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GPSMap62s Track List issue unresolved by Garmin Support

Started by Cheese_Spread_Butties, January 31, 2020, 06:13:16 AM

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Does anyone know what criteria the GPSMap62 firmware uses to display the tracks in the "Track List" (and the Archive List) in sequence?  If I save recorded tracks with the default Date/Time name they list in chronological order with the newest track at the top.

But if I edit the tracks in Basecamp, give them a meaningful name (eg: 2020-01-20 Liverpool, 20-01-25 Chester) and export GPX files giving them the same meaningful names, then copy the files back to the GPSMap62 they do not list in any alphabetical or chronological order.

With just a few one day hikes this is not much of a problem - I usually only have the tracks I'm currently using on the device.  But with a multi-day hike with a number of alternate and side tracks (in June/July I'm walking the Camino de Santiago across Northern Spain, 750km over 35 days) I'd like all the tracks in sequence for each day.

I've exported all the tracks I downloaded with names like "01 Place A - Place B", "02 Place B - Place C", "02a Alternate", etc. and I exported them in sequence (exporting the last day's track first and the first day's track last) so that all the GPX file data is in both alphabetical and chronological order.  So I thought the GPSMap62 would display the first day's walk at the top of the list and so on.

But the Track List (and Archive List) is always out of sequence with any tracks I send back to the device - tracks recorded on the device or downloaded tracks.  I think (not 100% sure) that the GPSMap62 always displays the list in the same out of sequence order with the same files so maybe it's not just random.

After 2 weeks of back and forth emails to Garmin Support with example files and explanations their final answer was "Unfortunately we are unable to say why the device is listing these tracks randomly. I am very sorry about any inconvenience."

Help ! ! !


This is just a guess (but an educated one, I hope).... they are probably using information INSIDE the track files to sort the list. Not quite clear from your post, but maybe they are using the date the track was recorded?

.gpx files are just plain text and are human-readable. Open a file and have a look, this can be done in any text editor such as Notepad on Windows or TextEdit on the Mac. Was recently writing some software to work with .gpx files, and just had a quick look. There's a timestamp at the beginning of the file, like this:

    <link href="">
    <text>Garmin International</text>

If it's using that timestamp for sorting, then you could manually change it to force a sort in any order you like. The "Z" indicates they are in Zulu time. There's also a name inside the file that it might be using, and Basecamp might not change it.

It should go without saying that you should make backup copies of the .gpx files before attempting to modify them. :)


Boyd - Thanks for the reply.

Yes, I've checked the contents of the GPX files.  The <time> data gets updated every time you export from Basecamp.  That's why I exported the files in sequence so that the embedded Date/Time data would be in sequence.  So in any of my own files recorded with the GPSMap62 each track point has data for the Date/Time it was recorded but the <time> data on about line 7 of each file is for when it was last saved or exported.

Some of the downloaded files don't have any data for elevation or date/time of each track point - only the Lat/Lon co-ordinates but none of those GPX files come in sequence when I put them back on the device either.

So all the Date/Time data of the files and each track point if they exist are all in chronological order and the file names are in alpha/numeric order.

I've tried using the "Send" function of Basecamp (which does not use the exported GPX files) and I've copied the files through Windows to the GPSMap62.  I've tried sending them one at a time and I've tried exporting a batch of tracks as one GPX file.  Every method results in the same out of sequence track list.

As I said earlier, for individual unrelated tracks it's not a big problem.  But for a multi day trip I'd really like the tracks to list in sequence.

I'll try some experiments over the next few days.  I'll go out and save the "Current Track" every few minutes, then take the files off the GPSMap62, turn it off and on again, put the files back on and check the track list.  I'll also try putting some files on to a friend's Etrex to see if another device has the same result.

Time for a cup of tea . . .


Interesting. In the end, you may just have to accept the fact that it won't do what you want.  >:(


Well I've made a little bit of progress . . .

I went out today with the GPSMap62 and saved the Current track 4 times with the default date/time names -
Track_2020-02-01 101349
Track_2020-02-01 102350
Track_2020-02-01 103202
Track_2020-02-01 103533

Back home I copied the files to the PC and deleted all saved tracks on the device.

