Converting Legal Description to GPS Waypoints

Discussion in 'Global Navigation Satellite Systems' started by gc2rangerbob@yahoo.com, Nov 26, 2005.

  1. Guest

    I have a nearly square 20 acre property in North Idaho which has been
    surveyed. I know the physical location of one of the metal survey
    markers. I want to locate the other 3 corner markers. Is there a way I
    can convert the legal decription data into a form that is usable in a
    GPS to enable me to at least come close to the marker locations.

    Here is part of the legal description so you know what you know the
    type of information I have:

    "A tract of land in the North half of Section 17, Township 58 North,
    Range 1 East, boise Meridian, Bonner County, Idaho more specifically
    described as follows:

    Beginning at a point on the North line of said Section 17, distant
    South 80-05-10 West 4231.19 from the Northeast corner of said Section
    17;

    thence south 0-30-34 East 822.01 feet, more or less, to a 1/2 inch
    rebar as noted on Survey, recorded July 2, 1979 under Instrument No.
    XXXX and also noted on Survey recorded October 12, 1986 under
    Instrument No. XXXX, records of Bonner County, Idaho;

    thence south 89-05-09 West (also known a North 89-57-42) a distance of
    1059.49 feet,more or less to the West line of said Section 17;

    etc etc....

    If a GPS will be useful, please let me know if there is any particular
    functionality I will need. Or maybe I could do this just as easy with a
    compass.

    Thanks for your help.

    Dave
     
    , Nov 26, 2005
    #1
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  2. Guest

    wrote:

    > Beginning at a point on the North line of said Section 17, distant
    > South 80-05-10 West 4231.19 from the Northeast corner of said Section
    > 17;


    Those are "Quadrantal Bearings", a Google search will lead to lots of
    explanations. The one at ccsu.edu was easy reading.

    I didn't have any real starting reference for GPS measurements, but I could
    still find the corner posts using the directions and distances.

    I was also able to locate a parcel map of my property, overlaid onto
    topographic maps and aerial photos, at my county web site. Side by side
    comparison of that, with the same maps exposed in ExpertGPS, allowed me to
    make waypoints for my GPS that let me use my GPS to find the corner markers
    for my property. Try a google search of XXX county gis mapping.

    --
    ---
    Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
     
    , Nov 26, 2005
    #2
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  3. KBH Guest

    >I have a nearly square 20 acre property in North Idaho which has been
    > surveyed. I know the physical location of one of the metal survey
    > markers. I want to locate the other 3 corner markers. Is there a way I
    > can convert the legal decription data into a form that is usable in a
    > GPS to enable me to at least come close to the marker locations.
    > Here is part of the legal description so you know what > described as
    > follows:
    > Beginning at a point on the North line of said Section 17, distant
    > South 80-05-10 West 4231.19 from the Northeast corner of said Section
    > 17;
    > thence south 0-30-34 East 822.01 feet, more or less, to a 1/2 inch
    > rebar as noted on Survey, recorded July 2, 1979 under Instrument No.
    > XXXX and also noted on Survey recorded October 12, 1986 under
    > Instrument No. XXXX, records of Bonner County, Idaho;
    > thence south 89-05-09 West (also known a North 89-57-42) a distance of
    > 1059.49 feet,more or less to the West line of said Section 17;
    > If a GPS will be useful, please let me know if there is any particular
    > functionality I will need. Or maybe I could do this just as easy with a
    > compass.
    > Thanks for your help.
    >


    'Scratch-Plot' can layout a legal description.

    Convert your four-quadrant bearings to azimuths which are clockwise angles
    from North. Get UTM North and East coordinates of the found monument. Set up
    a scale in 'Scratch-Plot based on the UTM coordinates and largest dimension
    of the tract. Enter the UTM coordinates for a point layout, select Azi mode,
    and enter the direction and distance calls as lines around the tract...back
    to the starting point for a graphical closure.

    Finally, navigate to the 'Scratch-Plot' application folder, open the
    'Scratch-Plot' file with a text editor, and find the resulting UTM North and
    East coordinates within concatenated strings.

    Here is a user link to 'Scratch-Plot':

    http://www.kbhscape.com/plot.htm


    Of course the result is approximate because the regional survey is not on
    the same directional orientation as either latitude / longitude or UTM...and
    only a field survey using any two points could determine the actual
    difference in directional orientation...(However, if we assume that the
    Federal land subdivision is on the same directional orientation as modern
    latitude / longitude then each forward description direction must be rotated
    by the amount of convergence found at each starting point...where the
    convergence can be found as the difference between latitude / longitude
    directions and UTM grid directions between the starting point N,E and a
    hypothetical point N + 1852, E .)
     
