Bicycle Travel > GPS Discussion

Using Adventure Cycling GPS Data

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Fred Hiltz:
This topic summarizes some of the FAQ and answers that have arisen about effectively using the GPS data from Adventure Cycling.

Find more information in the GPS Data User Guide. From the ACA front page, go to Routes and Maps > GPS Information. Click the link to the GPS Data User Guide. This topic does not duplicate the Guide, but may repeat some of its information for continuity.

Adventure Cycling offers GPS data that you can download and use on a GPS device, smartphone, or tablet. Use it with the paper maps of the Adventure Cycling Route Network to improve your navigation, both on and off the route.
We are improving this GPS data to offer Adventure Cycling Route information in track format for higher accuracy and compatibility across multiple devices; and to make service points easier to use.
During this transition, there will be two types of GPS data.  For more information see the following links:
Adventure Cycling offers GPS data that you can download and use on a GPS device, smartphone, or tablet. Use it with the paper maps of the Adventure Cycling Route Network to improve your navigation, both on and off the route.
We are improving this GPS data to offer Adventure Cycling Route information in track format for higher accuracy and compatibility across multiple devices; and to make service points easier to use.
During this transition, there will be two types of GPS data.  For more information see the following links:
•   Digital Data for Devices
•   Digital Data Agreement
•   Support for Legacy Routes and Service Points (See Quick Start Guide and GPS Data User Guide on the right of this web page)
•   Support Pages for New Tracks and Service Points
•   Tracks and Service Points FAQs
•   Temporary Road Closure Forums and Map Addenda: always be sure to check for temporary road closures and map addenda before leaving on your trip.

Fred Hiltz:
Considerations for Long Rides

Maps: Most modern mapping receivers have enough memory to hold all the maps for a cross-continental ride on a removable memory card. However, some maps come in large chunks that may not fit. Consider loading up two memory cards and swapping mid-way.

Tracks: Most modern receivers have no trouble with tracks under 10,000 points.  All of our tracks will contain fewer than 10,000 points.  But if you join tracks, be aware of this common 10,000 point limit.

Waypoints and routes: Most receivers cannot hold the 2000 to 3000 waypoints needed for a transcontinental ride. Swapping memory cards does not work for most, which hold routes and waypoints in a separate non-removable memory.

Create several files containing fewer points than your devices limit, allowing plenty of overlap, and reload the receiver along the way. One or two reloads should suffice. If you will not be carrying a computer or a tablet, you can put the files on a CD or a memory stick (flash drive). Beg a few minutes on a computer from a friendly local cyclist, a bike shop, or a computer shop. Most libraries will not let you connect your own devices for security reasons, probably a good policy. Delete the old waypoints from the device and copy the next file into your device’s NewFiles or GPX folder (if using a Garmin). Do not forget to carry a short USB cable.

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