Geocaching update, Paperless with the PN-40

Update – Geocaching Updates are Live!

Just a quick note with some screenshots… I know everyone is getting a little restless waiting for the Initiative to release. I talked with the people at Groundspeak yesterday and they are very close to rolling the Send to GPS functionality out for the PN-Series devices. We’re targeting their release for our PN-40 firmware update so it won’t be long now! Once you have those pieces you’ll be able to view cache information like what I’ve posted below… Keep an eye on our forum for more information and thank you all for your patience while we put the finishing touches on this update!

Chip Noble

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26 Comments on “Geocaching update, Paperless with the PN-40

  1. Wow!!! I’m so Excited, I can’t wait. Hopefully it will be early next week, I’ve got some caching to do🙂

  2. Looks very interesting. Hopefully will have some kind of ‘batch’ load feature since won’t want to have to manually load 500 waypoints when I head out for vacation🙂

  3. GaryP

    I’ve read where it will have P.Q. support. You would then be able to load up the PQ

  4. Chip, correct me if I am reading that wrong, but it sounds like to me that the PN-40 firmware update is ready, but DeLorme is holding it up until groundspeak is ready with their send to GPS functionality? Why wait? Secondly, you said that the send to GPS function would be available for the PN series. Does that mean the PN-20s won’t require a firmware update to use send to GPS? Thanks.

  5. Thanks for all the comments… We started testing with’s test server today. I sent my first geocache from directly to the PN-40 and it brought a tear to my eye… I sent a dozen more right after that… no more than a minute all told. We’ve got some fine tuning to do but overall it was a very exciting day for us on the Geocaching Initiative team!

    GaryP: we’re also making good progress with the Cache Register widget, this cross-platform tool will allow you to load your pocket queries onto the PN-40. That project is staged behind Send to GPS but our developers are making good progress there too.

    Bdev: both development teams are running at the same pace right now, we’ll finish our testing and roll them out together. The Send to GPS plug-in will work with both the PN-20 and the PN-40.


    Chip Noble

  6. Chip – one clarification RE Cache Widget. Will it handle only PQs from, or will it handle any gpx file (such as a GSAK export). And if it will handle any GPX, will it be limited to only those of NMT 500 waypoints?

  7. Chip,

    Great to hear the PN-20 will also work with the Send to GPS plug-in. Now both my main GPS (PN-40) and backup GPS (PN-20) and more geo-friendly.

    Will the PN-20 still have the 800 character restriction? If so where do the hint and logs reside? OR will there be a FW revision needed to break the 800 char limit?

    I’m just a little anxious butI’m really trying to be patient.

    Thanks again.

  8. Cache on!

    Thought it might have been here by this past weeke-end, but I cached on without the FW 2.5. Found 13 caches with PN40 over the week-end

  9. Can’t wait for this to roll out. The functionality in the geocaching portion of the FW update looks awesome.

    Doesn’t seem like anyone on the Groundspeak forums has any idea when the PN-series roll-out will occur either. I was kind of hoping for a hint, but nothing.

    Oh well. Nothing to do but wait now.🙂

  10. 3doxies: I see no reason why Cache Register wouldn’t be able to open the GSAK GPX files. We aren’t limiting the number of caches we’ll open either. The key is in the GPX file format, so long as GSAK uses the same format that Groundspeak does we’ll be all set. Good question though, people are already formatting GPX to move between GSAK and Topo USA.

    MightyMo: We’re wrapping up the 40 firmware and then will plan the 20 firmware. I haven’t heard how the character limits will be handled. We have a performance difference and a memory difference but we’ll do our best. Thank you for being patient.

    Topotrex and Chris: We’re in the middle of our second beta and planning a public beta very soon. We just want to make sure that we get everything right before we send it out into the wild!

    Thank you all for your comments, it won’t be long now!

    Chip Noble

  11. Chip,

    Thanks for the update. I can hardly wait for the public beta.

