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Do you use your GPS for anything OTHER than caching?


user13371
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Two primary uses are boating/fishing and hunting. I have all the seamounts (tuna hotspots) within 40 miles of San Diego, as well as harbor entrance channels and the best Catalina primitive beach campsites in my old Magellan 315.

 

Also my elk "honeyholes" from Colorado trips a few years back are in the 315 which has served flawlessly for years. The PN40 with its imagery is far superior and has similar info for Oregon's cascades and offshore areas.

 

Use the PN40 a bit for routing, with considerable caution, as well, and as a tax preparer it occasionally proves useful in determining mileage for client's business auto use.

 

As a Groundspeak member for several years with only 11 finds, you might surmise that I'm not as dedicated as some.

 

Jerry

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Before the days of geocaching when selective availability was on, I used my GPS for finding my position on the trail and that was about it. Now that we have electronic road maps and geocaches, and my overnight backpacking days are memories, I'd say my current GPS does 95% geocaching, 4% road navigation (when not driving to a cache), and 1% hiking (again when not to a cache).

 

Why such a small amount of use for non-geocaching activities you ask? It's because just about wherever you go nowadays you can't help but travel past a number of those little treasure chest icons on your screen. Anyone remember the non-Google map we used to have for viewing available geocaches? It used to have one geocache here and one way over there. Over the years I watched with amazement as those little treasure chest icons spread across the map like a strain of bacteria. I'm not complaining, just amazed at how geocaching took hold with so many. Now the bulk of GPS receivers made are geared to either car navigation or geocaching, or both.

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I used several Colorado's to test:

 

(1) Speed of Canada Post shipping crap to Garmin Repair Centre in Montreal

(2) Turnaround time of aforementioned Repair Centre (not good)

(3) Quality of Garmin's Customer Service

(4) Speed of Canada Post shipping more crap to Kansas

(5) Speed of UPS clearing electronics across the Canadian Border

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I used several Colorado's to test:

 

(1) Speed of Canada Post shipping crap to Garmin Repair Centre in Montreal

(2) Turnaround time of aforementioned Repair Centre (not good)

(3) Quality of Garmin's Customer Service

(4) Speed of Canada Post shipping more crap to Kansas

(5) Speed of UPS clearing electronics across the Canadian Border

:):unsure:

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Assume (everyone here) geocaching? No....bad assumption.....

 

Starting back before the Geocaching game was even a concept......

Use for:

Mapping Snowmobile,ATV,Hiking trails and logging isolated random POIs

Hunting

Locating irrigation ditch headgates plotted on USGS maps from old legal descriptions.

Mapping irrigation ditches.

Plotting and locating mining claims from old Claim "legals".

APRS radio use.

Benchmark hunting (only previously unfound/older than XXX)

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As an genealogist, my original reason for purchasing a GPS was for locating cemeteries. Using a yellow eTrex, I would obtain the coordinates for the cemetery from the Graphical Names Information System website and manually load them into my GPS. While driving unmarked country roads, this made it much easier to find cemeteries that were off the beaten path. It was great for locating cemeteries that were no longer maintained, and sometimes buried in the woods. On one occasion, I was less than 20 feet away from the cemetery, but could not see it because it had become overgrown.

 

It wasn't until about 10 years later that I was introduced to Geocaching by a fellow worker.

 

Incidentally, when I purchased my new high sensitivity Garmin, I sold my old eTrex. He uses it to mark locations of spots where he has found mushrooms (the mushroom hunters are very secretive about where they find them).

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As an genealogist, my original reason for purchasing a GPS was for locating cemeteries. Using a yellow eTrex, I would obtain the coordinates for the cemetery from the Graphical Names Information System website and manually load them into my GPS. While driving unmarked country roads, this made it much easier to find cemeteries that were off the beaten path. It was great for locating cemeteries that were no longer maintained, and sometimes buried in the woods. On one occasion, I was less than 20 feet away from the cemetery, but could not see it because it had become overgrown.

 

 

WVRadar,

 

I've got a sis-inlaw and others in the family who've been working on our family tree for years. We have ancestors buried in old unatended plots like you mentioned. I thought it would be a good idea to mark all these places and also take it a step further and mark old home places where these folks lived. A lot of this info gets buried with time.

 

For instance, the other day I was looking at a topo map of an area my Dad's people once lived. This Magellan topo software shows "historic" POI's. One of these was called "Lackey's Mill". This was only a short distance from where my dad was born. I asked him about it because this was news to me. He said, "Sure, that was a grist mill your Granny's family ran a long time ago." It would be good to pass this kind of thing on with the regular geneaology stuff.

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I used several Colorado's to test:

 

(1) Speed of Canada Post shipping crap to Garmin Repair Centre in Montreal

(2) Turnaround time of aforementioned Repair Centre (not good)

(3) Quality of Garmin's Customer Service

(4) Speed of Canada Post shipping more crap to Kansas

(5) Speed of UPS clearing electronics across the Canadian Border

 

Sounds like the Colorado needs a calendar instead of the clock display.

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I think I still use my GPS more for other things than for Geocaching. I use it all the time for mine exploring to locate mine shafts and adits, along with a way back to the car if we come out a different portal than the one we went in. The PN-40 with the USGS maps and aerial imagery has been a huge help for that. I've used by GPS as a speedometer and track mapper in my race car, as a top speed recorder in a toboggan type slide, hiking, boating, in an airplane and on a cruise ship.

 

They're handy little things!

