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National Geographic TOPO! with Garmin?

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Can the National Geographic TOPO! State Series maps be used as custom maps for Garmin GPS units that support custom maps? If so, anyone done that and have the steps to complete it?

 

Thanks,

 

JT

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No why would you want to anyway?

Probably because is new to all of this, paid an arm and a leg for the NatGeo maps, is looking at the price for Garmin 24K maps, and does not realize that he can get free topo maps for his Garmin at gpsfiledepot.com!

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Well, I"ve been using TOPO! for years on my computer and it works great. Is there a better solution? Are the Garmin 24K series better? What are these free maps you speak of? Are they good quality? What do you do?

 

Thanks!

 

JT

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Well, I"ve been using TOPO! for years on my computer and it works great. Is there a better solution? Are the Garmin 24K series better? What are these free maps you speak of? Are they good quality? What do you do?

 

Thanks!

 

JT

Dial up www.gpsfiledepot.com and you'll find good topo maps there. You select the tiles you need and it builds a map file for your Garmin. There's a decent tutorial there on how to do it and load them, too. The exact process varies a bit based upon which model Garmin you have and how it deals with maps, and whether it will hold or need (based upon size of your selections) an SD card or uSD card. So what model DO you have?

 

As I noted in another thread, I keep the entire state of Colorado at 24K in less than 200MB of space on my Oregon.

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Thanks for the info!

 

"So what model DO you have?"

 

I"m looking to purchase one soon. Looking at the eTrex 30 or Dakota 20. Looks like the Dakota could take user maps, but the eTrex has some conflicting info.

 

JT

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I have the 62ST (and 4 other older Garmin models).

 

If, like me, you are a fan of the USGS-style topo maps, Garmin prrovides some USGS map imagery download capabilities through BirdsEye subscription. Some info:

 

http://gpstracklog.com/2011/05/garmin-birdseye-topo-us-and-canada.html

 

They had some initial bugs but seem to have worked through them. I have the old Wildflower Topo! maps which are USGS-based and I have always liked working with the USGS maps here in the Pacific NW - I prefer their display of permanent snowfields, glaciers, etc. The BirdsEye products have so far played well with my 62ST.

 

Dave

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Well, I"ve been using TOPO! for years on my computer and it works great. Is there a better solution?

Yes, unlike your NG maps, GPS maps are inside your GPS and automatically center on your exact position. You move, the maps move. No longer do you have to triangulate to determine your position, the marker shows you position in real time.

 

Are the Garmin 24K series better?

Yes and no, the NG's are certainly prettier, but the NG's are only single level, most Garmin maps are 4-level, meaning instead on a single 24K map, you have a 24K, 250K, 1M, 5M scale map that automatically switch as you zoom. Each level drops detail so your can see the forest from the trees. The custom maps in your OP are only 24K and on a 2" screen that is way too much detail except when looking at a few hundred yards.

 

What are these free maps you speak of? Are they good quality?

There are multiple 3rd party Garmin maps free and fee, as always you get what you pay for. A modern GPS can easily hold 4 large states at 24K in memory, that's like 10,000 paper quads. Hence, you don't have to print a new map for each trip, how I hated that, especially when my plans changed and I went somewhere else. Also, a GPS can hold multiple maps from different publishers: ie Garmin and 3rd party, simply switch as the need arises.

 

What do you do?

I've totally abandoned paper maps in favor or GPS vector maps. Not as pretty, but knowing my position w/o triangulation is worth a lot. Record tracks, odometer functions, record waypoints, now even photo geo-tagging. Because I live in Colo, I use the Above the Timber topos, not free but very inexpensive.

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They had some initial bugs but seem to have worked through them. I have the old Wildflower Topo! maps which are USGS-based and I have always liked working with the USGS maps here in the Pacific NW - I prefer their display of permanent snowfields, glaciers, etc. The BirdsEye products have so far played well with my 62ST.

