is just as much fun to be had here.



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Very well stated, Rob! I like the accuracy and detailed reporting of NGS standards, vs. a simple "recovered as described" entry.


I recently recovered triangulation station EZ2851. Any resemblence between the original description and how it appears today is purely a coincidence! [grin]


Witness post at station changed from metal to fiberglass.


Station disk recessed 2 inches instead of flush.


Disk missing on RM1. Stem remains. (And they failed to mention it is in a rock outcrop instead of a cement monument.)


Monument missing on RM2.


Reference Mark 3 established in 1986, but not reported in NGS. (Hey, we move slow in the South. These things take time!)


Referenced power pole has been replaced, but is still standing.


Direction from Witness Post to Az Mark needed correcting.


I'm certain the professional surveyors are grinning as they read this and thinking, "Welcome to our world!" :rolleyes:



Edited by PFF
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I can appreciate your observations, and I see these all the time.


It is just my observation that some people have been weighing in over in the other forum about the geocaching rules and how much latitude can be taken with them. For some it would seem that things are a little too anything goes, and for others, it is not anything goes enough. If the answer is that it is just a game, and that there will be little official anything to help shed light in the grey areas, then ok, I'll bite. This alternative can be just as fun for those who are so inclined.


Here, there are rules too, but they were made by NGS, who has no vested interest in Geocaching, or a game. All they are after is as pure a recovery as they can get, and hope people who submit reports will try their best. These Rules are quite a bit more stringent, and definitely more defined, but only for the purpose of trying to keep the database in the best, most accurate state they can. If one wants to use those rules as a guide with which they approach this hobby, I see it as no different than those who want to be more creative with game rules. My thought though is that there are 3 kinds of people those who see it one way, or the other, and those who can mingle with both.


This method brings a different kind of challenge, and perhaps more of one too, that some people really like sinking their teeth into. Different strokes for different folks. Tough challenges are appealing to some people. Like you have found, you can still log your finds at Geocaching, as there is no rule that says you can't, but you can adopt a method of recovering them that does require that more be done, and an attempt at writing a technical description of the station you found be made. More and more, some people seem to becoming involved with this style of the game and are enjoying it.


Rather than stir the debate, it could be easier to to use this forum if the way you like to play is the NGS recovery style game. This way, the people who just want to play by the easy rules do not feel threatened by those who want rules that could disqualify some finds that were found with geocaching methods. They are also not confused or otherwise exposed to a more technical dialog unless they come to this forum to read it, and in this forum, that is the order of the day. This way people can choose their style of fun without all the endless debate. (yes the debate is endless, just look back over the last year.) The easiest way is to decide the way you like to Benchmark Hunt, and remember which forum the discussion will be more appropriate to.


Food for thought anyway... I certainly see the many cases where we have all sat around dissecting descriptions and methods of hunting as constructive, and this forum seems to lend itself to that sort of discussion than the other one. So if you like NGS recovery better, or enjoy the technical side of things when that need arises, this may be where you will want to come to ask or chat, even offer your thoughts. Sometimes it is interesting to discuss the reasons how a station goes from flush to recessed 2 inches...


Best Regards,



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The following is basically a suggestion to the NGS.


I like hunting benchmarks and reporting them according to requirements and specifications. I like knowing the specificaitons so that I don't break the rules, submit garbage, and generally waste everyone's time.


When I started benchmark hunting, I read the GC.com benchmarking FAQ. It specified some rules for benchmark hunting. Later on, based on a lot of repeating questions, and learning ourselves, we worked on the FAQ a bit, adding more rules, guidelines, definitions of terms, and links to more NGS information. We didn't think of everything or course; progress is never done.


What I found quite odd is the following:


The NGS didn't seem to have a text of rules on PID recoveries! (It has mountains of information on rules for surveyors submitting new stations to the NGS database.) The "Tell me more about Submitting Recovery" page doesn't really have any rules. (There is a link about the option of submitting photographs.) The Mark Recovery Entry page has:

1) a rule that says: "If the data sheet for this mark shows a recovery within the past 12 months and the status has not changed, please do not report it."

