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Summer ContestHighlights. SUMMER PHOTOS: THE B SIDE CONTEST!

Shortlist of contest entries! Hits can be on the B-side too. Now, it's a contest with new judges (i.e. you)! [See A-List Winners on flip side here] Your top ten or so overall choices will be posted on GPS Central on Facebook with entrants sent T-shirts/gear. It also gives us a great 'excuse' to enjoy more amazing GPS pics and stories... Voting closed Dec 15, 2008

WINNERS: Sue Wight, Roxanne Emblau, Enrico Ferrari, Tim Janzen, Danger Dan, Bruce Holland, Elizabeth Yak, Robyn Byrne, Paul Bruch, Mike Downey, Scott Paterson. Congratulations! We are assembling your prize packages. In the meantime, you'll be contacted by email for confirmation of your mailing address. Prizes ought to be in the mail by Wednesday Dec 17/08.


Tim Janzen (Joint Arctic Expedition, Nunavut)

Hi there. This submission is for the 2008 category of "Road Trip". Current coordinates:  74-32-27.7N Lat, 082-26-28.5W Long, Devon Island, NU.

The enclosed photos were taken during a joint Canada, Denmark, and Sweden expedition high in the Arctic Ocean, to take water depths and seismic readings, as well as some other scientific work.  The main goal of the expedition is to determine the extent of the Arctic continental shelf for the purposes of offshore boundary determination under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) treaty.  We were based aboard the Swedish Icebreaker Oden, and were escorted by the Russian Icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy (50 Years of Victory).  I was the Canadian contingent.

The first photo, 001, is my trusty Garmin GPSmap 60Cx in my cabin window. It was a gift, purchased at GPS Central. It shows our position at 269 km south of the North Pole.  We actually got much closer to the pole than this, but I did not have the time to take a photo then.

Photo 002 is two of my colleagues on the ice in front of our ship, the icebreaker Oden.  We have through-ice, acoustic depth sounding equipment to measure the water depth.  We are standing on about 2-3 metres of ice, over 4,500 metres of water!

Photo 003 is our ship's helicopter returning from a flight to the Russian icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy, which is assisting us in getting through the 3-4 metres of ice we are traversing.

Photo 004 is me and my colleagues back on the ice via helicopter, taking more water depth measurements.

Photo 005 shows one of the science projects of collecting ice samples.  A person is being craned in a basket down to collect "dirty ice" samples.  Spectral analysis of the dirt on the ice flow can pinpoint where the along the shoreline the ice originated, which helps to determine the nature of ice flow and currents in the Arctic Ocean.
Sheila S. Villamor (Coastal Resource Management Program, Philippines)
1. Centennial Mangroves, 2. Mangrove Infinity, 3. Peeking Up for Signal
Nogas Island (98.23 ha) is a marine protected area (MPA) covered with diverse mangroves of 12 species (10.29 ha old growth and 8.24 ha reforested). The island is located at 10.411713 deg N, 121.918308 deg E. Garmin eTrex Legend was used to survey the mangrove cover and community structure as well as to mark the transect plots of study sites.
4. Point of Perspective
As you arrive nogas island, kalachuchi trees welcome you and lead you to the lighthouse. In celebration of Earth Day last April 2007, we collected garbage left by irresponsible people visiting the island.  As we go around, Garmin eTrex Legend was used to track the areas we cleaned up.

5. eTrex d Left and d Right
Around Nogas Island is a vast coral reef inhabited by 209 fish species and other marine organisms. Ten stations were established around the island to assess the percentage cover of corals and conduct fish visual census. However, it was found out that 41% of coral cover is dead and only 33% live hard coral and 10% live soft coral are left. This is due to destructive fishing activities therefore this situation needs serious attention and action. Nogas Island a marine protected should be strictly implemented by the government with the cooperation of the local community.
Professor Gerard Lachapelle (Field Class - Kananaskis Country, AB)
1.  GPS Navigation Lecture in K-Country_6Sep08:  New users of GPS learn how to use the system on a hike to Elbow Lake in the Kananaskis Country.

