Surveying GPS/GNSS, level and rod

Survey Says

Field Book: Winter Is Coming

Russell Hammond - Monday, January 08, 2018

Day 362  -   Hour 16:00

Winter is coming…

As the snow blows across the field there’s a shrieking hawk circling overhead. Silently standing face to face with a rustling area of brush, a horrible feeling takes over. A distant voice yells out to move forward into the thick brush, all the while dreading that this is just the beginning of a horror movie. Will this be the end?


Field Crewman #2


Land surveyors use Field Books to record what happens out in the field. No, this doesn’t mean storytelling the events of the day. These books are used to record important information such as calculations, angles, measurements, elevations, and the layout of houses and other structures.

Field books have come a long way since land surveyors began to keep notes out in the field. In the earlier years, every detail needed to be recorded. There were no such things as computerized equipment. Can you imagine life without smart phones and other electronics? Could you survive your work day without those devices?

Before the dawn of today’s advanced technology, manmade tools such as poles and metal chains were used for measuring distances. This was known as the Colonial Style of land surveying and was adopted in the earlier years when the first colonies started to become distinguished as states. As time went on and technology advanced, the equipment progressed to having the capabilities of storing data. This would change not only the way that surveyors collected data, but also what they would record in the field books.


When looking at an entry, its as if it must be translated from hieroglyphic sketches and abbreviations to an understandable language. These sketches and abbreviations display information that translates into dimensions of a house’s sides, along with placements of mechanical fixtures, and calculations of corner markers on property boundaries. These entries are a key part in the completion process of survey work.

If you’re ever to see a surveyor out working and writing down notes, you’ll know it’s definitely not love letters. Services that require the use of Field Books are Elevation Certificates, Boundary Surveys, and Location Drawings to name a few. You can see a list of more survey services that our company offers to start off your next project.



Licensed in Maryland & Delaware. Specializing in Worcester County, MD & Sussex County, DE
Maryland License #21329 • Delaware License #S6-0000781