The Garmin ForeTrex 401 is a GPS unit that you wear on your wrist. I have had GPS units in the past but they get put away in a backpack and forgotten - never to be used again. This wrist-worn GPS unit is front and center, records tracks (where I walk), and can record waypoints with the click of one button. No bells, no whistles, just tracks and waypoints. Perfect for me.
You are probably wondering how I paid for it. Work contributed $100, REI dividend contributed $46, and I contributed $32. Yes, work contributed $100 to a personal GPS unit for me. Each year during March Madness (NCAA basketball tournament), work sponsors a bracket challenge. The whole company breaks into teams (typically 10-12 teams) and each team fills out a bracket. My team (Warhammer - Gods of Thunder) came in second place which had a $100 prize for each team member (first place is $250 for each team member). My team came in second last year as well and I used my $100 to buy my first FitBit. This year I bought the GPS unit.
When will I use my new toy? I will use it on all my Snake Hikes and Runs. With the capability of recording where I go and where I find snakes, I can begin to look at snake distributions in the places I go. In addition, I am a super nerd and want to know how many snakes per mile I find this summer. Do I find more snakes hiking or running? What species do I find most and where? What time of day and year have the most snakes per mile (bang for my buck)? The possibilities are endless.
Snake Hike on 24 April 2014 with 2 gartersnake hibernacula waypoints