The Above the Timber topos display snowfields/glaciers inside your GPS, worth a look.

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They had some initial bugs but seem to have worked through them. I have the old Wildflower Topo! maps which are USGS-based and I have always liked working with the USGS maps here in the Pacific NW - I prefer their display of permanent snowfields, glaciers, etc. The BirdsEye products have so far played well with my 62ST.

The Above the Timber topos display snowfields/glaciers inside your GPS, worth a look.

 

Followed your advice and checked these out. They are quite nice - I went ahead and bought the Wash state map. Nice supplement/option to the others I have downloaded.

 

Dave

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Followed your advice and checked these out. They are quite nice - I went ahead and bought the Wash state map. Nice supplement/option to the others I have downloaded.

 

Dave

I'd be curious, at some time in the future, if you'd post what maps you have and the respective Pros & Cons.

 

For Colo, I have the Garmin 24K Topos and Above the Timber topos, basically I only use the AtT unless I want to use the Garmin routing. The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

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The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

 

Which maps? Inferior how?

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The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

They have definitely improved over time. I just picked up the 2011 topo for Colorado a couple of weeks back. It doesn't include trails, but I find that the individual MyTrails trail map gives me a better result than any of the topo maps for trails anyway.

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Followed your advice and checked these out. They are quite nice - I went ahead and bought the Wash state map. Nice supplement/option to the others I have downloaded.

 

Dave

I'd be curious, at some time in the future, if you'd post what maps you have and the respective Pros & Cons.

 

For Colo, I have the Garmin 24K Topos and Above the Timber topos, basically I only use the AtT unless I want to use the Garmin routing. The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

 

Here is what I have on my 62st for the state of Washington and my personal view of the pros and cons. I should note my use and background because that colors what I like and dislike wrt the map products I use. I have 5 Garmin units dating back to the 12XL. I use this unit primarily for hiking, biking, and climbing – I am not a geocacher. I am also kind of a “mapping techno-weenie” – I have done cartographic work in the past (for NOAA) and in my work as a s/w developer I wrote the navigation s/w for what I will call a “fast flying aircraft”. (That means I buy some of these things not just to address functional needs but rather because I can be obsessive.)

 

Garmin 100k Topo

Pros: Full US coverage, came with 62st

Cons: Pretty useless to me, should have saved $ and just gone with the 62s

 

Garmin 24k Topo

Pros: Routable, even on trails. Nice to have on a PC to use with MapSource and BaseCamp because you can easily create a route on trails and then view the elevation profile.

Cons: Expensive, trail coverage spotty, snowfields and glaciers not delineated

 

Garmin City Navigator

Pros: Good city street coverage, routable.

Cons: “City-oriented”, not outdoors. Routing can be strange at times. I prefer to use my nuvi for in-city navigating because of the larger, landscape-oriented screen but it is handy to have available in the 62st.

 

BirdsEye Topo

Pros: Provides a USGS map view which I like for mountain terrain. Puts the same paper map I have in my hand into my GPS unit. Also, as a nostalgia fix for me it was worth the $30 - I have developed quite an attachment to some of the USGS maps I've had for over 40 years.

Cons: Not routable, USGS maps can be dated.

 

BirdsEye Satellite Imagery

Pros: Can give a Google-like satellite image perspective that can be quite good.

Cons: There have been image quality and download issues recently. In the end, limited utility for me.

 

Misc Wash topos (gpsfiledepot)

Pros: Free, good detail, some have good trail coverage

Cons: Not routable, not multi-level, terrain delineation a mixed bag

 

Was 24k Topo (Above the Timber)

Pros: Nice product. Good detail, including trails. Good terrain delineation, including snowfields and glaciers. Multi-layered. Lots of POI.

Cons: Somewhat pricey at $50 but significantly cheaper than Garmin options. Not routable.

 

Dave

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The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

Which maps? Inferior how?

