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Bill93

Silly reports to NGS

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Today a guy from the Corps of Engineers mentioned that he finds the Geocaching logs helpful. So the thread isn't all negative.

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Benchmark recovery and reporting has a steep leaning curve for those with little background in the field. Aside from this forum and its mostly ignored tutorials there is not much out there to help the amateur. That’s why I cringe when someone suggest a newbie report their recoveries to NGS.

 

There are some very good amateurs that report and they are of course a big help to the professionals. The professionals can easily sort them out in most cases.

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Today a guy from the Corps of Engineers mentioned that he finds the Geocaching logs helpful. So the thread isn't all negative.

I have no doubt that a lot of professional surveyers find GEOCAC recoveries helpful. However, I think the thread is more based on the 'amateur' (non-professional surveyor) that are.. a little misguided, like this one:

 MB2848'HTTP*COLON*//WWW.GEOCACHING.COM/MARK/DETAILS.ASPX*QUESTION
MB2848'MARK*PID=MB2848

I found this because some pattern of characters in their recovery caused NGSGPX to freak out and crash.

 

Then we have this guy, there are MANY of these in there:

 AA3779'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2010 (CT)
AA3779'CAP IS MISSING.  PICTURES OF THIS MARK ARE AVAILABLE AT THE GEOCACHING
AA3779'WEBSITE (WWW.GEOCACHING.COM).  SEARCH THE BENCHMARK SECTION USING THIS
AA3779'MARK'S PID, AND VIEW LOG ENTRY BY 'COYOTE TRUST'.

No offense if you're on this forum - or even if your not, but there's no need for the whole 'pictures' thing. :)

 

Then we have people signing their reports, which isn't that bad, but unnecessary, IMHO:

 DN0055'RECOVERED IN GOOD CONDITION AS DESCRIBED IN THE 1959 CGS SURVEY.
DN0055'DESCRIPTION IS ADEQUATE WITH CORRECTED COORDINATES OF (N 33 36.278 W
DN0055'96 22.752) BY DAWGIES OF GEOCACHING.COM

 

Then we have a nice guy offering his pictures to anyone who asks:

 EV1541'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2006 (KW)
EV1541'THIS BENCHMARK WAS FOUND IN POOR CONDITION.  IT HAS BEEN STRUCK WITH A
EV1541'HARD OBJECT AND HAS BEEN PRIED UP ON ONE EDGE.  THE STAMPING IS ALL
EV1541'BUT LEGIBLE. VERY FEW LETTERS CAN BE MADE OUT.  ON THE GEOCACHING.COM
EV1541'BENCHMARK PAGE I UPLOADED A PICTURE.  I STILL HAVE IT ON MY COMPUTER
EV1541'AND CAN SEND IT TO YOU IF NEEDED.
EV1541' 
EV1541'<name whitheld>

 

..And I can't tell you how many times I see "Photo's". Argh..

 EV3534'GOOD CONDITION AT 3025' BY GPS.  PHOTO'S AT WWW.GEOCACHING.COM/MARK/

 

..And I like these, personally. Always makes me smile..

 FB2489'WWW.GEOCACHING.COM/MARK/DETAILS.ASPX(QUESTIONMARK)PID=FB2489(POUNDSIGN
FB2489'1009
HV1916'THEM AT HTTP(COLON)//WWW.GEOCACHING.COM/MARK/DETAILS.ASP(QUESTION
HV1916'MARK)PID=HV1916.  MY PHOTOS OF THE MARK ARE AT THE SAME URL.
MB2848'HTTP*COLON*//WWW.GEOCACHING.COM/MARK/DETAILS.ASPX*QUESTION
MB2848'MARK*PID=MB2848

 

..And I'm running out of comments, but:

 FW0142'NOT FOUND AT COORDINATES LISTED ON GEOCACHING.COM.  DESCRIPTION DOES
FW0142'NOT MATCH SURROUNDINGS.

 

..And this guy added his own recovery start line, which was considerate of him..:

 JZ3532'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2004
JZ3532'RECOVERY NOTE BY WEB-LING OF GEOCACHING.COM 2004.

