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GPS for walking and driving
for an old technophobe

 9:33 pm on Jan 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

I was out walking today and I was thinking about a gadget I saw someone with a year or two ago. It was GPS like you put in a car but he was using it for walking. It could record position, distance covered, etc.

I quite fancy one of these but I am not up to date with this technology. What am I looking for?

I work from home and seldom go anywhere in the car that I would need a GPS but can you buy these that cover both situations?



 9:43 pm on Jan 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

Garmin has several GPS devices (Edge 605 & Edge 705) that are more for hiking/bicycling, but do have color maps as well. The screen might be a bit small for use in a car though. But that's the problem- something with a big enough screen for a car is not going to be very convenient for carrying with you.

Actually- that would be a cool device- one that you could "dock" to larger screens (that could also be touch screens), but also allowing you to carry the "basic" device for sports activities. Sort of like docking your laptop when you want to use a big monitor.

[edited by: LifeinAsia at 9:43 pm (utc) on Jan. 26, 2009]


 9:50 pm on Jan 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

Yes - good idea!


 11:39 pm on Jan 26, 2009 (gmt 0)

You're looking at GPS's used for fishing and hunting. They come out of the box with fewer details in terms of road maps, but let you map where you've been (generally). You can buy topological and marine maps for them. Those are the handheld models.

The bigger ones come with detailed road maps, don't always allow you to breadcrumb map where you've been and have bigger screens. Those are the ones you'd use in your car.

Generally they fit into one of those two categories. Since they are software based there is some crossover. But generally the low end roadmap/car units won't be handheld and allow breadcrumbs. And the handheld ones will allow breadcrumbs but won't have much if any in the way of roadmaps. You can buy software to upgrade however.

I've got a car based GPS and I just bought a handheld unit for when I'm in the bush. From what little bit I've seen your best to seperate the two uses.


 8:29 am on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

And do they measure distance walked, etc?


 9:59 am on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

Look on any store dealing with outdoor activities. Computer and electrical stores just seem to have in-car models (in the UK anyway).

The demands of an aging parent mean that I don't do the amount of hill walking that I used to but I would love something reasonably inexpensive that would simply give me my current map coordinates at the touch of a button.


 12:15 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

a friend of mine (uk based) has a gps on his bike and it does all kinds measuring as far as i can remember - i'll ask him, what it does and the model number.


 12:52 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

here's what my friend said:
it's a garmin edge 705, does all sorts of clever stuff, comes
with heartrate monitor, does training programmes etc, transfers it all to
your computer so you can see your whole ride, distance, time, graphs of your
heart rate, speed etc

obviously it is geared for cyclists but could easily be used for walking too.


 1:10 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

If you want a GPS both for walking & driving, I recommend the Garmin Vista HCx, GPSMAP 60CSX or the newer Oregon series (with touchscreen but much more expensive). These units allow you to track your hikes in detail & even allow you to transfer them to Google Earth.

In your car, these units can do auto-routing from one location to another & provide turn-by turn instructions with a beep (but no voice). The screens are quite small for use in the car (except maybe the Oregon series) but it works fine for me.

Best of all, these units are great for GeoCaching :)


 2:15 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thanks for helping an old codger with all this information.

(Shhhh, what's GeoCaching?)


 3:03 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

You're not that much of a nerd that you really want to know the answer to that. Seriously.


 3:24 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

Not an nerd at all when it comes to these things. Luddite would be a better description.


 4:34 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

GeoCaching- Think looking for buried treasure with a treasure map. But you use a GPS instead of a map, the treasure isn't buried, and it isn't even treasure to begin with. Other than that, it's exactly the same! :)


 4:39 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

Sorry, I have never tried searching for buried treasure so the concept is still alien to me. :)


 5:17 pm on Jan 27, 2009 (gmt 0)

Oh, one of those online/offline crossover deals. A pointless-object hunt, essentially.

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