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Budbrew

Best Gps For Deer Hunting!

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I am looking for a really good gps for deer hunting. I need a GPS that exceeds in Topographical Detail as well as the fact that it must be a color unit. I have been looking a both Magellan units and Garmin, and can't seem to make up my mind. Can someone help me out? Thanks :D

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Before I found this sport/hobby, I wanted a GPS mainly for deer hunting and a little ice fishing.

 

I had all but settled on the Lowrance Hunt. Their Topo maps are supposed to be the best. It was designed with hunters in mind.

 

Great unit.

 

But, it isn't color. If it were, I would probably already own one. Plus, upon discovering geocaching, I think I like the Garmin units for all around use. But, that's personal opinion, your results may vary.

 

If you need color, you gotta look at the GPSMAP 60CS / 60C (no compass). Of course, the Vista C / Legend C would work well also.

 

Best for Deer hunting is a tough criteria....

 

Good luck.

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I hear that Garmin's Topo detail are that great. I have been more leaning to Magellan's Explorist 600 but leary about descision. :D

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After reading this thread, I have sworn off anything made by Magellan.

 

I know they probably make a good unit, and anyone can get a lemon, but that's a lot of problems.

 

Again, that's an opinion, it was free, and with most things in life, you get what you pay for.

:D

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Having been a hunter, navigator and now a geocacher, I have found that all the GPS topo programs are not detailed enough to be of any use in hunting situations, and of little use in hiking situations. Hunting on horseback maybe is a different story. My preference is also toward Garmin because they are the leader and compatible with various software other than Garmin's own. In hunting, all I use is waypoint navigating and marking capability, track log capability and an occasional route. For example, I recently walked the perimeter of the property I can hunt by going from posted sign to the next posted sign., all the while tracking with the log feature. I then downloaded that to the computer and made the track log into a route which I keep on the GPS. When my position and the route appear on the screen, as long as I am insde the route I know I am on my huntable property. I also set up a route and store it on the GPS which represents the 450 foot safety zone away from occupied dwellings.

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If Garmin is the way to go, which unit would be better the 76CS or 60CS? I need some Magellan users to pipe in and give me their thoughouts.

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Best for deer hunting? For that I'd got to go with stable receptions under tree cover. That's Magellans Sport Trock Pro, the Sport Track Color (the color screen isn't as good as the Explorists...) and the Merdians.

 

Most of those are black and white but the Magellan averaging that causes a boomerange effect while hunting a cache also keep the GPS more stable in the woods.

 

If you go with an External Antanea capable GPS then they all work well under tree cover.

 

Edit: Good reception and stable are different things. The garmins get good reception but the lack of averaging has the GPS jump around more under tree cover.

Edited by Renegade Knight

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One thing to keep in mind is that most if not all the GPS's that I just mentioned are being discontinued. That may mean great deals are to be had, or it may just mean you will be the only kid on the block with a GPS and no support.

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If Garmin is the way to go, which unit would be better the 76CS or 60CS?

That's a matter of personal choice. Before you decide that, make sure you hold each one in your hand. The 76 is much larger than the 60 and the buttons are on top of the screen. If that fits your hand, then it may be the way to go.

 

They are very similar, other than that. The 76 has twice the memory and it floats.

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my magellan meridian platinum is great, and gets consistently good reception even under the thick tree cover up here in the Adirondacks...I have topos loaded of the surrounding area, it has a barometer, compass useable at any angle you hold the unit at, moon and sun info (rise/fall/direction), and lists hunting and fishing good vs bad times. It has a nice big screen, with its neoprene case has survived drops and dunkings, and seems to run forever on 2 AA batteries.

 

just my $0.02

 

nfa-jamie

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If you want really good Topo detail, consider a Lowrance iFinder H20 with Mapcreate Topo. The topo detail on the Lowrance software is much better than Garmin's or Magellan's. Its not a color unit, but the detail is so good, color really isn't needed.

 

It also gets better reception under trees than the Gargellan units I've used.

 

If you go with Garmin, consider the Legend C or Vista C. They are nice and compact units (fit easily in your pocket) and have a rep for very good reception.

 

Though their memory is somewhat limited (24megs), you can fit quite a large area with Mapsource Topo in the Vista C or Legend C units.

Edited by briansnat

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I had a Meridian Platinum and was quite satisfied with it except that I really wanted color. I've been *reasonably* satisfied with my Explorist 500 (which seems to not have as many problems as the 600 is showing out of the gate) for hiking. Color makes interpreting the topo data easier, and I like the smaller size of the unit. Of the extra features of the 600 over the 500, only the magnetic compass is of value.