2) a rule (with 2 options) that says how to report when you think a mark is destroyed

3) a rule that says not to enter personal phone numbers

There are some other instructions about the details of filling out the form.


Three rules.


This doesn't seem very specific to me. So I, and many others, have asked the NGS for much clarification here in the benchmark forums. We asked for rules, we asked for clarificaitons, we asked what-ifs, and we asked for definitions of terms. We got some, in GC.com benchmark forums and in personal emails. But there's still no comprehensive online NGS text on mark recovery including all the rules, guidelines, and definitions of terms (like POOR). It seems that the GC.com FAQ has more written-out rules on mark recovery then the NGS does.


Surveyors probably don't need such a comprehensive text; they know all about benchmarks and are the users of the recovery information after all. But what about everyone else? The NGS made a bold step in allowing the general public to participate in the mark recovery function. To go along with that bold step, one would think that they'd write a lot of rules, guidelines, definitions of terms that a link from the mark recovery page would bring up. I can't find it. Can any of you?


The USPSQD has webpages with mark recovery rules, guidelines, definitions of terms and so does the GC.com FAQ page. How about everyone else? Check out the NGS Contributors List. They aren't all surveyors or government entitities! What about INDIV? Do all these people know all about geodetic mark recovery rules?


It seems to me that the NGS should make a mark recovery rules text.

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Fortunately, we have had the pleasure of direct contact with the NGS here in this forum to help define the blurry rules and procedures. They have been quite helpful in clarifying this for us as we find them. Again, they do this as a disinterested third party, and not interested in anyones game.


Perhaps Casey can weigh in with the possibility of them adding a link to their comprehensive website concerning how individual citizens can best serve the needs of the NGS and their Mark recovery Program and web page. How about a rules and procedures page, Casey, Any thoughts?



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Hello Rob and the gang,


I have hunted and recovered a number of NGS benchmarks which are probably known to local surveyors, but haven't been reported to the NGS for many, many years. Local surveyors have other priorities, besides submitting reports to the NGS, and justifiably so. This affords us the opportunity to contribute to a public good.


I'm amazed how concise the "how to reach" descriptions are worded, usually one paragraph. I would like to start submitting recoveries, but I find my descriptions, especially on older benchmarks end up being a long and winding story with probably more detail than is actually needed.


Any suggestions on writing detailed, yet concise descriptions??




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Any suggestions on writing detailed, yet concise descriptions??





Excellent question--especially with the "how to get there" paragraph. I don't comment on that in my reports unless the road has a name change or has been rerouted. But I enjoy reading the old descriptions which start at the courthouse or train station. It's interesting to see what has changed.


I've noticed that the "dim road to the peak" of the past seems to be yielding to a driveway to a house. Railroads get abandoned and converted to bike trails. The local train station disappears. School buildings are closed as systems consolidate. And "Ferguson's Store" has been replaced with a Wal-Mart. <_<



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Studying the descriptions written in other datasheets is a great guideline when writing a description. As a Rule, bigger more succinct words were used in lieu of many. I tend to avoid lesser landmarks and business names, because they are less permanent than a street name or a cross street. Lengths as in miles and tenths of miles or Yards and feet are helpful. A building is better described by it's type of construction and street address rather than it's color.


Paul made some great points too, so if a Wal-Mart has arisen in that said place, you could say that a large retail chain store building has been constructed at a said address, and is currently doing business as a Wal-Mart. Why say it like this? Well, Wal-Mart may in four years decide to build a Super Wal-Mart a quarter mile away and abandon that building. The Building would then be leased or sold and modified to the new customers specifications. but you in your description will have left a building and a street address as a clue...


This really is a treasure hunt you know... We always find the changes and if we think it is important and helpful, we note the changes. If instead the Monumenting Surveyor who placed a station on a bridge pier in 1953 said the station was located on the Westernmost Pier of Bridge 12A of the SP&S Railroad Crossing irrigation Canal 36 near Hanford Washington, I bet that for the most part things are still the same, only the Railroad is now known as BNSF. If that line is still in use or maybe even not the westernmost pier is the westernmost pier and the canal is still... And so the Local Surveyors may not bother with the update because the name of the railroad is not all that significant to the finding of this, but the empirical things which signify the location are.


