NorCal FJs

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I have a really old, non-updateable Garmin that would see most FS fire roads but not all. Time for something better, I thought. I am now returning a brand new tomtom VIA 1535 that does not see fire roads by name/number at all.

Any ideas for good off-road gps? I would also like to be able to store co-ordinates and load trail co-ordinates from other people.

Thanks everyone,

Steve Hope.

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I think Garmin is still the go to manufacturer for offroad use. Friend of mine had their expensive Montana handheld model, with all the bells and whistles, could do waypoints and satellite imagery.. but in reality I think you just need a device that can download the topo maps they offer. At $600ish they are a lot.. haven't gotten there yet. 

Another route is a different head unit. I was just reading a fjcforums post saying that Kenwood had partnered up with Garmin for their GPS in their head units.. so you could potentially get the GPS that route as well.

thanks, I did see the Montana, actually three Montana's. 600, 650 and 650t (with topography) from $470 to $600.

I also looked at lowrance, they have a good but discontinued elite 5M for $500 and delorme have a nice pn-60 for $300 which seems best of the bunch for features compared to price.

Mapping ability seems like a much better use of money than Bluetooth, I already have a Bluetooth capable FJ.

Trip tracking seems valuable. Will look at Garmin again, thanks.


I use an iPad 2 (has to have cellular to have GPS functionality), with Motion X GPS

Download your maps ahead of time on WiFi, then take off! Used it in Death valley and Barney Riley. Use it with this stand:

Motion X GPS HD for the iPad's..

I use a laptop and Topo North America 10 with a usb gps receiver. It has worked very well for me and cost around $100 for the software with gps receiver. I also have an old Garmin 60csx, but I don't like the small portable ones for actually navigating...I just can't see the screen well enough. I mostly use it on my dr-z400 motorcycle.

I have not seen any off road gps that are perfect and have all roads labelled, but at least they have most of the roads.

Let me know and I can meet you after work some time and you can check out my gps setup.

Scott are you local? Sacramento? I would like to see the gps set-up you have  pm me soon

Steve Hope.

I use my Nexus 7 running backcounty navigator offline with topo and sat imagry along with various .gpx & .kmz trail files and it served me well throughout my 5 day SL Tahoe and Nevada trip. 

Noticed you also mentioned the DeLORME pn-60 which i really want to pick up as a backup seems to be a great unit sucks the screen is not bigger.

I use this with my Galaxy S4 and my pioneer appradio 2 running ARliberator... basically my head unit displays my phone and I can interact with it via the touchscreen head unit.

Backcountry navigator is a sweet app that lets you import waypoints/trails, mark them, and trace your route (so you can go exploring and still find your way back).

funny I was about to write up a post about Motion X HD for the iPAD.

Version 21 of Motion X added the ability to download and cache maps from various public map servers to your device.

This is a great write up on the current version TLC FAQ - Add custom maps to Motion X he even gives a good list to load. I tried it out this past weekend and I was very happy with USGS maps I cached.

I'm still looking for a good Android solution since I would rather take a 200 dollar android tablet on the trail instead of my $$$ iPAD, plus I can run APRS over RF with Android and I can't do that withthe iPAD. I haven't been happy with the offerings I've seen thus far, but I might give backcountry navigator another try

Otterbox. ;)

Although i do wish motion x was available for android since i am not an apple fan for many reasons..Backcountry navigator when paired with accuterra is pretty damn good IMO with a good selection of maps to cache for offline use and reads both .gpx & .kml .kmz.




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