[Cdt-l] GPS and Maps (howzit done?)

Sly hikertrash at gmail.com
Wed Dec 9 22:41:59 CST 2009

While using the Wolf books I found a wrist watch altimeter to come in 
handy on several occasions and was able to make the right decision or 
correct a bad turn.  A few times I used a Garmin Legend loaded with the  
mapsource topo maps suggested in Yogi's book and the compass rose on 
Jonathan's maps to place myself on the trail looking at both maps.

I honestly welcomed the "where am I moments" as it gave me time to sit 
down and reflect about the hike. Getting truly lost wasn't a major 
concern.  It was all good.


Marshall Karon wrote:
> I also used the Garmin Vista HCx. I would get the Legend without the
> altimeter if the price is better. Never used the altimeter or the electronic
> compass. I never found the barometric altimeter to be useful because you
> need to calibrate it each time you turn on the unit. The satellite altimeter
> was good enough. Besides, with maps indicating your location and the contour
> on the map giving you the calculated altitude at that spot (presuming the
> maps were correct), you don't really need an altimeter.
> The unit worked very well and the battery life is really good. The screen
> was adequate. Remembering which buttons to push was a little bit of a
> challenge. I used the carrying case for protection. The unit was normally
> off - on only when I needed to check where I was (and sometimes, that seemed
> like every 5 minutes).
> The GPS will NOT keep you from getting "misplaced". The biggest issue was
> figuring out which map I was on and where I was on the map. Practice that
> before you go. You need to set your GPS up correctly. It would be nice to be
> able to put a compass rose on a local map for practicing. Also realize that
> not all trails and roads are on the maps (some are new) and some trails and
> roads that are on the maps are no longer. But how reassuring it was when the
> GPS showed the trail, showed you are on it, and the paper maps were the
> same.
> As for the GPS maps, I would get the disc and download the maps I wanted
> onto the micro SD. That way you always have a backup. Of course, you do need
> to select the area you want and that was not always easy.
> I only used the TOPO 2008 maps - some details were not so good and sometimes
> the maps had the trails wrong in place. Garmin does say the 24K maps are
> more up to date and give much more detail. 
> When you buy, look for a deal on a package - unit plus maps together.
> Marshall Karon
> Portland, OR
> -----Original Message-----
> From: cdt-l-bounces at backcountry.net [mailto:cdt-l-bounces at backcountry.net]
> On Behalf Of Jack Haskel
> Sent: Tuesday, December 08, 2009 8:05 PM
> To: cdt-l at backcountry.net
> Subject: [Cdt-l] GPS and Maps (howzit done?)
> Hey Ya'll,
>      I'm buying my GPS for the CDT 2010. I'm leaning towards the Garmin
> Vista HCx. But what do I do for maps for the unit? Do people really buy the
> TOPO Mountain South, Central and North 24k memory cards? That's $300 extra
> dollars! 
>   Cheers,
>      jack
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