For the past several years, I have always carried a GPS logging device with me on all of my safaris. This small device records a track and waypoints for my entire trip. Once home, this becomes a record of the adventure that I can overlay using Google Earth. My choice device is the AMOD AGL3080 128 MB GPS logger. The logger comes with photo geo-tagging software which allows you to write the GPS coordinates to your metadata. I have read enough articles on metadata corruption that I have become very leery of third party software making changes to metadata contained in my raw files, and therefore opt not us use this software.
So how do I use this device? I simply turn it every morning, about 5 minutes before we leave our safari camp, and leave it on until we return at the end of the day. Using lithium batteries, I can usually get three full days, before battery replacement. During the day, should something come my way that I want to “mark” along our path, I simply push the waypoint button and a manual waypoint is placed on the track. The AMOD generates a new log every time the unit is turned off and on, which means you will have a new track for each day. Although you can assemble these tracks to make one entire trip log, I find the daily separation much better to manage and it corresponds to the daily log that I try to keep from each day. Next posting on the AMOD will deal with the settings that I use and how they match up to the various NEMA sentences. The final posting on the AMOD will provide instructions and demos of getting these files into Google Earth for viewing, so stay tuned.