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Started by gasgas, March 18, 2021, 12:25:53 PM

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Hi Folks;
More and more I see the forest service posting forest trail information in the
form of 'Avenza Maps' instead of 'GPX ' files.

Is there any way a guy could convert avenza maps over for a Garmin ?

Take Care;


Wow, never heard of that before. Some very quick research shows they're an online platform for use on mobile devices and mapmakers can sell their maps through their store... for a "modest" 50% comission  ::) Suppose they should get some credit for that however, Garmin just tells third party mapmakers to "get lost" if their work covers any area that Garmin already covers (basically, the whole world).

Anyway, as far as I can tell, it is only a way to use their maps on your phone with their app. The Forest Service website says:

"The Avenza Maps Mobile App, developed by Avenza Systems Inc., is available as a free download from iTunes and the Android Play Store. The app provides access to Forest Service maps, such as motor-vehicle-use maps, which are free while pages from national forest atlases are 99 cents and forest visitor maps are $4.99. Prices are pending for other agency maps."

The FAQ on the Avensite site makes it pretty clear you can't do what you want...


No, downloaded maps are delivered to the buyer's Avenza Maps account and may not be printed, shared or redistributed to other users. Downloaded maps can only be used in the Avenza Maps app and are not compatible with other apps or map readers."


Thanks alot Boyd;

  Thanks for doing the research. I have a 7" drivesmart mounted on my ATV.
Seems like I'm always looking around for trail maps that I can download.
Planning a trip to Montana and S Dakota this summer. Always looking for more
Best for riding is to have maps with' just roads and trails showing' and with no topo lines .

      Take Care;


It's a shame that government agencies are using proprietary map formats for their maps. I have nothing against using private companies, but the data should be available in formats that can be used without commercial software. For example, the USGS is now storing large datasets on AWS (Amazon Web Services) and streaming web data from ArcGIS but these are still free and use open standards.


HI Boyd;
It seems like there's no standard on the map data that's supplied from
forest to forest. Some do better than others. A guy knows they have the Data.
I guess it doesn't hurt to ask.

  Take Care;



I saw this and thought I'd opin in with my .02

In addition to displaying the maps I've been making, Orux maps will display geopdf's as well as several other formats.  Orux is free from the authors site (optional to donate) or pay for the googleplay version which doesn't really give you any more functionallity.  It's android only so use your own or get some old phone on ebay and a micro sd and your set.  There is a learning curve to the app, but it has A LOT of features.  I've been using it for 5+ years and it's great.  I've also tried a lot of other apps (though not Avenza) both the free and (cough, cough, pro, cough, cough versions) of other apps and they seem lacking.

The FS geopdf's are basically quads with designated trails, etc.  On a computer various layers can be peeled away for viewing though it is complete map on Orux.  Personally I'm weary of most of the paid, subscription or "in app purchase" models as comparable solutions can be found with a little bit of work on the users end.  Give this a go and see if it works for your needs.  You can always buck up later if it doesn't.  If you have any more questions you can post here or pm me and I'll see if I can help.



Thanks Sockmonkey;

This is great info .I'm going to look over Orux Maps, it could do the trick.

I could get an I pad and go with Apps, but I'm all set up with my Garmins.

Most of the time ,the maps on this site pretty much cover about everything.

I'm going to play around with these 'geopdf's you found me.

     Take Care,


It's funny, I'm working on a gps web app for phones and have been looking for public map servers that I can add (already have over 100). A few days ago I found the forest service site and was initially excited by all the maps there. Spent awhile looking and got discouraged however, each of these is pretty crude, just displaying a certain type of feature instead of a complete map. I played around for awhile trying to combine them with other maps but had limited success as there are some technical issues (some of the maps aren't transparent, for example).

Anyway, here's the root directory of the available map services, there are a lot of maps in the enclosed folders.

Maybe you can find something of interest? I had other things to do and  moved on, but was planning to revisit these at some point. I'm open to adding these to my app if they're useful. You can view the maps by clicking "View in ArcGIS Online Map Viewer" in most cases. But keep in mind, the base map that is shown there is a proprietary ArcGIS product, I would need to use a different background map. And as I said, that doesn't always seem to work.

Here's my web app, it's free with no registration or advertising. Works on iPhones and Android Phones. Although it works as a web site, for the best experience you should install it. That just takes a second, see the instructions in the Help Menu. It also works on computers, but it's been optimized for smaller touch screen devices.

This app is now the focus of all my map-making work. I'm done with Garmin and am discontinuing all my downloadable maps. Will be adding lots more maps and new features to the app, I work on it every day.  :)


I've used the shapefiles and merged them with USGS data to make some Garmin maps.
Email me if you want a link to Montana.
I can make the same map in Mapsforge that Orux will handle.


Thanks Boyd + jolly47roger;

So, I dug through the government links you guys sent me.

I came across this page where you can make an KML file  with

optional layers:

I think this will do the trick. Thank a lot for the help.

    Take Care,