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Canada Topo Map

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Yes it's good and for $140 for the whole country it's a good deal. It does show all grid roads in Alberta but some smaller trails and cutlines are left out. You can use the map viewer on the Garmin website to look for yourself.


It's now possible to make homemade topomaps for Garmins but it's a rather involved process.

Edited by PDOP's
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It is a nice to have, but not required, we have just started and have done 15 caches and the first 13 were without any maps but the ones that came with the Garmin Legend. We are from a small town in southern ontario that showed only 2 roads orginally and now with the Topo almost all roads are shown, so worth the money but not required if you can't afford to dish out the $140 now.


Waterfall Crew

Edited by Waterfall Crew
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In hindsight, I wouldn't have bought the Garmin Topo Canada, and in fact I might not have bought a mapping GPS at all. I just don't use it, as I use computer and paper-based maps. When actually navigating, I don't use the map display much, and that also makes the lovely colour screen kind of useless.


I think I should have bought something like the Brunton Multi-Navigator -- that they appear to have discontinued -- as I find I get a suprising amount of utility out of the electronic compass and pressure altimiter in my Vista C, more so than the maps.


But I'm also talking about using the GPS for a variety of navigation, searching and outdoor purposes.


For geocaching, you only need the most basic of GPS units. Between the description and free mapping services like Google, you can pinpoint exactly where the cache is and how to get there before you even start.


In fact, I used Google Earth to find a cache recently. It's great for ones that pop up at work when you don't have a GPS. :)

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I have the Topo Canada maps but must confess I seldom use them on my GPS. The detail in many parts of the country is rather coarse and the odd-ball metric conversions of spot elevations are annoying. Sadly, one cannot switch between Imperial & SI elevations.


It is however useful for my job which involves determining microwave radio path viability.


Just my 2 cents. YMMV

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I always use the Garmin Topo maps on my unit, and swear by them. I must admit, though, that before I got a colour unit, the topo map could confuse at close zoom levels. It was easy to confuse a contour line with a stream.


The topo map sections with cities are also smaller than the same map in Metroguide, so you can load more map area into your GPSr.


I love having the topo maps so I always can tell the lay of the land, especially how far up or down and how steep it is.

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Wolfzone, there isn't any TopoZone "software" at all, and we have no maps of Canada. Unlike the United States, Canadian topographic maps carry a copyright and the government insists on being paid royalties if we want to display them for free on the Web. A business strategy that makes you keep paying for things you keep giving away is hard to sustain for very long! We've had a standing offer to Natural Resources Canada for over five years now - if we can obtain Canadian topos on the same or similar terms as the US ones, we'll put them up on TopoZone for free. We don't get the US maps for free - a complete set of topos costs over $30,000 - but we only have to pay once.


- Ed


Ed McNierney

President and Chief Mapmaker


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