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April, 2009:

Cacheberry review

Yesterday Team JNLe4 and I went on a cache run to the south east of Columbus. The plan was to do about 30 caches but we managed 20. This is still the highest number of caches I’ve done in a day so I was pretty pleased.
This was also my first time using the registered version of Cacheberry and it worked really well. I’ve purchased a 4gb SD card for the Blackberry that I used to store the data on which also made it easier to transfer the gpx data from gsak to the blackberry.
The ability to quickly search for a cache,open the logs and hints really helps when out in the field and the option to save cache logs whilst out in the field and email the log file for “one click logging” is very useful.
As we did 20 caches with several travel-bug pickups I was actually saving the travel-bug information in the Blackberry note feature – but that was because I wasn’t sure how the field-note logging works. However, now that I’ve logged when I was back home I now know that I didn’t really need to do this.
It’s better to write the travel bug information into the field note in cacheberry and then as you log the cache itself by clicking on the saved log within the website you can delete the travel-bug information.

What would be nice would be a separate function to pick up the pre-existing travel bug information. Currently cacheberry knows that there is a tb in the cache but there is no interface to say that it’s been found or discovered. If you’ve used gpxsonar in the past you will be used to this function.

The other thing I’d like would be to have the time that the cache was found added to the online log function, I like to know how long it took me to go between each cache but once the caches are logged online this information is not available anymore (unless I go back to the cacheberry application).

I didn’t use the new compass facility (as I was using my gps) apart from one test cache find. For this cache I had both the gps and the blackberry running a search for the nearest cache. The Blackberry normally had the distance to the cache about 5-6′ shorter than the gps, but when it came to ground-zero, both the gps and cacheberry had the same information. I was very impressed at how quickly cacheberry updated itself with the position and it wouldn’t certainly make a good emergency gps if the main gps battery dies or if looking for that ftf without a gps available. I’m not sure how much using the gps affects the battery but I suspect it does make the battery life shorter.

Overall, this app is well worth the $15 registration fee for those blackberry owning geocachers