Basically, sum of the parts.

 

The only one I currently have on MapSource is called "Colorado TOPO" v1.0, things I disliked (no particular order)

- Default colors for areas and lines, poor contrast

- The entire Roaring Fork River system missing, streams there, no rivers

- Rivers not named, simply "River"

- Wilderness areas not separated by color from forest

- Base level had only interstate, no federal or state roads

- Roads frequently lack number shield

- Few trails in default line style almost invisible vs bold dashed red

- Apparent street number ranges add to clutter, useful to some, not me

 

I'm sure I could name more, but to me it is easily worth $50 for a better map, especially when I have almost $1K in receivers, it's a disease.

 

I once had a map by a forum member Fred? handle Jeepin?, IIRC it had no trails.

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The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

They have definitely improved over time. I just picked up the 2011 topo for Colorado a couple of weeks back. It doesn't include trails, but I find that the individual MyTrails trail map gives me a better result than any of the topo maps for trails anyway.

Correct me if I'm wrong, MyTrails only works as a transparent overlay in a GPS, NOT MapSource? Yes I can easily see MyTrails in MapSource, but not on top of a topo.

 

I spend a lot of time in MapSource looking for new trails to explore, not having a map to see makes MyTrails a non-starter for me.

 

As an experiment, I downloaded MyTrails and converted the Colo portion to a GPX file so I could load it to MapSource on top of a Topo. I was curious as to why so many names had so many instances? Turns out the file has never been edited and is simply one trail on top of another. Where three line segments would cover a trail, I found twenty. This happened over and over, grossly inflating the file size.

 

As to coverage, in urban areas MyTrails had somewhat more coverage than the Above the Timber maps, in BLM, NF somewhat less.

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Just downloaded the free AAT demo map for UT. Pretty small sample, doesn't even get one full national park, so quality's hard to judge. Within the next month http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/ plans to offer routable topo maps of the entire world (UK to UT).

Edited by seldom_sn

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As an experiment, I downloaded MyTrails and converted the Colo portion to a GPX file so I could load it to MapSource on top of a Topo. I was curious as to why so many names had so many instances? Turns out the file has never been edited and is simply one trail on top of another. Where three line segments would cover a trail, I found twenty. This happened over and over, grossly inflating the file size.

 

Don't know what you used to make the translation, but when I tried something like that I was seeing all the detail levels, not just Level 0. You'd need a copy of the source file to strip out the higher level elements.

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Here is what I have on my 62st for the state of Washington..............

 

Have you tried Moun10bike's Northwest topos ? They are free and I would be curious to see how you felt they compare with your other maps.

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Here is what I have on my 62st for the state of Washington..............

 

Have you tried Moun10bike's Northwest topos ? They are free and I would be curious to see how you felt they compare with your other maps.

 

Yes, I have and I missed it - thanks. To follow my original format:

 

Pros: Free (a donation is encouraged), good detail, very good to excellent trail coverage, lots of POI

Cons: Not routable, not multi-level, terrain delineation a mixed bag (to be more specific: as an example, Mt Rainier is shaded entirely green, unlike the USGS and Above the Timber maps which delineate rock and glaciers. This is a biggy for me as I travel a lot in the Cascades above the tree line).

 

Again, the pros and cons are from my usage point of view.

 

Dave

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I posted some BaseCamp screen captures of different map displays of the same area:

 

http://www.pbase.com/sparksdjs/map

 

These are of an area on Tiger Mtn, just outside of Seattle and it is interesting to see the detail and feature differences. I posted captures from:

 

Above the Timber 24k

BirdsEye Satellite Imagery

Garmin Topo 24k

Moun10bike's Northwest topos

A free map from gpsfiledepot

 

I just switched from map to map without changing settings or position, doing a screen capture at each.

 

Dave

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Thanks for all this info - VERY helpful!