 

..And this guy's cut-and-paste apparently broke the submit form:

 KU1645'HIGH RESOLUTION PHOTOS REVEAL THE APPEARANCE OF SAW MARKS ON THE TOP
KU1645'SURFACE OF THE BRASS.  IT IS POSSIBLE THAT THIS IS THE STEM OF THE
KU1645'ORIGINAL DISK WITH THE TOP SAWED OFF, AND NOT AN UNDOCUMENTED BRASS
KU1645'PLUG REPLACEMENT.  WHAT APPEARED TO BE A PUNCH HOLE ON THE TOP WAS
KU1645'FOUND ON CLOSE INSPECTION TO BE A SMALL MASS OF BROKEN BRASS.
KU1645' 
KU1645'THE CLOSE-UP PHOTO IS AVAILABLE ON THE WEB AT
KU1645'IMG.GEOCACHING.COM/BENCHMARK/LG/F67527E4-07C8-4F31-8894-CEFA118193DC.J
KU1645'EB AT
KU1645'IMG.GEOCACHING.COM/BENCHMARK/LG/F67527E4-07C8-4F31-8894-CEFA118193DC.J
KU1645'HE WEB AT
KU1645'IMG.GEOCACHING.COM/BENCHMARK/LG/F67527E4-07C8-4F31-8894-CEFA118193DC.J
KU1645'TO IS AVAILABLE ON THE WEB AT
KU1645'IMG.GEOCACHING.COM/BENCHMARK/LG/F67527E4-07C8-4F31-8894-CEFA118193DC.J
KU1645' PHOTO IS AVAILABLE ON THE WEB AT
KU1645'IMG.GEOCACHING.COM/BENCHMARK/LG/F67527E4-07C8-4F31-8894-CEFA118193DC.J
KU1645'20060930
KU1645' 
KU1645'WHETHER IT IS A PLUG THAT REPLACED THE DISK, OR THE STEM OF THE
KU1645'ORIGINAL DISK, ITS USE AS A BENCHMARK IS NOW PROBLEMATIC AND SHOULD BE
KU1645'USED WITH CAUTION.
KU1645' 
KU1645'THE SCALED COORDINATES ARE WRONG AND WOULD PLACE THE STATION ON THE
KU1645'NORTH SIDE OF THE GEORGE WASHINGTON BRIDGE.  THE COORDINATES GIVEN ON
KU1645'THE DATASHEET FOR KU3890 SHOULD BE USED INSTEAD.

 

These types of reports (and these were just found searching all the datasheets for 'geocaching.com'.. who knows what else is out there..) is the main reason I'm hesitant on adding NGS submitting to my android app. :D

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I have no doubt that a lot of professional surveyers find GEOCAC recoveries helpful. However, I think the thread is more based on the 'amateur' (non-professional surveyor) that are.. a little misguided, like this one:

I felt a little better when I saw the thread in the OP was mainly complaining about some old, pre-geocaching amateur activity, so I have to thank foxtrot_xray for making it painfully clear that lots of worse drivel comes from geocachers. I find it amusing when I see bonehead mistakes in the geocaching logs, but now I'm horrified to realize some people have actually submitted such mistakes, as well as other mistakes I don't even understand, to NGS. I always resist the minor urges I have to submit reports because I doubt anyone will really care much in the days of GPS, but now I have a whole new reason to not add to the junk geocachers are contributing. I'll stick to the geocaching.com logs.

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There are those for whom benchmarking is 'all about the numbers'.

 

They log recoveries on church steeples or lookout towers that are long since gone. Most don't bother to read the data sheets.

 

Fortunately though, I don't see the 'numbers' people submitting recoveries to the NGS.

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I always resist the minor urges I have to submit reports because I doubt anyone will really care much in the days of GPS, but now I have a whole new reason to not add to the junk geocachers are contributing.

