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Best Gps For Kayaking

Post By:ffgemini on 6/1/2008 8:22pmicon
Replies:17, Views: 28665

Hi All!

I am looking for some GPS advice. Sadly, I know barely anything about GPS, but am looking to learn more. I'd like one so I don't get lost and can find some of the cool sites discussed in trip reports Smile

Any info or advice would be greatly appreciated! I should add that I don't need anything fancy, just a beginner one that I can grow with and costs less than $200, maybe more if it's worth it.

Thanks!


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 Reply #1   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: dusther on 6/3/2008 3:22am

Hey ffgemini

yeah there are alot of them to choose from nowadays. IMO there is really no name brand that seems better than the others. Personally I use a magellan meridian gold. It is a few years old but does a good job. plus it is water proof and FLOATS although I keep mine attached to the yak with velcro pads.

For work I use a Garman which was furnished by them. it does a good job as well. But not as weather friendly, I know that Garman does have some unit that are waterproof though.

Mainly it depends on how in depth you plan on getting with gps interactions with your computer have a look at software that is availible for each unit you are thinking about and how ruggidized the unit is.

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 Reply #2   
RE: Best Gps For Kayakingicon
Post By: ffgemini on 6/4/2008 7:40pm

Thank you!!!

That is exactly the info I was looking for!

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 Reply #3   
RE: Best Gps For Kayakingicon
Post By: actnup on 6/14/2008 12:07pm

I bought one of the Garmin GPS I only paid $100 for it at walmart, I was not to impressed so I brought it back and dropped another $100 and got the Magellan Triton 400. This is nice it has a SD card slot on it and a nice program to log all your waypoints and trails on your PC. Also opens up the world of Geocaching, which is kind of fun, if you like looking for small treasures, that people leave. All in all I think it was worth the $200. Also you are able to buy National Geographic Topo! maps, they are a little expensive, I have not purchased one yet but I think it will be a good investment. I'm waiting for one of the updates on the software, so they will allow you to use the library on your GPS for trails and waypoints, apposed tojust waypoints like it is now. The battery life is great on it and it comes with a USB wire to hook up to your computer along with keeping the GPS water proof. There is one issue that I think is alittle bit of a problem or maybe I'm just not reading it right. But when im out on the water and I'm using the odom. on the GPS it never seams to be right but then when I uplaod the trail on my PC then it tells you how far you went. Anyways for the purposes that I use it for it is perfect for me while I'm kayaking and I recomend it! If you are going to buy one new, instead of used I would recomend you buying it from Wal Mart because they give you a 90 day no question money back if you don't like it, you can bring it back and get a different one or just get your money back. Well I hope this helps a little, it really is a great GPS.

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 Reply #4   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: admin on 6/21/2008 1:43pm

To throw my 2 cents in about GPS units, I've have two. Both are Garmins. The first one I purchased several years back has mapping built in and was supposed to be waterproof to 5 feet for 30 minutes. I used it in the boat for several years before maybe the seal wore out and the unit got saltwater in the battery compartment. Needless to say it was shot. I sent it back to Garmin (out of warrantee) and for $100 they sent me a new $350 unit. Great customer service.

So I purchased a second Garmin (eTrex model). It is one of the $90 cheapies but has worked like a charm. Never flooded even though it has sat in saltwater for probably hours.

Both GPS units saved me from getting totally lost while exploring the wilds of Florida. I primarily use the more expensive unit in the car for road trips where the maps seem to make more sense and I keep the eTrex in my gear bag for regular paddling use.

Have the MapSource software that allows upload / download and it works well.

Overall, if you do much exploring in the backcountry, a GPS is a must. Especially if you go paddling with moonlightdesigns... Grin

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 Reply #5   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: swamprat on 7/27/2009 11:03pm

I have the cheap garmin, about 100.00, it has been with me for a long time, it is waterproof. I attach it to my deck bag with a cord and it lays on my spray skirt. I also bought the computer cord and download my info with a FREE program called WAYPOINT + . You can get it going to:
http://www.tapr.org/~kh2z/Waypoint/ They also have points for quite a few palces /areas too. I upload to pooter and Dwnload back to the GPS when needed

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 Reply #6   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: gpax on 7/28/2009 6:42am

I bought a refurb Garmin GPSMAP 60CSx for the USB interface and the color map which I thought was kind of expensive but I would bite the bullet and buy it.

Then I found as I went along that I also needed to buy an SD chip, rechargeable batteries and two types of maps to make it fully usable. Maps are in the neighborhood of $100 each.

The map that comes on the unit is unusable. I bought a Road Map and TOPO Map. The road map is the same as in the car gps. The TOPO map has a difficult time getting streams in exactly the right places. Garmin offers expensive map updates every year.

The Garmin is waterproof so far in its first year and a half of service.

