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Extreme Benchmarking


holograph

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OK, I have a first rough site up and running. You can see it at the Extreme Benchmark Hunting page.

 

Comments and suggestions are welcome.

 

As a note, stations were excluded from the dataset if their last report was "NOT FOUND". We all know that is a somewhat rash assumption, but I did it in order to keep the list more usable for geocachers who would actually like to find something when they go looking.

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Holograph, that's a pretty cool site.  Does it automatically update, or manually?  Very interesting.

Thanks. It's semi-automated. I have to watch to see when the NGS posts the monthly updates to their FTP site. Then I download the latest monthly updates and run some programs to automatically interpret the datasheets and merge them with the data I've previously downloaded. That means that the site's data won't be updated any more frequently than monthly.

 

A couple of people have already noted errors in the NGS datasheets, and suggested that I kick some PIDs out of the pool and make room for more accurate ones. That's an improvement I'll have to work on.

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IN ARKANSAS THIS IS LISTED AS THE

OLDEST MARK.

PID: FF1967

Designation: HOPEFIELD SOUTH BASE

Date: 1879

Type: V = STONE MONUMENT

State and county: AR/CRITTENDEN

Position: 35° 07' 51.7" (N) 090° 04' 55.9" (W) Topozone

Altitude: 65. (meters) 213.25 (feet)

Last report: 1879 MONUMENTED CGS

 

 

I HAVE FOUND ONE OLDER THAN THAT .

BOUNDARY MON 73 FH1007

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GEO*Trailblazer 1,

 

Yes, that's an example of the problems that occur when going by the NGS datasheet. The datasheet shows it as monumented in 1935, so my programs think it it is only 70 years old. Only by reading the description do we see that it is engraved with the date 1877.

 

I'll make a note and try to see how we might be able to incorporate it into the record book.

 

Thanks for pointing it out. It does raise the question as to how far do we dare stray from the NGS datasheet facts.

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It seems to me that the octagonal iron monument actually is 70 years old as a surveying monument. (As a witness post of a boundary, the object is 128 years old.)

 

Some geodetic marks are large rocks, and one could say that the rock itself is 582,425,691 years old, or the large rock piece was broken off of bedrock by a glacier 18,247 years ago......

 

The monumentation date was when the object, however old it may be, became a survey mark. I think using the monumentation date is what the standard should be in calculating the age of a survey station.

 

I think the way the data mining that was done is just fine as is.

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I saw this, and just checked a couple in Wisconsin. The highest point in WI is Timm's Hill/Ogema station(where I hunt), and Rib(#3) is one of the 3 highest points in the state(where I grew up).

 

The question I have is the #1 highest in WI is listed in Columbia Co. at 3000ft, which is over 1000 feet over a couple of the highest points. How can this be? What am I missing? Thanks. :D

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I saw this, and just checked a couple in Wisconsin.  The highest point in WI is Timm's Hill/Ogema station(where I hunt), and Rib(#3) is one of the 3 highest points in the state(where I grew up).

 

The question I have is the #1 highest in WI is listed in Columbia Co. at 3000ft, which is over 1000 feet over a couple of the highest points.  How can this be?  What am I missing?  Thanks. :D

It looks like an error in the scaled elevation on the NGS datasheet. If you use the Topozone link, you can see that the station should be approximately 1000 feet, not 3000.

 

The NGS data is what it is. I'm not comfortable with arbitrarily ignoring or discarding the NGS data, but I have been thinking about adding an asterisk or comment whenever an obvious error has been noted.

 

Of course one avenue would be to bring the errors to the attention of NGS so they can correct the datasheets, and then my site would automatically be corrected at the next update cycle.

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holograph...would you mind if I linked to it from my website?

 

nfa-jamie

Of course you may. If I start getting nastygrams from the hosting service that my traffic has suddenly gone astronomical, I'll know who to blame. :D

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holograph...would you mind if I linked to it from my website?

 

nfa-jamie

Of course you may. If I start getting nastygrams from the hosting service that my traffic has suddenly gone astronomical, I'll know who to blame. :D

you're up on the site...don't worry about your traffic...it's not really busy...

 

Thanks again though for the site...I love the list I got for New York State, and am going to head out after a couple of the 1845 benchmarks North of me along the border with Canada!

 

nfa-jamie

Edited by NFA
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On the mark that is listed as 3000 when it was expected to be nearer 1000 ft,

938. (meters) 3077.42 (feet)

it seems likely that the elevation was supposed to be 938 feet and got its units converted once too many times. Since it is a horizontal control point, the elevation doesn't get much scrutiny. I think I recall another example of this being discussed.

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Awesome site! Great job.

 

As a result of digging around for old marks, Neweyess and I have pushed the date back nearly 200 years. Here's what has been found, recently:

 

NORTH CAROLINA's OLDEST MARKS:

EZ5145 (1857)

FB3773 (1815)

EC1655 (1813)

 

We'll keep you advised if we find anything earlier!