Then I made copies of the files and kept the originals un-edited.  I loaded the copies into Basecamp and renamed them in various ways and kept exporting each version but did not edit anything else in the tracks, just the names.  So I ended up with files like "01 Out", "02 Here", "03 There", "04 Return" and "AA Out", "BB Here", "CC There", "DD Return" with each file having the same embedded track name (as it appears in Basecamp) and file name.

Then I copied the files back to the GPSMap62 in various ways to try to determine what changes affected the track list order on the device.

When I copied the 4 original files back they only appeared in sequence if they were copied one at a time in the sequence required.  Copying the earliest file first, then the next earliest then the next one then the most recent file last resulted in the correct order just like when they get saved on the device.  If the files are copied in the reverse order they appear in the track list with the oldest track at the top and the newest at the bottom.  If the files are copied back out of sequence that's how they appear in the track list.

Also the alpha/numeric embedded names of the tracks have an influence on the track list order.

I also renamed some of the files with nonsense names but left the embedded track names.  These tracks still appeared in the track list correctly.

So part of the criteria of the device firmware for the track list order seems to be the track name (not the filename) and the sequence the files get copied to the device.

However, I've tried the same process with the files I downloaded for the Camino de Santiago trip but they are still showing out of sequence.  Maybe it's because those tracks don't have any date/time and elevation data with each track point.

More testing and tea required . . .



Sorted it out ! ! !

After another internet search I found some similar queries from several years ago.

The tracks (and I'm assuming routes and waymarks as well) are listed in a Garmin device (not just a GPSMap62) depending on how far away the first track point (or waymark) is from your current location.

I'd already checked the GPX files I have for my Camino de Santiago trip and compared first points, last points, most northerly point, etc.  But, the tracks for trip are all a similar distance (about 760/790 miles) away and go roughly in an arc from my current location in the UK.  So even though one track might seem slightly more to the North than another track, the first track point might be further away so it gets positioned further down the list.

So when I get to my starting location in Spain the tracks should all list in sequence as each one will be further away from the previous one.  If you had a circular multi day trip where you ended up back at your start point, then the list would still be out of sequence as the last tracks would be nearer than those in the middle of the trip - and the sequence would keep changing as you progressed.

Garmin support couldn't give me that information though!



Good find!  8) I knew this was true with waypoints on automotive devices, and has been a complaint for a long time. Didn't realize it was also the case with handhelds. They really should give you a choice of sorting. And their iPhone app "StreetPilot" actually had that option, which I really liked. But Garmin killed that app, I guess they felt it was hurting sales of their dedicated devices.  >:(


Just done another couple of tests to confirm that's the way it lists the tracks. So you can try this to check your device or series of tracks.

1. In Basecamp, draw two parallel tracks with just start points and end points, very close together going North from your current location (your home) with "Track 2" starting slightly further away than "Track 1". They only need to be quite short - say 200 feet/metres. Load the 2 tracks on to your device. Turn on your device and wait for it to get a position fix. Check the track list and "Track 1" should be at the top then "Track 2" next, because the first track-point of "Track 1" will be the closest of all your tracks to your current location.  Select "Track 1" and from the menu invert the direction of the track, so now it goes North to South towards your home (on the GPSMap it's "Copy Reversed"). Go back to the track list and now "Track 2" should be at the top and "Track 1" next because the first track point of "Track 1" has been moved 200 feet/metres further away.

2. If you have a series of tracks you want to check the order of, go to the satellite page and turn off the GPS (on the GPSMap62 it's "Use with GPS off"). Then in the same menu use the "Set location on map" option to move the arrow on the map (your position) to somewhere way before the start location of your trip. My Camino trip in Spain is about 780 miles South of my home and the trip goes East to West so I moved about 800 miles South East to somewhere in central Europe. It helps if you zoom out a long way to move the arrow more quickly and it does not matter if you go off the edge of your map. Go back to the Track List screen and your series of tracks should be in sequence. So for example: if you were hiking the Pacific Crest Trail from South to North, move the position arrow to somewhere in Mexico and all the PCT tracks would be in sequence up to the Canadian border.

So on a Garmin device, alpha-numeric naming of the tracks and GPX files has no effect on the sorting of the track list. Nor does the date/time the file was created, saved or exported. The only criteria is your current location.

Well, that was another few days of my life wasted. I think it's time to put the kettle on again!!!


Just loaded all the 48 tracks for my Camino de Santiago trip on to a friend's old Etrex Legend HCx and guess what - they all listed in alphanumeric order straight away!!!  ???