Author Topic: confused by gps maps  (Read 800 times)

davew

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confused by gps maps
« on: 21:07:15, 04/09/19 »
i'm looking to buy my first handheld gps unit and have been looking at the various mapping software and i'm a bit confused ,some of the walks that i have done when i look on the map the tracks don't appear to be there, i've looked on talkytoaster maps, viewranger and satmaps explorer maps and quite a few of the paths i walk are just not shown.
i live in Durham and if i look on the councils website for paths and rights of way everything is there ,what is it that i'm missing i don't want to spend money on maps only to find what i want is not shown.


gunwharfman

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #1 on: 21:13:31, 04/09/19 »
I've never owned a dedicated GPS unit, mainly because I've never understood the difference between one of those and the GPS maps on my phone? I assume that the OS maps would show all of your footpaths? I personally use the app Backcountry which displays OS maps and to date, I've never had a problem with it. Your entry interests me because I know nothing about these items and hope that some other Forum members respond to you. If you learn something so will I.

Slowcoach

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #2 on: 21:24:25, 04/09/19 »
Davew,  os maps and open street maps often do not show the same paths. Unless someone supplies OSM  with info from their logged route they won’t know about the path. If i walk in areas generally not popular then OSM often shows me walking across blank areas.
If the tracks/paths you walk are on the council maps as public rights of way they should appear on OS mapping.
It's all uphill from here.

ninthace

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #3 on: 21:36:59, 04/09/19 »
Welcome, I'm a bit confused by your post.  Are you saying that you have done a walk but you cannot find the path you used on the digital maps you have looked at?


That is not uncommon.  Paths appear over time and areas that are well walked are criss-crossed by paths that are not on the map.  Even OS maps do not show all the paths that exist.  They will show rights of way (whether they physically exist or not) and some other paths that were there at the time of the last survey.  ViewRanger offers OS maps (for a subscription).  Their own maps will show rights of way plus some other paths that people use.  Talky toaster and OSM maps likewise.  They are a combination of rights of way and other paths that people have sent in gps traces for.
GoogleEarth or OS Aerial view will show even more paths as they are pictures of what was on the ground at the time of the last picture (useless for wooded areas though).  It is a fact of life reflecting a dynamic system.
« Last Edit: 21:55:20, 04/09/19 by ninthace »
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davew

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #4 on: 22:31:47, 04/09/19 »
sorry i'm not very good at explaining myself , the first picture is a screen shot of talky toaster map, the second is a map from Durham council ,the first picture shows almost no paths and tracks the second there is loads more detail.
how could i possibly plan a route using the talky toaster maps as there are hardly any tracks or paths shown, if that makes sense.


WhitstableDave

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #5 on: 22:34:27, 04/09/19 »
i'm looking to buy my first handheld gps unit and have been looking at the various mapping software and i'm a bit confused ,some of the walks that i have done when i look on the map the tracks don't appear to be there, i've looked on talkytoaster maps, viewranger and satmaps explorer maps and quite a few of the paths i walk are just not shown.
i live in Durham and if i look on the councils website for paths and rights of way everything is there ,what is it that i'm missing i don't want to spend money on maps only to find what i want is not shown.

Hi davew. I think that most of your questions have already been well answered, so I'll just say something about you looking to buy a handheld GPS unit...

I subscribe to OS Maps and plot my intended routes on their online map/website. I copy the routes to my device and follow them on my walks.

I used to use OS Maps on my phone, but there were lots of problems: my phone is my camera so I was forever switching apps; it would go haywire when wet (despite a 'waterproof' case); the touchscreen was problematic in rain and with gloves; the zoom level was limited (I don't wear my reading glasses on walks!); I occasionally lost signal; but, most troublesome of all, the battery life was insufficient so I would often be carrying my phone with a battery-pack attached.

I put up with all this for a long time because I struggled to justify getting an expensive dedicated GPS unit. But I eventually gave in and bought a Satmap Active 20 with full GB 1:25k maps. It was the best thing I could have done because it revolutionised my walking!

The battery life is good enough for a full day; I can zoom in very close or to any degree I choose; it's completely waterproof although I can use the buttons if rain affects the touchscreen; the positioning accuracy is extremely good, and the unit is incredibly tough. There are lots more advantages over a phone, but that will do for now!

One last thing... I can't get to grips with Satmap's Explorer, but I'm a huge fan of OS Maps.  O0

alan de enfield

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #6 on: 07:26:27, 05/09/19 »

I put up with all this for a long time because I struggled to justify getting an expensive dedicated GPS unit. But I eventually gave in and bought a Satmap Active 20 with full GB 1:25k maps. It was the best thing I could have done because it revolutionised my walking!

The battery life is good enough for a full day; I can zoom in very close or to any degree I choose; it's completely waterproof although I can use the buttons if rain affects the touchscreen; the positioning accuracy is extremely good, and the unit is incredibly tough. There are lots more advantages over a phone, but that will do for now!

