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ceranes

Average waypoints or not?

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I have been watching videos on how waypoint averaging is more accurate than taking your handheld gps unit to your potential cache location, and sticking it on the ground.  Once the gps finds itself, and settles down, the coordinates it displays is what should be used on the cache submission.

 

What does everyone else do?  This will be my first hide and my gps does support waypoint averaging.

 

thank you.

Chris

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2 minutes ago, ceranes said:

What does everyone else do?  This will be my first hide and my gps does support waypoint averaging.

The last time I listed a cache, I took the coordinates for its waypoints using both my handheld GPS receiver and using the "waypoint averaging" feature of my smartphone app. The coordinates they produced were virtually identical.

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2 minutes ago, ceranes said:

I have been watching videos on how waypoint averaging is more accurate than taking your handheld gps unit to your potential cache location, and sticking it on the ground.  Once the gps finds itself, and settles down, the coordinates it displays is what should be used on the cache submission.

 

What does everyone else do?  This will be my first hide and my gps does support waypoint averaging.

 

thank you.

Chris

If your GPSr has the ability to mark tracks, turn it on, then set your device down and not move it for about 10 minutes. The tracks on the map will look as if you've been wandering all over the place. The coordinates really never completely settle down. You will always see the drift. For that reason, I always use averaging. The rare exception is if my hide is in a painfully obvious location - even then I still want to be accurate.

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I use averaging.  I usually take 3 averaged readings on each of 2 GPS units and 3 readings on my call phone.  Then I list all these, throw out the highest and lowest readings, repeat until I have all the same numbers left.  Sometimes I am amazed at how much variation there is between the highest and lowest.

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48 minutes ago, NanCycle said:

I use averaging.  I usually take 3 averaged readings on each of 2 GPS units and 3 readings on my call phone.  Then I list all these, throw out the highest and lowest readings, repeat until I have all the same numbers left.  Sometimes I am amazed at how much variation there is between the highest and lowest.

 

And I suspect that if you came back a day or two later and took additional readings that the results would vary as well.  Taking three readings a minute or two apart isn't going to change as much as a reading  taken the next day when the satellite configuration has changed.  

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We average, then walk out a ways and come back.  Maybe go for a hide up the road, then stop back.

Rocky areas, river gorges, we'll even come back another day or two later.

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2 hours ago, cerberus1 said:

We average, then walk out a ways and come back.  Maybe go for a hide up the road, then stop back.

Rocky areas, river gorges, we'll even come back another day or two later.

 

That's what we always did, even with averaging.  Walk a couple of hundred feet away, and use the GPSr to come back and find the cache.  If necessary, I manually change the coords, and try again.

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3 hours ago, ceranes said:

I have been watching videos on how waypoint averaging is more accurate

 

Averaging is more accurate than single reading. There is no doubt about it. But you have many ways to do the averaging. Using an app or special function in your GPS device is just only one way to average and may be not the best at all.

 

3 hours ago, ceranes said:

taking your handheld gps unit to your potential cache location, and sticking it on the ground.

 

This is almost the worst way to get coordinates. Especially, putting the device on groung should be avoided because threre are more obstacles on the GPS signal path.

 

3 hours ago, ceranes said:

What does everyone else do?  This will be my first hide and my gps does support waypoint averaging.

 

You can avarage manually. My simple algorithm is based on moving between measurements and to the observation of environmental barriers to avoid making measurements where the satellite reception is not adequate. For example, if your view to sky is blocked by a huge tree, you should not take measurements near the tree where it will cover many satellites. Instead, take measurements evenly around the tree and average them to get the position of the tree in the middle.

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12 minutes ago, Harry Dolphin said:

That's what we always did, even with averaging.  Walk a couple of hundred feet away, and use the GPSr to come back and find the cache.  If necessary, I manually change the coords, and try again.

 

This method is very good. After making several test runs the CO should be able to estimate the best coordinates to the cache.

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19 minutes ago, arisoft said:

This method is very good. After making several test runs the CO should be able to estimate the best coordinates to the cache.

At one time, I used the averaging feature on my Oregon 450 and it generally worked well. However, Garmin then made some changes that made the position wander more than before, so I've changed to use the finned one's method. I take a reading, walk away (usually several tens of metres), walk toward the waypoint and see how close I get. Tweak the coordinates, walk away, walk back, lather, rinse, repeat... I find I can usually get a good set of coordinates using this method. I also use this method to get suggested coordinates when I find someone else's cache with coordinates that are off, and I often see positive feedback from later finders using my coordinates.

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