 

-Paul-

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One in San Diego from 1800??? What, did the Spanish missionaries place it? Pretty cool that they knew how to place disks in concrete though. :D

 

Must be a typo, default entry, y2k glitch, or something.

 

Cool site!!

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I noticed a couple of crazy errors by looking around local states. It says the lowest in Wyoming is the Sheridan Muni Standpipe at 3.28 ft. There is no place in Wyoming even close to 3 feet in elevation. And Sheridan is at the foot of the Bighorns which are the tallest range in Wyoming topping out at over 13000 ft. Montana's lowest is shown in Park Co. just north of Yellowstone Park. 631 ft. Any point on the Yellowstone river all the way to North Dakota would be lower, even though the lowest point in the state is in the NW corner on the Kootenai River. 1800 ft. In South Dakota here, the oldest is shown in Brookings Co. dated 1874 and oddly designated I29 138.85. It seems strange that they would have known at that early date exactly where I-29 would be built. I'm betting they were off by about 100 years when doing the entry. I see in the entry, the stamping on the disk says 1974.

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In South Dakota here, the oldest is shown in Brookings Co. dated 1874 and oddly designated I29 138.85. It seems strange that they would have known at that early date exactly where I-29 would be built. I'm betting they were off by about 100 years when doing the entry. I see in the entry, the stamping on the disk says 1974.

 

That's a good one! In Enfield, North Carolina, a data sheet describes a cell tower with a "first observed" date many decades prior to the invention of cellular service. Actually, it pre-dates even the early "YJ" type mobile telephones on 150 MHz. But if you transpose two digits in the date, it's obvious what happened. :rolleyes:

 

By the way, finding the oldest BM requires a lot of reading. Neweyess and I have discovered nearly a dozen granite posts from the 1800's where the data sheet says "MONUMENTED 1934" or later. The REAL date is mentioned in the text and/or is carved on the stone. In other words, when we attempted to do "global" searches based upon the date, we found we were missing many interesting targets.

 

-Paul-

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I concur with Black Dog Trackers, above, regarding the "age" of a benchmark. For the purposes of benchmark hunting, the age of the station should be the "monumented" date or date "first observed" as listed on the NGS datasheet. That (those) is the date that the NGS recognizes as the date that the station became the station.

 

The oldest benchmarks are, therefore, JU3849 and JU3851, both of which have monumented dates of 1/1/1765. HU1686 is several years older, but remained unmonumented for about 120 years.

 

JU3851

JU3849

HU1686

 

I think HOLOGRAPH's standard for the age of a benchmark and the determination of the oldest in each state is correct.

 

Will

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I started a new topic in the NGS forum for listing database problems exposed by holograph's new website. While I agree that dates can be interpreted in different ways, the issues are usually interpretation not database problems. But in many other cases, there is a problem with the information on the datasheet. That's what I started the new topic for. Go here: Extreme Errors, originating from extreme benchmarking.

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First, thanks to all of you who have suggested improvements and noted errors in the datasheets.

 

I have made modifications to exclude the obviously erroneous NGS datasheets from the "extreme" summary lists, but they are retained in the extended lists and your comments have been added.

 

I also modified the "Notable Recoveries" to allow you to see the top 10 recoveries that fit in each notable category.

 

I think I captured all the errors that have been brought to my attention, thanks to (in no particular order)

Team Nazgul

BuckBrooke

rogbarn

2oldfarts (the rockhounders)

Zhanna

schubfam

1setter

 

For now, I'll keep an eye on Rogbarn's thread in the NGS forum and try to keep the exclusions up to date. Eventually I'd like to allow you to add your own comments to the lists, although the Geocaching logs and these forums should still be the preferred way to exchange information and ideas.

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On the recovery statistics page, is the count only FOUNDs, or are NOT FOUNDs included?

All reports are counted, regardless of whether the station mark was found or not. The intent was to see how many reports are being submitted by Geocachers, with the assumption being that a (trustworthy) NOT FOUND is as valuable as a FOUND to someone who might otherwise spend time looking for something that is not there.

 

For all intents and purposes I am counting the number of occurrences of GEOCAC in the history section of the NGS datasheet, and then looking at the report description to get the initials of the submitter. That means that two different Geocachers who submit reports for the same station would each get credit, although that is relatively rare so far. I also include the statistics for known Geocachers who routinely submit INDIV reports.

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Previous to today I'd already found the oldest BM's in Mass. and N.H. I didn't know that the one in Mass was the oldest until this web site came along for which I thank you. Black Dog Tracker turned me on to the oldest in N.H. so I went after that one with success. Today I found the oldest in RI.. The one in Ct. is destroyed so I'll have to get the second oldest there. Thanks for a great site.

Dave

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