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Messages - jgaffney

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1
GPSr Units / inReach Explorer+ Maps
« on: September 20, 2017, 10:03:45 AM »
Well, I finally did it. I ordered an inReach Explorer+ from REI. It should be here in a couple of days.

I read on the web where it comes preloaded with a North America map. I'm waiting to see how much detail the map has. But, on my old eTrex 30, I also use some of the maps here, especially the Yosemite map with all of the trails and features. The Garmin manual describes a procedure where I can load additional maps from their website. Are the maps here compatible with the new unit? Is there a way I can load them on my device?

2
GPSr Units / Re: Garmin vs. DeLorme
« on: September 14, 2017, 08:40:17 AM »
Boyd:

Thanks for the link. I think I've settled on the Garmin Explorer+.

3
GPSr Units / Garmin vs. DeLorme
« on: September 11, 2017, 01:36:04 PM »
I was walking through the Sportsman's Warehouse when I saw that they have the DeLorme InReach Explorer for $300, or about $150 less than the replacement Garmin unit. It looks like the store is closing out its DeLorme units with deep sale prices.

I've been using Garmin eTrex units for about 15 years. I also have a SPOT locator to let my wife know I'm OK. Lately, the subscription price for SPOT has been going up and up, so I'm looking for something that I only subscribe to when I need it, like the 4 months during the backpacking season.

My question is, Is there $150 worth of value added in the Garmin unit? Or, should I jump on the DeLorme sales price?

4
Do you mean National Geographic TOPO! Those maps are scans of USGS maps that are enhanced with hill shading. You are just never going to get anything remotely resembling that on an eTrex. Your gps will only use maps created in Garmin's proprietary format. The National Geo maps are what we call "raster imagery" which are basically pictures - they were created by scanning paper maps.

I understand that part. The TOPO! maps are georeferenced raster images, so I am putting my cursor on a picture, but the software knows where it is in the world.

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Some of the newer Garmin models support this kind of map, but the eTrex series does not. Even the new models are limited in that you cannot cover a very large area with raster imagery (about 25 miles x 25 miles from my experience).
25 miles by 25 miles is plenty of coverage for me. My usual 3-4 day backpacking trip would be contained in an area like that.

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Garmin's format is vector based, meaning that the map file is just a database of coordinates with instructions for how to connect them on the GPS screen. So it's basically "connect the dots" to create lines (such as roads), polygons (such as lakes) and points (such as cities). Vector based maps have their own advantages, but they never look like raster imagery.
What about the software that I've seen, here or somewhere, that "vectorizes" a raster image?

5
I've been reading the tutorials and discussions here about loading custom maps on my GPS and I'm very excited about the possibilities. I downloaded the California topo file and loaded a portion of it on my eTrex Vista Hcx, and I am underwhelmed by the lack of detail on the map. I was hoping for a richer image, similar to what I have in TOPO!

I am planning a hiking trip to France for this fall, so I have been researching downloadable maps for the French Alps. IGN has the best 1:25,000 maps, and they even have a software program comparable to TOPO!. But, it won't transfer images, only points and tracks. I found a program at SourceForge called TopoMap, which downloads img tiles from IGN, or the equivalent servers in Spain and Germany.

In reading the tutorials here for installing img files in MapSource, the section for those of us with img tiles but no tbd file, the author references a txt file as a stand-in for the tbd file. I couldn't find any reference for what this txt file contains, or how to create one. I'm anticipating having upwards of 1,000 img files to compile, with no way to arrange them.

Any help here?

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