Tuesday, December 30, 2008

look at the flush brackets on that

Unnecessary extra detail about yesterday's walk, if you want it.

I've been tinkering with the GPS today and I've managed to upload the waypoints and track information I logged yesterday, and also (via the clever people who wrote the GPS Babel application and then, more importantly, kindly made it available for free) converted Garmin's proprietary GDB file format into the KML format that's readable by Google Earth. This enables you to overlay the route info onto a map or satellite image, as below:

The raw KML data is available here should you want to recreate this particular walking experience for yourself.

The little notchy detour between waypoints 003 and 004 was to take in the trig point (309 metres, 1014 feet) which the map told us was there, just off the path in a little wooded glade (absolutely no chance we'd have spotted it without the map). This set me to thinking: I wonder if there's a database somewhere of all the trig points in Britain? Needless to say it turns out not only that there is, but that there is a thriving community of people who go out and "bag" as many as possible, photograph them, log flush bracket serial numbers, etc. Sadly I failed to note down any relevant details from the one we're leaning on on the right, but luckily someone else has already done it anyway.

I completely accept that the distinction I choose to make whereby taking a few snaps next to a trig point you were passing close to anyway as part of some unconnected rugged outdoor activity is OK, but the slightly more obsessive bagging activity and things like geocaching are a bit geeky is a completely arbitrary and subjective one, but I choose to make it anyway. So there.

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