What to Know When Buying a GPSWritten by Chuck Fitzgerald
Why are GPS units showing up everywhere? You might find one in your rental car, on your wristwatch or even built into your wireless phone. Anti-theft systems use one, heavy construction equipment might use one and having one on your boat now seems to be a requirement. Anytime we want to know our exact location on face of Earth, GPS becomes indispensable. Like many other technologies, feature rich GPS units are now affordable for average person. So how do you know which one to purchase? Letís look at few things to consider prior to buying your next GPS unit, but first, what is a GPS unit?
A GPS (Global Positioning System) unit has primary function of calculating its own location on land or water by using satellite signals. Once GPS unit knows its own location, it can help user determine direction and distance to other known locations. For instance, a GPS on a boat can tell captain how far it is to shoreline or how far it is to a favorite fishing spot. For outdoor sportsman a GPS can help with finding your campsite, your vehicle or your next geocache. Popular outdoor activities such as hiking, hunting, fishing, trail running, backpacking, rock climbing, canyoneering and canoeing are all made more enjoyable and safer when you take along your GPS.
When buying a GPS system first thing to consider is how you intend to use it. If you plan on using it while on foot, youíll want a GPS that is lightweight, compact, weather resistant and that is equipped with features important to foot travel. WAAS (Wide Area Augmentation System) is one such feature. WAAS greatly increases accuracy of your GPS, in most cases to within 10 feet. Accuracy within a few meters is important for outdoor enthusiast but not nearly as important for navigating through town in your rental car. Next, be sure your GPS has at least 12 channels of reception too. Since your GPS will only work when it receives signals from satellites orbiting Earth, less than 12 receiving channels will not get job done in wooded areas or in steep terrain. If you plan on using your GPS to navigate while driving in your car, its weight is not nearly as important as its ability to display street maps. The GPS mounted to dash of your truck probably doesnít need to be weatherproof, but one on your boat better be.
Every River Tells a StoryWritten by Mike Clifford
Every River Tells a Story By: Mike Clifford HeartlandOutdoorsman.Com
The next time you begin a journey or fishing expedition on one of your favorite rivers or streams, take time to look at surroundings (I mean REALLY look), and listen closely, as each one has it's own unique story to tell. As we begin our journey, we may see a typical farmer out in field plying his trade, doing his best to put food on your table and eke out an existence that was handed down to him over generations. Coming around bend, we notice billowing white smoke of a local power plant churning out electricity to make your life comfortable and secure. As we turn our head to look at something perhaps more aesthetically pleasing on opposite bank, we notice that elusive red fox we've been hoping to see for longest time on this particular waterway. Watching vixen run back and forth delivering food to underground shelter of her cubs tells you that they are around 2 weeks old, and you can't help but think to yourself that wildlife go about business of living not much unlike that of each and every one of us on Earth. Every living thing needs to eat food and drink water that this planet provides in order to survive.
Perhaps hardest facts to consider are those of how we, as humans, go about existing in this environment. The river provides drinking water to local residents, who in turn pay for this service by going to work at plant that treats water to make it palatable and healthy enough to drink in first place. Like fox and her cubs upstream, we too are characters in one long story of life along river. Let's take a closer look at a few of characters involved as our journey continues:
With sight of power plant just a blur on horizon, we come upon a neighbor of ours. This man (or his predecessor) had long ago cut down his woods opposite mine, and is on his riding mower cutting his grass to within an inch of its life. This lawn exudes a bright green color that can only come from a bucket of chemicals designed for such. His mission for himself on land, from our perspective, might be expressed as 'clear, drain, mow, spray, control. For him story of a property owner features an actor at war with his surroundings, which can be beaten and shaped and maintained by constant vigilance. A piece of property such as his can only be described as a great place to practice with a pitching wedge before holing out a 25 footer on putting green, all while considering this to be a piece of recreational paradise on earth. The neighbor fully believes in his heart that he has best that nature provides, and uses it to his full advantage.