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Baffled first-timer


Maisie
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Is it me? Is my new eTrek Legend faulty?

 

When I walk in the direction the arrow is pointing to, the distance goes UP. When I walk so the distance goes down, the arrow is pointing back over my shoulder. What's going on?

 

I also noticed that if I entered the cache location in lat/longs, then switched the units to UTM, my UTM values didn't match the ones on the cache page.

 

Please advise. This isn't fun yet!

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maisie, sometimes when you're very close your arrow becomes useless and you should rely on the numbers.

 

if your battery is low, your readings will also be wacky.

 

i can't answer about UTM. be patient, and develop a sense for it, and you'll start to find them. there's this incredible feeling when you've been searching for a thing and all of a sudden it appears.

 

-====)) -))))))))))))

presta schrader

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If you are using the unit some where like a densly forested area or close to cliff face the GPS signals can be bouncing around in a way that affects the readinf strangely.

 

Also, try walking slowly and allowing the GPSr to contemplate the sky and its position for a few moments. Often it will sort out the extraneous signals that were confusing it and will give an accurate reading after a few minutes.

 

"Now may every living thing, young or old, weak or strong, living near or far, known or unknown, living or departed or yet unborn, may every living thing know happiness!"

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OK...a serious suggestion. Unless you are moving the GPSr has no idea which way you are facing. It figures out which way you are facing by comparing your current position with the last one it calculated (simplified explianation). So you need to be walking for the arrow to point you in the correct direction...if you slow down too much it might get confused.

 

stunod_sig.gif

"Just because I don't care doesn't mean I don't understand." - Homer Simpson

Eamus Catuli AC145895

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Hi Maisie. A similar thing happened to me in Northeast oregon. Same kind of arrow thing. I actually figured it out. So I hope this helps. Somewhere in setup switch that pointer to "Bearing Pointer", instead of "Course Pointer". If you use a GOTO a single waypoint and have that page you were on setup with a course pointer, it will do something exactly as you described. Switching it to Bearing pointer should solve your problem. The Course pointer does not behave correctly when using a simple GOTO. It needs an actual Route or Track to work properly. I'm almost 100% sure this is your problem. Please post with your results. I would like to know if I helped. I ahve an Etrex Legend also.

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quote:
Originally posted by Maisie:

Thanks everyone, I'll give it another try!

--M

(and No, Stunod, I'm holding it readable-wise, but do you think they might have given me left-handed software by mistake?)


 

Good! You're welcome to these forums. You got a sense of humor. You'll need it around here! icon_wink.gif

 

Regarding the UTM coordinate thing, set the Datum to WGS84 and coordinates to DD MM.MMM BEFORE you enter the coordinates from the cache page. That's the way it's presented pon the page. If it not set this way, then when you switch to UTM you'll get a waypoint that might take you to another state. In fact even if you don't switch it you'll still wind up where you don't want to be. Once when AI set the wrong coordinates I wind up in some guy's campsite while he was relaxing eating his soup. Didn't look like a cacher so I just waved and moved on. Never did fin out what kind of soup it was.

 

Good lcuk and welcome.

 

Alan

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quote:
Originally posted by Alan2:

quote:
Originally posted by Maisie:

Thanks everyone, I'll give it another try!

--M

(and No, Stunod, I'm holding it readable-wise, but do you think they might have given me left-handed software by mistake?)


 

Good! You're welcome to these forums. You got a sense of humor. You'll need it around here! icon_wink.gif

 

Regarding the UTM coordinate thing, set the Datum to WGS84 and coordinates to DD MM.MMM BEFORE you enter the coordinates from the cache page. That's the way it's presented pon the page. If it not set this way, then when you switch to UTM you'll get a waypoint that might take you to another state. In fact even if you don't switch it you'll still wind up where you don't want to be. Once when AI set the wrong coordinates I wind up in some guy's campsite while he was relaxing eating his soup. Didn't look like a cacher so I just waved and moved on. Never did fin out what kind of soup it was.

 

Good lcuk and welcome.

 

Alan


 

Tis indeed nice to see someone who hasn't had a radical humorectomy.

 

___________________________________

All weal drive, the only way to go!

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quote:
Originally posted by BogSlogger:

The Course pointer does not behave correctly when using a simple GOTO. It needs an actual Route or Track to work properly.


This is a misunderstanding of the course pointer. It certainly does work with a single GoTo, but it works the way it's intended. That is, it will always point parallel to a line from your start to your destination, regardless of your current location! Think of your destination as a point with a line passing this point. The line is perpendicular to your course line to this destination. So, if you walk towards your destination and drift off to the right a little, sooner or later you'll be on that line, but to the right of your target. The course pointer will still point straight ahead, though, since that's your original course. If you change over to the bearing pointer, that will point 90º to the left, since that'll be the correct way to go from where you are now.