 

Just so I understand correctly, if I go with the Dakota 20 (allows custom maps) I can use all the different maps/services listed. However, if I go with the new eTrex 30 (looks like no custom maps) then my only real option is the Garmin 24K series maps. ( I want these maps for hiking and backpacking.)

 

Is that correct?

 

JT

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Dave,

 

Thanks for posting those shots. The Garmin BirdsEye looks amazing! 20 years ago the Garmin 1000K was the best I could do - things have come a LONG way! Are those worth it on a small screen like the eTrex or Dakota?

 

JT

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Dave,

 

Thanks for posting those shots. The Garmin BirdsEye looks amazing!

THAT Garmin Birdseye looks amazing... and in some places, it really is pretty good. But what's served up from Garmin's servers isn't always so pretty. They will also deliver shots where the nearby area was overcast (producing dark, low contrast images), or where the area itself is overcast - you'll be looking at clouds and nothing more. Further, not all areas are covered at the same resolution. You'll find some where you'd swear you could identify the make and model of the car in the drive, and others where you can't tell a tree from a rock.

 

So FWIW, be aware that the results are variable based upon location and how recent they've been shot.

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Dave,

 

Thanks for posting those shots. The Garmin BirdsEye looks amazing!

THAT Garmin Birdseye looks amazing... and in some places, it really is pretty good. But what's served up from Garmin's servers isn't always so pretty. They will also deliver shots where the nearby area was overcast (producing dark, low contrast images), or where the area itself is overcast - you'll be looking at clouds and nothing more. Further, not all areas are covered at the same resolution. You'll find some where you'd swear you could identify the make and model of the car in the drive, and others where you can't tell a tree from a rock.

 

So FWIW, be aware that the results are variable based upon location and how recent they've been shot.

 

Exactly true - your mileage will vary. It can be a real mixed bag and there have been recent issues with variable quality. See this thread over at the garmin forums:

 

https://forums.garmin.com/showthread.php?t=19882

 

Dave

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Thanks for all this info - VERY helpful!

 

Just so I understand correctly, if I go with the Dakota 20 (allows custom maps) I can use all the different maps/services listed. However, if I go with the new eTrex 30 (looks like no custom maps) then my only real option is the Garmin 24K series maps. ( I want these maps for hiking and backpacking.)

 

Is that correct?

 

JT

 

No thats not correct. "Custom Maps" does not refer to non-Garmin maps, it refers to a way of loading a georeferenced picture as an overlay. Any of the non-garmin produced maps listed here will show up as if it was an officially produced Garmin map, and can be loaded to any Garmin that accepts maps(even Nuvi's etc).

 

More details here---> http://www.garmin.co...rail/custommaps

 

Even though the Etrex 30 doesn't list custom maps, it hasn't even been released yet, so I wouldnt hold to those specs.

 

I wouldnt worry too much about them as they have little value anyway as there are much better ways to display custom raster imagery.

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So to my original question, I could use the National Geographic TOPO! maps (as custom maps) if I printed them as .jpg file and georeferenced them? I see that would be more trouble then it's probably worth.

 

Thanks for the additional info, I will look into these different options when I get my GPS Unit.

 

JT

 

Thanks for all this info - VERY helpful!

 

Just so I understand correctly, if I go with the Dakota 20 (allows custom maps) I can use all the different maps/services listed. However, if I go with the new eTrex 30 (looks like no custom maps) then my only real option is the Garmin 24K series maps. ( I want these maps for hiking and backpacking.)

 

Is that correct?

 

JT

 

No thats not correct. "Custom Maps" does not refer to non-Garmin maps, it refers to a way of loading a georeferenced picture as an overlay. Any of the non-garmin produced maps listed here will show up as if it was an officially produced Garmin map, and can be loaded to any Garmin that accepts maps(even Nuvi's etc).

 

More details here---> http://www.garmin.co...rail/custommaps

 

Even though the Etrex 30 doesn't list custom maps, it hasn't even been released yet, so I wouldnt hold to those specs.

