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I've used a variety of pigments, from deep red nail polish (wife almost killed me) to fluorescent orange paint (fumes almost killed me) on the 2-inch washers for marking Start, Mile split and Finish points on the last couple of courses I measured.

Short of investing in a digital camera (reference Pete's suggestion), is there a good, semi-permanent means of marking washers that will not infuriate the local constabulary or the spouse?
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Over this last year, generally on bike paths, I've taken to putting down a three inch dot of paint, with no identifying text. Just a dot.

The race director gets the course map and description (and photo CD) which tells how to find the dot and what split it is.

Ordinary anonymous small dots seem to raise fewer hackles than do big numbers.
Confused All right. Let's play with my mind. Using Pete's log-in? Or are we talking Sybil-esque personalities?

Regardless, thanks for the suggestion.

BTW - why does EVERYONE think they can accurately measure a course? I just had an exchange with a holder of power within the local running organization who told me he could measure the course for certification. I responded that he did not have the equipment, nor the know-how (which is correct, for if he had either I would never gotten into this activity). He responded that neither he nor I were irreplaceable...I'm looking for a runaway bus so I can figure out if this guy is.

Sorry. Just venting my spleen.
I wish everyone thought they could measure a course, and would at least try. If they did, some of the triers would become course measurers, which are in woefully short supply. Most of us who have done the job remember the first course, and what a confuser it was. But the second got a lot easier, and from there it was onward and upward.

We read about how Americans are ill-educated in science and mathematics. Perhaps this results in a lack of confidence to tackle what is, after all, not a terribly complicated procedure if one takes it a step at a time.

Best from Pete in Columbus, not son Tom in Harrisonburg.
Tom, here, down in the valley. I need to get a photo so y'all can tell us apart. Though my accent usually gives me away....

The survey washers hold up very well to everything but snow-plows. They are available in different colors, materials, and sizes. Survey supply houses can pre-print them, or they can be hand-stamped with a punch.

The roofing washers won't degrade quickly. If they don't get plowed up, could last for years.

Another technique I use for splits is a big nail with survey ribbon on it. You can write the mile down, and drive it flush with the ground. In the grass off to the side of the bikepath, they are hard to spot and won't be molested. If the location is well noted, they should be spotted only if you know where to look. We have traverse all over the county that goes back decades using this method.
I just read this sequence of comments. About (5 to 10?) years ago I hit upon the same solution that Pete describes: a round dot of paint at the location. Mostly because the National Park Service gives folks a really hard time about paint marks. A simple white dot is pretty hard to blame on any particular person-- and it's pretty quick work to put down-- or to not put down depending on how your story is told.
Anyway these dots last pretty well and some unnamed good samaritan seems to come along every 3 years or so and refreshes them, possibly in the middle of the night.

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