Welcome! Log In Create A New Profile Recent Posts
Tuolumne Meadows and Lembert Dome during a summer storm, Yosemite National Park

The Moon is New


Advanced

Re: How to use GPS?

All posts are those of the individual authors and the owner of this site does not endorse them. Content should be considered opinion and not fact until verified independently.

How to use GPS?
July 15, 2011 09:35PM
I have a Garmin 60CSX that I barely know how to use. I love to see the maps and tracks that some of you post and wonder how the heck do I do that? Are there tutorials online that any of you know of? I have googled and found some, but maybe you know the best one?

Can you input a trail and then have it guide you?

Right now I use it for mileage and geo caching. I used the track back feature once, but not even sure I know how to do that anymore. I tried to get it to record my tracks when I went to Yosemite last month, but nothing was saved. Guess it is the most expensive nearly a paper weight I have ever bought. sad smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/15/2011 09:36PM by hotrod4x5.
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 15, 2011 09:54PM
I have the same one, but have only used it twice (it was basically a gift). To use the tracking feature, press the menu key. Use the arrow keys to select tracks and press enter.

Use the arrow keys to select On and press enter. It should start recording you tracks now. BTW, the page key will take you through the various screens.

When the hike is completed, go back to the track screen and use the arrow keys to select save. Press the enter key to save the track log. You can also download this track log to a computer with a USB cable and mapsource (or delomre software).

Hope that helps. Playing around with it is how I figured out much of it. You do have the owners manual, don't you?
Re: How to use GPS?
July 15, 2011 09:58PM
The manual is somewhere, yes. But I have had this going on 5 years, not sure where it is. I don't even have the software installed on my current computer. Thanks for your help.
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 15, 2011 10:07PM
Quote
hotrod4x5

The manual is somewhere, yes. But I have had this going on 5 years, not sure where it is. I don't even have the software installed on my current computer. Thanks for your help.

The manual and quick reference guide for your Garmin GPS is still available to download (for free) on the Garmin website:

Garmin.com: Manuals for GPSMAP® 60CSx
Re: How to use GPS?
July 16, 2011 01:26PM
I use the Garmin and it's pretty self explanatory. I learned by just sitting in the car and messing around it, since I hate directions.
It has it's faults, but I consider it a lifesaver, while getting through Los Angeles, for work. I doubt the satellite system could get you through California SR roads, however. So, probably not something to use for dispersed camping. I haven't used it Yosemite, but plan on it, this September, on my trip. smiling smiley
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 16, 2011 06:15PM
I found the maps on the garmin superior to my paper map (USGS from REI). The real trick is to set way-points at trail intersections or places you need to "turn" when off trail.

BTW, it was very accurate in Yosemite.
Re: How to use GPS?
July 16, 2011 10:01PM
I love my Garmin 60CSX and use it all the time. I took a class at REI one evening, after I bought it, and in about 1.5 hours, I learned how to use it. You need to either buy or download topo maps to get the most from it. There is national parks topo this is very high quality and very accurate (has all the trails already on it). There is also a 100K nationwide topo that is pretty good (has a lot of trails, generally but not completely accurate, has good waypoints already in it, etc). I would highly recommend the REI class to get you started.
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 09:22AM
It is possible that the person who had it before me purchased topo maps for this GPS. He purchased a set for his previous one, but I thought he was using what came with this one. But, it could be Delorme maps on the GPS. Not sure...
Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 09:36PM
Usually, the topo maps are loaded onto your hardrive. Then, when you are planning a trip, you load the maps you want onto your GPS. Generally, you do not load the entire mapset onto your GPS (insufficient memory unless you have some sort of removable memory, which my Garmin 60CSX does not have). You can, however, load an awful lot of maps onto the Garmin 60CSX ... I loaded a bunch a few months ago of all my usual suspects (basically Shasta down to Whitney) and haven't had to load any new maps since then.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2011 09:37PM by Akichow.
Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 09:12AM
Quote
Hitech
I found the maps on the garmin superior to my paper map (USGS from REI). The real trick is to set way-points at trail intersections or places you need to "turn" when off trail.

BTW, it was very accurate in Yosemite.

I have found the maps to be inadequate. Not all trails are on the map, and not all trails on the map are up to date - trails are frequently re-routed or decommissioned, so by the time I get to that trail junction I find a field of weeds or brush with no discernable trail. In three of the state parks I've hiked in I was using the map more than the GPS because of this.

I get the latest version of Tom Harrison map if one is available for my destination. I have found that they are more accurate.
Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 10:16AM
I have used my Garmin 60SCX in several National Parks and some CA State Parks with good results and found the maps I have on it to be accurate on the trails I have been on. However, I don't backpack so I can't give information on it's performance in that situation. I also use it when I do geocaching and like the feature where I can note on the GPS which ones I found. I have not used it on SR roads in CA but did on some off roads in the Arches area and found them to be accurately marked on the GPS.

