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danrider

Good Information for those that use their GPS.

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I know a lot of you guys are great using a GPS for tracks and routs, as a fact Ken the Kug used his GPS to help me get out of a place that I took him riding several years back in Yuma.   When I came across this article I thought it would be a good read for those who are not that experienced and a good reminder for those who are proficient with their GPS's units.  Do take sometime to read the article. It was a great reminder for me because I have experienced what they talk about in the article. 

 

https://www.desertusa.com/desert-activity/gps-navigation.html

 

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Good stuff and good reminders for even the experienced crowd. 

 

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In aviation we call those folks "Children of the Magenta". In reference to the generation of pilots that are dependent on the electronics and automation to navigate the plane.

Dan,

Good information to share. Many users of the GPS constellation don't know much about it or how it can be dangerous to the end user. Blindly following the routes it spits out can be one of them. And it's not just dangerous in the deserts or remote areas of the Southwest. Ask me about the time I used an early version of Waze to avoid some traffic and drove through Gangland Los Angeles. Not fun for my lily white ass in a hot rodded Mini Cooper. I was quite happy to have the extra 50 tq and 30 hp that day! I don't use Waze anymore.

 

Now we should discuss the GPS constellation itself. Since the article Dan posted discussed the dangers of getting lost in our California deserts I would like to share some information regarding the GPS system and how it can relate to another dangerous situation. GPS system outage.

The GPS system was developed by and for the Department of Defense. It was designed for an unlimited number of users to be able to benefit from it's implementation and we do. But up until the early 00s the GPS signal was intentionally degraded by the DOD to limit the accuracy of civilian sensors. They have since removed that signal and we can all experience position accuracy of a few meters whenever we like. Or, until the DOD says we like it too much and resets the Selective Availability.

The US military runs a huge area of airspace and an incredible amount of land in California and Nevada. Draw a line from Palmdale to Victorville then Northeast to the Nevada border. Now another line from Mammoth Lakes to the Nevada border. Use a marker and shade in the area between your lines. That is all military airspace in the California desert. There is more in Nevada that extends well North of Reno and East into Utah. The area is a hotbed for testing, research, development and training for the military.

Because of the civilian reliance on GPS the DOD is required to inform the FAA of all planned GPS system outages. Over the last few years there have been 100s and guess where they are all positioned. Good guess, over the hotbed of military airspace and land in the deserts of the Southwest. Pulling from memory here but there was one planned outage that extended on a radius of 400 miles at 35,000', but might've only been 40 or 50 miles at the surface. Most of the outages seem to be from surface jamming transmitters as the shape of the area is conical with the smallest area at the bottom but others have been inverted. As in the jamming signal is coming from space.

Now imagine if you will, it's 7AM and you're about to put kickstands up on a 4 day trip into the desert. Little do you know your route is going to get nasty after the heavy rains last week and the DOD is going to shut down GPS in the area for the next 48 hours between 8AM to 5PM. Should be fun to navigate that magenta line or find a bypass for the washout in the dark. 

So what am I getting at? Maps and compass. Of all the crap we bring with us on adventure rides those two take up very little space and don't fail. GPS receivers fail, signal blockages occur, we plan for the unexpected by overstuffing our bags with parts, tools and gear. Sure compasses are prone to error by magnetic disturbance and you struggle to read maps, but the power of the earths magnetic field isn't going out and good maps are still usable when wet. Can your GPS say the same? Practice close to home with overland navigation and when it counts it could save your life.

Maps, they cost less than that spark plug(s) you've been carrying around for 3 years and take up less space than a magazine. 

 

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Very interesting about the planned outages. Had never heard of that. Good to know.

There is an area, probably a few miles in radius at the surface, just north of Trona. GPS never works there. There is some kind of military radar, radio transmitter, sumthin' just north of the lakebed there. Kills all GPS signals. Probably microwaving all the nearby residents too.

This thing:

 

Capture.JPG

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Here's the current list for LA and Oakland Center. Those two facilities cover most of the desert we know and love. There is a third military control center in the area but notices aren't published under their name.

 

04/125 - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 15 APR 07:00 2018 UNTIL 15 APR 13:00 2018. CREATED:
11 APR 22:07 2018
 
04/119 (A0248/18) - NAV GPS (NTTR GPS 18-06) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 535NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 371957N1160221W
(BTY034047) FL400-UNL,
488NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
450NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
403NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL,
377NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 15 APR 18:30 2018 UNTIL 15 APR 23:00 2018. CREATED:
11 APR 14:39 2018
 
04/109 (A0245/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 13 APR 07:00 2018 UNTIL 13 APR 13:00 2018. CREATED:
10 APR 16:27 2018
 
04/104 (A0244/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL,
0700-1300, 1830-2230. 14 APR 07:00 2018 UNTIL 14 APR 22:30 2018. CREATED: 10
APR 15:20 2018
 