One last thing... I can't get to grips with Satmap's Explorer, but I'm a huge fan of OS Maps.  O0



I can only agree 100% about the SatMap - 'its a perfect tool'.


I have the SatMap 10 (not touch screen) and full UK OS mapping at scales of 1:50,000, 1:25,000 & 1:10,000 and you can zoom in even tighter.
It gets down to individual blades of grass levels (well not quite)  but with 1mm on the screen being only 10 metres on the ground its pretty close.
Accuracy is normally under 20 feet - and even shows which side of a track you have walked up.


It gives you a good summary of times, distances, height gain etc for post walk evaluation.


Recommended.



I found with the SatMap "Adventure" maps that being based on "Open Cycle Map" & "Open Street Map" are not much use for hiking.

I have been walking on a footpath and all of a sudden it disappears (on the map) and there is no indication of it reappearing, in other cases a path is shown on the map but is not indicated or in existence in 'the real world'. I have given up on them (I have the full UK at 1:25,000 Adventure map) but find the OS mapping to be accurate.





« Last Edit: 07:40:02, 05/09/19 by alan de enfield »

sussamb

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #7 on: 07:27:51, 05/09/19 »
I have had Garmin GPS for many years, the advantage of Garmin is that there are many free maps freely available, and I generally find OSM maps accurate.


Having looked at the TT map that is poor in that area, my main OSM map is a different one, and it matches more accurately the other one you posted. It looks though as that's an area where folks haven't updated OSM that much, as some other ones while better than TT aren't perfect.




One other thing to consider based on how you use it, Garmins have a higher waterproof rating than Satmaps, and there are often complaints about them not being 'waterproof'  although there are waterproof cases for them.
« Last Edit: 08:04:20, 05/09/19 by sussamb »
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geordie33

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #8 on: 08:05:48, 05/09/19 »
I live in Durham and find that OSM is very sketchy.I think it's because a lot of our paths are in remote hardly visited areas so no one updates it
All paths are on the definitive map but that doesn't mean they actually exist on the ground so again OSM unlikely to be updated.
I use a Garmin GPS or Viewranger which are generally enough for me
I did try an OS subscription but often forgot to download for off line use and as you will know lots of Durham does not get a phone signal
This is of course not a problem with Garmin or Viewranger which use the devices aerial

ninthace

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #9 on: 08:28:47, 05/09/19 »
For my Garmin I use BaseCamp, the mapping app thar supports Garmin, to download the OS mapping I need to the unit's SD card.  Basecamp is also a very good planning tool.  I also have Freizeitkarte for the UK and CacheMapsUK on my SD card which are both open source maps.
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B-BtzqG8Y_Z0fkwxRm5vOWNjOEdHZGlUTUYzM0p3dEFmaTVMcHowNjBsZ3RXUWh6QzVfMkU
http://www.freizeitkarte-osm.de/garmin/en/index.html


Freizetkarte



CacheMapsUK
« Last Edit: 09:04:13, 05/09/19 by ninthace »
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ninthace

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #10 on: 09:14:24, 05/09/19 »
By comparison:
OS Standard Map (the one that is free)
host an image
The OS 25k - my preferred map with Garmin
pic upload
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WhitstableDave

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #11 on: 09:18:15, 05/09/19 »
One other thing to consider based on how you use it, Garmins have a higher waterproof rating than Satmaps, and there are often complaints about them not being 'waterproof'  although there are waterproof cases for them.
I happily use a Garmin GPS watch and a Satmap handheld GPS so I'm not looking to rate one manufacturer over the other.

The Satmap Active 20 has a waterproof rating of IP68, which (I believe) is as good as it gets - submergible up to 1.5m is fine with me anyway.

As far as I know there are no waterproof cases available for the Active 20, presumably because it doesn't need one.

A quick browse of the most expensive Garmin handhelds shows waterproof ratings of IPX7 - 'Incidental exposure to water of up to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes'.

sussamb

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #12 on: 11:48:44, 05/09/19 »
Maybe the reports of waterproof issues were with previous satmap versions then, I know screens misted up etc
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Patrick1

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #13 on: 14:00:38, 05/09/19 »
I don't think anyone's going to have a solution to your issue other than to say - you're right, not all maps are equal. OSM is not bad in well walked areas, and I tend to carry both OSM and OS maps. Comparison is sometimes instructive, with OS often superior but not always - sometimes OSM shows where people really walk while the OS just shows where they're supposed to walk!


One simple way in which the OS maps do score for me could actually be easily emulated by other digital mapping products but sadly isn't. That's the overlay of the 1km grid squares, which means its immediately possible to get a feel for distances, even just by glancing at the map. Other products vary the amount of detail, and the resolution of any grid, as you zoom in and out, which can make it very hard to judge scale at a glance.

Owen

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Re: confused by gps maps
« Reply #14 on: 14:59:55, 05/09/19 »
Maybe the reports of waterproof issues were with previous satmap versions then, I know screens misted up etc


Satmap 10 wasn't waterproof at all, can't speak for the 12 or 20.