 

Good elevation bench marks are still important to professionals for at least several more years. NGS plans to complete their GRAV-D project and release a new vertical datum that will be based on GPS measurements with adjustments from the gravity data. Until then, GPS can't give accurate elevation data of the kind (orthometric heights) established on the passive bench marks.

 

And if you understand just a little bit about what the marks represent , the difference between SCALED and ADJUSTED, use common sense and caution, and follow the examples of prior recovery reports, you can still make worthwhile contributions by reporting finds.

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What is the present proper link or procedure to make a report to the NGS? I have recently re-found 2 BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed (after I recovered them a few years earlier). The link provided in the NGS FAQ is 404 error.

 

I've been meaning to make reports in the past, but felt the reporting should be better left to true professionals who do this every day. However, correcting a destroyed report has moved me off the center. Thanks.

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What is the present proper link or procedure to make a report to the NGS? I have recently re-found 2 BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed (after I recovered them a few years earlier). The link provided in the NGS FAQ is 404 error.

 

I've been meaning to make reports in the past, but felt the reporting should be better left to true professionals who do this every day. However, correcting a destroyed report has moved me off the center. Thanks.

 

Try this link http://www.ngs.noaa....y_entry_www.prl link .

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What is the present proper link or procedure to make a report to the NGS? I have recently re-found 2 BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed (after I recovered them a few years earlier). The link provided in the NGS FAQ is 404 error.

 

I've been meaning to make reports in the past, but felt the reporting should be better left to true professionals who do this every day. However, correcting a destroyed report has moved me off the center. Thanks.

 

Grizzflyer,

I think the surveying community should appreciate the work of amateurs, especially those of us who take it seriously. I try to think of it in terms of a surveyor who has to find the best bench mark to use for a project. If I find one that was difficult I am hoping that by describing it in terms of new references that I can make their job a bit easier. They don't look for these for the challenge like I do--they just need it to do their job, and the faster they can find the mark the faster they can get to the meat of what they do. (I am not saying that some surveyors don't appreciate a good bench mark hunt, but when trying to get a job done they probably just want to find it as quickly as possible). Also, I have been to many marks that have not been recovered in decades, only to find them clearly marked with surveyor's tape, and that tape isn't even faded, so that means they were used in the last year or so. Many professionals don't have time to submit recoveries, or don't make it a priority.

 

My approach is that if there is no change in the status of the mark from the most recent recovery I will submit a recovery with no text, if it has been a few years since the last recovery--sort of saying "yeah, it's still there. You can expect to find it quickly". If something has changed I will try to totally redescribe it in relation to all references that I measure. I find it confusing to read a recovery that says "delete reference to railroad tracks, and yeah, also it is 10.5 feet from a tree...". It's much easier to find it if all the references are in one place and you don't have to refer to multiple recoveries.

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What is the present proper link or procedure to make a report to the NGS? I have recently re-found 2 BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed (after I recovered them a few years earlier). The link provided in the NGS FAQ is 404 error.

 

I've been meaning to make reports in the past, but felt the reporting should be better left to true professionals who do this every day. However, correcting a destroyed report has moved me off the center. Thanks.

 

Try this link http://www.ngs.noaa....y_entry_www.prl link .

 

Thanks for the link, much appreciated. Makes reporting very easy.

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>BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed

 

I have a philosophical difference with NGS over the way destroyed reports are handled. You provide an explanation and evidence and they mark the data sheet "Reported destroyed by John Q. Public" with none of the circumstances logged.

 

I tend to report a Not Found (when totally gone) or Poor (if still nearby but obviously unusable) so that the log will contain my explanation. That will let people in the future evaluate the credibility of my report, particularly if they have any doubts because of any other evidence they discover.

Edited by Bill93

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>BM's that were previously reported by a geocacher as destroyed

 

I have a philosophical difference with NGS over the way destroyed reports are handled. You provide an explanation and evidence and they mark the data sheet "Reported destroyed by John Q. Public" with none of the circumstances logged.

 

I tend to report a Not Found (when totally gone) or Poor (if still nearby but obviously unusable) so that the log will contain my explanation. That will let people in the future evaluate the credibility of my report, particularly if they have any doubts because of any other evidence they discover.

