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I'm looking for PC GPS software that can track aerial maps
nevadagary
On my Asus EEEPC, I'm using a Microsoft USB GPS-360. Is there any such software that is compatible and will do that?

I want to take my netbook in my Jeep for off road wheeling, so highway maps do me no good at all. I will not be rock crawling so no real jarring or bouncing. Aerial maps that show the mountain trails are perfect, but I would like to track my progress, and maybe plot a route to see where I would turn, branch off etc. Driving mountain trails is hairy enough without not knowing where you are and where you're heading.

Thanks
Ken in Regina
Here are a few options that I'm aware of.

One is Google Earth. If you combine it with a good "front-end" program like Earthbridge or GooPS you can use it for realtime navigation. You can browse the area you want to drive in at whatever zoom level you need with the aerial/satellite view turned on and it will be saved in Google Earth's disk cache so that it can be used when you are offline.

The free version has a 2GB disk cache which will cover a very large area, even with highly detailed aerial views.

Google Earth is not terribly GPS-friendly on its own so you need a good GPS front-end program to make it easier to use for realtime navigation. GooPS and Earthbridge both do a good job of finding the GPS and making sure Google Earth can use it.

Limitation is whether you can get aerial/satellite images on Google Earth of sufficient resolution in the areas you want to travel. That's really easy to determine because you can just look at the area in Google Maps online to see. Or download and install Google Earth. It's free.

A second option is DeLorme Topo USA ver. 8. It has all the realtime navigation features of DeLorme's Street Atlas (and all the same street maps if you want a little onroad nav occasionally). It also has good topo maps (for the continental USA). But the key in your case is that it comes with a one year subscription to DeLorme's online map repository which includes lots of aerial imagery. You can download all you want and use it for advance planning and also for realtime navigation.

A third option might be National Geographic topos. I know that lots of people like them for planning camping and hiking and mountain biking trips. I know it will use a GPS but I don't know if it has realtime navigation or just spot location for your current static location. And I don't know if it has imagery available or just topo maps, which might be just as good for your purposes.

That's a start. Perhaps others have alternative suggestions.

...ken...
nevadagary
Thank you Ken that was very helpful and I will look at the options. I do have Google Earth and the aerial maps in that and Microsoft Maps have really excellent detail showing trails all over northern Nevada which is where I will be wheeling almost exclusively. I'll have to get one of the front end programs for my 360.

Thanks again.
GadgetGirl
Nat'l Geo's TOPO can:
1. mark your current location as a waypoint
2. show your current location
3. lay down a configurable track

See screenshots. It doesn't have aerial maps, just USGS topo maps,
Attached Images
capture.jpg   capture1.jpg  
nevadagary
Thanks gadget girl but I need more than topo maps. I have that on my Garmin Etrex and while it shows my position and elevation it doesn't show the actual trails.
nevadagary
I just downloaded GOOPS free one to my netbook and it looks really good. Now all I have to do is figure out how to use it.... I guess the best thing to do would be to go outside and plug in my GPS and then run GOOPS huh?
GadgetGirl
Quote:
....doesn't show the actual trails.
That's true. Nat'l Geo doesn't show anything but fire (forestry) roads and some major trails.
Does Goops give you any real advantage with Google Earth if GE it is already running OK with a GPS? I've been wondering about that.
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetGirl
Does Goops give you any real advantage with Google Earth if GE it is already running OK with a GPS? I've been wondering about that.
I don't know. I've never had much luck getting GE to work smoothly with any of my GPS receivers so I use one of the frontends any time I want to use it that way. But I've honestly never looked at either one of them to see what else they do. I've already got so many GPS utility programs kicking around that they're starting to get confusing. That would be two more to get confused. ... At my advanced age I get confused enough trying to remember my name some days.

...ken...
nevadagary
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken in Regina
I don't know. I've never had much luck getting GE to work smoothly with any of my GPS receivers so I use one of the frontends any time I want to use it that way. But I've honestly never looked at either one of them to see what else they do. I've already got so many GPS utility programs kicking around that they're starting to get confusing. That would be two more to get confused. ... At my advanced age I get confused enough trying to remember my name some days.

...ken...
Man I know the feeling Sometime I have a hard time figuring out how to get out of bed.....SHEEZ! I haven't had a enough time to fool around with either program yet but if GooPs works with GE well I'll will be so happy cuz it's exactly what I want. I actually stood outside today looking at the trail I'm going take over the mountain and said to myself "I gotcha now!" HAH
GadgetGirl
I guess I've been pretty lucky with GE with both of my receivers. GPSGate has been in the middle though, so I don't know if that's making a difference. GE finds GPSGate and locks on very well, even going down the road. I've been experimenting with GE's cache as I don't have mobile broadband....yet

Quote:
I've already got so many GPS utility programs kicking around that they're starting to get confusing. That would be two more to get confused. ... At my advanced age I get confused enough trying to remember my name some days.
....my GPS software folder on my USB HD is bulging! I just can't resist a new utility. I just store them away thinking....hey, that will come in handy someday! I get myself confused a lot!
GadgetGirl
Quote:
I actually stood outside today looking at the trail I'm going take over the mountain and said to myself "I gotcha now!"
Keep us posted as to how it works out. I live in the Rocky Mts. of Montana and am very keen on exploring more of the forestry roads in the Tribal Wilderness area of the Mission Mountains. The snow is starting to melt in the lower elevations. I want to compare Nat'l Geo to Google Earth side-by-side. (Most of these roads are in Nat'l Geo.)
GadgetGirl
These roads can be very confusing with so many branches and forks!
nevadagary
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetGirl
These roads can be very confusing with so many branches and forks!
Yep and that's the reason I want a program that I can plot a course to a destination and when I get to a confusing intersection I will have waypoints and pins already there so I'll know which way I want to go. Nothing scarier than to get lost up in the mountains. I'll be doing this in late April or May and at these elevations there isn't any snow....low ranges.
GadgetGirl
How did Lewis & Clark ever manage without GPS!

Sure, they had compasses, but no maps!
nevadagary
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetGirl
How did Lewis & Clark ever manage without GPS!

Sure, they had compasses, but no maps!
That's because they had years to do it not hours.... HAHAHAHA
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