Trail Karma: Lost GPS
Friday, May 08, 2009

Yesterday afternoon (Thursday May 7, 2009) we lost the (one and only) official Garmin Edge 305 GPS while riding the Walrod Cutoff trail above Cement Creek road. This is the same superb GPS we've used to track the wanderings of our dog Duke while riding Reno-Flag-Bear-Deadman. It's the same GPS we use to create maps for our local nordic trails in winter. It's the same GPS we've loaned to the Crested Butte Nordic Council for pinpointing the location of their trail network in relation to private property. It's the same GPS we used to monitor over 1200 miles of summer trail-riding and nearly 500K of winter nordic skiing last year. Apparently we can't live without it. So we're offering a reward for its return...

Find this:

Garmin Edge 305

lost somewhere between "start" and "end" on this satellite image: (Google Earth KML file)

Walrod Cutoff Trail #418

and return it to for a $50 reward and lots of good trail karma!

This occurred somewhere between the first aspen tree grove above the three-way trail intersection above the Cement Creek caves and Walrod Gulch where it intersects Cement Creek Rd., a total of 2.45 miles (we know the distance from our many GPS tracks on that trail!) We rode from the 3-way intersection downhill on the trail to Walrod Gulch (northeast). See the diagram or Google Earth KML file link above (ignore the low section on Cement Creek Rd.) for the start and end of that short ride. This trail is east of Crested Butte South, CO.

Near the end of riding season in Fall 2008 the tab securing the GPS to its mounting bracket broke for no apparent reason. During our last rides of the season we kept the Edge secured to the mount with cable ties. On this particular ride we used a thick rubber "LIVESTRONG"-style band (seen in photo below) to clamp the GPS to its mount. Presumably the band slipped off and the GPS wiggled out. Since the GPS comes out of its mount to the right (see below), we think the unit is likely on the downhill side of the trail. We saw the GPS on our handlebars as we started and did not notice it missing until the bottom of Walrod Gulch.

Garmin 305 GPS mount

A few people have asked why we don't just bill another hour at work and buy another. Good question. We've already spent many hours slowly searching the trail (alone and with sympathetic friends), publicizing the loss to fellow trail users, and posting notices on this popular trail. Unfortunately, buying a replacement GPS won't restore the GPS tracks from our recent (first) bike trip to Grand Staircase / Escalante Canyon / Capitol Reef in southern Utah. Also we don't like leaving trash in our national forest. Another friend suggested using a beach-type metal detector. According to those who should know, the rock in our vicinity contains a lot of iron so false positives make that method of searching untenable. Instead we're hoping that in the next week or two someone walking, running or riding will catch a glimpse of the GPS. After that the blooming springtime growth will make finding the unit a lost cause.

So if you're planning a hike soon why not try the Walrod Cutoff? The trail is in great condition and the pasque flowers are blooming. If you want (or need) some good trail karma keep an eye out for the flyingcracker GPS. We're offering a $50 reward for its return. Thanks!

Pasque flowers