Friday, December 18, 2009
GPS As A Verb
It was the dis-connect between my charts and what I could see around me while paddling on Georgian Bay a couple of years ago that finally pushed me to buy a GPS unit. A year later, I bravely headed out once again on Georgian Bay, this time from Honey Harbour. Within a half hour I was lost once again! How could this happen, especially now I was equipped with both charts AND a GPS unit?
The fact of the matter was that I wasn't using the GPS enough to really learn - and remember - how the thing worked. Once out on the water, I found myself scrambling to recall which button did what and how to apply it to my situation. I realised that I needed to find an interesting way to practice using the device so that these situations didn't recur, but what?
Accidentally discovering a 'geocache' this past summer in Newfoundland has proven to be my key. Eager to learn more about what I had found, I joined the geocache internet site and, as I've reported on other posts, am now a geocache addict. In the process, most of the mysteries of using a GPS device have now disappeared. I feel much more comfortable and confident using it while paddling. In fact, I can't wait to head somewhere warm this winter to begin geocaching and exploring while kayaking in ernest.