Unfortunately, like even the GPS systems in cars, the maps are only as good as the company who makes them and how frequently the company goes back and updates conditions and offers upgrades.
Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 10:21AM
All maps are USGS maps with an overlay of updated or additional info on them. Not all info gets updated as frequently as we would like.

I wonder if my mapset would have the old or the new version of the JMT in it? They rerouted part of that trail pretty drastically.
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 10:30AM
Humm, one of the things I noticed was that the Garmin had MANY more streams than the paper USGS map I had. If I would have relied more on the Garmin we could have carried way less water. I didn't know much about the Garmin at the time so I really only took it for backup. Now, the paper map will be the backup. grinning smiley
Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 10:41AM
Quote
Hitech
Humm, one of the things I noticed was that the Garmin had MANY more streams than the paper USGS map I had. If I would have relied more on the Garmin we could have carried way less water. I didn't know much about the Garmin at the time so I really only took it for backup. Now, the paper map will be the backup. grinning smiley

Relying on the streams marked on maps is a gamble - I've had stretches of trail where we should have crossed five streams and only found one. Sometimes maps show them as intermittent or seasonal, sometimes not.

I'm not trying to be difficult, just pointing out that there are flaws with relying entirely on the data on a map of any kind. As a SAR volunteer and frequent hiker I've had a lot of things end up just being flat wrong - we frequently find that terrain changes due to natural processes, trails aren't where the GPS thinks they are, and water sources can dry up or reroute (especially if the area is hit by a forest fire or earthquake, or is landslide prone). Miles marked on maps are inconsistent and GPS units get tweaked - if you aren't calibrating your GPS's compass on a regular basis, you may be in trouble if you ever have to navigate cross country with it.

On searches we have occasionally experienced mass GPS confusion - we are all given the same UTM coordinate, which is exact down to a square meter. One GPS unit will send one person one way, the next may be sending the person a mile off from the first. Has happened, and fortunately we are all trained to be aware and compare and double check - and pull out the map, triangulate, take a bearing from the map, and walk while orienteering with the compass if the GPS is "on the fritz."

This is enough to make me warn folks as I run into them that GPS units are a convenience, but until you know their limitations and foibles, relying exclusively on them is a mistake - after you understand their limitations, you won't rely on them exclusively at all. People have been rescued after their GPS failed them. They are only as good as the info they receive, either from you or the satellites. Incomplete info/bad connection from the satellites or miscalibrated GPS - or using it over a major ore deposit. Anything reliant on magnetics is confused easily by metal. First thing we learn in search and rescue navigation training - don't stand near the comms trailer or get a bearing on the hood of your car!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2011 10:55AM by AlmostThere.
avatar Re: How to use GPS?
July 17, 2011 03:01PM
Quote
AlmostThere
Quote
Hitech
Humm, one of the things I noticed was that the Garmin had MANY more streams than the paper USGS map I had. If I would have relied more on the Garmin we could have carried way less water. I didn't know much about the Garmin at the time so I really only took it for backup. Now, the paper map will be the backup. grinning smiley

Relying on the streams marked on maps is a gamble - I've had stretches of trail where we should have crossed five streams and only found one. Sometimes maps show them as intermittent or seasonal, sometimes not.

I'm not trying to be difficult, just pointing out that there are flaws with relying entirely on the data on a map of any kind. As a SAR volunteer and frequent hiker I've had a lot of things end up just being flat wrong - we frequently find that terrain changes due to natural processes, trails aren't where the GPS thinks they are, and water sources can dry up or reroute (especially if the area is hit by a forest fire or earthquake, or is landslide prone). Miles marked on maps are inconsistent and GPS units get tweaked - if you aren't calibrating your GPS's compass on a regular basis, you may be in trouble if you ever have to navigate cross country with it.

On searches we have occasionally experienced mass GPS confusion - we are all given the same UTM coordinate, which is exact down to a square meter. One GPS unit will send one person one way, the next may be sending the person a mile off from the first. Has happened, and fortunately we are all trained to be aware and compare and double check - and pull out the map, triangulate, take a bearing from the map, and walk while orienteering with the compass if the GPS is "on the fritz."

This is enough to make me warn folks as I run into them that GPS units are a convenience, but until you know their limitations and foibles, relying exclusively on them is a mistake - after you understand their limitations, you won't rely on them exclusively at all. People have been rescued after their GPS failed them. They are only as good as the info they receive, either from you or the satellites. Incomplete info/bad connection from the satellites or miscalibrated GPS - or using it over a major ore deposit. Anything reliant on magnetics is confused easily by metal. First thing we learn in search and rescue navigation training - don't stand near the comms trailer or get a bearing on the hood of your car!

Navigating the California coast while sailing in the fog or at night brings this home very clearly.



Old Dude
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login