Base your descriptions on things you feel will last the longest. Concrete, steel, the centerline of a road.


We have learned that if something is 39 rails from a mile marker, or a Semaphore, we can become discouraged if the Rails are now welded and the line is CTC Controlled. Likewise if it is now abandoned and a Bicycle trail. We have learned there are a lot of Stations in Airports, but since 911 there is little chance of most people ever getting close.


Bridges we have learned are not forever, and I know of one I found in a concrete foundation for wooden pier supports, which were no longer used but still in place when a road and a bridge over a railroad cut was realigned long ago. It took a local old timer to tell me where the road used to be in order to make sense of the description.


Another I wanted to find, set vertical in the wall of a railroads brick round house but the roundhouse was re sided with steel siding. I bet it is there, and in great condition, but hidden until whenever. I could not obtain permission from the railroad to see, but I know the building was re sided to within 4 inches of ground level. on the public access side. Can I submit a report as based on my suspicions? No. I Wouldn't. I can't stand behind the integrity in that, and in my circles, people are old and new in the field and even an old timer long since gone on is remembered by their work, and trusted as being good at what he did, or not, even today, as we revisit his stuff.


At the end of the day, we are trying to leave clues that by the time someone else may seek, be nothing more than a myth of fingerprints. I like to do that as well as I can. In 125 years hence, someone may need all the help they could get.


If there is a specific description giving you a struggle, bring it to the table here and let us all have a go at it... We'll come up with something.



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NGS people have stated that the most important thing in a recovery is whether the mark is still there. After that comes facts that tell a surveyor if the condition is usable (cold facts are better than judgements here, like "post is tilted from vertical" or "disk is loose in its mounting"). Below that would be improvements in the to-reach when useful.


If you read a bunch of data sheets, you get a flavor for style. Some are written with a clearer style than others. You could read the instructions for describing "to reach" for new marks, and use common sense in determining how much of that should be applied for recovery reports. The main thing is to tell the next person what they need to know to rapidly find and use the station, without cluttering up the data sheet.


Write your report as a file on your computer, and then polish it several times before submitting. Reread it looking for errors, extraneous wording, and ways it can be misunderstood. Don't bother including things that will likely change next year. Don't repeat stuff that is in the earlier descriptions and still true--you don't have to write a whole description, just report what is helpful to add.


I always keep reminding myself of the quote "It is not sufficient to write so that one can be understood. It is necessary to write so that you cannot be misunderstood".

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Difficult Run -


The best thing to do at this point is to go ahead and click on the mark recovery page and log a couple of your latest finds.


The NGS logs have a particular style and the only real way to learn it is to observe it. No doubt that's what every recovery author does.




1. A to-reach is made of a series of landmarks and the PID's distance and bearing to each. Always start with the most distant ones, like 7 miles east on route 4 from the post office, and finish up with that power pole that's 4 feet SE of the station. Don't vary from this progression of large-distance landmarks to small-distance landmarks.


2. Recovery logs are of 3 kinds:

a. A complete recovery log

b. A 'change' recovery log (e.g. found as described except that RR3 is now Maple Avenue)

c. A combination (e.g. All the tree landmarks in the 1954 description are gone and a new description follows.)

Any of these types seems to be acceptable.


3. A complete recovery log is made of parts; usually:


a. the condition of the mark and whether it was found or not (e.g. the mark was found in poor condition)


b. the to-reach description (described above)


c. the description or classification of the mark (e.g. it is a USGS disk 1 inch below the surface. It is stamped blah blah blah.)


d. auxiliary marks' descriptions and to-reach directions - for the reference marks, witness marks, azimuth mark, if any


The order of a. b. and c. varies depending on the author. The order I gave is the usual order, I believe.

The main tip here is to keep the a., b. and c. parts clearly separate in your writeup and not wander back and forth between them or repeat parts of them.