 

My biggest gripe with the Magellan units are related to the limitations of DirectRoute, the autorouting software. The Garmin autorouting capabilities are much better.

 

Personally I would disagree with the observation that GPS topo maps are of *no* use. A good paper map certainly has its advantages over a GPSr, but there are some advantages with the GPSr, too. It's good to have both.

 

You should take a look at the quality of the maps on the Magellan site, which allows you to look at your area of interest. I *think* that the Garmin web site has something similar.

 

Bottom line: I think the explorist 500 is stable enough to warrant consideration, but the 600 needs a firmware update to shake out some bugs that you would have to live with for awhile. The Garmin 60c variants are very popular. If I were you I'd probably be steered most by the quality of the maps; if there's no significant difference *and* you don't need the SD memory capabilities, the 60c/s would be my choice.

 

Edit: I also regard Brian's opinion above as well-informed (I'm relatively ignorant of Lowrance offerings). I'd still favor color, myself.

Edited by embra

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If you want really good Topo detail, consider a Lowrance iFinder H20 with Mapcreate Topo.  The topo detail on the Lowrance software is much better than Garmin's or Magellan's.  Its not a color unit, but the detail is so good, color really isn't needed.

 

It also gets better reception under trees than the Gargellan units I've used.

Or iFinder Hunt:

 

http://www.lowrance.com/outdoor/Products/ifinderhunt.asp

 

Specifically designed for hunting:

 

http://www.lowrance.com/outdoor/hunting.asp

 

"iFINDER® Hunt™: The all-new, waterproof iFINDER® Hunt™ features exclusive, hunting-specific graphic icons to mark your tree stands, game signs, as well as your truck or ATV positions. Includes a built-in electronic compass and barometric altimeter!

Also available with the Plus package.

 

Hunting Software

MapCreate™ USA Topo Series 6.3 - MapCreate™ USA Topo CD-ROM software, enhanced with an easy-to-use interface, integrates topographical data with U.S. state mapping detail. Hunting specific data includes:

Public hunting areas for 47 states (excludes Alaska, Hawaii and Washington state)

Game Management Units for 22 states (includes AZ, CO, IA, ID, KS, KY, MA, MN, MO, MT, ND, NE, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, SD, UT, WI, WY)

State and federal Wilderness Areas

State and federal Wildlife Refuges

Corp of Engineers land

Recreational areas

State forests

Intermittent streams

Swamps and marshes

Improved inland hydrography

Improved coastlines

Searchable USGS quad map boundaries

Hunting-specific symbols.

Also included are 2,000,000 POIs, new searching features, and much more! Go to LEI-Extras or see your local dealer for MapCreate™ CD-ROM software purchasing information."

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you want something with a Quadrifiler antenna. Better reception in the trees. Magellan Gold. As for topo maps, My magallan has many more unimproved roads/trails than the Garmin. I could tell you story after story about how a little used road on the GPS has saved my bacon more than once out in the middle of nowhere.... Also, don't get any of the etrex lines, ie, vista, etc, the display is soooo small. The Garmin mapping ones are better. More screen easier to read!

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Some more food for thought regarding software: the Meridian line is able to use the older MapSend Topo USA. Although it was criticized for inaccuracies in some parts of the country (it was pretty good where I live), it did have a lot of old logging roads and 4WD tracks that the later Topo3D lacks. Topo USA will *not* run on the explorists.

 

FWIW, I have found my explorist to be comparable to my Meridian in reception beneath leaf cover.

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I'm a big time hunter. If it were me, I'd get an eTrex Vista C.

 

The reason for the C is that the Compass will let you get a bearing to a downed deer or another hunting location from a treestand when you can't move. A GPS without a compass can not do that. The Barometer does a fairly good job of forecasting short term weather changes.

 

The eTrex units fit easily in a shirt pocket. You won't know it's there unless you need it.

 

The color units have USB ports. It is getting almost impossible to find a computer now days with a serial port. Plus, USB ports are about 30 times quicker than serial ports.

 

As far as software goes:

If you hunt the same places a lot, I'd suggest getting Topo. If you like to travel to hunt new places, I'd suggest City Select. If you fish too, Fishing Hotspots would make a lot of sense.

 

I kept my Vista after I upgraded to the 60CS simply for the shirt-pocket fit when I'm hunting.

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