2. Elbow Lake Serenity_6Sep08: The serenity and beauty of Elbow Lake, after a light snow fall during the night. It is striking to the newcomers, two of whom touched snow for the first time in their lives...

GREAT EARTH - going places...

Wayne J. Burke (Lake Ontario)

I’m sailing across Lake Ontario, and as you can see on the Vista, I’m 23.1 Nautical Miles South of Main Duck Island (21.4 from next waypoint), which is 10 Nautical Miles North of Oswego NY.  Pardon the knee in the photo, but enjoy the beautiful blue water of Lake Ontario on a nice sunny day with no land in sight.
Bruce Holland (Clayaquot Sound, BC)

Sea Kayaking These photos were taken on a recent paddling trip out and around Meares Island in Clayaquot Sound just off Tofino, B.C. A wonderful place to paddle combining sheltered inland waters with the wild exposed west coast.

I have been kayaking for 28 years, always relying on the good old chart and compass to get me to where I am going. While I still always have the chart and compass on board, I love tripping with my Garmin 76CSX. A quick glance and I always know exactly where I am, even when the fog rolls in. The ability to easily keep track of my time, speed and distance travelled is an added bonus.

Photo (left): My wife Linda paddling through a kelp bed as the fog lifts.

1. Linda paddles a quite channel under lifting sea fog. 2. Good friends Mary & Steve in their double kayak as the last of the sea fog blows away revealing spectacular vistas. 3. Clear, calm waters and sunny skies as I paddle towards Lone Cone on Meares Island. 4. Linda paddling under sunny skies, on sparking waters and tendrils of fog wisping away.

Robert Berdan (NWT)
My father and I travelled to the North West Territories in August and used the Garmin unit for both on and off road travelling. Several images are taken on the 60th parallel, Alexander Falls (left) which is on the 60th parallel, and Cameron Falls a short hike off the Ingraham trail near Yellowknife. Along the highway we photographed bison, moose and a black bear.
Scott Paterson (Reversing Falls - Saint John, NB)
These were taken at the Reversing Falls in Saint John, New Brunswick, during our summer trip to the Maritimes. The first two are during "high slack" -- when the Saint John River is at the same level as the Bay of Fundy, allowing boats to travel safely between the river and the bay. Later in the day, we revisited the falls at low tide, as the higher level river flowed into the bay causing rapids and whirlpools to form.  While we were there, of course I was able to log a find on the earthcache, "Saint John Reversing Falls (GCQC6K)" and "#1 Scout Scenic Series - Reversing Falls (GCQB1Z)" . This place is a must see during any visit to Saint John!
Roxanne Emblau (Wylie Lake, AB)

My fiance and I along with my uncle and his brother in law went on a five day fly in fishing trip this June to Wyley Lake which is in North Eastern Alberta. We flew for about and hour and a half from Fort McMurray with a clear view all the way to the lake. No doubt about it this is a beautiful locale, no one else on the lake but the 4 of us, nice hot days and a ton of Lake Trout and Northern Pike with our names on them. We grabbed our gear and away we went...
It was our second day of fishing and Brad hooked into a nice Lake Trout. He reeled the fish in with no difficulties and retrieved his hook with no problem. He was trying to be as gentle with the fish as he could (after sticking a hook into it's lip when it thought it was just having lunch) so it didn't get hurt in the picture taking process and also to get the least amount of slime on himself as possible, then back in the water with Mr. Fishy, should have taken 20 seconds max. He got the fish up in his arms so I could snap the shot.....
Just as I was about to get a picture, the fish decided that it didn't think it was very cool to be taken out of its natural habitat thank you very much and at that point decided to start squirming around and up and down and all over the place with Brad trying to keep up with each move without hurting it.
After the first few flips and dips and oopsey dooseys the fish actually slapped him upside the head with it's tail, which I personally have never seen before. I was almost tipping over the boat laughing hysterically and I missed probably the best picture I could have taken in my life time, ohhhh to get back that 2 seconds.... This picture was actually the result of me laughing so hard that I accidently clicked the button on the camera.
So much for no slime.............approximate time to get poor Mr. Fishy back in the water 1 min.