4. Convert all your [less than 1/2 mile] to-reach measurements to feet-and-tenths.


5. Be sure to include both distance and direction for each to-reach element.


6. If you're in an area with a high magnetic declination, convert all to-reach directions to true-north.


7. Include handheld GPS coordinates for all location-Scaled marks if no one else has.


8. If you're establishing new local to-reach landmarks, try to pick two that are in different (but not opposite) directions from the mark. That way, it will be easier to locate if it gets buried.

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It seems to me that the NGS should make a mark recovery rules text.

I am going to see if there is anything that has already been published. It might be the case that we do have something, but it is for internal use (i.e. not on the public website). I'll let you all know if I find something.



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Take a look around here.






Open the pdf file for "attachments 1-6"


Starting around page 23 or so of the pdf, there is stuff on how to write descriptions and the to reach section of a datasheet. There is good stuff both before and after page 23, so have fun. Hopefully there is enough specifications and guidelines here to keep you busy for the next year or two (it is really extensive) assuming you can read it and not fall alseep.




Hope this helps.



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An interesting thing in attachment 5 is an example of entering handheld coordinates:

THE HH1 GPS IS: 304050.2N 1201020.4W


The accuracy code HH1 is for differentially corrected hand-held GPS accurate to 0.01 second.

The accuracy code HH2 is for handheld GPS receivers accurate to 0.1 second.


Oddly, the specification of HH1 is


but the example has format:




Has anyone seen codes HH1 or HH2 in any NGS PID recovery note?

Edited by Black Dog Trackers
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(edit: rewritten)

HH2 format to SS.S matches the resolution (precision) available on most current consumer units. I read more of the document at the link and find that it states the accuracy requirement for HH2 is +/- 10 meters (which is 32.8 ft). It isn't clear if this is standard deviation sigma or 95% confidence or what, but under most conditions I think we're ok even at 95%. I think my unit uses 95% confidence for its indicated accuracy number. Of course, I don't always believe the indicated accuracy, when I suspect there may be reflections that it doesn't know about (with less than NGS standard sky visibility).


For a mark with scaled horizontal position, I report my coordinates even if the indicated accuracy is worse than that, although that is rare. I figure for most of them it is still an improvement. I'm going to continue using my old format which will probably indicate to future readers that I'm just reading numbers without claiming any particular accuracy.

"Handheld coordinates N41 01 23.4 W091 01 23.4"

Edited by Bill93
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We seem to have caught the end of this thread at an opportune moment. Yesterday, near Okemah, Oklahoma, we pulled off I 40 to look for FJ0761, designation K196. The To Reach is very clear, and we had no trouble arriving at the vicinity of the station, which is marked with a pair of carsonite witness posts about 3.5 feet apart. The area between them is grassy, so we got the metal detector and pinpointed a place to prod a little. Pretty soon we located the access cover.


The diffidence and indecision set in when we lifted the access cover and removed six or eight inches of gummy soil.


How far down is it reasonable for amateurs (yes: serious, careful, fairly well informed, concerned to meet NGS standards, but amateurs) to dig in a situation like this? By the way, we were on the far edge of I40 right of way, not on the property of the gas station next to it.


As things now stand, we have to report the mark as not found, with a note that we located the witness posts and the access cover.


This is not a question about what counts on any scoresheet. We're not competitors. We'd like to be useful.


Many thanks.

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m&h -


Interesting, multi-part question.


Part One - the real, physical world: I note that the mark you sought at FJ0761 is a metal rod covered by a logo cap. You found the cap, opened it, and removed six to eight inches of soil. So, you ask, "Where's the rod?". I have recovered over 100 such rods (mostly in rural Maryland). I have found many chambers filled with sand or soil (and spiders, leaves, etc etc). In no case, however, have I ever failed to encounter the top of the rod more than about four or five inches below the lip of the chamber. FJ0761 would have would have piqued my curiosity, and (assuming I had my normal inventory of benchmark hunting tools with me) I would have gone down to a depth of about a foot - which is the practical limit for digging in the typical steel rod chamber without specialized tools. If I did not encounter the rod at that depth, I would begin to suspect that the rod, itself, was gone (unlikely, but possible). That would have been a surprise: I have seen a few rods bent out of plumb, but I have never encountered an empty chamber. How far should you have gone? I don't know. If I was in my full-throttle benchmark hunting mode, I would go down to about a foot. If I was on my way home from a wedding, I might not dig at all.


