Mapping Research Sites

RMBL Home Page     Research Info

Question 1:  Is mapping currently required?

Yes.  We ask that all researchers (current and new) map their research plots/locations using RMBL's GPS equipment.  Mapping your site allows us to manage research sites, so that we don't have conflicts between researchers.  Each spring a new research site map is created that has all the active research sites.  If you wish to be on this map, you should collect your site location(s).  Mapping sites also provides a historical record of where each researcher has worked and what was done.


Question 2:  What is the procedure for getting your sites mapped at RMBL if you are a NEW researcher or want to work in NEW area? Note: if you already have a site and just need to get it mapped, go to Question 3 

There are 4 easy steps:

1.) Once you arrive in Gothic, go to the area of interest and collect a GPS coordinate(s), using either a personal GPS or RMBL GPS unit.  For information on how to do this, go to question Question 4.

2.) Using GIS software, view these coordinates along with the other mapping sites and facilities.  For information on how to do this, click here.

3.) If your site is not in conflict with other research or facilities, e-mail the director ( to let him know that you have found a location.  If your site conflicts with research, contact the researcher(s), then the director.  If your site conflicts with facilities, contact the director.

4.) Once your have chosen a site(s), follow the steps outlined in Question 3.  


Question 3:  What is the procedure for getting your sites mapped at RMBL if you are a CURRENT researcher?

There are 4 easy steps:

1.) Sign up with the GPS technician for training (if you have already been trained, skip this step)

2.) Sign out the GPS unit needed (GeoXT, Hiper Pro, or Total Station)

3.) Collect GPS data and return unit to GPS office

4.) Fill out metadata form. Receive data via e-mail after we receive this form


Question 4:  How do I obtain a general GPS coordinate? NOTE:  Getting this coordinate is NOT considered mapping your site.

If you have a personal GPS unit, you can use this to get a GPS coordinate(s) for the site where you would like to work.  If you do not have a personal unit, you can use one of the RMBL GPS units.  For information on how to use one of the RMBL GPS unit, click here.


Question 5:  Where can I find more information?

For more GPS or GIS information, go to the RMBL GIS/GPS website.  You can access it from the RMBL home page, or by clicking here. The following questions are examples of some of the information provided on the website:

  • Which GPS unit should I use to map my site?
  • What is the accuracy of the GPS units?
  • How do I get training?
  • How do I get help using GIS software?
  • How do I fill out metadata?