Paul Dunphy (Germany)
<<Autobahn nuvi! - 200km!!!

Despite assurances from the car rental agency that the GPS in the Mercedes I rented the first 10 days and the Audi I rented after that both had the best GPS units available built-in to the cars, my portable Garmin smoked them both. It had every detail of every town now matter how small. The ones that came with the cars were missing many towns and the details of the towns and roads that were in the units were not nearly as good as on my Garmin. It was a neat way to compare them and it re-assured me I had made the right purchase with Garmin.

"Where's Dano?" - Dan Babaluk

 "Here are some hints. 1) An extreme geographic location on Earth. Much easier to get here than the opposite extreme. 2) Even the worst swimmer will do well here. 3) As you SCROLL through the menus on your gps, you will find this place. Just don't let your batteries go DEAD. 4) If you need any more hints, consult one of the oldest books in the world. This place is referenced several times. My trusty eMap with Garmin's world map loaded, guided me nicely throughout the region."

Darrell Vincent (PEI)

(No story, great pic!)

Enrico Ferrari (Trenton ON)

My pictures are taken during a ride I did at the end of June (Ride for sight * Trenton, Ontario). The route was downloaded to the GPS (eTrex Legend my model), and the unit then mounted on the newly received RAM mount (you guys are amazing, it arrived in 2 days).

Pretty cool ride that saw the highlight of a bike under water on a river crossing. In picture 03 is the actual removal of water (actually visible) from the exhaust as part of the over all procedure.

<<Picture 03.

Sue Wight (Port Coquitlam, BC)

I have just this week started geocaching and was thrilled to find my first cache. Especially since it was one that had alluded my friends for many outings. I received my first GPS –a Garmin –at Christmas and being directionally challenged- my son says it was the best gift I ever received. I just came back from a month in Eastern Canada Eastern USA and Quebec. I would never have attempted driving a rental car there without a GPS. I am now hooked on Geocaching and will be purchasing a special one for the sport. Today we used my friend's Garmin Geocaching unit.

Len Wells (Vancouver Island)

< This is a shot of an area near where I work. It’s from an old native village located on Village island on the east side of Vancouver Island near Port McNeil and Telegraph cove.

Len's Geofamily>>

Robert Geal (Nova Scotia to Newfoundland)

My pix were taken on our trip from NS to NL this past summer. 6 of us left on Aug 8th and took a week to get to Labrador and back to NS.

It was simply an amazing trip for all involved.

Denis Ouellet (Alberta)
1.MYSTERY LAKE, 2. On top the GRAVE FLATS lookout tower, 3. MCLEOD RIVER.
Shawn Handley (Baja)
My favorite pic was taken from my sleeping bag in a open wall palapa on the east coast of the baja (left).
Put 4500kms on the bike.
Rode from USA border to the tip of the Baja 2008.
The girls flew to cabo, I got married on a beach and rode back north to the truck.
Elizabeth Hak (Yoho National Park, BC)
On a recent trip to the mountains, I took a sidetrip to Takakkaw Falls in Yoho National Park. The falls are a short walk from the parking lot. Taking the foot bridge across the river, I noticed people building inuksuks all over the shoreline. It was an epidemic of industry. There were inuksuks on boulders, on the shore, near the water and inukshuks on inuksuks.
Inuksuks were used by the Inuit for a number of reasons - to mark dangerous areas, good hunting regions or places where caribou routinely cross. But the one I like best is they were used for pointing the way home - an early version of a GPS unit!
Instead of building a traditional inuksuk, I chose to place my Garmin amongst them as a "then and now" tribute to navigation.
Michael Leaman (Nevada & southern California)
Over the Christmas Break in 2002/3 I travelled from the cold and snowy weather in Eastern Canada to Nevada and Southern California for a 2 week vacation that included a week in Las Vegas and a week in the Los Angeles.  After picking up my rental car in Las Vegas, the first thing was set up my Street Pilot 3 which I had already set waypoints in for all the places I hoped to visit.