Part Two - logging FJ0761 at Geocaching.com: Some time ago, there was a discussion about logging such rods. The consensus at the time was, as I recall, you could log a "FOUND" if the stamping on the collar of the chamber matched the designation. But, having lifted the cap and found no rod there, could you validly log it FOUND? I don't know what I would do. Could be FOUND if the stamping matched the designation; could be NOT FOUND as I saw no rod where a rod was supposed to be; could be NOTE, "Found the logo cap, confirmed the stamping, found no rod at eight inches down". I think I would log it as NOT FOUND if I failed to encounter the rod at the maximum depth possible with my tools and attention span.


Part Three - reporting the recovery to NGS (and to the point of being useful): This is easy - either FOUND-POOR or NOT FOUND with, in either case, comments describing what you found. Something like "FOUND THE LOGO CAP, AS DESCRIBED IN 19XX, AND CONFIRMED THE STAMPING ON THE RIM. REMOVED SOIL TO A DEPTH OF EIGHT INCHES BUT DID NOT FIND THE STEEL ROD. HANDHELD COORDINATES ARE NXX-XX-XX.XX W0XX-XX-XX.XX" The comments are the useful part - Whoever had an interest in that station would know what they needed to know about it. Either the rod is not there or they need to bring a battery-powered shopvac with them if they intend to use the rod.


Also, the fact that USPSQD reported the rod as GOOD should mean nothing, but it would, in fact, motivate me to dig an extra inch or two.


That's my opinion.


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I wonder how a rod could become gone. Sucked into the ground by moving tectonic plates? :rolleyes: Quite a mystery there.


A dumb question - did the access cover's rim have the Designation printed on it?


This scenario is similar to SD0457 and JE0768 in that the monumentation was found, but not the mark. It is beginning to appear that there's a difference between the Geocaching site and the NGS site in how to log such situations; NGS being to log as (Found) Poor, while it would be more like a Not Found on Geocaching. I have written to Deb today on this topic, hoping for further clarification/confirmation on this.


edit: Note: I just received a reply from Deb saying that she'd be out of the office for some time. We will have to be patient on this question.

Edited by Black Dog Trackers
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Like I said, I've never seen an empty chamber. But m&h asks an interesting and very relevant question: "How far down is it reasonable ... to dig ...?


I say one foot (+/- Brown Recluse spiders), but accurate recovery comments provide the useful information that renders the actual depth less than critically important.




p.s. - I think Deb is still out-of-pocket via her work e-mail.



p.p.s. - Ignore p.s.

Edited by seventhings
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I would probably have logged that as Not Found, but you raise a valid point. I would only have logged it if I thought I had taken every effort to locate it though, and digging down a foot would be pretty much as far as I could go (fat hands for one thing!). I might return with a pointy metal object to see if I could hit anything deeper too.


You are right about the GC and NGS standards being different, and there are scads of posts comparing, arguing, complaining, etc., about them. My chosen standard for recovery is the NGS standard. They are very clear in what they want and why they want it, and I like clear rules. As for GC.com, I can deal with the hobby aspect of recoveries too, and my posts to GC.com tend to be less formal, more wordy, and I will report a destroyed for a mark that I am personally certain is gone but don't have the proof to send to Deb.


Will, a thousand thanks for using p.p.s. and not p.s.s.



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mloser -


I'm thinking that if the NGS wants recovery results like FJ0761, SD0457, and JE0768 to be logged as Found POOR, then we should think about changing the guidelines in the GC.com FAQ to be the same as that. Currently, the GC.com FAQ guides toward these 3 recoveries being logged as Not Found.


The current scenario of GC.com being more strict concerning these cases than the NGS is somewhat surprising.


I think we can't totally make GC and NGS standards the same because GC has a way for people to log Destroyed and the NGS doesn't. However, other than that, we can try to make them as congruent as possible through evolving what the GC benchmark FAQ says.

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NGS recovery standards vs. GC.com guidelines.