 

I wouldnt worry too much about them as they have little value anyway as there are much better ways to display custom raster imagery.

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The free maps are so inferior I don't even have them on my GPS' and rarely open them in MapSource.

They have definitely improved over time. I just picked up the 2011 topo for Colorado a couple of weeks back. It doesn't include trails, but I find that the individual MyTrails trail map gives me a better result than any of the topo maps for trails anyway.

Correct me if I'm wrong, MyTrails only works as a transparent overlay in a GPS, NOT MapSource? Yes I can easily see MyTrails in MapSource, but not on top of a topo.

 

I spend a lot of time in MapSource looking for new trails to explore, not having a map to see makes MyTrails a non-starter for me.

 

As an experiment, I downloaded MyTrails and converted the Colo portion to a GPX file so I could load it to MapSource on top of a Topo. I was curious as to why so many names had so many instances? Turns out the file has never been edited and is simply one trail on top of another. Where three line segments would cover a trail, I found twenty. This happened over and over, grossly inflating the file size.

 

As to coverage, in urban areas MyTrails had somewhat more coverage than the Above the Timber maps, in BLM, NF somewhat less.

 

First what you did is a violation of the copyright/use agreement you agreed to when you downloaded the map. You did not ask for or recieve my written permission to do this-if you would have complied with the use agreement and asked, I would have said yes for personal non commerical use. Multiple CO cities (including Denver) required me to sign an agreement before they would let me use their data. I have an obligation to protect the data. I expect you to promptly erase the file. I also will expect to see a donation to make up for your illegal use of my work. I am NOT kidding about this.

 

Second, besides being a software pirate, you don't know what you are talking about. The the map has two layers. One layer displays at low zooms and the other displays at higher zooms. Almost all the trails are included in both zoom levels so you will get double tracks in the gpx for all those trails. In mapsource and on your GPS, only one layer is displayed at a time. Lots of the source data (particularly from the Forest Service) has trails broken down into many segments (which is a royal pain when I go through and deal with new or conflciting data). Also the compiler breaks large lines into segments. It does not affect the map size, it just makes it draw faster.

 

I like checking out trail locations too, but I do it on my GPS. I would encourage you and others to email Garmin and tell them to make MapSource/BaseCamp display more than one map at a time. They make transparent maps too.

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They had some initial bugs but seem to have worked through them. I have the old Wildflower Topo! maps which are USGS-based and I have always liked working with the USGS maps here in the Pacific NW - I prefer their display of permanent snowfields, glaciers, etc. The BirdsEye products have so far played well with my 62ST.

The Above the Timber topos display snowfields/glaciers inside your GPS, worth a look.

 

The snowfields/glaciers are included in the USGS NHD data map authors use to make the maps. So I would be suprised to see a map without it. I have the first version of Above the Timber map for CO. One reason I did not like it was it had snowfields/glaciers showing as lakes. They were in the right place, the mapmaker just did not seperate them out from the lakes (which is real simple to do). The roads were also pretty bad-I remember even I-70 being way off. I complained about the roads and was told they are for off road use. Hopefully these problems were fixed.

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They had some initial bugs but seem to have worked through them. I have the old Wildflower Topo! maps which are USGS-based and I have always liked working with the USGS maps here in the Pacific NW - I prefer their display of permanent snowfields, glaciers, etc. The BirdsEye products have so far played well with my 62ST.

The Above the Timber topos display snowfields/glaciers inside your GPS, worth a look.

 

The snowfields/glaciers are included in the USGS NHD data map authors use to make the maps. So I would be suprised to see a map without it. I have the first version of Above the Timber map for CO. One reason I did not like it was it had snowfields/glaciers showing as lakes. They were in the right place, the mapmaker just did not seperate them out from the lakes (which is real simple to do). The roads were also pretty bad-I remember even I-70 being way off. I complained about the roads and was told they are for off road use. Hopefully these problems were fixed.