Over the course of the next 2 weeks I put over 2000 miles on the rental car and the only time I got turned around was once in Los Angeles when I decided I knew where I was going and did not program the SP3 to take me back to the hotel.  Of course I missed the turn and as soon as I realized I set the SP3 to take me back to the hotel and sure enough it handled all the one way streets and in no time I was at my hotel.

The photos show Death Valley and actual elevation at the lowest point I could find (238 below sea level). Even though I was a GPS fan before I will never travel without one again.  I have since upgraded the SP3 to a SP 2610 and currently to a SP2730 and also have GPS 10 for use with my Palm Treo 650.Needless to say I am a Garmin fan!
Howard Neighbor (Hoodoo at Pillar Lake, near Falkland BC)
1. Hoodoo at Pillar Lake, near Falkland, BC.  30 m tall. 2. Two biker/hikers provide some scale. 3. Pillar is also an Earthcache.
Martin Lecomte (PQ)

Here is Antoine’s, Emilie’s and Johanne’s initiation adventure to geocaching with « Les Corsaires »!

The team went through mud, moskitos, determination challenges to find the caches…and the reward was mini putt!

Mike Downey (Rocky Point, NL)

These photos were taken this summer when my wife and I took our motorcycles to Newfoundland for a holiday. We had never been to NL before but we will certainly go back again. The weather was not great, but we were dressed for it so we had a lot of fun. It was probably the best holiday we've ever had!

I took many photos, partly because my wife was in an informal contest with other motorcyclists on an online forum called "Ride the Rock". The object of the exercise was to take a picture of your motorcycle with a lighthouse in the shot and see who would get the most pictures. We did pretty well, compared to those who actually live in NL, but we only found 5. Before we go back we're going to create a "point of interest" file to upload to our GPSs, to make the search a little easier.

I use a GPSMap 60 CSx and my wife prefers her 76CSx. We'd be lost without them, though we know we can't rely on them alone. Maps are still very useful too. On the ferry, I turned on my 60 and was able to see the progress we made, and was surprised to see that the GPS knew we were on the ferry. It made the 7 hour ride much more interesting, especially as we knew pretty much exactly what time we'd get into port. Fascinating!

Anyway, it was tough to choose only a few pictures, but here are those I'd like to enter. The "Loch Ness of Newfoundland" pictures were taken at the site of a Geocache. We did find the cache, of course. The "monster" was very well done; I bet kids get a real thrill, sitting on it. The other two pictures were taken in Rocky Point, probably the nicest spot in all of Newfoundland. It was amazingly picturesque, but unspoiled. The "Table Lands" nearby were awesome!

David Leech (West Kootenays BC)

Check out the GPS in our Jeep Commander. The OEM GPS was useless. Sony Vaio VGN-TX651P laptop is only 7.5 x 11 inches – small and light enough to sit on a Jotto Desk printer platform. We’ve got the Garmin GPS 10 Bluetooth antenna, and Fugawi maps for off-road travel.

It’s great to have topographic maps “live” as we travel the backroads and trails. We always know where we are, what to expect, and when we are close to destinations such as BC Forests campsites – which can be easy to miss when there is only one site. We can plot our Fugawi routes to Google Earth – that’s cool! These two photos were taken on the Glacier Creek forestry road in the West Kootenays of BC, access to a great hike up to Jumbo Pass.

The map shows our vacation trek. The Garmin also connects to my HP iPAQ, which we’ve used in rental cars in Arizona, California, British Columbia, and Quebec with the Garmin maps. So it’s a two-in-one value!

J.J. Guy Longtin (Algonquin Provincial Park)
Jack asked me to help him out in his training as he will be going to base camp at Mt. Everest this fall.

He went out and purchased a new GPS which tracks elevations so when he emails back to home he can let everyone know at what altitude he's at.

