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Garmin Dakota GPS w/ Camino routes

Discussion in 'GPS and the Camino de Santiago' started by alipilgrim, Jan 1, 2012.

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  1. alipilgrim

    alipilgrim Veteran Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances (2005), Frances (2007), Madrid/Frances (2011), 1/2 VdP (2012)
  2. grayland

    grayland Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    Camino Frances (2010);
    Le Puy Route (2012)
    Via de la Plata 2013 (August hot..hot..hot)
    Looks interesting. Not needed to walk the Caminos...but might be fun to fool with while walking.

    I would be interested in what review Falcon might have.
     
  3. newfydog

    newfydog Veteran Member

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    I have a Dakota 10 and Dakota 20. I mount it on my mountain bike handlebars and it works wonderfully. It runs for several days on two AA batteries and is waterprooof.

    I've used mine from Italy to Arles and Arles to Toulouse, and it was essential at times, especially on the new Voie Aurelienne from Italy to Arles, where the marking is not great. We like to stay in Chambre d'Hotes, and we would often follow it to the tourist office, (they are all on the Garmin map) and get info on the best places from there. We'd find motels, restaurants, phone numbers as well as following the route.

    I don't think it would that useful on the Frances, but it does pack a lot of info into a small package, and makes a handy record of each day's travel. I can go back and find restaurants we ate in just by looking at the track from that day. I seldom use maps anymore. If the track is good enough, you can zoom up to a scale where you know if you are 10 meters off route.

    There are many good tracks on the internet. I put them on Google earth, make a few variations for mountain bikes, then load them to the GPS. I don't think buying a Camino specific pre-loaded package is neccessary, but if it is a good package at a good price, why not? I'm not sure what is in that model, but it might save you the time of loading some of the info, and it might have more albergues than the regular Garmin map.
     
  4. alipilgrim

    alipilgrim Veteran Member

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    Thanks Newfy,

    That's some food for thought. I don't know anything about GPS's but have an interest as many people whom I hike with here in Palm Desert, CA use them to track our hikes. Fortunately the hikes are all well-marked so it's used more for distance & elevation info.

    I'm planning on walking the Via de la Plata starting March 29th - I've read that there are many instances where pilgrims have gotten lost, either due to poor signage or construction projects, so I was considering the usefulness of carrying a GPS with me....

    Thanks, Allison
     
  5. newfydog

    newfydog Veteran Member

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    There is a high quality GPS and Google Earth track of the Via de la Plata available here:

    http://users.skynet.be/watermael/gps/Es ... .html#VdlP

    It would be easy to download it to a Garmin GPS. Send me a PM if you get one and need any specific help.

    The link you put up is a good price for any Dakota 10. Do you know what base maps are in it? I prefer the Dakota 20 because of the ease of adding maps via a micro sd chip. The sd cards can be found cheap on ebay, while the Dakota 10 requires installation via computer. Garmin maps are expensive and hard to unlock and install. There a many free basemaps at GPSfiledepot.com which can be unstalled as well, on the Dakota 10 or 20. For example, you could get free topo maps of California and add them to your unit.
     

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