We have always regarded the NGS standards as being more strict than GC.com guidlines because of the effect of NGS' standard for logging DESTROYED's. The bar is so high for destroyed disks that it has affected our thinking about all possible search outcomes. [The "emanations" from the "penumbras" of the DESTROYED standard has affected our assumptions about the standards for other possible recovery types.]


In fact, the GC.com guideline for FOUND - "If the marker is a survey disk, you must read the disk [and the stamping must match the Designation] ..." has always been more strict than the NGS' standard. For some time, we've understood that NGS would accept a FOUND for the stem of a disk with ADJUSTED coordinates. Recently, as I recall, we had a discussion that seemed to conclude that NGS would accept a FOUND for the stem of a disk defined by SCALED coordinates. This second possibility makes no sense to me, but that's not important at this point.


Now, even with the relatively clear and strict guidelines for disks, we know that many GC.com'ers will log FOUND if they stumble across any round thing on the ground in the general vicinity of a station. What's going to happen if the GC.com guidelines are changed to provide for "finding" stems and other indicia? You know what will happen - every scratch and chip and blob of gum will become FOUND geodetic control points.


Here's what I think: First, leave the GC.com guidelines as they are, recognizing that the guidelines provide for recording what can be seen or not seen in the real, physical world. Second, improve and refine our understanding of the NGS standards, but confine discussions of such to this forum. It shouldn't be too hard to keep this in mind: the GC.com approach to benchmark hunting applies to what is or isn't there; the NGS approach seeks to provide information that is useful (very good word that m&h used, above) to the many users of the NGS database.


Put another way: I think trying to make GC.com congruent with the NGS has a low probability of success. Make 'em more distinctly different instead.



Edited by seventhings
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Ok, where was I?


Anyways, This forums seems a better place to discuss, and maybe ask questions if you prefer holding yourself to NGS standards. It is just my observation that some people are uncomfortable with NGS and the rules that go along with their version of recovery. I just think we can perhaps avoid some animosity and confusion if we bring the technical and NGS here and keep the light hearted game over in the other forum.


There does seem to be two main methods of pursuing the hobby. This is not to say we cannot be light hearted and fun, but the hope is we can avoid tensions and confusions... Perhaps?



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I got a reply from Deb!


I asked her about whether to use FoundPOOR vs. NotFound in cases of the monumentation being found but not the actual marker. I referred to FJ0761, SD0457, and JE0768 as examples in my question.


Here is her answer:



Hi Tom,


The stability of the concrete post in this case is the factor. If a concrete monument is found but the disk missing and the /monument is stable/ then use the POOR condition. The reason for this is that the monument itself can be used for positional purposes. If the monument is unstable but intact use the POOR condition. If the monument is out of the ground, laying on its side, broken up etc. (with our without the disk) it's destroyed.

In all POOR condition cases, please add text to the recovery form explaining what the exact status of the monument and disk is.


I hope this helps. Some of these decisions have to be "good judgement" ones.

Thank you for your interest.




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Many thanks to seventhings, bdt, and others for the insights on FJ0761. We did not discover the stamping on the lip of the cylinder, but it could be there. We'll be back that way in a few weeks' time, meanwhile giving thought to the design of an implement.



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Well, we went back to Maryland, packed up for a move west, and hit the road again, all the while (or much of it anyway) turning over in our minds the matter of the tightly-packed clay in the casing of the rod at Okemah (FJ0761). Then one day in an antique mall in Adamstown, PA, for about a dozen bucks, there it was--a hand auger about an inch and a half in diameter and about two feet long with a sturdy wood T-handle. There's a picture of it in the log.


So today we arrived again at exit 221 on I 40, turned off, parked, and got to work. The end of the rod is about eight and a half inches below the level of the access cover--not that deep, as it turns out, but a mere trowel and the density of the clay had made it seem deeper. And we did locate the stamping on the lip, though it was worn and faint and tough to photograph.


A few hours later we were entering 74 south from Britton Road in Oklahoma City, and saw off to the right of the on-ramp a regular gaggle of witness posts--four of them, with an access cover in the center of the square they form. So we nabbed it, and pulled the datasheet later (FJ1359).


Some days you get the bear, some days the bear gets you, and some days you don't hunt.

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