You've probably already found one or two benchmarks while doing something else. Now you want to go on your first benchmark hunting trip. Pick about 10 ["PID"]s to look for, preferably fairly close to each other. If you can, pick some that other people have found within the last year or so. This should assure you of a good experience finding benchmarks and prevent you from going home without a find on your first trip.

Before going out on your first benchmark hunting trip, be sure to educate yourself on these basic topics: ["designation"], ["PID"], ["azimuth"], ["witness post"], [:to reach:to-reach], ["azimuth mark"], ["reference mark"]. Also look through the list of [:Equipment:benchmark hunting equipment] to get an idea of what to take along.

Print out every page of PIDs' ["datasheet"]s. Even if you intend to 'go paperless' with your benchmark hunting, it is good to use paper at least on your first trip. On each paper, use a highlighter or other marking method to highlight these things:

These are the most important items in a datasheet. Just before going to each PID's location, review these highlighted items in its datasheet. Making a drawing of what you understand from the geometries of the to-reach statements can sometimes save you a lot of time and false starts.

Be ready to take notes. A very important aspect of mark ["recovery"] is to note any changes since the last recovery report and inform the NGS of these changes in your recovery report.