Making a Method out of the Madness

Most of the time I have a lengthy list of places that I need to check out.  While a few sites are places I've sighted from the road as I passed by, most of the places I've found lately were potential tunnels I (or other explorers in the area) spotted from above via Google Earth.

Typically, my exploring friends and I will pool the coordinates of the prospective sites together, and then I'll group a series of coordinates so that they're in the same general area and arranged in a logical sequence to hopefully hit all of them in the shortest possible distance.  We'll take a trip out that way at some point using the GPS to get us from one to the next via the fastest route.

Additionally, I bring with me supplimental written descriptions of what I'm looking for once we're in the general vicinity if the tunnel is, for example, out of view behind a building, etc., then I'll make a note of that or give directions that I need to head, say, a little north of the intersection the GPS brought us to.  I almost always have my Alphasmart with me (see the Gear page), and that's a good resource for carrying notes like this as well as annotating them with additional details (e.g., "Couldn't find it.") so I can follow up on things later or do a write-up for the journal or gallery page.

While this method is a good approach, there are a lot of places that turn out to be duds once we get to them on the ground.  Based on previous scouting trips, only about a third of the places will turn out to be anything interesting, but these are often places I otherwise never would have happened across on my own without getting completely lost first, so it's worth the trip after having exhausted all the obvious spots within driving distance.

Copyright 2007 Alexplorer.
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