 

To provide some means of understanding if you do follow the straight line from start to destination, there is a CDI functionality built into the course pointer. (CDI = Course Deviation Indicator). As soon as you leave the course line, your course pointer will split up in three parts. The center part gives a graphical indication of where you should have been. You can see the scale beside the compass, so that you can easily judge how much off you are (often referred to as Cross Track Error, or XTE).

 

Besides, if your batteries are low doesn't matter. Your readings will be correct as long as the unit works. When it dies completely, it will not be useful any longer, but then you'll most certainly notice that.

 

Anders

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Well it's been a few hours and the forums have once again managed to drag another subject into the ground and tamp it down a little. But back to the original problem. Has any of the suggestions helped Maisie at all? I hope she would post and fill everyone in on success or failure. The idea of a beginning Geocacher not having fun or enjoying the experience just fills me with dread. This is something to definitely enjoy.

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Sorry for the delay, my dears, I just couldn't get out for awhile to try again.

 

It turns out my unit was set to show course direction, not bearing, just like you said, BogSlogger (great name by the way) and after I switched it, the direction and distance started moving in sync. Hurray.

 

I still haven't found my first cache, but I had fun looking anyway. And I can see the wisdom of cache-in-trash-out AND of carrying an explanation of the game, in case anyone wonders why the madwoman is thrashing through the brambles.

 

Thanks for all your advice!

I can't wait to get out there again.

 

Maisie

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Here is a copy of my post to a similar question. Zero in on the aprts about COMPASS and TRACK and BEARING..

-------

1. Arm yourself with every "tool" available. That is part of good orienting. In addition to that Mapquest map,which gets you by car to some starting spot, start using a topo/arial map as well. A good one is lostinthewoods. With expereince, you will start dropping off tools but they really help you "put it all together." Its like in school, you need the answers to the algebra problems to understand if you are making the right calculations.

 

2. After all is said and done , you need a GPS that allows you to enter a WP and a compass. "Tell" the GPS to GO TO and pull up a what I call the rosette screen. Most GPS units have this. This screen is like looking at a compass with you in the center and the direction you are travelling will be UP and the direction you need to GO will be indicated.

 

3. Get very familiar with TRACK and BEARING. Track is the compass heading that you are "walking" and BEARING is the compass heading that you "need to walk." Thes numbers need to be on the display screen you select

 

4. You will notice that the GPS gives you great info when you are in the car moving or biking or walking briskly but when you stop, it doesn't know your TRACK anymore but still knows your BEARING. Thats why you need that compass. When I get close to the cache, DISTANCE less than .05 - 250 feet, I start to stop a lot. Get your BEARING from the GPS and use your compass to give you that BEARING and walk in that direction. This is also great for triangulating to locate a cache when the GPS starts to jumparound because of tree cover.

 

4. When you are at DISTANCE 0 or at the intersection of triangulation lines, then your compass and GPS are useless. Do not get sucked in to thinking that just becasue your GPS sez you are there that you are there. You will have error in your unit and the unit used to place the cache will have error and this can throw you off a good bit. So, at this point, you will have put your technology in the bag and start doing the GEO-Dance and using a lot of common sense and intuition.

 

5. As for "flying" with the GPS alone. This can be fun but you need to practice going to known locations. I usually use the 90 degree rule. I drive until target is 90 degree to the road I am on and then turn appropriately. If you want to "stay pure" you really do need a map as you may be trucking down a road that deadends into a lake and then you have to back track a zillion miles. It is one thing to use a map INSTEAD of the GPS and another to use a map WITH a GPS. INSTEAD of means that the target location is marked on the map. WITH means that the target is not marked on the map. If you are FLYING without the target marked on the map, then your navigator can use the map to pick the next logical road. I like to FLY to caches sometimes. So, 1.) start somewhere and get a bearing and draw a line on the map from where you are along a bearing indicated by the GPS after you GO TO. 2.) Pick a road that advances your game and get going. 3.) Adjust when appropriate.

 

Of course, it's also fun to project the line and also use the DISTANCE to mark the target. Do this from a different starting point and you are bascially traingulating to the target.

 

The fun of learning to orienteer is using many diverse techniques to get to the objective. But you will be frustrated at the beginning if you make it too hard for yourself. Only by using a few simple tools and some maps and knowlege of the answer will you gain the expereince and knowlege to master your craft.

 

Good luck!

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