 

The Above the Timber map for Wash does a nice job of glacier display, unlike many of the others which either don't delineate them at all or, as an example, display them as a crosshatch of blue lines (Garmin 24k topo).

 

Even with just a quick check, I have seen some significant road errors in the Above the Timber map.

 

Dave

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The Above the Timber map for Wash does a nice job of glacier display, unlike many of the others which either don't delineate them at all or, as an example, display them as a crosshatch of blue lines (Garmin 24k topo).

 

Even with just a quick check, I have seen some significant road errors in the Above the Timber map.

 

Dave

 

A big part of the problem for this (and other display issues) is MapSource, BaseCamp, and GPSs display many features differently and many times the way it is displayed makes the feature hard to see, the map hard to see, or just does not make sense. MapSource will display a glacier as blue hatch lines. On the OR, a glacier is displayed as white. Here is a screen shot from my OR 550T showing a glacier (in the most beautiful spot I have ever been). The glacier is in My Topos. The screenshot also shows My Trails, My POIs, and Western Land Ownership (the pink shows Grand Teton NP and the Green shows Targee NF):

 

1312297929.jpg

 

However, map authors can overwrite these defaults with a custom typ file. You can use the typ file to tell it how to display features. For example, the default for trail is very hard to see. So the typ file for My Trails tells MapSource and the GPS to draw a thin red line for trails. You can control how any polygon (such as a glacier), line, or point displays and MapSource/BaseCamp and GPSs normally will comply with the typ file (the 60csx and older GPSs don't alway follow the typ file, but I beleive all the newer GPSs do.

 

In the early days this was extremly difficult to create typ file. You had to use hex, a compiler, and it was extremly complex. I could never figure it out. A few years ago, someone put up a website that makes it real simple to create and edit typ files. So nowadays most of the maps use a typ file to control how things display.

Edited by myotis

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Seriously you guys have no idea what you just taught me, my wife and I have over 500 finds, and we have been using the dakota 20 with just what it came with, a arrow with a pink line towards the cache, with only main highways identifable. I seriously had no idea I could put a topo map on it WOW THANK YOU...i feel dumb right now lol

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Well you can't beat free! went to gpsfiledepot...and got topo maps of south carolina (where I live)....so so so so much better improvement. I am so glad I read this thread..Thanks!

 

I had to install mapsource, cgpsmapperfree, and went ahead and installed basecamp while I was at it. LOL A little bit of a learning curve but I figured it out

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myotis -

 

Thanks for that last post of yours - I didn't realize that I was really looking at a BaseCamp (or MapSource) display issue with the glacier rendering. I just bought the 62st relatively recently and have not had the chance to use in a glaciated area and had not specifically scrolled to such an area on an installed map. My comments had been based on looking at a BaseCamp/MapSource rendering - Garmin 24k Topo does indeed display glaciers nicely on the 62st but not in BaseCamp. Your explanation clarifies this for me though I am surprised that such an issue exists when using Garmin maps with Garmin Windows s/w. I had been using a GPSMap 76s until I bought the 62st and the rendering of topo maps had never but much of an obvious issue.

 

Dave

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Well you can't beat free! went to gpsfiledepot...and got topo maps of south carolina (where I live)....so so so so much better improvement. I am so glad I read this thread..Thanks!

 

I had to install mapsource, cgpsmapperfree, and went ahead and installed basecamp while I was at it. LOL A little bit of a learning curve but I figured it out

 

Why did you install cgpsmapperfree?

 

It is a map MAKING tool. There is nothing a map USER would use it for.

