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New Maps for Canada, US and Mexico

Started by sockmonkey, October 08, 2020, 01:03:57 PM

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Green on Mount Adams is a bit confusing. It looks like a forest to me, but actually it is some reserved or protected area?



The Mt Adams area is both forest and a protected area.  It is managed by the US Forest Service.  The mountain is classified as a wilderness area while the rest of the Gifford Pinchot Nat Forest is all the way from "primitive" to logging.  It's little sister, 40 miles to the west is Mt St Helens, to the east is the Yakima Indian Reservation.

Early on I adopted the green color in my typ, it is/was the color used on many cgpsmapper maps here and my old Garmin 24k maps.  Of course the end user can change (with editor) what colors, etc suit them.

Now for me to bow to you.  Your maps were the biggest inspiration taking me down the osm/mkgmap  rabbit hole.   A year or two ago your maps replaced the open andro maps I had on Orux and my gps's and then I moved on from there...I'm kinda biased to another map at the moment though...

Given that there seems to be a just handful of mkgmap mapping mavens I've had to scour the web for answers (as you know there is no one stop shop) and over the past decade you have posted and contributed all over the place, which is what it takes to fill in the blanks about map making.  Gmaptool comes in handy too.  Thank You sir!


Thanks for your kind words!

I think maps of US are quite difficult to create from OSM. I suggest to make protected areas semi-transparent, because they might cover other details. See for example islands near Los Angeles.



I use the default typ and style, earlier various known wilderness/protected areas, on land, did not render at all.  After trial and error, a lot, using different typ and style I found the problem.  One of the results was the marine areas such as you pointed out were "nature reserve" color.  I did play around with draw order and resolution but found, for now, the least worst solution is to keep, as is.  I found that almost all those marine areas, on any of my maps are just sea/ocean.  In the case of those island areas near Los Angeles there may be some oil platforms, but I have # all of those sorts of point, lines and poly's in the style sheets, so they won't show up anyway.  As I pointed out in my first post, OSM is Euro centered so I've adapted the best I can for US and North America in general given I'm still learning the fine art of osm/mkgmap mapmaking.


After my last update I wondered why most if not all of the maps had grown so much, up to 40% larger!  It looks like the DEM (3d/shading) values were the cause.  Now just using basic values and it doesn't appear to affect the visuals that I can tell.  The next round of updates will be smaller download and map size;  I've also added in where state/province will display big and boldly in base camp and gps, but only normal size in orux maps


Hello Sockmonkey I am new to the community and been interested in mapping for years for my backpacking trips in Mexico. I just started out in making maps in ArcGIS but I came to this page via a search in google and found out that you already have the Mexico topos ready however I encountered that with the tutorial of installing maps in my basecamp there are problems with some programs in order to have your maps ready for base camp. I managed to download the MX-MexicoTopo Disk Image file for windows but I encountered that the program necessary to download these files to basecamp compatible files is no longer available. Do you know where can I get a program to install your maps? Thanks in advance for your help and thank you for your contribution to world mapping!!!



Welcome to GPS Files Depot, I have been around here since 2009 but didn't register until a couple of months back.  It's a great source for Garmin maps and gps related subjects.

Your issue sounds similar to a user a few weeks back though they haven't yet responded if they were/were not successful.

A Garmin image file can't really be directly installed in Basecamp it's to put on your gps, but...  JaVaWa Device Manager will allow you to view a garmin .img on a usb or virtual disk so follow those instructions or my recommended method is listed on the linked post.  Simply download the MX-MexicoTopo  the "Mac" version extract per the instructions and copy to your C:\ProgramData\Garmin\Maps folder to then be available to Basecamp.

Boyd, a long time poster here has brought up on other threads that some older Basecamp versions will not display custom maps (like mine) I am using 4.7.1 and it works, so make sure your Basecamp is up to date!

Of the maps available on GPS Files Depot there is not a universal way to get the maps to Basecamp.  The hosts of this site do offer installers to map contributors here but not all have them (like mine), some maps which are displayed here but downloaded at another site may have there own installers and methods to get maps to Basecamp and/or GPS.

As to my contributions to mapping I'm one of many and for now Garmin compatible GPS maps. I've enjoyed making them and I'm I'm glad we have this site to offer them.  It happened over months and years which finally took me down this rabbit hole...

Post back if you get things working or have further problems and best of luck on your own Mapping journey.



Quote from: sockmonkey on December 19, 2020, 05:33:57 PMBoyd, a long time poster here has brought up on other threads that some older Basecamp versions will not display custom maps (like mine)

I have not been following this thread too closely, but had the impression you were creating .gmap files for Basecamp (as opposed to the older registry-based maps). If so, then the Basecamp version probably won't matter. The Basecamp bug only affected the old registry-based map format. This was not initally clear, so there are some old threads here that claimed all maps were affected by the Basecamp bug.


