Don't Count On It: News from Idaho and Montana - Grampies on the Go - CycleBlaze

April 18, 2011

Don't Count On It: News from Idaho and Montana

Our exuberance at being able to blog from the road in Eastern Washington evaporated pretty fast in Idaho and all the way to Missoula. In Idaho the Internet Stick found an Edge (2G) network, but never managed to load a web page. No wonder, even our regular cell phone showed no bars. Same for Montana, outside of Missoula. So had anything gone amiss it would have been smoke signals, or nothing.

Waiting for us in Missoula was the Garmin Edge 800 GPS. I downloaded the Rails to Trails maps into it (as well as Garmin City Navigator) and it does seem to work (sort of). You can not really use it to calculate a route from A to B, unless you are located at A.(Garmin does have an application called Base Camp that apparently can do this and download the results to the GPS.) And while the rail trails show up, looking like railway tracks, you can not get guidance to, or along them. However, if you see a bridge or a restroom symbol up ahead on the rail trail map, you can can a distance to it from your present location. Helpful. And you can search around your present location for a grocery, campground, restaurant, etc. Finally, if you wander off in search of something (Starbucks?) you can record your wanderings and back track. Helpful? Maybe.

For guidance on your bike across the whole country? - don't count on it. It's actually more oriented for recording and comparing your performance on one day training rides. One thing is sure - there are hours of fun playing with the thing so it makes a great birthday present. Thanks Dodie!

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