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Hiking with Nuvi 260W (and most others): not bad at all!


aud78
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Temporary not having any hiking GPS unit I decided to check out what my now discontinued Nuvi 260W was capable off. To my big surprise hiking experience was comparable if not better than my two previous outdoors units. With virtually no effort and zero cost I had very detailed Topos and with a reasonable effort my large track library was rendering as bright orange lines. Geotagging couple dozen photos was a breeze and I had some unexpected nice features like beeping when approaching an easy to miss trail intersection. I thought I will share my not-too-detailed “howto” here. Feel free to inquiry about any step if you need help. Please note that on other Nuvis menu names may differ from my 260W.

 

Configure hiking friendly settings (Easy)

 

1. Enable recorded track display (Tools->Settings->Map->Trip Log->Show)

 

2. Change map to 2D (Tools->Settings->Map->Map View->Track Up)

 

3. Change default vehicle icon to feet icon (Tools->Settings->Map->Vehicle->Change…)

 

Upload topos to Nuvi (Easy)

 

1. Install Mapsource

 

2. Download/install Topos for your state(s)

 

3. Using Mapsource, send to the unit segments you want

 

4. On the device, disable the build in City Navigator map and enable the one you uploaded (Tools->Settings->Map->Map Info)

 

Upload your tracks to Nuvi (Moderate)

 

Note: as Nuvi does not render uploaded GPX tracks, the only way I was able to get tracks rendered was by creating a transparent map.

 

1. Install MapMan, cGPSMapper Free and MapSet Toolkit

 

2. Configure MapMan and MapSet Toolkit to point to installed cGPSMapper

 

3. Launch MapMan and start new map

 

4. Import your GPX files

 

5. Convert tracks to lines (Tools->Convert->Tracks to Line; select all your tracks; under “Convert to” choose how you want your tracks to appear on the map (after couple experiments I found that “Road: Arterial Route” renders as orange line which contrasts well with green, white or black background and is easy to distinguish from Topo contour lines); click “Ok”)

 

6. Export map (Export->Map and optionally compile/upload; give it a name and some unique ID; check “transparent map”; click “Ok”; answer “Yes” once prompted to create an image file; choose “No” when prompted to upload to GPS).

 

7. Launch MapSet ToolKit

 

8. Click “Select IMG”, chose the folder you save your MapMan files, click “Ok”, select [iD].img file and click “Add”

 

9. Choose mapset directory, type mapset name you wish, enter any number in “family ID” and “Product Code” fields.

 

10. Check “Install in Mapsource” and click "Start”

 

11. Start MapSource (restart if it is running) and send your new map to the GPS unit

 

Geotag your pictures (Easy)

 

1. Make sure your camera’s clock is correct before shooting

 

2. Make sure GPS is on and has acquired satellite connection when you are shooting :laughing:

 

3. Launch gpicsync, point it to the picture folder

 

4. Connect the unit, click “GPS file”, and point it to “[Garmin Drive]:\Garmin\GPX\Current.gpx”

 

5. Set the UTF Offset to the difference between your local time and GMT (in EST case it’s “-5”)

 

6. Click “Synchronize!”

 

Beeping when approaching track intersection (Moderate)

 

1. Launch Google Earth and load your tracks there

 

2. Create a folder in My Places

 

3. Add placemarks on the intersections of the trail you are planning to hike and save them in the new folder

 

4. Save the folder as KML and convert it to GPX (e.g. using gpsbabel)

 

5. Load the GPX into your Nuvi using Garmin’s POI loader and set the desired proximity alert

 

Limitations:

 

1. 260W’s screen is absolutely unreadable on a bright day (although in a store it seems to be much brighter than Oregon). You will need to bump up the backlight to 100% AND find a shade

 

2. Battery capacity makes all-day hike impossible. In “lock screen” mode the most I got was 5 hrs (although with frequent map browsing with backlight at 100%)

 

3. No way to use the unit in portrait layout. Still, amount of pixels available for map of what's in front of you is 2-4 times larger than on PN-40

 

Too much is written already on geocaching with Nuvi, so I'll skip on that.

 

NuviHike.png

 

Orange lines are trails from my library.

 

I will be happy to answer any questions.

 

Aud

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Based on your screen shot, you have the newer 260W which is a rebadged 255W.

 

I have not seen the "1. Enable recorded track display (Tools->Settings->Map->Trip Log->Show)" on the older model.

