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Military "geocaching"

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I am an active duty Air Force officer in the space command training to be an operator in the space and missile career field and today to cap off our lesson abut GPS systems they gave our class all gps 72s and sent us in the woods in search of 16 different flags hidden around the base backwoods. Was alot of fun and made explaining geocaching alot easier to some of the members. The 72s did ok, lost sat covereage in the trees when my 60C never missed a beat, it did however get a bit sluggish with the bearing pointer when it dropped to three sats, but only twice, both times at which the 72 had given up 500 feet prior. When in the open, accuracy between the two units was comparable, both taking the lead a few times with the 60C displaying better accuracy most of the time. So yeah...today I got paid to geocache..haha, granted it was in my BDU's and we covered roughly 7 miles of trails, but still kinda neat.

Edited by wickedsprint
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I'm in the Army Reserves and am considering using something along the lines of Geocaching to teach GPS to my troops. I was thinking about an introductory classroom session (crawl) followed by an open field (walk) ending with an op order to solve a multipart cache (run) with the final sign-in sheet for the class located in the final cache. Of course with the current training tempo it is hard to find time for this kind of training over a typical two-day drill weekend.

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That's cool, paid to "geocache".

Thanks for your Service. No matter what you make, you are underpaid in my eyes. Tell everyone on base we say THANKS.

I am quite overpaid, but thank you for your kind words.



Just wait till you retire, and need to "PAY FOR" your "FREE" medical and dental.

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Hey thanks alot man, on a slightly different career path from the aviation side I was training for, but I am quite glad I made the decision, now I just need to find time to do the real caches around here, turns out there are quite alot, and yes, it is a crime what they pay the enlisted members, I don't understand how they make it.

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As a retired army SFC (E-7), I often used a PLGR while in Korea. Now as a US Army civilian employee, I recently had the opportunity to take a few civilian contractors with me to Kuwait for participation in and support of OEF/OIF. While at the CONUS Replacement Center (CRC) at Fort Benning, GA, I took an opportunity to educate the contractors on the fine art of using a yellow ETREX. Our organization had purchased several to aide in our navigation, once in the desert. I managed to get them to understand all of the entry and use options and then took them out for a small land-nav course. The first bad habit I had to break them of was ignoring the roads and paths and following the 'go to' arrow. Bad habit number two was, not marking the start point. I did make one mistake during my training of my fellow travelors. I told them that the GPS was more than accurate enough to get us to within 30 meters and when we were in the desert we should be able to locate a military unit, when 1000 meters away. How wrong I was. Once we got into the desert, there were times, where you could not see a mile square area of vehicles due to the blowing dust, and in fact, without the 30 meter accuracy you couldn't find the location. However, practice with Geo-Caching is a great way to train for many military type missions. :rolleyes:

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I used to do a lot of orienteering and go to orienteering meets with my Boy Scout troop on a regular basis. When we went out, there would be guys out there who would run the course. Me and my buddies would walk at a decent pace and do the entire course even though it would take us about 5 times as long to do it :D .


I've picked up Geocaching I guess to kinda make up for that. I am wanting to pick up NG topo so I can make maps for when I go out onto the trail.


Now I am in Army ROTC (yep, another officer around here :) ) and figuring out where you are going in the woods is pretty important. I am glad I did a lot map and compass work earlier since it seems to be very helpful at not getting yelled at for getting lost! I've been trying to use my GPS more when I am out in the field but my Garmin 176c is a pretty big unit to be using out there in the mud (but its great for my truck!). I'll probably be looking for a smaller, lighter, cheaper setup for the future.


I think the GPS is one of be best additions to my equipment list yet. Right up there with my pocket knife and food. I've never been lost, ever! I've taken a wrong turn, but never lost :D .


Max T.

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