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Making Field Maps and Marking Locations. How to use a GPS. Garmin etrex Vista. Goals. Build a base map for reference. Locate places so they may be found again. Navigate with confidence to a known point. Add location references to an existing map. Basic Equipment.

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Making Field Maps and Marking Locations

How to use a GPS

Garmin etrex Vista


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Goals

Build a base map for reference

Locate places so they may be found again

Navigate with confidence to a known point

Add location references to an existing map


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Basic Equipment

“Garmin” GPS (plus batteries)

Computer with a serial port

Serial cable for the GPS

Mapping software (e.g., GARtrip)

Scanner (optional: your own base maps)

GPS map (optional: commercial maps)


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Key Terms

Waypoint

Single points that you choose

Route

Waypoints assembled into a set

Track

Set of points automatically generated by the GPS


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How GPS Works

Signal time to arrival

using multiple satellites

4 satellites minimum


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GPS Coverage Limitations

Works worldwide, equally well everywhere

Signal is degraded by vegetation cover

Signal is blocked by buildings

Signal goes through a windshield or airplane window, but not the roof of a car or sides of an airplane


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GPS Accuracy

Selective Availability

~40 m

Normal Accuracy

~20 m

WAAS Correction

<10 m

Base-Station Differential Correction

~ m to cm


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N

06

05

02

09

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22

W

E

S

GPS Constellation

29 satellites in orbit (8/01)

Orbits are not synchronous

Garmin GPS listens to 12 max at a time

Quality of the constellation varies


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e

trex

lL

LEGEND

Controlling the GPS Functions

click stick

zoom out

page

zoom in

enter

(choice selection)

power(hold in)


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Page button

Satellite

Map

e

trex

lL

LEGEND

Navigation

Trip Computer

Main

Pages

page


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Setting Up the GPS

Main page

Main Menu

System

Units

Coordinate format: hddd.dddddº

Datum: WGS-84


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06

17

14

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09

02

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12

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02 05 06 09 11 12 14 17 22 27

Initial GPS Acquisition

Satellite

page

May take several minutes to get enough satellites

No signal detected

CheckingID

Signal strength of confirmed satellite


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Map Display

Map Page

Current location and the direction you are moving

Scale

0.2 mi


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GPS Map Databases

Map page

Garmin Default

US Cities (general) and Foreign (general)

Garmin Supplemental

US Cities

US Topography

Foreign (some detail)

Some foreign countries (mostly Europe)


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Navigation

Navigation page

Waypoint

destination

Honolulu

34.1 mi

Straight-line Distance

01 hrs 34 min

W

N

Bearing Pointer

(toward destination)

Compass

(direction you are moving)

S

E

Elevation

Time of Day

1103 ft

04:06 pm


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Trip Odometer8.1 mi

Moving Time10 hr 07 min

Stopped1 min 56 sec

Odometer000008.1 mi

Speed___ mh

Max Speed7.2 mh

Moving Avg6.9 mh

Overall Avg7.2 mh

Trip Computer

Trip Computer Page

These fields can be replaced with many alternative types of information



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Save

Clear

Logging a Track

Main page

Main Menu

Tracks

on

off

Track Log

0%

Saved Tracks

10 unused


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Helpful Hints

Use GARtrip to manage your data

Go to the field with the locations of key places already in your GPS

Save sets of location data as separate files

Mark locations of places that are important and carry the GPS so you can find them


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More Helpful Hints

Check the batteries before you start

Clear out old data (use GARtrip)

Enter key waypoints (e.g., airports, cities)


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Marking a Location (“Waypoint”)

Waypoint Collection

Press and hold the “click stick” in (~3 sec)

Waypoint is stored with number for its name;

Link this number to your field notes

Waypoint Processing

Download to GARtrip using the serial cable

Save these waypoints in a file on the PC

Edit the waypoints by adding descriptors

Draw a map with the waypoints


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GARtrip

www.gartrip.de

$30 per license

Major Functions

Basemap calibration

2-way data transfer

Waypoint editing

Map drawing

Route assembly

Track drawing



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GARtrip: Editing Waypoints

Make sure your waypoints are loaded.

Highlight a waypoint and click Edit.

Name: 6 characters max (no spaces)

Description: 16 characters max



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GARtrip: Calibrating a Basemap

Scan (or digital photograph) an appropriate map (max 150 DPI). North up.

Save the scan as a GIF file (or convert to this format).

Inside GARtrip, open with Map/Calibrate

Note: You need to know the GPS location of two places on the basemap.

The basemap will be used as a background for your data.


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Exercise: Set-up

Scan or digitally photograph a campus map that will be used as a background. Save this as a GIF file on the PC.

Check the GPS with GARtrip to make sure that there are no stored waypoints or tracks.

Check that the GPS has adequate batteries and the setup is proper.


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Exercise: Data Collection

Start the GPS and make sure that it is functioning properly.

Walk the perimeter of the campus, marking the corners on the GPS. You will need two of these points to calibrate the map.

Go through the interior of the campus marking at least a dozen significant points. Record the importance of each point in your notes.


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Exercise: Post-Processing

Download the waypoints and tracks into the PC

Edit the waypoints by adding short comments to each one.

Group the campus boundary waypoints as one route and the significant points as another route. Save these as separate files.

Generate a map using your significant points.


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Exercise: Post-Processing

Calibrate the map inside GARtrip using two of your perimeter points.

Add your significant points to the basemap.


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