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Best GPS for Off Road Trail and back country roads

Discussion in 'Off-Roading & Trails' started by IOTOI, May 29, 2017.

  1. May 29, 2017 at 12:40 PM
    #1
    IOTOI

    IOTOI [OP] New Member

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    Looking for the best for the money off road navigation. Want to know if I have to buy a unit like Magellan TRX7 or I can use a tablet or mini laptop and load maps?
    I'm planning a trip from New York to Alaska, then down the coast to California and back to New York.
     
  2. May 29, 2017 at 5:19 PM
    #2
    inthedark

    inthedark New Member

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    GPS units are generally not for off road mapping. However, Rand McNally units are pretty good. I use a TND730 that has been pretty reliable. It does have a "bread crumb" feature that will record an off road trail. If you travel a lot, it is worth the expense. Don't forget to expense it on your taxes.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2017
    Bob and IOTOI [OP] like this.
  3. May 31, 2017 at 11:16 AM
    #3
    TedRCASC

    TedRCASC New Member

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    We have a 5.5" Garmin and bought a package of off-road details to insert into it. It has been a big help in exploring the northwest, British Columbia and the Yukon. - Ted
     
    IOTOI [OP] likes this.
  4. May 31, 2017 at 6:09 PM
    #4
    Kyotii

    Kyotii New Member

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    WINDOW TINT!.....
    Hema maps
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2017
    IOTOI [OP] likes this.
  5. Jul 26, 2017 at 1:51 PM
    #5
    grave

    grave New Member

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    i have Gaia on my iphone and ipad and it's fantastic when out of service. download your maps before you go, add waypoints, routes, etc.
     
    Jynarik and doublewide like this.
  6. Jul 26, 2017 at 10:47 PM
    #6
    v_man

    v_man New Member

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    MotionX is a mapping app for IOS, I've had good experiences with it for years. I would never buy a GPS unit for my off road mapping needs.

    If you have an iPad , tablet , android phone etc., you already have the hardware for mapping and routefinding, you just need to acquire the right software....
     
  7. Oct 3, 2017 at 1:25 AM
    #7
    dricko

    dricko New Member

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    I use a Garmin 600. Compact and fairly easy to use.
     
  8. Mar 27, 2018 at 6:26 PM
    #8
    SnowroxKT

    SnowroxKT New Member

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    I map trails for www.trailsoffroad.com and most of all the crew uses Gaia GPS. It is great, has helpful features, easy sharing, multiple background maps, and is cheap. If you want a dedicated unit go buy a $100 Samsung tablet from Costco and run it on that (my plan eventually). For now, I run it on my Galaxy S7 with no issues, just a slow boot up to the app.
     
  9. Apr 25, 2022 at 7:04 AM
    #9
    Thunderbirdman

    Thunderbirdman New Member

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    td {border: 1px solid #ccc;}br {mso-data-placement:same-cell;}Most phones and tablets support navigation apps, which can be quite cheap. It is also possible to download from multiple map sources and geo-tag photos. Many modern vehicles come with built-in GPS devices. In very remote areas, there might be no signal or cell coverage. It pays to have an off-road GPS that can download maps in advance so that you won’t need connectivity to find your way around. Offline maps should be updated regularly to keep updated with any road or terrain changes. They also save the locations you've been through. You just have to turn on DATA RECOVERY from settings.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2022
  10. Apr 25, 2022 at 7:29 AM
    #10
    Jynarik

    Jynarik I like boobies

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  11. Apr 25, 2022 at 8:21 AM
    #11
    kbp810

    kbp810 rebmem wen

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    I use a combination of Gaia and OnX - I've found that Gaia has National Forest roads/trails well covered and mapped out, but is terrible when it comes to State land (often includes closed roads or misidentifies 50" and under only trails). Gaia is also easier to search and manually add in way points.

    OnX can be annoying at times when trying to search the map by coordinates, which sort of nixes trying to add waypoints in advance (it doesn't seem to understand searching by coordinates). However, at least here in Michigan, it has state/public land mapped out extremely well; including differentiating ORV Route (50" and larger allowed) and ORV Trail (50" and under only). If I'm just driving around somewhere at random, I like to have OnX running to find where I can and can't go.

