Jan 042011

I really haven’t paid much attention to GPSrs recently since we haven’t really been getting out to geocache much. That will change in a couple of years but it just makes sense tow wait until we have a reliable vehicle to get out caching often since by that time there will likely be newer models if we want to upgrade our old Garmin 60csxs.

I just came across the Garmin 62S now. Though I haven’t even seen one in person if I were to pull the trigger and get a new GPS now this would likely by my choice. It appears to have taken the good from the old 60csx and added to it instead of creating something completely different. It keeps the same form factor which is the best I’ve seen in a gps for what we use it for. I really don’t want to depend on a touch screen in the woods or that wheel thing Garmin tried. It also seems like it has the same screen as the 60csx which I found very readable with a magnifier. For those who don’t know I am legally blind and have poor vision. The biggest plus this seems to have over the older models it includes the full cache details. I can’t even begin to count how many times the write up or a recent log would have been very handy out in the woods when we’re searching for a cache that has gone missing. I don’t mind the DNF but we get obsessed and spend hours searching.

I am anxious to read other peoples’ thoughts on this unit. If Garmin did it right it could be the perfect gps. Hopefully it retains the older model’s dependability and accuracy along with excellent battery life. The old model was also pretty much unbreakable. I’ve dropped mine more times than you can imagine and it still works fine. The only thing it did is popped the microSD card loose once in a while.

According the the description it also includes 1.7 gigs of memory built into the unit which would be great. A great plus would be if they overcame the map block limitation all of their older generations had.

Jan 072008

I just saw that Garmin is releasing a new gps.  From what I read they may have actually improved over the 60csx.  I think I will be getting on as soon as I can.  I’m looking forward to playing with it.

The best thing about it is the fact that it seems to support paperless caching better by having the cache writeup and previous logs right on the gps.  That means we wouldn’t have to use the ipaq for caching which would be a good thing since Molly has a habit of letting the battery die completely in it.

Garmin Colorado 400t Handheld GPS Unit with US Topographic Preloaded Maps

Aug 062007

Last week was Molly’s vacation and we had wanted to work on the Pennsylvania Delorme and all county challenges. We were able to hook up with Geometeacher from York and had a great two day trip in western Pa.

We got to see some pretty cool things. One of the caches we did gave you a view of the I 80 bridge over the Allegheny river. I had been over it and never realized how height it actually is. It turns out it’s 270 feet above the river according to the cache page and was the highest bridge east of the Mississippi when it was built 40 years ago.

We made it across I 80, went to Ohio to add that state and got to Pittsburgh and got a room. Not bad for a day. The next morning we went southwest then east towards home.

Wednesday we stopped by some really interesting places. The first that comes to mind is the site of the rescue shaft from the Quecreek Mine accident in 2002. It’s hard to imagine how they were able to know where they were underground and rescue them from above. I couldn’t begin to imagine what was going through the miner’s heads. I’ve always wanted to visit this area but had no idea there was a virtual cache here.

It was too bad we didn’t get to visit the sight where flight 93 went down. We really didn’t realize we’d be as close to it as we were but next time through the area we are going to try to stop by.

We were pretty surprised how route 30 winds up and over the mountains out in that part of the state. I guess we are just used to it being a highway in our area and east towards Philly.

We also did a cache called the coffee pot. It was at a a coffee pot shaped structure along Lincoln highway. It’s always interesting to see these odd shaped buildings.

One of the last caches of the day was the Len Miller bridge one. I have been wanting to do this one for years. It’s a really nice place. I would love to return to that area and explore some.

I really feel lucky to live in Pennsylvania because it has a lot of history and diverse geography. You just really don’t know what you may find.

May 052007

Friday we tried to place a cache on an island in the middle of a creek but we just weren’t going to be able to make it work. It was way too close to another one. We had fun trying though. Molly wanted to try to avoid the mud that sucks your feet in so waded downstream as the water got deeper. Finally she ended up having to swim while I held the gpsrs above the water. I couldn’t beleive how warm the water was.