I've downloaded the CA-CentralProvTopo. I tried everything but I wasn't sucessful trying to install it on a Garmin 60csx.

I can now see it in BaseCamp even though it is still an img. But I can't see it in MapInstall.

Tried a lot of things... for different purposes: MapSetTooling, ImDisk Virtual Disk Drive, JaVaWa Device Manager, Cgsmapper, gmaptool, JaVaWa map converter. Some of these software were useless, some did their things but didn't help at the end of the day.

I have no clue now... :(



Sorry you are having trouble getting the map on your 60csx.  Some others on this site may have more to add about your model since I don't have that same model but...

When I was doing some early testing I used my etrex 30 and an old etrex hcx vista.  The 30 will accept multiple maps in named format and cards up to 32gb.  The vista is limited to 4gb card and one mapset.  My quick research showed the 60csx is limited to a 4gb card.  It looks like my vista is similar to yours.  There are a couple of routes (no pun intended) to pursue:

-Make a copy of the CA-CentralProvTopo and rename it gmapsupp.img (older models will ONLY accept this name.  On your gps the folder on your sd card must be named Garmin exactly as I typed it.  Copy and paste the gmapsupp.img into the Garmin folder.  This is all assuming that your gps is attached to your computer and the proper usb cable is used for 2 way communication between the computer and device.  Remove cable and power cycle gps and maps should now load.  Keep in mind if you have other maps on the card they will be overwritten.  Get some more 4gb cards or learn to format and partition larger size cards to 4gb or less to swap out cards if needed.  I have about 8 2-4gb cards that I used in the past for the vista.

-One possibility that mapinstall cannot see your gps is that your basecamp version is older than 4.7.1, so make sure you basecamp is currrent.  There are other threads here about this. this on touches on your situation, so you might try using mapsource as well.

You are not the first or will be the last who faces challenges getting maps to their gps regardless if the are Garmins own maps or custom made Garmin compatible maps.  Be persistent, expect to learn and be frustrated and eventually succeed.  Let us know how it goes.



Thanks! That gmapsupp worked! :)

God! Wish I had read this somewhere 2 days ago. Lost a few hours there!

Thanks again!



Updated US-AlaskaTopo!  Since the last update I've gain a little more knowledge into the Open Street Map world.  The last map was made with the most current at the time, and the only data I used, but not necessarily the most complete.   When I downloaded the most recent Alaska "extract" several land areas were flooded in in coastal areas.  I also compared the extract to previous versions which didn't have the flooding and also had a somewhat more complete displaying of several prominent boundary's (ANWR for one).  As the "community" can edit OSM they can add, remove or change the data.  Mostly people do so correctly, but not always.  Alaska is a small population state and of course a big area.  Some data has never been added and it looks like some was deleted and not re uploaded.  What one may see using OSM on the web is not necessarily what is available in the data that is downloaded as an extract and visa versa, I plan on investigating this in the future.

With that said I'll now talk about the Alaska update.

I lived in Alaska and at one time or another visited many of the units within the Alaska State Park system.  As near as I can tell several of the larger state park unit boundary's (and trails) have been submitted to osm and are available as part of the data extract, but most of the 150+ units had not.  I went to the Alaska DNR website and downloaded the boundary's and trails and merged those with a slightly older osm data extract  to process to what we can now see.  I fully expect to upload the State Park boundary's and trail to osm in the near future.

NPS, Forest Service, BLM and UFWS land boundary's seem to come and go.  Either "accidentally" deleted, incorrectly tagged or some other reason.  In order to make sure I was including what I wanted in the map I went to the respective land management entity, download boundary data and merged it like i did State Park data.  I need to do more research but intend to upload or re upload missing data as appropriate.

As I've analyzed and made my various maps Alaska has stood out as being more incomplete when using just OSM data which is why I've supplemented it with other sources.  Hopefully this gives the user a less incomplete map for whatever purposes they may have.



Your Monkey Maps are awesome! 

I have lurked around GPS file depot for years.    Never found exactly what I wanted and tried making my own maps.   I did make a transparent contour overlay for the Canadian Rockies but it had many broken contours at tile boundaries.    Anyway  - your CA-WestProvTopo is just what I have been looking for.     I just installed it on my Vista HCx.    Now if the navigation toggle switch would just cooperate.   


Thank you for the compliment on the WestProvTopo.  I've enjoyed (mostly) the whole process of making the maps I have.  I'm happy that others may find them useful for their purposes.  While I didn't set out do this to receive accolades, it is appreciated.  I understand what you maybe went through on your overlay.  Mapmaking is less "trial and error" and more "error and sometime success".   Thanks again and enjoy.