    So in a nutshell... if I'm leading a group and need a preplanned route, I lean towards Gaia. If I'm out solo or small group exploring new areas, I lean more towards OnX.

    Both work over Apple Carplay as well; so can pull them up on the head unit, so no longer feel the need to carry a separate GPS or tablet.
     
  12. May 4, 2022 at 4:40 PM
    #12
    2112 R

    2112 R New Member

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    Garmin inReach mini paired with a ipad mini on a ram mount with Gaia maps app.
    GPS accuracy
    Emergency satellite text and SOS function
    Bigger screen than a phone
    Gaia allows me to plan trips, routes and waypoints on my pc and synchs to my ipad quickly. Download the maps and you're good to go.
    Look up TrailRecon or LifeStyle overland for how to videos on their set ups for ideas.
     
  13. May 15, 2022 at 9:22 AM
    #13
    blackcloud08

    blackcloud08 New Member

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    Gaia Premium.
     
    Thatbassguy likes this.
  14. May 15, 2022 at 10:20 AM
    #14
    kmeeg

    kmeeg Less code less bugs, same story for a 4Runner.

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    I was thinking to try OnX offroad this time. Also thinking to have Garmin overlander used if I find cheap (original price is not worth for me, at best I would pay around 200 bucks).

    Advice appropriated for options that does not require planning at home.
     
    Thatbassguy likes this.
  15. May 15, 2022 at 10:47 AM
    #15
    Altitude4x4

    Altitude4x4 New Member

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    Gaia
     
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  16. May 15, 2022 at 12:08 PM
    #16
    Henry J

    Henry J If it isn’t the consequences of my own actions

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    I just bought a refurb Garmin Glo2 off eBay for $100 and paired it to my phone. Gaia worked great and kept everything active while some of the others lost cell connection and had to use the downloaded maps.
     
  17. May 15, 2022 at 8:25 PM
    #17
    kmeeg

    kmeeg Less code less bugs, same story for a 4Runner.

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    I didn't like Gaia user experience much. That's why I was thinking to try something else.
     
  18. May 16, 2022 at 9:20 AM
    #18
    Altitude4x4

    Altitude4x4 New Member

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    I don't know what to tell you, I'm offroad twice a week and it's all I use.
     
  19. May 16, 2022 at 11:28 AM
    #19
    Overland WT

    Overland WT Grumpy Old Guy

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    Many with many more to go
    This has never failed me. I use my OEM (Jeep and 4Runner) onboard head unit for freeway and in town mapping/locations/etc but when I am off pavement or in BFE without mobile service, I run a Samsung Tab 8 (built in GPS antennae) with GAIA, but I download ALL of the maps for the areas I am going from trailsoffroad.com. Download to my laptop, and with the app open and signed in on my tablet, they auto-upload to the GAIA program. I've run probably 4k miles offroad in Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho, Utah, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona without a hiccup. Occasionally the map wont completely sync with Gaia. It shows me on the map, but doesn't move me with the trail. Just have to hit the recenter button and it catches up, but that's rare.

    I also run another program (name escapes me) that has TONS of stops for fuel, bathrooms, propane, camping, etc in out of the way places, not just Walmart, Chevron, etc.

    If you go the tablet route, make SURE it has built in GPS. More Samsung than iPads have built in GPS, but not all models. 90% of Tab 7 and 8 do have GPS built in.
     
    kmeeg likes this.
  20. May 27, 2022 at 8:49 AM
    #20
    2ndGen22re

    2ndGen22re Goldie, my 1st love & my new kid…

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    Carson Valley, NV
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    One-at-this-price stripper. Bought new 32yrs ago, a $13K leftover. Added Detroit TruTrac and 1”rear spring spacer. Factory AC kit and roof rack bought at dealer cost at time of purchase, still blows ice cold 32yrs later. 2022 AG ORP all stock.
    Bingo, exactly what I did.
    I got the basic GAIA subscription on sale for $70(regular $80) for 5years and bought a subscription for my son as well for Xmas. Got a Samsung Tab 8 tablet at a after Xmas sale at Costco ($80), soft silicone rubber case(Amazon $10) and RAM mount hardware at GPS City ($50). Now I have a 8” GPS display w/mount AND the GAIA subscription for my IPhone for under $200(no GAIA limit on devices).

