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Hey folks.

I'm looking for a good quality gps for mapping new and existing trails. Any recommendations? I don't want to spend a fortune but am willing to shell out for a quality unit. Would like to spend less then $500 Needs to be compatible with Mac too.


Thanks in advance.
 

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The Garmin GPSMAP60CSx is pretty much the ultimate unit for trail needs. If you have some money left, invest in a good GIS software and 1:20,000 topo maps. We use Touratech QV4 and some enhanced Natural Resources Ministry topo maps.
 

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saddlemeat
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The Garmin Vista HCx is perhaps the best bang for the overall buck. Lots of free topo maps at gpsfiledepot.com. TopoFusion has become my favorite mapping software.
 

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2 questions:
- How do you plan to use the captured data?
- What is the landscape/terrain like where you will be working?

If you plan to use the data directly in the device then screen, navigation and ergonomics may be more important to consider. If you on the other hand plan to do further processing in GIS apps etc. then you may want to consider what data the device can store or transfer.
If you are capturing trails in areas with a lot of heavy forest and/or very steep and hilly terrain then receiver sensitivity is really a key factor.

I use the Garmin 60 CSx and am very happy with the the robustness of the device and the fact that I can use an external antenna to boost reception. But it does leave some things to be desired; the responsiveness when redrawing and panning maps is slow, but for me more important, the exported data does not contain all the parameters the device can record. It would have been great to have the error margin for each position in the .gpx output.

/Thomas
 
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