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Do you use a GPS when trail riding?

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  • Do you use a GPS when trail riding?

    There are many trails near me, but there are no published maps. Now that I am finally getting my own trailer, there are some really gorgeous trails I'd like to go on, but not get lost. Does anyone use a personal GPS for trail riding? If so, which one? I just want something that will help me get back to the truck and trailer!

  • #2
    Nope, but I obviously need one -- was riding in forest last week, and had to get off the trail due to downed trees -- somehow I managed to get all turned around. The sun was going down, so at least I knew which direction to go toward. Seriously would like to know of a good GPS for riding.


    • #3
      Garmin E-Trex Voyager. Turn it on and go. It leaves a "breadcrumb" trail on your screen, so all you have to do is follow yourself back

      Then you can upload your trail to a software program, such as National Geographic Topo, so you can see where you were on a map.

      You can also load your trail to http://www.gpsvisualizer.com/ which shows you where you went on satellite photographs
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      • #4
        If you have a smart phone they have gps apps that will work as well as the Garmin and then you only have one device.

        You don't need cell phone reception for the gps to work, it is much more sensitive than the cell signal.

        If you look up the apps available with a gps and mapping guide, you'll be amazed at the choices. Many of them also offer the opportunity to upload to the internet.


        This is just one example.


        • Original Poster

          I do have a smart phone--I'll have to look into using that. The only thing is that turning the GPS on often really sucks up the battery, especially if it's looking for a cell signal the entire time.


          • #6
            Absolutely, after giving up after waiting for years to hook up with someone to play trail guide for me. I got a Garmin 60csx over 2 years ago, and it gave me confidence to get out and explore on my own. You can see how much exploring I've done at www.everytrail.com - search "Natchaug"

            Garmins are highly rated and I agree, except I will caution you that they're not always as user-friendly & intuitive as they should be ... they're notorious that way.

            Use the "belt & suspenders" approach when attaching one to your belt. My first time out, I relied on the belt clip alone. It attaches to a screw-in button on the back of the unit. Works fine UNTIL the button unscrews itself and your expensive, dull grey GPS unit drops off without your realizing it! I was lucky & found it not too far back up the trail, despite its tendency to fade into the color of the ground. Now I use both the belt clip and a tether that attaches to a belt loop.


            • #7
              Yes, but not to use as a GPS. I have a Garmin Forerunner and use it to keep track of my hours (for the Arab Frequent Rider Program) and my mileage (for my own information and training). It has a limited "mapping" function, which is pretty useless if you are trying to find your way to or from somewhere.