Jump to content

Anybody Use Topo Map & Utm To Find Location First?


TeamVilla5
Followers 1

Recommended Posts

As a Geophite (is that the word I'm looking for?), and having only really played with a GPS in conjunction with a topo map, I'm wondering if anyone here uses a topo & UTM to find the general area of a cache in order to get there, then use their GPSr once in the area?

 

Also, do you keep your units in HHMMSS or in UTM mode to find caches?

 

TIA to all!

Lori V.

Team Villa5

Link to comment

i use expertGPS, GoogleEarth and aerial maps to locate the best approach. we carry topos of the area, and print out aerial maps if they show major trail veins on them. if i cache on my own.. i just go for it.. but with the kids we do some homework first.

 

on expertGPS i usually place a few waypoints in key locations, including backstop points for the kids to get an idea for where they are. i like to teach terrain association to the kids, but it is a little difficult on Long Island in NY... no real standout features.

Link to comment

I always check the large scale 1:24,000 or 1:25,000 topo map before I hunt a cache - even the urban ones.

 

I keep all the large scale topo maps (within 100 miles of home) on my Pocket PC for walkin', and on the portable when drivin'. My buddies used to laugh... but I've saved their butts with the maps so many times now, they always ask ME to check the map before we hit a cache in new territory.

 

I use the maps to KNOW which side of a river or stream the cache is hidden on, how to avoid the worst slopes, if it's in dense tree cover, on a bridge, etc. etc. Often, I can tell my hunting partners just about where the cache is gonna be hid even before the cache hiding place is in view. Sometimes, I only use the GPSr for the last couple hundred feet or to "close in" on the final hiding spot. Sometimes, I don't even need the GPSr at all.

Link to comment

I use maps to get to the area (not topo). Then use my GPS and sometimes a compass (when satellite recep is bad). When all else fails, I use my "caching skills", as my nephew and team member would call them. I've checked topo maps before I go, which help identifying the terrain and any lakes or rivers, but I've never used one in the field. :rolleyes:

Link to comment

I always use UTM. It's how i learned to use a GPS, it's what we use at work in the field, and it's just so much easier with everything based in meters. I haven't a clue how far a minute or second or whatever is... but i can look down at the UTM co-ords and know exactly how many meters i'm off etc.

 

Sometimes it causes problems with geocaching since we use UTM and NAD83 at work and sometimes i forget to switch datums. But no major problems so far.

Link to comment

I'll use ANY excuse to look at a map, just because I love maps so!

 

As others have said, I use topo maps to check out trails, elevation, and general terrain information before heading out to caches that involve a bit of hiking...and I use street maps to look for driving and parking information for all caches in unfamiliar areas. I have found that it is good to have at least seen the maps so that if there is unexpected road closures I have some idea of how to get to the cache another way.

 

I like to think that if I ever got lost while looking for a cache, that I would at least have some idea of the boundaries of the area. It would certainly make me feel foolish have my GPS fail and then spend two nights camping in the woods waiting for rescuers if I was just on the other side of the hill from a main road the led to a small town!

Link to comment

I use Google Earth almost exclusively (the area we cache in has high resolution). I can see where the cache is, roads & parking, streams, etc. Of course, in some areas the data is a couple years old, but that's part of the fun, right? :anitongue:

 

The GPSr is loaded with hunting trails and access roads plus streams and topo data, in addition to the normal roads, so if we get confused when doing a bunch of caches, we just use the mapping function of the Lowrance H2O. When doing some offroading caches in New Jersey, I asked "THIS trail is in the GPS" a few times, as the trail was accessible only by 4x4 vehicles (which we were in).

 

I only use topo maps when I'm in an area that Google Earth doesn't have high resolution coverage of. Of course, for caches less than 0.5 miles from parking, I don't even bother if the terrain rating isn't too high.

Link to comment

I have a computer mapping program called Street Atlas and I load waypoints from GSAK into it. These are the same waypoints that go into my GPS and my Palm V. I can look at potential caches and even print out a map so I can plan ahead how to get close without a GPS. I've never tried UTM, it's always HHMMSS.

 

Don't know about Geophites or Geophytes but I hope I can handle myself if I ever get into a Geofight.

Link to comment
As a Geophite (is that the word I'm looking for?), and having only really played with a GPS in conjunction with a topo map, I'm wondering if anyone here uses a topo & UTM to find the general area of a cache in order to get there, then use their GPSr once in the area?

 

Also, do you keep your units in HHMMSS or in UTM mode to find caches?

 

TIA to all!

Lori V.

Team Villa5

Lots of people use maps in one way of another to find the area. If you are really into maps try finding a few without using the GPS at all.

Link to comment

I always print a map of the area from my Terrain Navigator Pro program. It is grided for UTM's, NAD 83. But my GPS is always set for Lat/Long. The first cache I found was done solely with a map and compass. *Polly Takes the Plunge-AWESOME CACHE QUESTMASTER!* I like to do the caches with only the map and compass but I always take along the GPS just in case.......LOL. :huh:

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 1
×
×
  • Create New...