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#195925 - 06/25/16 08:58 AM Garmin Etrex Vista
GrumpyGord Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 855
Loc: Michigan
OK. I have a Garmin Etrex Vista H which I have used very little. I have searched the manuals and tried to find videos etc but have not found the answer I have been looking for. I have been on a particular trail through the Michigan UP backcountry several times and it is very poorly marked and hard to navigate. On a trip back in 2009 I marked a bunch of waypoints thinking when/if I returned I could find my way quickly if I lost the trail. Now I am returning and have these waypoints so if I start at one end and say go to nearest point will it automatically go to the next nearest point or do I have to keep advancing it to the next point?

Also if I do the above either manually advancing points or letting the GPS advance it can I simultaneously record a track or route?

I think that when I recorded this back in 2009 I generated a track because I produced a map using my NG Michigan TOPO but the GPS track is long since gone.

The plan is to use the map until I get off track and then find the trail again using the GPS. Navigating in the Michigan UP is not a straight forward exercise due to clearcuts, unmarked two tracks, swamps etc. Getting a bearing on the next know point and going to it is frequently not possible due to these problems.

Thanks.

PS: I also am finding that I really hate auto correct. I look back and the word that I thought I had typed has been changed.

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#195927 - 06/25/16 05:21 PM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: GrumpyGord]
Glenn Roberts Offline
Moderator

Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1356
Loc: Southwest Ohio
Can't help with GPS (hopeless Luddite in my backpacking life: map and compass guy.) However, I can definitely relate with autocorrect - what with always trying to fix me, it's like having a second wife. smile

OK, let the "you're sexist" beatings begin. (It really wasn't intended that way, and, truth be told, I still probably need some fixing. As I've frequently said here, I married a whole lot better than Karol did.)

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#195930 - 06/25/16 06:38 PM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: Glenn Roberts]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6389
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
It ain't just you sexist men lol who have problems with autocorrect! IMHO, it should be banned!

I'm strictly a map-and-compass person, too, so can't offer GPS help. Hopefully someone will come along who knows something; they usually do! At least here in the NW, it's a beautiful day and I'm probably the only person not out hiking!


Edited by OregonMouse (06/25/16 06:40 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#195934 - 06/26/16 08:23 AM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: OregonMouse]
GrumpyGord Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 855
Loc: Michigan
I certainly prefer map and compass also but in this area there is a section of several miles of old burned over stumps with several small wooded sections where the trail changes direction so nothing to get a bearing on. My thought is the GPS will get me through this section. Not a deal breaker as I have made it through in the past but it is slow going. Obviously GPS is not a big part of my hiking style.

I am amused and annoyed by some folks who do not seem to be able to find their own bathroom without a GPS. There is a VERY popular loop trail near by recently discovered by the facebook group where the trail is packed down to the point that you could follow it in the dark and folks keep posting GPS tracks on facebook along with 30+ pictures of the same spots which have been shown 30 times before. There is a reason why I got the nick name of GrumpyGord.

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#195937 - 06/26/16 01:10 PM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: GrumpyGord]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By GrumpyGord
OK. I have a Garmin Etrex Vista H which I have used very little. I have searched the manuals and tried to find videos etc but have not found the answer I have been looking for. I have been on a particular trail through the Michigan UP backcountry several times and it is very poorly marked and hard to navigate. On a trip back in 2009 I marked a bunch of waypoints thinking when/if I returned I could find my way quickly if I lost the trail. Now I am returning and have these waypoints so if I start at one end and say go to nearest point will it automatically go to the next nearest point or do I have to keep advancing it to the next point?


So long as you organize the waypoints into a route and navigate the route by selecting it from the Garmin's route menu, it will take you from waypoint to waypoint automagically. Easiest to create routes in the Garmin software (or Topo) and upload them to your unit.

Quote:
Also if I do the above either manually advancing points or letting the GPS advance it can I simultaneously record a track or route?


A track will record automatically so long as your track storage isn't full (even then it probably just overwrites the oldest saved track). I save my tracks daily.
Quote:

I think that when I recorded this back in 2009 I generated a track because I produced a map using my NG Michigan TOPO but the GPS track is long since gone.


Tracks get overwritten, as noted above, but recorded waypoints live on until you delete them.
Quote:

The plan is to use the map until I get off track and then find the trail again using the GPS. Navigating in the Michigan UP is not a straight forward exercise due to clearcuts, unmarked two tracks, swamps etc. Getting a bearing on the next know point and going to it is frequently not possible due to these problems.


GPSs are a great help wherever one's traveling XC, when trails are unmaintained and maps have errors. Also in heavy forest or when weather is so crappy one has no points of geographical reference.

Cheers,
_________________________
--Rick

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#195948 - 06/26/16 07:48 PM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: Rick_D]
GrumpyGord Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 855
Loc: Michigan
Thanks Rick.It looks like if I just go to the TOPO software and create a route everything should work out OK. I have 61 waypoints for the 27 miles and the Garmin will take 250 points so I should be able to even navigate the route where the trail is not a direct track between waypoints. I do have the track from the original trip so I know where the trail goes on the map even if there are no recorded waypoints. Obviously map and compass is less hassle.

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#195955 - 06/27/16 12:45 PM Re: Garmin Etrex Vista [Re: Rick_D]
GrumpyGord Offline
member

Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 855
Loc: Michigan
I went to NG- TOPO and generated a route. Not bad but it just does straight lines and is limited to 50 points. Nothing too far off from the original track so it should be OK. I could have made it better by breaking up the original track into segments and making a couple of 50 point routes but it was not that big of a problem. I have already spent more time than it is worth but like a lot of people once I get on the problem I want to continue until I solve it and not just quit.

On another note: I have had TOPO Michigan for several years and it will not interface with the newer Garmin with USB port, only COM ports. I purchased an upgrade to TOPO 4.5 which handles USB but will not allow doing anything like zoom, mark waypoints, routes, etc so I have been doing the work on the original and then loading it into 4.5 to transfer. I thought well I purchased both programs and it is ridiculous that they do not work like they should so I contacted NG and their reply says that since it is a discontinued program they no longer support it. I have a lot of programs which have been discontinued or replaced but they still provide a certain amount of support. I am not impressed. I replied to their email with a two word reply. The first word was horse.

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