Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 3
celticrott

car navigation

Recommended Posts

My husband geocaches, not in cities, but out in the 'wilds' of NM, CO, UT, NV.  What vehicle navigation system would be good for him?  He has a 'simple' handheld unit for the caches, but I want something for driving for him.

Share this post


Link to post

In Garmin's current (diminishing) lineup for road navigation devices, the DriveSmart 51/61 is a good choice IMO. If you want to save a few dollars, look for a factory refurbished DriveSmart 50/60 (previous model). 

Share this post


Link to post
23 minutes ago, alandb said:

DriveSmart 51/61 is a good choice

That is what I use and I like it. Has voice command, and a lot of interesting features. My wife talked me into getting one for the car and one for the truck- even though there is a very quick snap on/off holder. What I would like to see is the ability to have caches show up on that - not all but selected one.

Share this post


Link to post
1 minute ago, Jayeffel said:

That is what I use and I like it. Has voice command, and a lot of interesting features. My wife talked me into getting one for the car and one for the truck- even though there is a very quick snap on/off holder. What I would like to see is the ability to have caches show up on that - not all but selected one.

If you use GSAK, there is a great macro that will load caches as custom POI's on the Garmin road navigation devices. Using the macro, you get complete cache information (difficulty, terrain, description, hints, recent logs, etc.)

Share this post


Link to post
30 minutes ago, alandb said:

If you use GSAK,

Don't think that works with Apple does it?

Share this post


Link to post

He doesn't have a 'smart' phone, just a simple flip phone.  Refuses to get a smart phone!  Can you input gps coordinates into the DriveSmart 51/61?

Share this post


Link to post
4 minutes ago, Red90 said:

 

Yes, no problem.  You can download the caches to the Nuvis.

 

https://www.gpscity.com/gps-receivers/&p=1&c=2&t=automotive+gps

 

I'm totally ignorant about gps, geocaching and anything to do  with it so please forgive my ignorance.  So any Garmin nuvi will allow you to input gps coordinates to a cache and then it will guide you to it?  Or does it have to be a specific nuvi?  He is so NOT technical so I want to get him something simple and effective for the BLM lands out here in the West.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, celticrott said:

I'm totally ignorant about gps, geocaching and anything to do  with it so please forgive my ignorance.  So any Garmin nuvi will allow you to input gps coordinates to a cache and then it will guide you to it?  Or does it have to be a specific nuvi?  He is so NOT technical so I want to get him something simple and effective for the BLM lands out here in the West.

 

A car navigation GPS can be tricky at times, because even if the destination is far off-road, the GPS tries to keep you on the road.  While driving, it's usually nice to stay on a road. :P

 

If the cache is at a guard rail, for example, you're fine.  If it's on a walking path or in a forest without a trail, the Nuvi might direct you to the point closest to the destination, then make a sharp turn into the forest.  If you select "Pedestrian mode", beware that it may try to find roads and trails where you may walk, but not necessarily the most efficient trail.  And various models of car mav do it differently!

 

My Nuvi refused to point to the cache "as the crow flies", and the icon was never directly on an off-road cache.  One time, I resorted to watching LAT and LON click up and down until I was at the correct spot.  On a circular trail, that took me forever.

 

Without special advance preparation, a car nav will show caches in its own way.  Although you load the entire cache page "GPX" file, you may only see the GC "Geocache Number" in the list, then the cache name and coordinates when you click it.  You may see no cache info at all.

 

What your husband may try is to enter a cache or two into the Drivesmart, for guidance into a cache-rich area, either as coordinates or by sending a GPX file.  Then use the handheld GPS to hike to the caches.  I use my Nuvi to get me to an unfamiliar area (and back out again), to a selected parking area.  I have all the caches loaded on my handheld GPS.  If he has a dash mount or window mount for the handheld GPS, your husband may see caches on the map as they scroll past while he's driving.  Load a bunch of Pocket Queries along a chosen route or for towns where he intends to stop, or use the "Find caches along a route" feature of Pocket Queries.

 

 

Edited by kunarion

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

I use my Nuvi to get me to an unfamiliar area (and back out again), to a selected parking area.

This is the info I needed, thank you.  Very few caches out here are in towns or near roads; they're mostly out in the back of the beyond in the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) and roads seem to appear and disappear there along with gates being closed.  He's been trapped a few times and it's taken him hours to get back out.

Share this post


Link to post
25 minutes ago, celticrott said:

This is the info I needed, thank you.  Very few caches out here are in towns or near roads; they're mostly out in the back of the beyond in the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) and roads seem to appear and disappear there along with gates being closed.  He's been trapped a few times and it's taken him hours to get back out.

