Map - Compass - GPS workshop Location: Lethbridge College Dates: May 9 & 10, 2015 Time: 9 AM to 4 PM each day Most travelers in the back-country agree that having a map and compass, and optionally a GPS receiver, is appropriate safety planning. However, having these things doesn’t provide benefit if there is no understanding of how to use them. GPS receivers are often carried without map and compass backup, assuming that maps and compasses are no longer necessary through modern technology. However, GPS receivers can fail, so having an understanding of maps and compasses is still important. Additionally, an understanding of topographical maps and coordinate systems is necessary to correctly choose the various options in the receiver settings menus. SATRA trail cataloging project We are developing a project to capture and make available the GPS track of every ride that we are doing this year. These will be available as downloadable track files from our website. These files can then be viewed with Google Earth on your computer, or loaded into a GPS receiver to retrace club rides. Because not every rider will necessarily be able to attend every ride, or there may be two rides at the same time, this project will require a group of active members that are interested in participating with the gathering of trail tracks. To start this project off we have asked Lethbridge College to provide a 2-day map, compass, and GPS workshop. The intent of this workshop is two-fold. Firstly to allow participants to become more knowledgeable about maps, compasses, coordinate systems, etc. for personal safety in the backcountry; and secondly, to train the participating members in collecting trail tracks. By being together in a classroom / hands-on environment participants will understand the content in the same way, and can support each other during the year if someone has difficulty with a GPS receiver or software technique. Tuition The fee for the course is $25. The balance of the workshop fee being charge to us by the college is covered by SATRA. Prerequisites To participate in this course you must be a current member of SATRA, plus have been a member for the immediately preceding two years. What to bring Lethbridge College has equipment available for the class to use, but if you already have a compass and GPS receiver you’re welcome to bring them. Location Room 2026. This is on the second floor of the Cousins Building on the Lethbridge College’s campus. Enter the south entrance, take the stairs to the second floor, and enter the hallway. Room 2026 is the first classroom on the right. (click for Google map) (street view) Parking Parking lot A is available on the weekend. This is immediately to the east of the building’s south entrance. (click for Google map) Lunch There will be a 1-hour lunch break provided each day, but bringing your own lunch is recommended in order to get the class going on time again in the afternoon. Additional information If you have questions about this workshop, about the trail track project, or want to sign up, contact Steve Dormaar at [email protected], or 403-330-1541. Workshop contents Day 1 Introduction to National Topographic Series (NTS) maps Map scale and map measurements Scale and unit conversions Relief and elevation Longitude & Latitude coordinates UTM Coordinate system Civilian Coordinate system Military Coordinate system Converting Latitude and Longitude to UTM North American Datum (NAD) Day 2 Introduction to compass reading Taking a bearing Back azimuths Triangulation Clinometer function Magnetic north, true north, and map (grid) north Converting magnetic north readings Declination calculations 1:50,000 maps 1:250,000 maps Global positioning systems (GPS) GPS receiver set-up & menu options Clear the active track at the beginning of the ride Close the track and the end of the ride to be ready to import to a computer Export from computer software as GPX (GP eXchange for use in other receivers), and KML (Google Earth) files Note: The software used in this workshop is Garmin’s free Basecamp as it seems that most members use Garmin receivers, but OziExplorer or Magellan’s free VantagePoint is similar.
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