Today we went caching along the south eastern Lancaster county boarder. We still love the southern part of the county. This is probably my favorite part of the county. There’s tons of history and not too many people.

We did a couple of caches near Octoraro Lake. We’d never really checked it out before. It’s a really nice area actually but it’s ashame how much trash there is. People are slobs. They just through trash on the ground where ever they are. There was even a pile of trash a few feet from the trash can. I can’t understand why people are so damn lazy.

We also went to a a cache on the Alexander King Nature preserve. That place had some interesting history. An earlier finder posted directions to a couple remnants from when they made charcoal for Hopewell Furnace (I think.) It was a ncie walk in the woods. I’m always interested in checking out old stuff like that and I consider us lucky to live in an area that has so much history.

Feb 232007

York County Geocaching Society‘s Fourth Thursday was a great time last night. We have to be thankful in this area for all the DoverDoggs do for caching. They plan these monthly events that so many people enjoy.

They had the meeting at Ryan’s Family Steakhouse in Hanover Pa. That food was good! I want more. There’s a bunch of caches in that area that we haven’t found but we got too late of a start to find any yesterday. We’re already looking forward to the next time.

Feb 082007

I know it’s not exactly new anymore but I thought I’d post my thoughts on it. I picked one up last August after my old Magellan Meridian Color was wearing out. After falling on some rocks near the Appalachian trail on NJ in a down pour the screen fogged up. I figured it was time for a new one. Molly needed a GPS because her etrex legend was falling apart and I decided it would be easier if we had the same ones. When I first picked up the 60csx it felt to me like it was built well and wouldn’t break easily.

We are both very happy with the pair 60csx units we have. They get a lock pretty quick. They even get a satellite lock in the house most of the time. As a matter of fact I have 31 foot accuracy right now as I’m sitting here in the house typing this. I’ve been impressed how it’s kept a good accuracy even where my old Magellan lost sats. The Sirf Star III chip seems to have great reception It’s almost always led us right to the cache of course that depends on the hider’s coordinates.

What made me want this GPS was the screen. For me it was very readable and bright. I can use the light text on a dark background theme which is what I normally use. I can just see it better. All of the screens are easy for me to see in this setting. You can even have the map screen use this contrast. I don’t know why more gadgets don’t offer this option.

On my old Magellan I noticed quite a bit of lag while waiting for the map screen to draw or switching screens. That doesn’t seem to happen at all on the 60csx. The only lag I notice is on the altimeter screen and that is just for a second or two.

The expandable memory was very important to me and is what stopped me from really considering the 60cs for myself. That may not be where the park entrance is. With the 1GB card we are able to fit everything from City Navigator 8 and the topo software east of the Mississippi on one card.

We have both City Navigator 8 and topo maps installed on our GPS. The auto routing has been excellent. It has been perfect for us as long as we had reasonable expectations. What I mean is that it’s only going to get you as close as possible by road. The auto routing has cut down on the planning of where we’d like to cache. When I did all the routing at home nothing would go according to plans so it was just a big waste of paper.

My only problems with it are if you drop it the microSD card can become loose but if that’s all that happens when it gets dropped I’ll be happy. The other thing was the unit would reboot on the altimeter screen once in a while. That hasn’t seemed to happen since the released newer firmware.

Feb 042007

We took part in an adopt a highway today for the York county geocaching society. Makes me wonder why we even have to to this.. I mean why do people need to just throw trash along the side of the road.

We found a propane tank and a pretty big truck tire among other things one doesn’t just fall out with out you noticing. There were some other bigger things but I don’t remember what they are.

The worst thing is all the cigarrette butts. There were more of them than anything else. Some smokers just love to prove how disrespectful they are. Cars usually have ash trays, why not use it?

I’m thankful roadside litter is not nearly as bad around here as it is where I grew up in Bensalem. There after a windy day trash would just pile up.