    I understand the memory issue. Could the geocaches be stored on the SD card? Many of the cachers here get long winded in the description. Sometimes at the end of their description they might write “at the 2nd stage add 20 to the north coords and subtract 20 from the west”. This works fine for the cache page and a PDA but with an 800 characters limit it became frustrating. I mentioned it once and got a comment “go buy a Garmin” GRRRRRRRR I keep my comments to myself now.

    Any way Thanks again for the update.

    My mom use to say “Patience is a virtue”

  12. ‘very soon’ is starting to sound like a broken record Chip.

  13. Chip – thanks. I’m reading your reply as saying that, if my current GPX output from GSAK works in Topo7 (which it does – fabulously), then it will work equally well thru Cache Register. Good deal! Thanks for the info…will go back to anxiously panting for the release.

  14. Ric (Mighty Mo): Storing GPS data on the SD card is on our list but we weren’t able to schedule it for this release. With the PN-40 firmware update and the new 15,000 character limit I think you’ll be all set to view the entire description, the hint, and the logs. In fact, I’d love to hear from someone who has a cache with more than 15,000 characters… I know it’s out there and we’ll hear about it shortly after the release.

    Bdev: I share the information that I have available at the time I write my posts. Since I can’t post a specific day for the release I choose to post “very soon” rather than post nothing. I understand your frustration but patience really is the last recommendation I have on this topic. Trust that we will announce the release of the firmware as soon as it is available.

    Greg (3doxies): I agree with your interpretation… if it works with Topo it will work with the Cache Register.

    Thank you all for your comments.

    Chip Noble

  15. 15,000 character limit?! HA HA HA HA! That should be enough to cover 99.94% of caches out there.

    That’s a large limit. Nice.

  16. Chip thanks. 15,000 characters should work. I don’t think I would want to read a small novel on the trail anyway. I know that the DeLORME team is very diligently and will supply the usual quality product as soon as possible.

    Patience my son patience!

  17. I went on to before lunch and the Send to GPS – delorme was on there. Does that mean the Firmware will be released. After getting back from lunch the site says it is down for maintenance.

  18. Thanks to the Delorme team for rolling this out, the interface for downloading the waypoints from is flawless. I now know I made the right decision with my purchase of the PN -40. I went from a Street Pilot to the 40 and I’m very happy.The learning curve was minimal and the maps, tracks are geocaches are very intuitive.

  19. Thanks for all the hard work, The PN-40 update is great with some quirks, but worth the extra features that comes with it, when you get Cache Register up and running nobody will have anything to look foward to. LOL. \Totally looking foward to that, hopefully when things get worked out with final update on the 40, those that have the 20 can get a update boost to make it somehow faster or more responsive, thanks again.

  20. I have a question. New pn-40 owner and new to geocacheing. I see the screen shots on this page and notice I do not have the field notes page or the Log Geocache page is this normal? I love the unit and am so impressed with all the info on these pages. thanks for all your hard work.

  21. I just received my Earthmate PN-40 in the mail yesterday. I have read that the biggest hurdle that everybody has is the Software. I would have to agree. It isn’t worth the frustration. I upgraded the firmware and have enjoyed the new geocaching screens, but I can’t figure out how to load my 10,000+ geocaches from my weekly pocket query updates. The plugin works fine for those hunts that you do one at a time, but for us serious geocachers wanting a serious tool, this isn’t going to work. My Earthmate PN-40 is back in the box ready to be returned to the store.


  22. Peter: make sure that you have the 2.5 public beta installed if you’re looking for geocaching functionality.

    Marcellus Barrus: You can load your pocket queries into Topo USA’s Draw tab using File>Import. After you’ve loaded them there you can send them to the PN-40. You can also load pocket queries that you modify through GSAK. There is a tutorial for this in the owner manual and there are lots of tips on this in our forums. You might also consider reading the following blog post where I give some tips for best performance from Topo USA and the PN-20. The PN-40 has a similar interface when used with Topo USA. Let me know if you have any questions.

    Thanks for the comments,
    Chip Noble

  23. I’m very interested in purching the PN-40….will it work in Canada (we are planning a trip there this Sept. 2009).

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