 

Take a look at that "handheld unit".  You may find a "track" feature, and especially "backtrack".  It's a trail that is drawn on the screen as you walk or drive.  Follow it back out later.  The main problem with that idea is if you're on the side of a mountain with a lot of switchbacks and intersections, changing altitude, you may have trouble figuring out which stacked road is which, but that of course depends on the mountain roads in any given area.

 

This map of logging roads, for example.  Hard to see here, but every thin white line is a one-lane dirt road, most hugging a cliff, some parallel roads separated by hundreds of feet in altitude.  This image is a small portion of a giant web of cliffside one-lane roads, with logging trucks heading in either direction.  I get nervous just thinking about it!

 

 

mapUntitled-2.jpg

 

 

Edited by kunarion

Share this post


Link to post

You may also want to consider a Montana GPSr. This combines the functions of a standard handheld backwoods GPSr and a basic nuvi for on road navigation. The 610/680 models allow for unlimited geocaches to be loaded to the unit. The Montana can be mounted horizontally on the dash like a nuvi road unit, a cache selected, drive directions given, then when you get as close as you can by vehicle, the Montana can be snapped out of the cradle and used like a standard outdoor GPSr to continue guiding you to the geocache along trails etc. The Montana is the best of both worlds combined (but not the best of either alone). The Montana 610/680 may be exactly what you need.

 

More info on the Montana series here.

Edited by Atlas Cached
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

I use my Nuvi to get me to an unfamiliar area (and back out again), to a selected parking area.

OMG  I can see this is going to take a LOT of research!  I wanted to surprise him, but it looks like that's not going to happen!

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, celticrott said:

OMG  I can see this is going to take a LOT of research!  I wanted to surprise him, but it looks like that's not going to happen!

 

There are many considerations.  I bought a Nuvi (I think now the new models are "Drivesmart") with my #1 factor being that I wanted to keep it in the car.  Yet not so expensive that I didn't want to leave it in the car.  Plus I have a handheld hiking GPS that I could drop down a ravine, yet still get home afterwards, because of the car GPS.  Having two devices, often means loading caches to both in some way.

 

As Atlas Cached mentioned, the Montana 680 (and previous similar models) is both the car nav and a hiking GPS with Geocaching abilities, and has a compass with pointer for the hike.  It's somewhat bigger than the typical hiking GPS, and on the expensive side.  But you can also get a charging mount for it with a speaker, for voice street routing.  Pretty cool!

 

So if your husband pretty much drives right on top of most any cache in the wilderness, he could switch from street routing to "direct routing" once off-road.  With just one device for the whole trip.

 

Edited by kunarion
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post

For just driving,  a Garmin Drive series is great. I recommend.

But.... And there's always a but.

For geocaching, I don't like the use of Drive or Nuvi devices. Yes, you can load geocaches - they load as waypoints and it can become faffy to then remove them later - simply connecting to your computer and deleting them in basecamp doesn't remove waypoints from these devices (well, it might with the new Drive series, but it doesn't with the older Nuvis). 

For geocaching, I like to use my Oregon 600 (the 700 is good too, as is the Montana with a larger screen) which has a Nuvi-like dashboard for automotive driving. This isn't my main GPS, but with a routable map loaded, it will get you to the cache, or close enough to park and walk the rest of the way. I do have trailheads saved in my car's Nuvi, but for geocaching, I'll route with the Oregon, then switch over to my main geocaching profile to do the rest out of the car. He could maybe get away with this with his "simple" handheld, provided that it's not the eTrex 10, but those touch screen devices really do make it easy to use in the car.

Share this post


Link to post
31 minutes ago, Mineral2 said:

For geocaching, I don't like the use of Drive or Nuvi devices. Yes, you can load geocaches - they load as waypoints and it can become faffy to then remove them later - simply connecting to your computer and deleting them in basecamp doesn't remove waypoints from these devices (well, it might with the new Drive series, but it doesn't with the older Nuvis). 

 

+1

I once loaded a StreetPilot with 500 caches as "POIs", with way cool proximity alert and everything.  Yeah, that was a mistake. :rolleyes:

 

Some display things differently, better or worse, some you can search by cache name, many default to only "GC number" listed.  And you may delete the original Pocket Query GPX file, yet the POIs remain.  And its GPX and memory limits may a super tricky deal.  Chances are that if you fill your car nav with caches, you'll be back here asking how to get them back off again. :)

Share this post


Link to post

How did he find 7,360 caches without knowing how to upload to the GPS?

Share this post


Link to post
5 minutes ago, Red90 said:

How did he find 7,360 caches without knowing how to upload to the GPS?

He can upload caches to his garmin with little problem.   He's been doing that for years with obvious success.  What I'm looking for for him is a car/vehicle gps unit.  We're getting a new to us car, but it doesn't have navigation on it and I'd like to gift him that so he doesn't have a problem with the BLM roads that change constantly in NM.