    KBH, Nov 26, 2005
    #3
  4. KBH Guest


    > 'Scratch-Plot' can layout a legal description.
    >
    > Convert your four-quadrant bearings to azimuths which are clockwise angles
    > from North. Get UTM North and East coordinates of the found monument. Set
    > up a scale in 'Scratch-Plot' based on the UTM coordinates and largest
    > dimension of the tract. Enter the UTM coordinates for a point layout,
    > select Azi mode, and enter the direction and distance calls as lines
    > around the tract...back to the starting point for a graphical closure.
    >
    > Finally, navigate to the 'Scratch-Plot' application folder, open the
    > 'Scratch-Plot' file with a text editor, and find the resulting UTM North
    > and East coordinates within concatenated strings.
    >
    > Here is a user link to 'Scratch-Plot':
    >
    > http://www.kbhscape.com/plot.htm
    >
    >
    > Of course the result is approximate because the regional survey is not on
    > the same directional orientation as either latitude / longitude or
    > UTM...and only a field survey using any two points could determine the
    > actual difference in directional orientation...(However, if we assume that
    > the Federal land subdivision is on the same directional orientation as
    > modern latitude / longitude then each forward description direction must
    > be rotated by the amount of convergence found at each starting
    > point...where the convergence can be found as the difference between
    > latitude / longitude directions and UTM grid directions between the
    > starting point N,E and a hypothetical point N + 1852, E .)


    (In other words the forward legal description directions would be rotated to
    UTM directions using UTM convergence found at each starting point of the
    forward direction.)
     
    KBH, Nov 26, 2005
    #4
  5. KBH Guest

    Oh, the tract description should also be converted from feet to meters if
    working with UTM...
     
    KBH, Nov 27, 2005
    #5
  6. KBH Guest

    This was the optional or additional section:

    > Of course the result is approximate because the regional survey is not on
    > the same directional orientation as either latitude / longitude or
    > UTM...and only a field survey using any two points could determine the
    > actual difference in directional orientation...(However, if we assume that
    > the Federal land subdivision is on the same directional orientation as
    > modern latitude / longitude then each forward description direction must
    > be rotated by the amount of convergence found at each starting
    > point...where the convergence can be found as the difference between
    > latitude / longitude directions and UTM grid directions between the
    > starting point N,E and a hypothetical point N + 1852, E .)


    However, I described a method used for an intersection of two directions
    while this is a boundary loop...So here there would be one rotation value
    and that same rotation value would be applied to all lines. And that's to
    rotate the tract description directions (that are based on Federal land
    subdivision) into a UTM directional orientation based on a UTM convergence
    somewhere on the tract...
     
    KBH, Nov 28, 2005
    #6
  7. wrote:
    > Is there a way I
    > can convert the legal decription data into a form that is usable in a
    > GPS to enable me to at least come close to the marker locations.


    Can you get the survey drawings in Shape (.shp) file format? If yes,
    you can convert the data, and transfer to consumer grade GPS with
    ExpertGPS w/GIS option pack.
    Ref: http://www.travelbygps.com/articles/undevelopments.php

    I hope this helps!
    - Doug
    www.TravelByGPS.com
    Travel by GPS (tm) Maps Waypoints and Tracks to Adventure
     
    Travel by GPS, Nov 28, 2005
    #7
  8. Guest

    wrote:
    > I have a nearly square 20 acre property in North Idaho which has been
    > surveyed. I know the physical location of one of the metal survey
    > markers. I want to locate the other 3 corner markers. Is there a way I
    > can convert the legal decription data into a form that is usable in a
    > GPS to enable me to at least come close to the marker locations.


    "I know the physical location ...".
    That's something that bothers me about my plot description.
    I don't see anything absolute. I guess that everything is built as a
    reference from some point that is not on the page that I have. I don't see
    any acknowledgement of any physical starting point.

    Consumer GPS is fine for locating the existing corner markers left by some
    surveyor, but certainly isn't accurate enough for putting those markers
    there.

    An error radius of 20 feet or more allows detection of the tall wooden
    poles used on my property as survey markers for four out of five marks. I
    never did find the one corner that is obscured in heavy brush and trees. I
    think I circled around it, but I couldn't find it.

    I also couldn't locate my exact ingress point on the cliff for egress. I
    missed it, and looking at the track later, I might have been close, but I
    can't trust the track within 20 feet either.

    ---
    Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
     
    , Nov 28, 2005
    #8
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