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  1. #1
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    Oregon - Now what?

    So I bought an Oregon 300 and added the Topo 100. I bought it mainly to see where I've been and to backtrack if necessary - I keep it in my pack while riding. As an example, I rode this weekend on some trails I've never been on with someone who knew them really well - lots of turns and few trail markers. I'd like to replicate that ride sometime so I downloaded and checked it out on Google Earth as well as shared the .gpx file with a few buddies who were along for the ride. I can see exactly where we went on Google Earth (within reason as the satellite detail where I was is not great) but I feel like I'm missing something. Maybe I'm expecting too much but is there a better way? When you get home from an epic ride what's your procedure? Do you use Garmin instead of Google for better resolution? Have you had success following your "track" later on that really tiny screen? I know that the Oregon is packed with technology but I feel like I'm on the perimeter here. I've been looking around on the Garmin forums but those seem to be less about mountain biking and more about geocaching. Thanks for the help

  2. #2
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    i mainly us the trip computer on mine. total trip time, time moving, stopped time, and mileage.

  3. #3
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    You're having the typical software crisis many get when they get their first GPS. Available satellite imagery for remote areas can be pretty wimpy. Not many folks need/want the detail, so either they send the satellite elsewhere, or the high res stuff costs big $$$. Just the way it is. Either use what's available, or switch to using topo maps instead.

    There may be freely available stuff that's pretty good quality for your area that GE just doesn't have yet. Search for your state, GIS, and aerial imagery or DOQQ (digital orthophoto quarter quadrangle) and you'll find the university/state database for your state. If it's not there, you likely won't find it anywhere.

    Most likely, you just need to find a program that works best for you. I'm seeking out a new web service (like motionbased...but more funtional) in my own post. I'm looking for a service that lets you view a map, ride stats, and easily share that stuff with others without having to e-mail a .gpx or .kml file. I like web services more than standalone programs for this for the sharing part.

    There are a lot of options if you want a computer-based program to do the job. Just sifting through can be a task. I have Mapsource and don't care for its post-ride viewing. I have NG Topo! and while the topo maps are good, I mostly use it for planning hikes, not bike rides. Many use Topofusion, Sporttracks, and others. Search this forum for software and you'll find stuff to explore.

  4. #4
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    As far as software goes, looks like we're in the same boat. I've been trying mapmyride both for the training log and the gps map data but still am not sold. I'd like a web based area where I can post and review rides as well. I guess the Garmin Topo USA software is probably going to get me the best resolution but unless I'm missing something I don't like the program in general. Google Earth is fine for sharing and reviewing, but as stated before, the resolution isn't the greatest. Any thoughts on the other part of my post - using the Oregon on the trail to figure out where I am and where to go? If I use gpsdepot (I think that's right) or other user made maps I don't think I can use either tracks or waypoints. While I'm at it I need street maps of Italy for a trip later this year and would like to get offshore maps of the East Coast for sailing. Do I have to buy the SD card versions of these through Garmin? I've read several reviews about the Italy maps being out of date and my local West Marine guy told me I couldn't use the Garmin offshore maps on my Oregon.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by moosemorrised
    As far as software goes, looks like we're in the same boat. I've been trying mapmyride both for the training log and the gps map data but still am not sold. I'd like a web based area where I can post and review rides as well. I guess the Garmin Topo USA software is probably going to get me the best resolution but unless I'm missing something I don't like the program in general. Google Earth is fine for sharing and reviewing, but as stated before, the resolution isn't the greatest. Any thoughts on the other part of my post - using the Oregon on the trail to figure out where I am and where to go? If I use gpsdepot (I think that's right) or other user made maps I don't think I can use either tracks or waypoints. While I'm at it I need street maps of Italy for a trip later this year and would like to get offshore maps of the East Coast for sailing. Do I have to buy the SD card versions of these through Garmin? I've read several reviews about the Italy maps being out of date and my local West Marine guy told me I couldn't use the Garmin offshore maps on my Oregon.
    If you want autorouting, you're limited to Garmin's stuff. Only way to get it right now. If the Italy maps are out of date, that's what you get, or you use paper maps. As for offshore maps, I can't comment, but Garmin's customer service would be the best source. And, buy the maps on DVD, not memory card format. If you buy DVD, you can use the software for trip planning at bare minimum if you choose not to use the maps on your GPS.

    To figure out where you are, all you need are the coordinates the GPS provides and a paper topo...simplest method out there. Choose your favorite coordinate format (lat long or UTM) and have at it. You could use topos or street maps on the GPS depending on what you want (I have both and use both depending on situation). Personally I'm happy with 100k topos, but some are not and use the freely available topos I mentioned before. Some use Garmin's 24k products. Whatever you prefer, honestly.

    To figure out where to go, put the GPS away. You're going to need a map of the trail, maybe you'll get lucky and find someone else's track of the trail, or something like that. Most trails I've ridden have no tracks available and there are no maps. I show up at the trailhead, put a waypoint at my car and ride into the unknown. I use my own nav skills to figure out where to go (is this trail on the left likely to get back to the car or is the trail on the right the one?) Sometimes I mess up and ride more than I planned. It's part of the adventure. My track shows me where I've been, so at minimum I can just backtrack.

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