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Field Herping Made Easy

Dave1812

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Have you and hints and tips to make a trip into the field more rewarding?

I'll kick of with the first tip -
Those of you who own a water hydration backpack fill it up a quarter of the bladder with water then lay this flat in a freezer overnight and completely fill remaining space with water before you go - this way the water will stay cooler for longer :D
 

Greatwtehunter

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Depending on what part of the country your herping, lots of bug spray (minus it on your hands). A good, comfortable pair of boots are small blessings at the end of the day. I have more but I am having a brain fart right now:rolleyes: so I'll leave it at this for the time being.
 

josh

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ALWAYS bring a flashlight cause you just never know ;)
 

Kaysie

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A change of clothes, especially socks, pants, and shoes. You may very well get soaked. It's nice to put on dry things at the end of the day. And I TOTALLY second Peter's toilet paper. And a flashlight. And a magnifying glass.
 

Kaysie

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Well usually when I fall into a creek, it's feet first, and I'm soaked up to my knees. But I suppose there have been times when I've totally fallen on my butt. Just bring a complete set of clothes.
 

Greatwtehunter

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Oh how could I possibly forget to mention snacks. My favorites to take happen to be Slim Jims, PB crackers, Pringles, Deer jerky, and Skittles. And under no circumstances ever leave the Dr. Pepper at home, this will cause mutiny with some folks I know.

Well usually when I fall into a creek, it's feet first, and I'm soaked up to my knees. But I suppose there have been times when I've totally fallen on my butt. Just bring a complete set of clothes.

I only mentioned the undergarments because I may have fallen in and needed them a few times before.:rolleyes:
 

blckkeys

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I would say that a compass (if you don't have a gps unit with you), a good pocket knife, and even sometimes flagging tape can all go along way to making a trip easier.

There is a woods I go herping in every so often, and I have gotten turned around in there a few times. And being a forester, I can usually find my way through the woods pretty well.

The flagging tape can come in handy because if there are no trials, you can mark the way you came in. And then when you leave, you go the same way back, and just take down the flagging tape.
 

John

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GPS - never leave home without it.
 

blckkeys

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You know, I still do not have a personal gps unit. I have one for my job. But personally, I do not have one. I still do stuff the old fashion way, with a compass and map. I have been thinking about that investment though. As I have made a few road trips with my "wife to be" and there have been a few small "differences" between us.

When she prints up directions, she prints up just directions. Well, I like maps. If we get lost (and it has happened), it does me no good to know that we should have turned right on Smith Rd. and I have no idea as to where Smith Rd. is in relation to where we are now. At least with a map you can see possibly where you are. But that is a topic for another thread.

I still think an old fashion compass does well as long as you know the direction you came in at. As gsp units run on batteries and those can fail, gps units can fall into water (not good if it is not sealed), not work well under vegetative cover (they are much better than they used to be. I once had a gps unit give me trouble under a few bushes in a 20 acre clearcut), or they can simply just break down.

While these events RARELY happen, it is nice to have even the most basic of a compass (as long as you know which direction you came in at).

I guess a good piece for another thread would be ratings for a GPS unit. I have an article in one of my forestry magazines that rated handheld GPS units. I will see if I can find it again and summarize the article, if it would be helpful.
 

John

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I have a Garmin etrex vista hcx and it has very good battery life. I bought the US maps for it so I can use it to navigate on the road too (which I do a lot actually). It does get a bit too vague in forests but I still find it useful (and it doubles as a compass, and triples as an altimeter). All in all it was worth every penny and I have all of my salamander sites, places where we left the road, etc, programmed into it. You create new waypoints in a second just by holding down the joystick button and then pressing it again - i.e. can be done in the pitch dark (which I've used it for). Actually on one trip a friend drove me into a forest in the dead of night and I had no idea which way was what or where I was. I just dropped waypoints for when we stopped and when we found things and then looked at the map when I got home. Awesome little gadget.
 

Dave1812

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I would have to say that a GPS is a great idea - but have the map and compass as a back up, that is assuming that you can correctly read a map and use the compass, as I fear its a skill that my be lost due to advances in technology.
Dose the GPS give a six figured grid reference or latitude and longitude?
 

Kaysie

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I'm with Pat on this one. I don't have my own GPS. I much prefer map and compass. But using the GPS at work was nice. I have a GPS on my "If we ever get the money" list.
 

Greatwtehunter

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I have been using the Magellan 315 GPS for 8 years now and it still gets the job done. So for those tight on cash or are frugal:p then I would seriously recomend you look into it, it's not uncommon to find them for around $100. I also have to echo the statements made earlier about a compass and map, the best technology is useless if it doesn't work. So it's definitely a skill that can and will save your life. Lets face it, most of us going to get lost at least once. The best technology is useless if it doesn't work. I don't know about y'all but it's a lot more easier to look for salamanders if I am not worried about keeping track of where I am going.

Later,
Justin
 

josh

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a good camera with extra batteries, extra film or CF card, polarizer and or neutral density filter. TRIPOD..... the tripod is a photographers best friend.
 

John

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Dose the GPS give a six figured grid reference or latitude and longitude?
Yes it does. As for reading maps, I can't speak for the US but we were taught this in geography class in Ireland as early teenagers. Seems a pretty standard skill to me?
 

drdetroit33

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In addition to many of the things everyone already mentioned I try to always have a trashbag.No matter how I do herping,I usually atleast find some garbage.:(
 

bewilderbeast

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A headlamp for hands free night-hiking and I never go herping without a pair of gardening gloves... I prefer the stretchy nylon ones with the rubberized palm and fingers... they give the right amount of protection and still allow dexterity... they cost about 6 bucks for a pair... they can really help with all the log flipping and rock lifting.


I would LOVE a personal GPS... I would be unstoppable... I love to get lost but I don't enjoy being lost... if you know what I mean... I like to wander but have an aversion to geographical disorientation.
 
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    she should be ok as axolotls can regenerate limbs, the only this i would say is to mabey feed the male more as this type of behavuor is uslay down to hunger.
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    its around 3 small pieces in the tank. Since i've just moved homes, my axolotl is still at my old house. Yesterday i fed him bloodworms and he missed a few. I couldnt get them out without a turkey baster and decided to let them sit because i was gonna move him to the house tomorrow. But now its late and I dont have a car and my dad wont drive me. Will he be fine?
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    yeah, im heading over tomorrow morning to move him to this house and feed him. Thanks for the help!
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    So my axolotl tank cycle just crashed and while i was in the middle of a water change my bucket overflowed and spilled water all of the ground in my brand new home. This is going super well 👍
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    1. You dont need to take them out of the tank to change the water as long as you pour it in slow as to not rattle them around too much
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    2. add the prime to your tap water, for most conditioners the consensus is 5 minutes of waiting time
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