Share this post


Link to post

It works the same with a Nuvi, more or less as with his handheld.  He needs to navigate to parking coordinates if they exist or use his brain to figure out where to park.  I'm pretty sure with that many finds, he is capable of figuring it out.

 

How has he been navigating in the car so far (sorry f this was mentioned, too lazy to read the whole thread)?

Share this post


Link to post

I load my Nuvi (now only on holiday, normal caching is always planned so I use Waze) from GSAK with a macro. Caches are saved as POI and I can see the icons (only cache + P icon) on screen while driving. The same caches are loaded on my Oregon 600 so the Nuvi is only used to get close to a cache, park and then the Oregon takes over.

As for GSAK use on a Mac, many are doing that so it is possible although it may not always work 100%.

I've had a few 1000 caches on the Nuvi while on holiday in New Zealand and Australia and it was very easy to see caches coming up a few kilometers ahead and stopping when we felt like it.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, Red90 said:

It works the same with a Nuvi, more or less as with his handheld.  He needs to navigate to parking coordinates if they exist or use his brain to figure out where to park.  I'm pretty sure with that many finds, he is capable of figuring it out.

 

How has he been navigating in the car so far (sorry f this was mentioned, too lazy to read the whole thread)?

LOL  He's been printing out maps on paper and taking them with him!

Share this post


Link to post

Some people like doing things the hard way!  :) Think of the money spent on paper and ink!

 

My suggestion.  Get him a nice Nuvi.  Find a friendly locally, tech savvy cacher and have them over for dinner and setup/teach how to get the caches onto both devices.  It is a lot less pain than trying to learn over the internet.

 

What is he using for a handheld?

Share this post


Link to post
On 11/6/2018 at 9:21 AM, celticrott said:

LOL  He's been printing out maps on paper and taking them with him!

After almost 7 years (initially caching solely with a Nuvi) I still do that even though I road navigate with a Nuvi and then switch to an Etrex 20x to get the cache. I even write the names of the caches next to their symbol on the map and add little notes to help with logging when I get home.

Edited by colleda
clarity

Share this post


Link to post

The man is quite the masochist!  A new handheld would also make his life a lot easier.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, Red90 said:

The man is quite the masochist!  A new handheld would also make his life a lot easier.

LOLOL  Yes, a bit, but mainly he is NOT technical at all!  

Share this post


Link to post

I think having a Drive model for the car would be great, just for general road navigation anyway. Not every logging road is on the City Navigator maps, but most of the driveable forest service and BLM roads are and, at the very least, it's an easy point of reference to look at while driving. The screens are big, and the touch screen is easy to use. You can now even create and save routes ahead of time and load them to the GPS.

But, in light of the new knowledge that he is using a very old handheld GPS, I also think that he'd do well with a newer GPS - maybe an Oregon 700, or even an Oregon 600 - they can be found for cheap on occasion.  I guess it depends whether he would enjoy a touch screen handheld model - if you're interested in going down this route, I suppose you could take him to your nearest outdoor gear shop and have him try out the Oregons, gpsmap 64 or 66 models, or the eTrex 20x or 30x. Mostly because loading geocaches onto these devices is much easier than with the older devices. But as I mentioned previously, the Oregon units have a mode that mimics a Nuvi vehicle GPS (must install a routable map), which makes it nice for geocaching. But even the other models will let you install routable maps and follow road directions to a destination.

Share this post


Link to post

In addition to the ease of loading caches on the new handheld, they will zero in on the coordinates a lot faster and more accurately if he really has the original etrex. 

Share this post


Link to post
51 minutes ago, Mineral2 said:

I think having a Drive model for the car would be great, just for general road navigation anyway. Not every logging road is on the City Navigator maps, but most of the driveable forest service and BLM roads are and, at the very least, it's an easy point of reference to look at while driving. The screens are big, and the touch screen is easy to use. You can now even create and save routes ahead of time and load them to the GPS.

But, in light of the new knowledge that he is using a very old handheld GPS, I also think that he'd do well with a newer GPS - maybe an Oregon 700, or even an Oregon 600 - they can be found for cheap on occasion.  I guess it depends whether he would enjoy a touch screen handheld model - if you're interested in going down this route, I suppose you could take him to your nearest outdoor gear shop and have him try out the Oregons, gpsmap 64 or 66 models, or the eTrex 20x or 30x. Mostly because loading geocaches onto these devices is much easier than with the older devices. But as I mentioned previously, the Oregon units have a mode that mimics a Nuvi vehicle GPS (must install a routable map), which makes it nice for geocaching. But even the other models will let you install routable maps and follow road directions to a destination.

Thank you.  Maybe taking him into the outdoors store in town and trying some of the gps units would not be a bad idea!

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 3

×