Yes, my 260 does not have a Trip Log feature (Tracks), but my 255W does.

 

Nice post, Aud, showing what can be done with these GPSrs.

Edited by EScout
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Notnormal, I haven’t seen the other version of 260W but based on what I’ve read in forums apparently I have the newer one.

 

Kallt, I just uploaded your custom vehicle to my Nuvi and it is really awesome! Thanks.

 

Rygel, I tested everything on 265WT and it worked fine. The only potential issue I noticed is that in “Lock” mode the backlight is very dim but still on. That may further decrease battery life. On another hand, screen seems to be brighter than on 260W.

 

Extra info for “Upload your tracks to Nuvi”: I’ve noticed that if the name of any of the trail segments includes space, MapMan will through “Unexpected Exception”. And if mapset name includes space, MapSet ToolKit will say “Operation Aborted”. In both cases not too straightforward to figure out what’s wrong.

 

Question: has anyone managed to import trails into Nuvi in such a way that they are routable on the unit when it’s in pedestrian mode?

 

Aud

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Please HELP!!! First off thanks for the tutorial. Im trying to convert a gpx file of a trail I got from redtrails and am trying to convert it using the steps in your first post. After installing MapMan, cGPSMapper Free and MapSet Toolkit from the included links, I install them. In step 2, I configured the first line in mapman to point to where I have cGPSmapper... is that correct?

I then make a new file, no problem, import the gpx file, then, Im on step 5. Convert tracks to lines (Tools->Convert->Tracks to Line; select all your tracks; under “Convert to” choose how you want your tracks to appear on the map (after couple experiments I found that “Road: Arterial Route” renders as orange line which contrasts well with green, white or black background and is easy to distinguish from Topo contour lines); click “Ok”)...

 

no problem,

 

now on step 6. Export map (Export->Map and optionally compile/upload; give it a name and

some unique ID; check “transparent map”; click “Ok”; .... after this, it makes the MP file but gives me an error and it says it cannot find the img file in the specified folder.

the error window states:

 

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Background Task Error:

 

The image creation application has run but the image file (C:Documents and settings/ ... The folder I specified/map1.img) cannot be found.

 

Please check log file for application errors.

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

 

In the log txt. file that i can read it states ...

 

Cannot find import; DLL may be missing, corrupt, or wrong version

File "SENDG.DLL", error -1073741795

 

I just cannot make the img file. Ive tried on two different computers one with xp, the other with vista... Im thinking that I must be setting something up wrong... can someone let me know exactly what needs to be pointed to/adjusted in step 2 regarding the programs interacting with each other?? I would love to get trails on my nuvi. Thanks soo much

 

jeff

Edited by vbittnv
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I compiled my img seperately now so just ignore this post... im good. Thanks

 

Please HELP!!! First off thanks for the tutorial. Im trying to convert a gpx file of a trail I got from redtrails and am trying to convert it using the steps in your first post. After installing MapMan, cGPSMapper Free and MapSet Toolkit from the included links, I install them. In step 2, I configured the first line in mapman to point to where I have cGPSmapper... is that correct?

I then make a new file, no problem, import the gpx file, then, Im on step 5. Convert tracks to lines (Tools->Convert->Tracks to Line; select all your tracks; under “Convert to” choose how you want your tracks to appear on the map (after couple experiments I found that “Road: Arterial Route” renders as orange line which contrasts well with green, white or black background and is easy to distinguish from Topo contour lines); click “Ok”)...

 

no problem,

 

now on step 6. Export map (Export->Map and optionally compile/upload; give it a name and

some unique ID; check “transparent map”; click “Ok”; .... after this, it makes the MP file but gives me an error and it says it cannot find the img file in the specified folder.

the error window states:

 

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Background Task Error:

 

The image creation application has run but the image file (C:Documents and settings/ ... The folder I specified/map1.img) cannot be found.

 

Please check log file for application errors.

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

 

In the log txt. file that i can read it states ...

 

Cannot find import; DLL may be missing, corrupt, or wrong version

File "SENDG.DLL", error -1073741795

 

I just cannot make the img file. Ive tried on two different computers one with xp, the other with vista... Im thinking that I must be setting something up wrong... can someone let me know exactly what needs to be pointed to/adjusted in step 2 regarding the programs interacting with each other?? I would love to get trails on my nuvi. Thanks soo much

 

jeff

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