If you are picking up this magazine for the first time, somewhere in the pages of 4 Wheel Drive & Sport Utility each month are hidden GPS coordinates. These coordinates pinpoint a location somewhere in the continental U.S. A stainless steel plate ("marker") laser-cut with the magazine's title and my phone number can be found there. The marker is about the size of a vehicle's license plate. When it is found and redeemed, the lucky enthusiast wins a very cool prize. These prizes will range from products donated by our advertisers and manufacturers to 4WD&SU magazine apparel and subscriptions.
The GPS coordinates in the magazine can be hidden just about anywhere. The coordinates will be divided in two parts - north and west - and hidden in the magazine's text or ghost-imaged somewhere on a photograph. The coordinates will not be hidden in or on any advertising. Finding the marker on the trail will require use of four-wheel drive and some hiking. We'll keep it safe, so don't worry, you won't have to rappel off the sides of any cliffs. The stainless steel marker may be placed behind trees, between rocks, or under something, but it will not be completely buried. If you have a GPS with WAAS (Wide Area Augmentation System) it should get you to within 3 to 9 feet of the marker.
4WD&SU's latest winner is Jay Lords of Rexburg, Idaho. Jay found the October 2006 marker outside of Ashton, Idaho. I personally hid the marker quite a ways away from civilization. I am guessing this is why it took so long for someone to call me and tell me that they had found the marker. I was also a little worried about hiding the marker in this area because it is grizzly country!
September '06Page 25. 36 24.958N. - Second news item from the top, righthand corner of 4WD&SU's webpage.Page 48. 115 59.231W. - Located in the last paragraph of the article.
The GeoStash marker will have my phone number listed on it. I must be called immediately when the marker is found. The marker must also be sent back to me for verification, but it will be returned to the person who found it. Each marker for any given month will have a unique identifying mark on it so it cannot be duplicated.
Very Important - do yourself a favor and check our website's GeoStash page to see if the marker has been found for any given month before you go out searching. Please keep in mind that the marker may have been found while you were en route to the coordinate's location. Once we have been notified, we will post where the marker has been found.
A disposable camera will be attached to the marker. Have a photo of yourself taken at the location (hopefully you won't be out alone) you found the marker and send the camera back with the marker when you mail it to me for verification. Though there will be a camera attached to the marker, we would prefer a digital image of the winner on the trail with the marker be e-mailed to us if you have the capability. If you do have a digital camera, please set it to the highest megapixel setting before snapping the photo. The GeoStash II webpage will highlight the enthusiast who found the prize, the product and its manufacturer, and the next month's prize to be given away.