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Old 04-06-2009, 02:03 AM   #1
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How do you plan your route?

Hi All!

I was wondering how you guys plan your routes? On or off road, with or without GPS, paper maps, compass... etc.

I use google earth as it has sat photos helps find better passage ways, once the route is set I export in kml format then convert to Garmin format and load into my Streetpilot III. I allways keep a second hand held GPS and maps with me just in case, also a good old fation compass but I have to get out of the van and move away a bit otherwise it gets loads of deviation due to the electronics etc of the van...

I'd be very interested in your techniques for routing
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Old 04-06-2009, 07:07 AM   #2
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Re: How do you plan your route?

Quote:
Originally Posted by saabman
Hi All!

I was wondering how you guys plan your routes? On or off road, with or without GPS, paper maps, compass... etc.

I use google earth as it has sat photos helps find better passage ways, once the route is set I export in kml format then convert to Garmin format and load into my Streetpilot III. I allways keep a second hand held GPS and maps with me just in case, also a good old fation compass but I have to get out of the van and move away a bit otherwise it gets loads of deviation due to the electronics etc of the van...

I'd be very interested in your techniques for routing
Same here. I almost always use GPS track files overlaid in google earth for route planning. I also usually carry my Gazetteer map books in the van on road trips.
Rob
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Old 04-06-2009, 08:54 AM   #3
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Re: How do you plan your route?

My wife and I are pretty old school still (but we're only 33). We rarley use our handheld GPS except when backpacking. We rely on paper topo maps of ther area we are in and once and a while use the mapping software on the laptop. Now that we have the SMB things might change though.
We have the month of July off this year and so far don't have a route planned except....head north! No itinerary.
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Old 04-06-2009, 10:42 AM   #4
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Re: How do you plan your route?

I use a combination of paper & GPS software. As much as it's fun to think about my route before I go, I usually have a make-it-up-as-I-go-along attitude once I'm out there.

Before a trip, it's inspirational to pull out my DeLorme Atlas & Gazetteer and Benchmark Maps Road & Recreation Atlas paper maps and mark up my ideas with a yellow highlighter pen. For Mexico, I do not mark up my Baja Almanac because the darn book is irreplaceable (out of print).

I'm a collector -- and I collect (in a big Excel spreadsheet) the GPS coordinates of Points of Interest in regions I'm likely to want to visit. That is: ruins, hot springs, petroglyphs, mines, lookout towers -- in the American southwest and Baja.

Before a trip, I take the POIs that will be nearby my route, and import them into my GPS mapping software. In the US, this means converting them to GPX-format waypoints and importing them into Overland Navigator for display on USGS topographic maps. For Mexico travel, I convert them to OziExplorer's proprietary WPT format.

I do the same thing for nearby GPS track logs -- my old recorded tracks, and any related tracks I've found searching the web.

On the road, I run both "streets" GPS mapping software and a "topo" product, both with my POIs and old GPS track logs showing. Here are some photos and details.

And, boy do I wish I could use Google Earth satellite images when out in the field!

-- Geoff
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Old 04-06-2009, 01:06 PM   #5
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Re: How do you plan your route?

Don't.
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Old 04-06-2009, 08:20 PM   #6
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Re: How do you plan your route?

I plan and plan and plan my route, then go a different way, and I get lost. That's all the fun!!!
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:16 PM   #7
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Re: How do you plan your route?

Interesting question.....

Our planning depends somewhat on whether it is an on-road or off-road trip.

We typically start an on-road trip with an atlas or Mapquest, but quickly move to using our Delorme Street atlas software on the laptop we carry. When on the road the passenger/navigator uses the laptop and software while the driver has a Gamrin Nuvi to watch progress. (they each have their own GPS antenna)

When going from point 'a' to point 'b' on-road with no real interest in a particular point of interest between the two, we will take the shortest route, not the fastest route; we know we will be driving 55 to 60 mph, so the shorter more scenic route does fine for us.

For reference we will put the same route in the Delorme Topo software. It is this topo software we use for planning our off-road routes.
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