Forum: Just Getting Started In Geocaching
Topic: Help! My Garmin Legend Is Lost
started by: FLMike

Posted by FLMike on Dec. 17 2001,3:49 pm
I'm a geocache newbie overwhelmed by his new Garmin Legend manual. I successfully completed today my first geocache hunt. However, as I got close to the geocache my GPS bearing pointer starting moving all over the compass as did the distance indicator. While standing still near the geocache the distance indicator showed I was 4 ft., 2 ft., 10 ft., 6 ft., ... etc. What gives? Is this normal? Why does this happen?
Posted by Quinn on Dec. 17 2001,4:57 pm
Quote (FLMike @ Dec. 17 2001,5:49 pm)
I'm a geocache newbie overwhelmed by his new Garmin Legend manual. I successfully completed today my first geocache hunt. However, as I got close to the geocache my GPS bearing pointer starting moving all over the compass as did the distance indicator. While standing still near the geocache the distance indicator showed I was 4 ft., 2 ft., 10 ft., 6 ft., ... etc. What gives? Is this normal? Why does this happen?

Yes...This is normal. It happens to every GPS on the market today. When you start getting down to a matter of feet from the cache you will start to notice that your pointer will flip/flop from time to time and that the distance will also change up and down, this mostly happens when you are standing still. The best way to go after a cache is to start walking slowly when you are within like 50 feet of it, then when you get down to less than 10 feet start depending on your eyes more than your GPS. A GPSR will track much better while walking than it will at a dead stop because it does not know your direction of travel at a stop, so it won't show the correct path to go until you start walking again. You will find also that in some tree cover the best thing to do is walk slowly into the area, and then maybe go beyond the cache several feet and wait for the needle to flip back around, once this happens head back the way it tells you to. Sometimes I have found a "X" pattern works best in rough areas.
Posted by Rocky on Dec. 17 2001,8:24 pm
You may also want to consider having a compass when you cache.  Although the pointer arrow can be misleading the bearing the GPS gives is dead on.  I set my GPS to magnetic north rather than true north so the GPS bearing matches the compass, at about 150' from the cache I will take a compass reading and use my line of sight to hit the cache area.  I say area as the GPS will at best put you inside a 30' circle with the rest of the hunt being done the old fashon way.
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