We have been doing most of our training around the Calabogie Peaks area to practice heights along with some back-country stuff into Algonquin Provincial Park and the Barron Canyon area.
Paul Bruch (Volcano on Vanuata - Brisbane, Australia to Fiji)

I had the opportunity to join some friends for a 3000 KM, 26 day sailing adventure on their 15M (45') sailboat from Fiji to Vanuatu to Brisbane, Australia.  Although the boat has several marine GPSs and a marine plotter systems, I brought my trusty Garmin 60Cx and RAM mount anyway.  It proved a valuable addition to the electronics arsenal as it provided real time access to position and track information right at the helm rather than having to call down to the navigation station.  On land it also proved its worth as on Vanuatu we embarked on several day long jungle tracks through the jungle and up to the active volcano with the knowledge that we always knew we were heading in the right direction and that we could find our way back to the boat. The marine features such as VMG (Velocity Made Good), course and bearing pointers, and off course tracks helped us optimize our travels.
James Feather (Murray Peak)

This picture was taken at N50 31.436 W121 34.592 on August 3, 08 while on my annual dual sport tour with my wife and son. This is the view from Murray Peak looking SW towards the Coastal Range 30 km away on the other side of the Fraser River. The incredible view from here is 360°. In this shot you can see my Vista HCx showing 2133 metres elevation. Right: My son took this picture of me on the Hat Creek Forest Service Road (N50 35.294 W121 35.608).
Danger Dan (Alberta)

We were on our way from Calgary to Saskatoon and we had stopped to do some Geocaching along the way.  We were on a backroad near Youngstown, AB and I requested my Garmin 60CS to navigate us back to Highway 9.  It "helpfully" suggested that I take this "road" as a shortcut.  Just moments after my wife said "I don't think this is a good idea" we ended up in the situation you see in the attached photos.

I learned several things from this experience:
1)  Just because City Navigator calls it a "road" doesn't mean it really is a road.
2)  GPS coordinates don't mean anything to AMA.
3)  Yes, the "silent treatment" from the wife actually can last the entire time while waiting for a tow truck.

Robyn Byrne (Esquimalt BC)

Left: The stairs to Mystic Beach, part of the San Juan Trail on Vancouver Island, are carved from a single fallen tree.

1. Highrock Cairn is a very small park in the middle of Esquimalt on Vancouver Island.  Of course there's a geocache here!  What a gorgeous view.
2. The geocache on the top of Mt. Finlayson, aptly named "Heart Attack Hike", proved to be an extremely challenging adventure.  Those of us who thought we were in good shape were pretty well spent by the time we reached the top.  The most embarrasing part was watching the joggers run past us on our way up and then run past us again on their way down.  Guess it's off to the gym!!
3. On the road to Gowland Park Provincial Park near Victoria, BC we were surprised to come across this 'Watch for Beer' sign.  We searched and searched over the next 4 kilometres but alas, no beer in to be found :-(

Clayton Hare (Geocaching romance...)

Title: Wandering Together For Forty Years. In early June of this year I purchased a Garmin Colorado and, even though I earlier had a 1994 Magellan Meridan, this little baby was something else a league of its own so to speak. Soon, my wife and I took up the sport of geocaching and after two easy caches we were soon looking for more of a challenge. One that seemed to fit the bill was a cache of Badge 77's known as Grassy Gulch Cache that had been hidden over three weeks earlier and hadn't been found yet. New to the sport and eager for a F-FTF (that's a First First Time Find) on a more difficult cache off we went on the morning of June 26. I should tell you right about here that this was the day of our 40th wedding anniversary and along with our lunch I packed two long stem wine glasses, a waterbottle of red wine, and some cheese. If the cache hadn't been found by the time we got there, it would be a double celebration. My wife June (Moonstone_6) knew about the wine and the glasses....but what she didn't know was that I also carried up her present...a ruby ring, ruby necklace, and ruby earrings...ruby, because it was our 40th.
Bernie Palmer - Here, there & everywhere.

1. Girls trip to the desert, Zion National Park, little bit of yoga at the top to get limbered up, 2. This picture using my GPS was on a trek around Ausangati in Peru, 3. While on Safari in the Serengeti. There were 1.5 million zebras and  wildebeests travelling together with all of the predators following close behind.