 

I'll admit, I actually take it a step further -

When I *know* it's been destroyed (like a bridge getting replaced, etc), I'll log a Not Found with my information in it (i.e. 'Bridge was replaced in 2009, old headwalls were torn down and rebuilt. Station destroyed.') and THEN send an email in to Deb to have it marked as destroyed. That way, when someone pulls up the datasheet, they'll see the 'Reported destroyed by Mike', and right above it will be my 'Not Found' recovery with the other needed info.

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I read they were having more of a problem with Power Squadron reporting than anything else. We shouldn't be surprised there, as we tend to also think the same and have discussed it more than a few times here in the benchmark forums.

 

Is anyone here using DSWorld to either submit photographs, hand held coordinates, recovery reports, etc? I have found that an extremely useful tool, and the pics are often updated to the datasheet within just a few days by Malcolm. Here is one where Malcolm has the pics already updated to the datasheet, yet my recovery report is still in the queue.

 

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=CQ2955

 

The recovery reports take a few weeks as they go thru a different section of NGS, but the datasheet is updated with all the corrections that you note on the recovery report submittal .......examples of which are the stamping; HH2 coordinates if applicable; whether the mark is now projecting, recessed, or flush; and more.

 

Even if you don't submit recovery reports, you can still use DSWorld to submit photos, HH2 coordinates, disk stamping, and more.

 

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=296816&st=0&p=5086310&hl=dsworld&fromsearch=1entry5086310

 

I kind of took a break from benchmarking for awhile but am trying to ease back into it. I have noticed something with my recent recovery reports, as the NGS did truncate some of the text, which could have been considered redundant with the other fields of the DSWorld recovery report. An example would be where I stated the mark was now recessed X amount of inches below the surrounding ground level. I also entered that information in the DSWorld part asking about the marks relation to surrounding ground level. The datasheet was updated reflecting that aspect, but the recovery report was truncated to take out the text stating the same.

 

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=CQ1110

 

Same thing here where I updated the recovery report setting code to state the reset was in a pipe where the original datasheet stated it was in a concrete setting. The NGS updated the datasheet to reflect this, but truncated where I also stated it, from the text report.

 

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=CQ1108

 

This is another reason I like DSWorld so much, is all the recovery report fields you can verify or update to reflect the marks scaled coordinates, setting codes, stampings, relation to surrounding ground surface, etc.

 

The reason I state all of this is maybe the NGS is aware of some of this "silly log" stuff and is being more selective on what is on the datasheets....but this is just a supposition on my part with no factual basis.

Edited by LSUFan

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I need to add that I sometimes think we all make silly mistakes. I won't mention any names, but there is a chiseled X mark in my area that has a NGS recovery report from a geocacher as follows:

 

STATION DESCRIPTION

 

'DESCRIBED BY COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY

10 1/2 FEET SOUTHEAST OF THE SOUTHEAST RAIL, A

'CHISELED CROSS ON THE TOP OF THE SOUTH CORNER OF THE EAST CONCRETE

'ABUTMENT FOR THE

 

STATION RECOVERY (2003)

 

'RECOVERY NOTE BY US POWER SQUADRON 2003

'RECOVERED IN GOOD CONDITION.

 

STATION RECOVERY (2011)

 

'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2011

'RECOVERED IN GOOD CONDITION.

 

STATION RECOVERY (2012)

 

'RECOVERY NOTE BY GEOCACHING 2012

'DISK HAS BEEN REMOVED, BUTWHERE THE STEM WAS REMAINS

 

Since it has a 2011 accurate recovery report, I submitted HH2 Coordinates and photos utilizing DSWorld, but no recovery report. The 2012 report was submitted by a geocacher, who I believe must have just made an error in which mark he was reporting.....since a chiseled cross has no disk.

 

I removed the PID and initials, cause I'm not trying to embarrass anyone, but just show that honest mistakes do happen.

Edited by LSUFan

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