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I used several Colorado's to test:

 

(1) Speed of Canada Post shipping crap to Garmin Repair Centre in Montreal

(2) Turnaround time of aforementioned Repair Centre (not good)

(3) Quality of Garmin's Customer Service

(4) Speed of Canada Post shipping more crap to Kansas

(5) Speed of UPS clearing electronics across the Canadian Border

 

Sounds like the Colorado needs a calendar instead of the clock display.

 

The CO just needs a respectful burial. Go West Young Man......To Oregon

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Almost all of my GPS usage is for hiking and exploring. I’ll admit I’m slowing down a little having passed the 50 years of age mark now, but I’ll still venture out on 20 plus mile hikes on occasion, in pretty rugged terrain. I’ve been doing it since long before GPS was available, but I’ve found that as I age, I’m less inclined to have the energy to hike extra distances to compensate for navigational errors. Having a nice track available to enable you to know exactly how far you have to go to get back can be of great comfort. They can also be quite the life saver when you’re way out there and learn the weatherman got it completely wrong again, and now your visibility is all but nothing. They’re also kind of neat on cruise ships to let you know where you are, and how fast you’re going.

 

Geocaching probably accounts for no more than maybe 1 or 2 percent of my handheld gps usage

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I originally bought my GPS12 (rest in pieces, old friend, rest in pieces) to mark fossil locations while prospecting in the badlands. That was back in the mid 90s when Selective Availability was still in play, so getting any kind of reasonable coordinates was tough! Naturally, it became a whole lot easier once SA was turned off.

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mostly used for

 

trail mapping and record keeping - sometimes you don't realize how nasty the hills were until you see the profile view. tracks are kept for hiking, snowshoeing, kayaking, mountain biking and various road experiences.

 

also used on a more limited basis for helping get around unfamiliar cities.

 

bryan

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My wife bought me a Rhino 120 in 2003/2004, I don't even remember when. I had it for a couple of years before we stumbled across geocaching.

 

I may be foolish, but I used to hike/explore all over Montana with compass and topo maps. Now I've reached the point where I don't carry hard copy topos anymore, just 2 GPS units and extra batterys.

 

Geocaching is maybe 10% of GPS time. The rest:

 

1. Hunting, plotting out terrain and areas to hunt. Marking where I originally parked.

 

2. Fishing, the number of fishing waypoints marked on large lakes and dams is numerous.

 

3. Hiking. I don't necessarily like to follow trails if I can find a shorter way to my destination. I generally keep tracks of these and the special ones get saved forever. (No, I probably will not share these with anyone but family).

 

3. Cross country skiing. Again we don't like to follow trails, but would rather chart our own. With kids, who are still learning I use my GPS & topo maps to avoid areas that they may not be able to handle. There are times we will just park and go. GPS marks the car (both units) and we just explore.

 

4. Driving, I'm a a country boy from small town Montana who spends 30 weeks or more each year working in large cities(mostly in the western 1/3 of the US). I'm not sure how I go around before having my GPS units.

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Ive used mine to save all of the grave sites we visit each year, makes memorial day much less confusing, put my yellow etrex in a clear bottle and floated it down an irrigation canal to measure water speed, have used it to check the speedometer in several vehicles, boats,planes mainly just out of curiosity. I've used it to measure distance several times. thats about all I can think of other than caching

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Planning, setting up, & retrieving the pulleys on lure courses.

It'd be much easier if I could get tracks into Topo USA 7. . . :^(

 

Norm

 

Despite what some might lead you to believe, this could be a possibility soon!! But, I'm thinking you already knew this :unsure:

 

I hope this wasn't off-topic...

 

Another use...as a gift!

 

Rockin Roddy

President

DeLorme Fanboy Club

Edited by Rockin Roddy
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The original poster must be kidding, as though geocaching is the only thing gps is for. Man, geocaching is the johnny-come-lately of gps applications, being around in big numbers in only the last couple years.

 

I use my gps for off-trail and on-trail hiking, biking, and windsurfing (on my arm in a waterproof bag) for the past 7 years already.

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I have a couple of out of the way uses.....

 

I like to bicycle in Japan, especially in rural areas.... and would never even attempt it without my trusty companion.... (not a whole lot of English out there...)

 

and I use it in large foreign cities for general direction and navigating back to a location... such as a subway... This works well so I don't look TOO much the tourist staring at maps and all, and even in Asian cities like Hong Kong and Shanghai. with the tall buildings, there is enough reception to get by...

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Geocaching is a relatively new thing for me and my GPS.

 

I've been carrying one when I hunt for years. It helps me find the good hunting areas when I can't remember how I got to them from a different direction. :)

 

I also use it on my boat, both to locate and avoid deceptively shallow water, return to the best fishing spots and record good scuba diving spots. My first GPS experience was in 1991 when I went to the Bahamas. I was using Loran-C up until the night before I left and my Loran gave up the ghost. :) Having never owned or operated one, I bought a GPS that night and the next day, found the Bahamas easily on my first try.

 

But my all-time favorite, is locating and recording genealogical information for my children (and hopefully their children and grandchildren, etc). I mark graves, homes, churches and business sites. I've located and visited over 40 graves and know the location of another 30 or so of my direct ancestors scattered from South Florida to New York state and southwestern Colorado. It's a VERY fulfilling hobby. :D

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I used my gps for flying my powered paraglider and my ultralight, both for groundspeed indication and navigation, but also to record the flights... using some analysis software I can evaluate the performance of different motor/proleller/wing combinations.

 

And, of course, hiking, hunting, and geocaching.

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