 

I am asking because sometimes people get confused and use make MAKING tools and mess stuff up

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I had to install mapsource, cgpsmapperfree, and went ahead and installed basecamp while I was at it. LOL A little bit of a learning curve but I figured it out

That mapset comes as a self-installing .exe file. All you need is MapSource or BaseCamp - either will upload the mapset or portions of it to your GPSr. I believe you will have to use BaseCamp to move the geocaching information to and from the Dakota. Also see the tutorials at gpsfiledepot on selecting and uploading map data to the GPSr (do NOT use MapSetToolKit - that method is 2-3 years old and is for mapsets which do not come as self-installing .exe files).

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So to my original question, I could use the National Geographic TOPO! maps (as custom maps) if I printed them as .jpg file and georeferenced them? I see that would be more trouble then it's probably worth.

 

Thanks for the additional info, I will look into these different options when I get my GPS Unit.

 

Yes, but I would just get a BirdsEye Topo subscription instead.

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the maps I downloaded where .img files, the tutorial said to use gpsmapper to convert it so mapsource or basecamp could read it. It was one click, it searched my computer for the files and it was done in 10 seconds, I then was able to pull the maps up on mapsource and basecamp whereas before I couldn't

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As long as it works, I would not worry about it, but it sounds like you made the mistake many do or are just confused. There is a tutorial on the site on how to install img files. This is how map makers do it and many get confused and think they need to follow the tutorial. The file you download is an installer. It places imgs on your computer and makes regestry entries to tell MapSource/BaseCamp where the imgs are located. Some people than try to load those imgs into MapSource by following the tutorial. This can mess things up as the imgs are already installed. So just remeber you download the map and run the installer. That's it. My Trails (which has extensive coverage in the Carolinas-particularly the Natahella NF) is updated regularly. If you download an updated version, the installer first uninstalls the old version and then installs the new version. In the early days of map making, you had to manaully install maps and mess with the regestry. Nowadays almost all maps come with an installer.

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the maps I downloaded where .img files, the tutorial said to use gpsmapper to convert it so mapsource or basecamp could read it. It was one click, it searched my computer for the files and it was done in 10 seconds, I then was able to pull the maps up on mapsource and basecamp whereas before I couldn't

 

TheLoneGrangers, you did what you had to do if you had raw IMG files, but where did you find raw IMG files at GPSfiledepot? Please post the link.

 

As myotis and snowfleurys say. Almost everything on GPSfiledepot comes with an installer.

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TheLoneGrangers - The only SC topo on gpsfiledepot downloads as a selfinstalling .exe file (or equivalent for the MAC). When you run that file, it 'unpacks' the .img, etc. files and make the necessary changes to the registry. cgpsmapper is used by map authors to compile the .img files from source files and except for a coastal quad containing a small amount of data would have taken a lot longer. Possibly you had MapSource open when you ran the .exe file - MS (and BC) only check the registry for mapsets when they are started. Which tutorial were you using? And why?

Edited by snowfleurys

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I think there is a better way to put 7.5 minute USGS maps and many other types of marine/european topo maps on your Garmin receiver that can display custom maps. I use a program called Topofusion Pro that georeferences, tiles and loads many USGS quads to your GPS at one time. I can store a number of maps sets in the Garmin Custom map folder. In the field, my Garmin Oregon 450 displays my location on the USGS quads, zooms in and out and is spot on accurate.

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There are many places you can get georeferenced 24K USGS maps. But why would you want to use a bitmap over a vector map? Spot on accurate on a usgs 24K topo is not saying much. You cannot zoom in far without pixilization. The USGS maps are mostly out of date and many times their accuracy leaves much to be desired. Map makers have access to much better elevation and hydrology data than the USGS 24K maps use.

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Seriously you guys have no idea what you just taught me, my wife and I have over 500 finds, and we have been using the dakota 20 with just what it came with, a arrow with a pink line towards the cache, with only main highways identifable. I seriously had no idea I could put a topo map on it WOW THANK YOU...i feel dumb right now lol

 

The idea of buying a Dakota, is for the interface, form, AND map data you can add. All by itself? well... :anibad:

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