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This is one of a series of guides for collaborative environmental research and advocacy projects. Pole Mapping is an easy way to get a view of your garden from above. This guide will cover how to make or purchase your own pole and affix a camera to it. **** ####Planning this event **Ahead of time:** * Take a look at the types of poles available, check out the pictures on the wiki page! * Consider the pros and cons of making, borrowing, or buying a pole. * **If you want to make a pole**, assess what you have locally available at hand to work with. Perhaps bamboo is readily available in your area, or perhaps a hardware store with long PVC is more your speed. * **If purchasing a pole**, I recommend a lightweight carbon fiber one like this, but be careful, unsupervised kids can easily break these delicate but high-tech rods (and yes they are a little pricey): * Make a decision on what kind of pole sourcing endeavor you will embark on **Materials to have on hand:** * A camera * an SD card that fits in the camera * charged battery(s) for the camera * rubber bands (15x) * wide tape (usually packing tape, masking tape or painters tape) * Note: depending on your decisions above, pole materials will vary widely **** ####Activity 1: If you are going to buy a pole **** ####Activity 2: If you are going to make a pole **** ####Activity 3: Affixing a camera to the pole * set your camera to take pictures automatically (insert link) * put your camera into a soda bottle rig (to protect it from hitting against the pole, or the ground while the pole is lying down) * hang it on the end of the pole, * Note: if using a fishing pole, you may want to not use the very thin end sections that would bend over or snap under the weight. Carbon fiber sections with at least a 1/4" diameter should be strong enough. *** ####Activity 4: Getting good images * Lay the pole horizontally on the ground * note how long it is as compared to the landscape that you are going to photograph because there's a rule of thumb: as far up as the camera is above the ground is the same horizontal extent on the ground that any given picture can capture. [insert GM diagram] * Attach the soda bottle housing -- with camera inside -- to the end of the pole. * Make sure the camera is on and taking pictures * Get your stance right: stand at the base of the pole and brace the base of the pole into the inside of your right foot (or whichever foot you tend to lead with) [get picture for this] * Lean over and grasp the pole with your hands and begin lifting the pole up, keeping the base braced into your foot. Keep your stance strong. * Bring the pole to as near vertical as possible to minimize the unwieldy weight (it's like holding a ladder -- straight up is easier and "seems lighter") [insert picture of Frank in Newark] * Check out [Ecta64](/profile/Ecta64)'s [research note]( on using the Public Lab carp pole (coming soon to the store).