Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Good time to GEOCACHE

No doubt that Thursday will be spent with family eating my fill of turkey, ham, dressing, cranberry sauce, green beans, slaw, potato salad, cream corn, macaroni and cheese, pumpkin pie, pecan pie and aunt Faye’s delicious strawberry Jell-O® pretzel pie ( I am not sure it has an official name around the family). Just thinking about all that food gives me a smile and heartburn all at the same time. I had better stop by the local supermarket and pick up some TUMS®.

Friday is typically a shopping day. However, my wife and I swore off that day a couple of years back. Seems we didn’t know what we were getting into when we showed up at Wal-Mart® near 6:00AM the day after thanksgiving. We had a small child at Granna’s and the toy we wanted to get little one was on the “sales” list. We saw the crowds as we approached. We exited our vehicle and stood in line (luckily inside the store), they released the crowds to the store at 6:00AM and I have never seen a more unruly, disrespectful group of American in all my life. We lasted all of about 5 minutes and we headed out the door with nothing but out dignity still in tact. So, I don’t think much shopping will be on the activity list Friday.

Saying that, something I am placing on the list early is a good day of Geocaching with a waymarking or two thrown in there. I have several waymarks located and photographed. However, I haven’t loaded them to the website. I should go home today and map out a good route for a day of Geocaching. I will look for somewhere not near a mall – that’s for sure.

Last night I spent the night downloading and learning an awesome new tool. I downloaded Google Earth® onto my home computer. www.geocaching.com and Google Earth® have a way cool application. Let me explain. (But first - $500 a share for Google® incredible! – I thought people were crazy in August 2004 for $84 a share).

Everyone is probably familiar with the Google® and the mapping and directions part of the software. Well, with Google Earth® you can create a “route” and directions of that route and save them in a .KML format to your computer. What does this do? You then log onto www.geocaching.com and upload that .KML file to their server and set a few parameters and press BINGO! (Not really BINGO – But it feels that way) What www.geocaching.com calculates for you is a day of Geocaching along your route.

For instance. I loaded the directions route from my house to my in-laws to their server, set my parameters as: 0.5 miles from route, single cache only, and all sizes, and pressed BINGO (not really Bingo remember). Their server calculated 17 different caches that met my set parameters and listed them for me. Now, that is a lot of the hard work out of the way. I have 17 caches that are less than a half mile from the road I will be traveling on that are simple enough that should be “quick” drive by’s.

Taking that technology to Geocaching was brilliant. It is ideas like these that lead me to inform you “the public” or the 1 or 2 people who actually read this to the Garmin® stock. Each week the latest technologies are being innovatively weaved into popular activities. If you take a 5 to 10 year span of continuous weaving and creating, you will have a winner in stocks. I didn’t buy Google® (go figure) but I am not going to miss out on a Garmin® (GRMN) who is using Google® and its’ technology to lead us into the clear blue (or green if you buy the stock and make millions) yonder.

So, there it is. I have said a lot of stuff without saying much. Friday, I will take this new technology mix use and apply it to a fun filled day of Geocaching. Currently, my mind is thinking about a southwestern tour of suburban Atlanta. Starting my directions from my hometown of Sharpsburg, GA. I will set the route towards Columbus or LaGrange Georgia circling around and returning through Warm Springs and back home. This route should be a good one for some excellent Geocaching.

It sure should work off all that ham and turkey I plan to eat on Thursday.

Cache in – Trash out!

1 comment:

scooter said...

Hello, I was reading your comment on Google Earth and geocaching. when you save the route off of google earth do you use the SAVE AS and then enter a file name then go to geocaching.com and bring it up. I have used Google Earth and Caching together for along time but I have never used it the way you suggested. Thanks for any help. You can email me at scooter@pmt.org