Monday, June 27, 2011

Déjà vu, all over again : 2010626

Sunday saw beautiful cycling weather and maybe more than 25 riders turn up for the regular C+/B- ride from Etra Lake Park.

There were enough participants to split the ride into C+ and a B- sections. So I joined the B- guys and set off on Gary's meandering road to Battleview Orchard using the same route as last week.

For several riders it was their first ever B ride. All survived with flying colours and all agreed it one of the best morning rides ever with the added benefit of blueberry strudel.

Garmin Edge 605
All the ride maps on this blog are compiled using a Garmin Edge 605, now superceded by the Garmin Edge 800, which adds some functionality and a larger touch screen.

Now a Garmin GPS unit is a very good device which can enhance and transform your enjoyment of cycling, whether you're just interested in its route mapping, ability to show cue-sheets or logging your performance through cadence, heart-rate and even power output in combination with a device such as a PowerTap.

However, these units do not come with a map included, which sometimes seems misleading when you look at the images of the units in publicity and adverts with the units' full colour screens displaying detailed maps.

Garmin Edge 800
Until you add a map, which can be around $100.00, the unit cannot show topographic or route detail on screen. Given that Garmin are also happy to offer an annual update for a further $100.00 this seems mean, especially since their GPS offerings for cars include the full map plus POIs ,voice alerts, photo galleries, .mp3 player, etc, etc, and cost far less.

Now, there are ways around this, most notable of which is The Open Streetmap project where some members are compiling copyright free maps for Garmin devices.

Okay, gripe over. Otherwise a GPS device can add a new dimension to your enjoyment of cycling.