Re: [GPSstash] Thinking of starting a Geocaching for the Inept boot camp...
Friday, March 2, 2007, 6:50:19 AM, you wrote: > Explorist 200 or similar unit), so I'm not trying to get rich, it > just sounds like it'd be fun. Somebody shoot down the idea quick, > I'm feeling like I might give it a go.
Not going to shoot you down, sounds like a decent idea. Just some stuff to add.
1. Teach them how to cache responsibly (tread lightly, muggle watch, cache repair kit, yadda, yadda).
2. I'm not sure about the part on giving them a cache they can place. There are so many drive by caches (i.e. open the car window, throw the cache in a bush, hit Man-Over-Board, go home and log it as a new cache). They should get a few caches under their belts to understand what makes a good cache and what doesn't.
Maybe you can give them a starting cache bag that contains some trade items, a pencil, AA batteries etc. rather than a cache container to place.
3. Plan a variety of caches (traditional, virtual, multi-stage, micro etc.) so they get a feel for what types they like.
4. Entering coordinates by hand is not much fun. Are you going to show them the paperless side and how to log their finds on a cache listing sites? Further, maybe show them some popular Geocaching software (EasyGPS, GSAK, GPX Sonar). This point might be semi-moot in terms of entering by hand as I haven't looked at the low-end GPSr units in ages and whether they can take waypoint uploads from a computer.
Another point to consider is making sure you know who your audience is. If it's a Mac user, are you going to be able to help them get set up on that software wise? Also make sure the GPSr you give them has software capable of running on more than just Windows and supports their version of OS. Mapsource 6.11.6 for instance only supports 2K, XP, and Vista.
Maybe ginning up a sheet or webpage with lots of info particular to the GPSr you're giving them and what software they can use with it might be pretty handy for them.
5. Are you going to teach them other features like trackback, routes etc. Not saying you should, just curious. My dad teaches, for college credit, Land Navigation and Wilderness Survival courses here in NM. He teaches primarily map reading and navigation with compass, but one of the things he's discovered is that people think just because they have a GPSr that they can't get lost. They don't realize heavy tree cover/canyons, dead batteries, mountain topography, waypointing your starting position (camp) etc. can play into your ability to survive. For some people, a GPSr gives them a false sense of security.