    BTW, virtually all modern tablets have GPS chip built in except for IPad WiFi only ones and GPS City folks are super helpful in selecting tablet holding hardware, they pointed me to a bundle deal on the mounting hardware which saved me a few bucks.

    My son broke down last week wheeling in the mountains and he texted me his exact GAlA map location which gave me a route map and made it super easy for me to find him and tow him back to civilization, IMHO it paid for itself just for that.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2022
  21. May 27, 2022 at 11:34 AM
    #21
    DaveW

    DaveW New Member

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    The maps that came with the 2020 TRD OR are pretty basic and geared for streets only. They are pretty much useless for any offroad or backcountry travel. For most of my backcountry travel (running, hiking, canoeing and backpacking), I use the mapping that came with my Garmin Fenix 6XP. Up until a couple of years ago I used mostly my Garmin 60csx with TOPO Canada Maps and sometimes other online maps (openstreetmaps and others). For communications, I currently use a Garmin InReach satellite messenger for 2-way communications in the backcountry. Up until I got the InReach, I previously used a SPOT satellite messenger for 1-way emergency communications.
     
  22. Jul 22, 2022 at 10:46 AM
    #22
    xmt037

    xmt037 New Member

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    What Ram mount do you have for your ipad?
     
  23. Jul 22, 2022 at 12:26 PM
    #23
    2ndGen22re

    2ndGen22re Goldie, my 1st love & my new kid…

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    CR
    Carson Valley, NV
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    1990 22RE & 22 AG ORP
    One-at-this-price stripper. Bought new 32yrs ago, a $13K leftover. Added Detroit TruTrac and 1”rear spring spacer. Factory AC kit and roof rack bought at dealer cost at time of purchase, still blows ice cold 32yrs later. 2022 AG ORP all stock.
    Go to GPS City.com they have all the RAM stuff and good prices/free shipping over $25.. Some mounts fit with cases, some without and they have package deals. Their tech support is outstanding, the rep saved me $ with a package deal.
    https://www.gpscity.com/mounts/&p=1&a=0&c=3&t=ipad+mounts
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2022
    Overland WT likes this.
  24. Jul 23, 2022 at 12:09 PM
    #24
    CommanderDave

    CommanderDave New Member

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    TRD wheels & blacked out lug nuts. More to come :-)
    I bought the Garmin overlander a couple of months ago on the recommendation of someone who owned one. It is nice, but I have serious buyer's remorse. It is way too expensive for what it is, and the person who recommended it to me, WAY oversold it.
     
    Overland WT and kmeeg like this.
  25. Jul 23, 2022 at 4:39 PM
    #25
    2112 R

    2112 R New Member

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    https://www.rammount.com/part/RAM-HOL-UN8BU
    Just the normal spring loaded squeeze one for 7-8" ipad minis. I dont have a case on mine, and not sure if that makes a difference.
     
  26. Jul 24, 2022 at 7:19 AM
    #26
    2ndGen22re

    2ndGen22re Goldie, my 1st love & my new kid…

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    First Name:
    CR
    Carson Valley, NV
    Vehicle:
    1990 22RE & 22 AG ORP
    One-at-this-price stripper. Bought new 32yrs ago, a $13K leftover. Added Detroit TruTrac and 1”rear spring spacer. Factory AC kit and roof rack bought at dealer cost at time of purchase, still blows ice cold 32yrs later. 2022 AG ORP all stock.
    This is the one I have for a Samsung 8” Tab A with a cheap $10 Amazon soft rubber/silicone-like case in to help if I drop it. I primarily have it on my SxS and it holds the tablet securely in very rough, bouncing terrain. I use this suction cup arrangement on Goldie and have a custom roll bar ram ball/bracket for the SxS to clamp the Ram arm on. The GPS City tech set me up with this combination and it is solid as a rock.
    https://www.gpscity.com/ram-mount-tab-tite-4-tablet-suction-cup-mount-ram-b-166-tab4u

    If your IPad is “WiFi only” it does not have the GPS chip, you will need a external GPS antenna. Virtually all tablets nowadays have a GPS chip. I got the Samsung at Costco for $80 on a after Xmas sale and combined with Gaia it works great.
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2022

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