I found that my Blackberry has an app that locates me on a Google Earth. It is pretty good when I have cell tower reception. I can see exactly where I am on an aerial photo with a map overlay.

My phone is not waterproof however and does not save my track.

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 Reply #7   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: djskal on 9/3/2009 3:08pm

The Delome PN series are great outdoor GPS units. The support the widest variety of satellite images. I use mine for kayaking, boating and 4 wheeling. The PN series meets MIL specs for moisture and impact resistance!

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 Reply #8   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: admin on 9/4/2009 6:35am

djskal - thanks for the tip about the Delorme. Which model do you have? Spotted 30 and 40 but there may be others.

I'm in the market for a new GPS as my 7 year old Garmin is finally fading. Actually, it's got a few rows of bad pixels and powers off on random occasion.

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 Reply #9   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: djskal on 9/4/2009 2:03pm

I have the original PN-20 and I love it. I though about upgrading to the new PN-40, but mine has been so great I couldn't justify changing up. When you buy one, you get like $100 in free mapping, which I'm still downloading from. The Delorme TOPO USA software is so powerful. If you aren't familiar with Delorme, they are one of the oldest map makers in the US, making printed topographical maps since the early 1900's.

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 Reply #10   
RE: Best Gps For Kayakingicon
Post By: paddlesolo on 9/4/2009 3:06pm

I have the Delorme atlas for Florida. Folks in the WFCKC just refer to it as the Delorme in the same reverential tones one would use for the bible. It shows every forest trail (although I have found out that just because it is on the map, it isn't necessary accessible) boat ramp, road in Florida. About drove me crazy because one day I was looking at it and it showed a road crossing Dry Creek here in Jackson County, and I thought there was no road there. I went out hunting and did find Iron Bridge road although the bridge has been unusable for 30 or 40 years. Another time WFCKC members were using it in Jackson County for a shuttle and came to a dead end because I-10 had cut that road off.

When I complained that the printing identifying creeks and streams was too small to read even with glasses, another person told me you can order or purchase from some liveries individual charts of the select pages one wishes to see more clearly. These individual maps are much larger.

While the Delorme GPS may be an excellent model, they are expensive. I was pleased to note in one internet source that my Garmin E-Trex was listed as one of the easier ones to use. For some of of that is a plus.

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 Reply #11   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: admin on 9/6/2009 1:24pm

The Delorme Florida Atlas goes on every kayaking trip (at least it rides in the car) and it's has helped me find many new places to paddle. One of the best resources you can buy for under $20.

Before purchasing, I'll try to find one of the GPS units at Best Buy or other retailer to see how it compares to Garmin.

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 Reply #12   
RE: Best Gps For Kayakingicon
Post By: paddlesolo on 9/6/2009 3:37pm

If you find a good price on the Delorme GPS, let us know where to go, on the Delorme website, I thought they were pricey.

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 Reply #13   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: gpax on 9/7/2009 5:06am

REI has the PN-30 GPS model $100 off right now for $199. Bruce Long took an older model Delorme on our Econfina paddle and the gps worked great. But he printed out a companion paper map from the software that was far superior to my Garmin map.

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 Reply #14   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: tarpon120 on 11/2/2009 11:42am

The etrex floats as well stays waterproof. This is important when you drop it into the drink occasionally.

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RE: Best Gps For Kayakingicon
Post By: martay6 on 11/4/2010 7:18pm

Are there any updated opinions on this subject??? I'm looking for a GPS to use in marshes... it's been a while since this was updated, and a lot of new GPS's out there. Opinions/recommendations please???

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 Reply #16   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: djskal on 11/6/2010 3:47am

I'm still very pleased with the Delorme. My dad bought the newest model and it is much faster as rendering the 3D topo maps and images.

If you have an IPhone, there are several GPS maps that work really well. Most GPS apps for the IPhone will require that you get 3G service so it can download realtime imagery, although there might be some that will install full map files. Pair the IPhone with the Otterbox and you have a pretty good setup.

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 Reply #17   
RE: Best Gps For Kayaking
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Post By: rod on 11/17/2010 12:47pm

I just bought a new DeLorme PN-60 for a good "buy it now" price on ebay with free shipping. I have always liked the DeLorme maps and Gazeteers. I went for the 60 for the additional internal memory and better battery life. It comes with the Delorme topos and a certificate for $40 worth of downloads from Delorme. I also picked it because of the ability to add aerial photos and satellite imagery which you can layer with topos. It also floats and is waterproof. After you use up your $40, you can get an annual subscription for $29.95 that will give you unlimited USGS Quads and aerial photos, as well as, NOAA nautical charts. I've just played with it so far & haven't taken it kayaking yet since I'm between boats (new SOT on order). I'm quite impressed so far.
Smile

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