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After geocaching for about 5 months, I've decided I have to get myself a little more organized. I am not the most electronic gadget literate person in the world. I've tried reading past posts about going paperless but I'm still lost.


Let's start out with - we have a basic Magellan Sportrac. Does great and have had no problems. We've found about 125 caches with it. We download the waypoints using EasyGPS. I have 2 questions.


1 - I would like to go paperless but have never touch a PDA (if that is what you actually call them) in my life so wouldn't even know where to begin. Don't care to use it for anything but downloading the sheets for caches. I'm sure I could figure out how to use Cachemate once I actually had something to download it to. but what unit to purchase?


2 - we need a better way for maps. Currently I print off driving directions (more paper) for each cache. So obviously that is not the smartest time efficient thing to do. Would I be able to get mapping on the PDA? The way I see it I could upgrade to a GPS that has maps thus eliminating the need for maps but that still doesn't solve the cache paper problem.


So.....recommendations are greatly needed.

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I use the basic palm zire. It has 2mb of memory and is more than enough to use cachemate and have plenty of memory left over. Mobipocket is a space hog and slows the pda down. Cachemate is the way to go.

As far as a pda, 2mbs is fine, but I think you will find once you have a pda you will use it for much more. Like I did. I never touched one before I got it for geocaching. My suggestion is to get one with more memory. Get what you can afford. 2mbs is fine, but I think you will want more after using it for awhile.

There are some pdas that have mapping on it for your driving instructions but I am not familiar with them.

As far as a program to use, like I said I use cachemate and have no problems with it. It is a great program and is exactly what I wanted when I would be out in the sticks thinking it would be great to read previous posts and hints and descriptions.

Good luck.

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I use an old ipaq (h3670) with a Navman GPSr Jacket, Mapopolis (GPS software) and GPXsonar (for viewing the cache pages and keeping notes on caches as I find them).


With this setup I cached for a couple of months without needing a stand alone GPSr. However I wanted the extra features and ruggedness of a stand alone and now have a Merdian Gold with Topo.


My routine:

1) Download the PQ

2) Convert to Mapopolis file

3) Convert to Meridian file

4) Use Topo to upload to Meridian (or use EasyGPS)

5) Upload PQ and Mapopolis file to ipaq via ActiveSync


The above takes 5-10 minutes.


I use Mapopolis to route me to the cache.

I use GPXsonar to provide cache info.

I use the Meridian to guide me to the cache, but the Ipaq could do that.

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I use a Palm Tungsten E. It has lots of memory and has a color screen which is easy to read in the dark. I've read that it is more difficult to read the screen in the dark with the non-color models. It is also made of metal so it is a little more durable than one made of plastic. I paid around $200 for mine, and it is well worth the price in my opinion. I run cachemate on it and GSAK to transfer pages from PC to PDA. I don't use the PDA for mapping as I prefer to use the gpsr for that.

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