Time:Meet at FieldSeminarCenter at 9.Course lasts until .
Course Description: This course is geared toward the recreational traveler who has little or no experience using a GPS and the GPS owner who would like to gain a greater understanding of his/her GPS.Emphasis will be placed on using the receiver with a topographic map. Topics to be covered include: demystifying grids and datum; plotting waypoints at home and in the field; use of GPS with USGS topographic maps; and various GPS functions and limitations of the GPS.All material is provided, and GPS receivers will be available for loan.An understanding of USGS topographic maps is helpful, but is not required. A half-day exercise in RockyMountainNational Park will be conducted in the morning or afternoon, depending upon weather.By the end of this course, participants will have the knowledge to navigate in the backcountry with greater confidence.
Margaret (Peggy) Ellis spent 25 years with the U.S. Geological Survey.During the last eight to nine years she assisted with and then taught map and compass and GPS classes.After retirement, she started her own business teaching these classes to the general public.She regularly teaches classes at the Bass Pro Shop in Denver, and she occasionally teaches classes in several parks around the west side of Denver.Peggy studied geology in college and enjoys hiking and viewing geologic features.
Moderate hikes of less than five miles per day with elevation gain of less than 1,000 ft.
Professional conduct will be expected from participants at all times.Respect for individual ideas will be observed.Except during course breaks, cellular phones, pagers, and personal entertainment devices are strictly prohibited in the classroom and during field sessions.
Car-pooling:Rocky Mountain Field seminars utilize car-pooling to limit vehicles traveling into the Park.Car-pooling makes it easier to keep the group together, reduces transit time, and allows courses greater access because fewer parking spaces are required at destinations.In addition, it provides an opportunity for participants to discuss course material in small groups during transit.Typically, a few participants from each course volunteer the use of their vehicles for car-pooling to course locations.
Tentative Course Schedule:
- 1:00 PM3 basic functions of GPS
Waypoints, routes, and tracklogs
Satellite status screen
Brief outdoor segment nearby
Working with the UTM coordinate system
Field session at Beaver Meadows in RMNP
The instructor will provide Garmin ETREX receivers to those who do not own a GPS.
A pocket-size notebook with pen or pencil
A small “Rite in the Rain” field book is optional, but a great tool for the backcountry enthusiast.
A small hand lens (optional, but helpful for reading information on GPS units with small screens)
CLOTHING AND EQUIPMENT RECOMMENDATIONS:Participants should bring hiking shoes, sunglasses, sunscreen, brimmed hat, a sack lunch, plenty of drinking water (1-2 quarts), and be prepared for possible cold and wet weather. Be prepared to hike on an established trail for a total of about 3 miles over rolling terrain (easy-to-moderate difficulty).If you like to hike with trekking poles, bring them.
FINAL NOTE:It is imperative that you come to this class with a basic understanding of the features on your particular model GPS.Prior to the class, read your owner’s manual (also, bring the manual along) and, at a minimum, learn how to scroll through the various pages on your particular model.Do not be afraid to experiment; unlike a computer, you cannot enter data that can damage the unit.Come prepared to have fun and to discover the power of this navigational system.
What to Bring:
Sack lunch, snacks, energy bars, Water
Pen/pencil and clipboard
Remember to Bring the 10 Essentials:
RockyMountainNational Park recommends that hikers always carry the 10 essentials in their daypacks.
RaingearMap and compassFlashlight or headlamp
Sunglasses and sunscreenCandlesMatches or other fire starter
PocketknifeFirst-aid kitExtra layers of clothing
Sack lunch, snacks, and water
Note:Rocky Mountain Field Seminars recommends that participants for all courses dress in layers and wear comfortable, sturdy hiking boots/shoes.Participants should be prepared for sudden changes in temperature and weather conditions.
Using GPS, GPS Simplified for Outdoor Adventures, Bruce Grubbs, Falcon Publishing
GPS Made Easy, Using GPS in the Outdoors, Lawrence Letham, The Mountaineers Books
http://joe.mehaffey.com(a great website devoted to GPS information.Excellent resource for first-time buyers and anyone looking to upgrade his/her unit.)
Teacher Recertification Credit:
Most seminars are eligible for teacher recertification credit through the Centennial Board of Cooperative Education Services (BOCES).The fee is $25.00 per seminar (.5 unit) or $25.00 per series of threaded seminars (1.0 - 3.0 units).A list of threaded seminars can be found online at www.rmna.org.Participants must enroll in all seminars of a threaded series in order to qualify for the $25.00 multi-unit fee. Please be prepared to pay for this credit with a check, made payable to BOCES, on the first day of a seminar or on the final day of a threaded series of seminars.
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