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Old 06-26-2019, 11:56 AM   #1
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Need hiking GPS suggestion

Hi
I hike quite a bit in various unfamiliar places. I used an old GPS but it had a drawback. It had to be held where it had a clear view of the sky. If I even hung it on a strap it would have problems. No way would it tolerate being in a pocket. I would like something that did not use the cell system. I just prefer not to be tracked. Perhaps there is a phone app that doesn't report the location. I don't need fancy. Just the direction to the start point or a route trace. Any suggestions? My old Garmin has become unreliable and their customer support is terrible so it is time to replace it.
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Old 06-26-2019, 12:40 PM   #2
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I use the AllTrails app on my iphone. Even if you don't have cell signal, it will switch to GPS mode and still mark your location on the topo map on the screen.

I used it during a hike at the Fiery Furnace in Arches NP. Tight canyons, washes, small slivers of sky with looming stone walls. Many dead end canyons and a very sparsely marked trail. We were able to download the trail and the topo maps and it kept my son and I from getting lost in a very desolate area.

It's pricey and has a monthly fee but we worth it and you can discontinue the fee at any time.
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Old 06-27-2019, 05:25 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RVThere View Post
I use the AllTrails app on my iphone. Even if you don't have cell signal, it will switch to GPS mode and still mark your location on the topo map on the screen.

I used it during a hike at the Fiery Furnace in Arches NP. Tight canyons, washes, small slivers of sky with looming stone walls. Many dead end canyons and a very sparsely marked trail. We were able to download the trail and the topo maps and it kept my son and I from getting lost in a very desolate area.

It's pricey and has a monthly fee but we worth it and you can discontinue the fee at any time.
I loved that canyon hike! I did take one dead end though. Does it continue to work in your pocket? If I may ask, how pricey?
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Old 06-27-2019, 05:53 AM   #4
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Itís about $30 a year for the Pro version which is cheaper than a new GPS! Pretty sure it did work in my pocket as we did do a bunch of scrambling on that hike. As a precaution we brought an external battery pack but I donít think we needed it.
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:08 AM   #5
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We used Guthook Guide back when we were still hiking a lot, mainly on parts of the PCT and the JMT.
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:32 AM   #6
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Nice but I am not doing really serious hiking, I just want to go on day hikes and have something that will let me backtrack if I get lost.
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Old 06-27-2019, 11:00 AM   #7
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Buy a Garmin or Suunto watch, its 100 times simpler and does a million other things you probably wont ever use, but much more useful than a dedicated GPS. The prices are all over the board, just decide how much you want to spend and which features are essential.

The beauty of this is when you get back into cell service range, the watch will automatically sync up to the mother ship and download all your data, its really pretty cool. Its interesting to me at least to see your trail overlayed on a topo map with all your heart rate info, rate of ascend and descend, miles covered, etc. during your hike. I also like the ability to store 1000 songs on my watch that I stream via bluetooth to my ear buds.

Haven't seen a hand held GPS in at least 10 years, do they still even make such a deceive
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Old 06-27-2019, 01:50 PM   #8
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The best one out there. https://www.gaiagps.com/

This guy will show you how to use it. https://youtu.be/RVflThDx7ZA
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Old 06-27-2019, 02:46 PM   #9
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I'm an avid hiker and the only GPS I use is AllTrails on my phone. I used to be a Garmin user but I got tired of losing the signal in canyons or even within a forest. With Alltrail I've never lost a signal. Plus it contains almost every hike in the US and Canada. I usually download the map for a hike I'm not familiar with and never have to worry about cell phone coverage,.
Try it for free, you've got nothing to lose.
In addition users rate their hikes, add photos and comment on their hiking adventure.
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:18 AM   #10
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AllTrails! $30 / year. Great app. Good info and directions for thousands of trails. You can record and create new trails , rate them, etc.
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:38 AM   #11
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One thing to consider is redundancy. Using a cell phone for both could leave you stranded in an emergency if the battery runs down. Two units or carrying a second power source would be safer.
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:59 AM   #12
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A little off topic but I Jeep off road a lot. I have the Garmin 770 for the RV. Has anyone used it in an off road situation?
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Old 08-18-2019, 11:26 AM   #13
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Used both Gai and Alltrails. Newest version of Alltrails is great.

I RV because I like to hike. RV gets me to great hiking places. Tents used to be fun, but now. I want a warm shower, a cold beer, AC, and a nice bed at the end of the hike. The RV is my portable hotel.
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Old 08-18-2019, 03:54 PM   #14
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I haven't found the GPS in a phone to be particularly good, be it Samsung or Apple. The maps can be really good, but you have to really watch battery life as it goes down quickly when you loose phone reception and it's searching for service. They don't make it particularly easy to turn everything off except the display and GPS.


I personally still use an old Garmin handheld, or just take my InReach SE sat communicator and simple GPS. It will connect via bluetooth to the phone if you like. Unfortunately, Garmin bought them out and thus it will probably go downhill. I have a Garmin Vivoactive 3 watch, but it's almost worthless as a GPS, and has pretty bad battery life. Good for shorter hikes, but not anything over 5 to 7 hours tops.
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