4. Dew drops reflecting the daisy in them, taken in my garden, 5. Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep taken in the southern Rocky Mountains, 6. All motion, taken on the Elk River in the southern Rocky Mountains.
Trina Kelemen (northern Alberta)

We left home after supper one evening to quad to our cabin this fall.  Dark always comes quickly in Northern Alberta, thus we were glad to have my husband's Map 76s GPS.  We arrived safe and sound to enjoy a roasty, toasty fire complete with hot dogs, marshmallows and, of course, beverages!

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GPS SIGHTINGS: pop & celebrity, politics & natural sciences, life, TECHNO, skies, etc.

Oct 24
NAVTEQ Global LBS Challenge. The developers' deadline for US$5.25 million in cash and prizes, 2009 competition.
read more

Oct 24
Video games turn 50. Go celebrate the anniversary at Brookhaven National Laboratory. On Oct 18, 1958, visitors lined up to play 'Tennis for Two' by Manhattan Project's William Higinbotham.
read more

Oct 13
Trimble & Panasonic bundle products. Toughbook and GPS Pathfinder ProXT, ProXH, for utility field workers - mapping, GIS and CAD operations.
read more

Oct 13
Navigon names LG exec, President of Americas. No, Mr. Roach is a Navigon President, not the other guy.
read more

Oct 10
Be a spook for Halloween! The National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) is hiring.
apply today!

Oct 10
New patents awarded to Mobile Satellite Ventures (MSV). Now work starts! - blending terrestrial and space based radio frequencies/ networks and eliminating co-frequency interference for handsets.
read more

Oct 10
Expedition 18 crew launches. New crew goes up until April, 2009 - and #17 comes down Oct. 23. Docking scheduled for Tues Oct14. International Space Station tourist among crew for a few weeks.
read more
| The Famous Tourist? | Richard in Space

Oct 9
Mozilla unveils location-aware web browser. GEODE is new extension to Firefox that uses Skyhook Wireless Wi-Fi positioning.
read more

Oct 8
SiRF debuts chip: SiRFlinkIII. Combo bluetooth RF GPS is cost effective solution for mobile navigation and location aware devices.
read more

Oct 8
GeoEye releases first image. GeoEye-1 takes a pretty sharp image from 423 miles above the US eastern seaboard.
see it here
| news release

Oct 4
GPS The Movie. Final screening in Seattle (Northwest Film Forum, 7PM) before the film goes to DVD in March '09.
movie website

Oct 3
Garmin announces GPSMAP 600 series. Marine and road navigation, 5.2" touch screen, IPX7(waterproof), available Q1 2009.
read more

Oct 1
Taxis with GPS provide mobile traffic data. Siemen's Mobility Div. presents new Traffic Information System at 15th World Congress on ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems) 2008 in New York, Nov 16.
Siemen's press release
| Congress on ITS 2008

Sept 30
SPOT helps rescue hiker. Helicopter arrives soon after Michael Ervin ruptures quadriceps knee tendon in Citadel Pass (The Banff Crag & Canyon).
read more

Sept 30
TomTom & Sex in the City. Kim Cattrell is new navigator voice for spicey directions.
read more

Sept 26
Overall health status of GPS and IGS constellation.
Learn the details for each satellite in orbit.
read more

Sept 26
Nokia announces disaster software.
Comprehensive, quick location-based data collecting on disease outbreaks or natural disasters for mobile devices.
read more

Sept 25
Russia launches 3 new satellites.
Proton carrier rocket blasts off Baikonur cosmodrome.
read more

Sept 11
Train your nuvi?
Garmin nuvi learns your driving and can better estimate ETA (Estimated Time of Arrival) for you.
read more

Aug 27
Windows Internet Explorer 8 in beta. Microsoft's new security options give Opera, Safari, Firefox a run for the money.
read more


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See 2008 3rd Annual Photo Contest Winners!
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See 2006 First Annual Photo Contest Winner
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