04/098 (A0243/18) - NAV GPS (YUMA GPS 18-01) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 521NM RADIUS CENTERED AT
331239N1150204W (BLH200027) FL400-UNL,
453NM RADIUS AT FL250,
401NM RADIUS AT 10000FT,
336NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL,
266NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 13 APR 18:30 2018 UNTIL 13 APR 22:30 2018. CREATED:
10 APR 13:05 2018
 
04/075 (A0238/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 12 APR 18:30 2018 UNTIL 12 APR 22:30 2018. CREATED:
08 APR 20:54 2018
 
04/070 (A0237/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 12 APR 07:00 2018 UNTIL 12 APR 13:00 2018. CREATED:
08 APR 20:53 2018
 
04/055 (A0235/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC 339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 11 APR 18:30 2018 UNTIL 11 APR 22:30 2018. CREATED:
07 APR 19:49 2018
 
04/045 (A0233/18) - NAV GPS (NTC GPS 18-19) (INCLUDING WAAS, GBAS, AND
ADS-B) MAY NOT BE AVBL WI A 271NM RADIUS CENTERED AT 352112N1163405W
(HEC339034) FL400-UNL,
222NM RADIUS AT FL250, 
148NM RADIUS AT 10000FT, 
117NM RADIUS AT 4000FT AGL, 
92NM RADIUS AT 50FT AGL. 10 APR 07:00 2018 UNTIL 13 APR 13:00 2018. CREATED:
06 APR 23:12 2018

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6 hours ago, PastaPilot said:

In aviation we call those folks "Children of the Magenta". In reference to the generation of pilots that are dependent on the electronics and automation to navigate the plane.

Dan,

Good information to share. Many users of the GPS constellation don't know much about it or how it can be dangerous to the end user. Blindly following the routes it spits out can be one of them. And it's not just dangerous in the deserts or remote areas of the Southwest. Ask me about the time I used an early version of Waze to avoid some traffic and drove through Gangland Los Angeles. Not fun for my lily white ass in a hot rodded Mini Cooper. I was quite happy to have the extra 50 tq and 30 hp that day! I don't use Waze anymore.

 

Now we should discuss the GPS constellation itself. Since the article Dan posted discussed the dangers of getting lost in our California deserts I would like to share some information regarding the GPS system and how it can relate to another dangerous situation. GPS system outage.

The GPS system was developed by and for the Department of Defense. It was designed for an unlimited number of users to be able to benefit from it's implementation and we do. But up until the early 00s the GPS signal was intentionally degraded by the DOD to limit the accuracy of civilian sensors. They have since removed that signal and we can all experience position accuracy of a few meters whenever we like. Or, until the DOD says we like it too much and resets the Selective Availability.

The US military runs a huge area of airspace and an incredible amount of land in California and Nevada. Draw a line from Palmdale to Victorville then Northeast to the Nevada border. Now another line from Mammoth Lakes to the Nevada border. Use a marker and shade in the area between your lines. That is all military airspace in the California desert. There is more in Nevada that extends well North of Reno and East into Utah. The area is a hotbed for testing, research, development and training for the military.

Because of the civilian reliance on GPS the DOD is required to inform the FAA of all planned GPS system outages. Over the last few years there have been 100s and guess where they are all positioned. Good guess, over the hotbed of military airspace and land in the deserts of the Southwest. Pulling from memory here but there was one planned outage that extended on a radius of 400 miles at 35,000', but might've only been 40 or 50 miles at the surface. Most of the outages seem to be from surface jamming transmitters as the shape of the area is conical with the smallest area at the bottom but others have been inverted. As in the jamming signal is coming from space.

Now imagine if you will, it's 7AM and you're about to put kickstands up on a 4 day trip into the desert. Little do you know your route is going to get nasty after the heavy rains last week and the DOD is going to shut down GPS in the area for the next 48 hours between 8AM to 5PM. Should be fun to navigate that magenta line or find a bypass for the washout in the dark. 

So what am I getting at? Maps and compass. Of all the crap we bring with us on adventure rides those two take up very little space and don't fail. GPS receivers fail, signal blockages occur, we plan for the unexpected by overstuffing our bags with parts, tools and gear. Sure compasses are prone to error by magnetic disturbance and you struggle to read maps, but the power of the earths magnetic field isn't going out and good maps are still usable when wet. Can your GPS say the same? Practice close to home with overland navigation and when it counts it could save your life.

Maps, they cost less than that spark plug(s) you've been carrying around for 3 years and take up less space than a magazine. 

 

This is well said, to many of us depend on our electronics,  I always carry a map with me when I take my road trips and adventure trips I go on,  In my camping bag I have a compass in the event that I breakdown and need to walk with map in hand.   I would like to add to your story but relate it to the water,  I am a big fisherman and I use all of my electronics when I am piloting my boat to the fishing grounds,  I always write down my compass heading while I am heading out so if all electronics go out I can reverse my heading and get home.  I  had a bad experience about twenty years ago when I was depending on my electronics to get home before GPS  was affordable,  we used to use radio signals to navigate and it took a crap and I was heading the wrong way. I stoped a boat because I had been traveling for sometime and I did not see the Coronado Islands.  The boat that saved my A$$ told me I was heading the wrong way.

Your point is well taken.  

 

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