Thursday, August 12, 2010

farewell to a legend


Well, not really. My trusty Garmin etrex Legend (below left) is just going into semi-retirement. I'll clean it up, take out the batteries, seal it all up in a double plastic bag and tuck it away with my safety gear. It will serve as a backup to my new Garmin etrex Venture HC.
I had mentioned a few posts ago that I was planning on upgrading my gps this winter, the Legend is probably five or six years old. With a nudge from my Mom (thanks Mom!) I decided to go ahead and get the new device for the fall trip.


I've been busy and haven't had time to look at the Venture HC, but I know I'll enjoy the improved color graphics, increased memory and better connectivity (usb) with computers. (But why can't they make their software Mac compatible???) I can't wait to starting importing waypoints for the fall trip. A big plus is that I'll enjoy knowing I've got a solid backup on board.


A couple of weeks ago my SPOT registration renewed automatically. I have the basic service plus unlimited tracking service. This evening I went online and added the SPOT Link for maritime service. I've been a BoatUS member for years, both my boat insurance and towing protection (for both Spartina and the boat trailer) are through Boat US. What SPOT Link does is create a link so that if I push the "HELP" button the message goes directly to BoatUS. (Just to clarify, the "HELP" button is a request for assistance - i.e. need fuel, mechanical difficulties, etc. It is not an emergency request for rescue - that would be the 911 button.)
In the past my "HELP" button sent a message to some family and friends asking them to contact my brother and make sure he was contacting BoatUS. Now that message goes directly to BoatUS saving time, effort and concern for everyone involved.


I was over on the other side of the James River this afternoon and photographed the fishing boats above on the Phoebus waterfront as a cool front brought some thunderstorms through the area. The boats reminded me of one of my books for the cruise, David Payne's Gravesend Light. I read the books years ago and can hardly remember the story line but I do recall that a fishing boat like those above play a crucial part in the story.


And I also received another one of my cruise books in the mail, David Grann's The Lost City of Z. The cover blurb describes it as a "Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon." What's not to like about that?


And lastly, the answer to that age old question: Scratch a statistician and what do you find? Statistics, analysis and good information. Plus some pretty nice photographs. That what I expect we'll see on DanceswithSandyBottom's new blog Dawn Patrol. DWSB, aka Paul, and his wife Dawn were of course our sailing partners on the Tag Team 200. Paul just launched his new blog which will focus on Dawn Patrol, their Core Sound 20, and cruising adventures. I can tell you from experience that Paul is a great sailor and his analytical nature really leads to some well thought out decisions on the water.
I know the blog will be a lot of fun to read and I'll look forward to checking on it as Paul and his sailing partner (and son) Alan get ready to sail Dawn Patrol in September's Watertribe NC Challenge.
Wow, talking about September tells me summer is almost over. But it also tells me that the fall sailing season is just about to start.

steve

7 comments:

DancesWithSandyBottom said...

Steve,

Thanks for those kind words --to which I can only aspire. And could you scratch a little higher and over to the left please? ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. (humor)

--Paul

Jim Vibert said...

Steve,
Do you use MapSource R & R for your GPS loading?
Jim

Steve said...

As far as I can tell MapSource is not Mac compatible, so I use Roadtrip. It reminds me of the old MapSource I had on a pc. Very basic but it works. steve

Jeremy said...

I was wondering if you could let us know why you choose this GPS unit over all the others when you upgraded? I am looking into what to get myself.

Steve said...

One word -- cost.

It was the lowest priced unit that had a color screen and the ability to import Bluechart marine maps (I haven't imported the maps, I'll do that later). There are other models that I like, but they were out of my price range. But this will do what I need.

steve

Jim Vibert said...

Steve, That is an interesting comment on your GPS unit selection. I have been leaning towards a Map76 series but always wince at the price. At $115 the Venture HC is able to provide all the data I would be interested in. Thanks to that Info.
Jim

Steve said...

Bruce brings a Garmin 76 series gps on our trips. It is a very nice unit. It would be an excellent choice, but it is out of my price range. steve