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How is the best way to read your GPS when you are under trees?


4buckarues
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I've found caches where poor reception is inevitable, and the owner apologized for the poor accuracy of his coordinates and provided specific hints to make up for it.

 

I've also found caches where I needed to move to an area away from the cache where I had good reception, and use the direction and distance from that location to figure out where the cache was.

 

If you can get a direction from two or more locations, then you can plot lines and figure out where they intersect. That may be more accurate than pacing off the distance from a single reading.

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I have had some luck turning the unit off and back on and then selecting the cache again. This has worked two or three times for me. Not sure if this is even a good way for everyone but it has worked for me these last few months. Good luck and it sounds like some of the other peoples suggestions are good ones as well.

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Something I do in low signal areas, and it seems to help, is to point the receiver/antenna towards the south... and to avoid covering the receiver with my hand to reduce attenuation issues.

 

If it's not particularly obvious, you can get hold of the technical specifications/drawings for your device, they should help you to understand which part of your device houses the actual receiver/antenna.

 

For example, on my device I know that the GPS chip and antenna is on the front left of the device, so I know not to grip/cover this side of the device with my hand in low signal areas as the attenuation caused by this will reduce the signal further. I also know that by exposing it and pointing it in, roughly the right direction of the satellites it can help to get a better fix.

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I'm new to site and so far a muggle, but I'm not new to GPSing. Sometimes you just can't avoid poor signal due to cloud coverage and/or thick vegatation, however, depending on your GPSr, you more than likely have some features such as WAAS, WGS84, etc that can be enabled/disabled. Check your user manual to see if you can manually enable these features for a stronger, more accurate signal. If you are struggling with a handheld unit in a vehicle, look into getting a remote antenna. These are also handy if you are a backpacker/hiker and like to keep your GPSr stowed while moving. Another thing you can do, is learn terrain association. In this situation, you would look at a the desired location on a detailed topo map while your signal is at its best noting any terrain specific details around it. I'm thinking this would be more handy for the hunts outside the city limits.

Edited by xhippiex
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...depending on your GPSr, you more than likely have some features such as WAAS, WGS84, etc that can be enabled/disabled.

That's not a feature. That's a map datum (kind of like a coordinate format, but not really)

 

Yes...I stand corrected on the WGS84...that is map datum, I obviously didn't have enough coffee yet when I typed. However WAAS is a feature on mine that can be turned on/off. WAAS is Wide Area Augmentation System and is a system of satellites and ground stations that provide GPS signal corrections and provides better position accuracy (up to 5x) if you are in an area that is receiving the signal. If you're not, it could degrade the signal but my GPSr will automatically select the best accuracy method and switch back to sats only. WAAS is only functional in North America but Europe has EGNOS or European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service which is basically the same thing.

 

Thanks for catching that. ;)

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Something I do in low signal areas, and it seems to help, is to point the receiver/antenna towards the south...

 

You're imagining things. GPS satellites aren't geostationary and so aren't only to the south. They're everywhere across the sky equally.

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Something I do in low signal areas, and it seems to help, is to point the receiver/antenna towards the south...

 

You're imagining things. GPS satellites aren't geostationary and so aren't only to the south. They're everywhere across the sky equally.

They might be inadvertently orienting the antenna correctly for a change... GPSRs with some antennas like to be horizontal (Legend) and others like to be vertical(Map6O). That was just two, some of the newer devices have multiple antennas I believe. I know the two mentioned and while the Map60 is intuitive to hold upright, the Legend seems to want to be upright when held, but works best horizontal. I see lots of people that don't read the manuals under using the GPSr.

 

Doug 7rxc

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