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#54310 - 08/27/10 02:47 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: talus]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Depends on the GPS unit, but most likely you have to buy maps. Some auto nav units have both NA and EU maps, but I'm pretty sure most don't.

The Garmin maps are pretty expensive, I think it might be cheaper to rent a unit while overseas. They do have 3rd party maps that are cheap/free, never actually got around to trying them.
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#54331 - 08/28/10 12:05 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: talus]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3763
Loc: Ulster County, NY
I don't think so. I think you just need to adjust the datum to the correct one. Do that in the set up menu.

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#54381 - 08/30/10 02:01 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: RangerRob]
pitfall Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/01/00
Posts: 1165
Loc: Albany
Hey Mike, if you need to borrow a GPS to map out an adirondack adventure, stop by on your way through Albany. I've got a hand held Garmin that will do what you need.

That said, I agree that knowing how to properly use a map and compass is an important skill, no matter what technology anyone is using to get them through their hikes...plus a little common sense but that's a whole different story.
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#54418 - 08/31/10 12:14 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: pitfall]
chip Offline
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Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2674
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
Having done some very detailed orienteering mapping with compass and overhead photos, I wondered if GPS would take the fun out of orienteering. The accuracy of GPS is not yet as detailed as is needed for orienteering, but will get you in the neighborhood. I find it much faster to read the map while running than to try to run in the direction indicated on a GPS as it keeps you on much more recognisable features and out of thickets, marsh, etc., but someday that may no longer be the case.

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#54419 - 08/31/10 01:38 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: chip]
HR1 Offline
newbie

Registered: 08/20/08
Posts: 34
Loc: New Paltz
Haven't used a gps have you? Yea, figuring out that last ten feet can be really tough.

Was sort-a wondering the same thing at one point. However, even though doing things the hard way can be rewarding in it's own right, and knowing how to get around w. map and compass is very important, off trail navigation by GPS is to map/compass what the computer is to a typewriter.

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#54436 - 08/31/10 02:15 PM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: HR1]
chip Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2674
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
I have used GPS and disagree, depending on the quality of map and the speed at which you are trying to complete a course. An orienteering map is another level of detail and readability. I have run off the side of a few USGS maps because they were just so bad and/or the terrain was that difficult to follow without a high level of detail and GPS would undoubtably help in that situation.
That said, it may be indispensible in bad visibility, such as an alpine storm.

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#54447 - 08/31/10 10:15 PM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: quanto_the_mad]
Aya Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/18/04
Posts: 754
Loc: Climbing somewhere
Originally Posted By: quanto_the_mad
Well, the thing with the "service" is that it's useless without a cell signal as it's pulling maps over the cell network. That's what you're really paying for.


Not true, exactly... GPS nav on my phone (google navigation) loads up what it needs when you enter it and then it doesn't need a cell signal after that. i.e. you need service at the outset, but certainly not along your whole route... at least on my phone. There are some pretty fun aps that let the phone work as a basic GPS in the wilderness also, haven't really tried them out extensively but sometimes I pop them on (they do drain battery quick) when out hiking or riding to see speed, elevation, all that jazz.
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#54451 - 09/01/10 02:26 AM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: Aya]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Yes, Google maps does cache bits of the map. So if you're moving around an area you've already looked at, it works. However, if you move outside the cached data, or try to zoom, you'll just see your location on a grey screen. Exactly how much data is cached might depend on the phone.

Driving through Harriman, I always lose data coverage (AT&T SUCKS), especially when there's traffic and all the other iphone users clog the network. So it alwasy shows me moving through a grey background, until I get back into decent coverage when the maps start loading again.

There's an app for the iPhone called "offmaps" which allows you to capture maps off google maps, including several zoom levels, so you can use it while out of network coverage. Haven't gotten around to using it yet, mostly planning on using when I'm travelling overseas and don't want to incur the overseas roaming fees.
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#54490 - 09/02/10 04:42 PM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: quanto_the_mad]
RangerRob Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/06/00
Posts: 3763
Loc: Ulster County, NY
HR1 I think you have it backwards. A GPS is like a cute little toy that may help in certain situations, but to people who need to navigate in the heavily forested areas of the northeast, you absolutely need to understand the intricacies of a topographic map, as well as using a compass along with it. Knowing how to relate features on a USGS map to what you are actually seeing in the field is critical. GPS and cell phones are electronic. They run out of batteries, get wet, lose signal....ergo totally unreliable. I would never attempt a new bushwhack without the appropriate topo and a compass. I sometimes throw the GPS in the pack when I want to play around with it. GPS is a small added feature to occasionally improve your navigations needs, it is not the base tool.

RR

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#54491 - 09/02/10 05:33 PM Re: Newbie GPS question [Re: RangerRob]
quanto_the_mad Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/14/02
Posts: 2628
Loc: brooklyn
Unless you're in areas where a compass isn't much use, such as deserts and open water.
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