GPS Maps for Southern Oregon

retrofive

rɛtrəʊ
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So this project may be a little overwhelming. Growing up in So. Ore. I have been quite a few places off-road, on-road, and just those really neat places to visit.

Recently getting into GPS, I have found a lack of maps available to upload to various GPS units. The commercial ones cover a lot, but miss some of the those "local" areas.

My goal is to take my GPS out to some of these areas. Document it and save the img map for public use for this region. There are many areas I probably dont even know exist.

This may not be the best place/website to start. But I would love to find other So. Ore. people that would like to do this.

I have the technical capacity to create an SO chapter for this with help on the web side of things. Perhaps ih8mud we could create a new fourum to share these maps, not only for SO but any region.

IF this is not the right place for this post/thread -or- Im out of place or most likely havent searched enough within to find, please discard, Im sorry.

IF this something anyone is interesting in collaborating on, let me know.

-Ty
 
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Birmingham, AL
it's a good idea but may be more work than you think. The devil is in the details with something like this. You, and everyone else who will participate, have to decide in advance specifically what features you want to map and what attributes to collect for those features. If you don't collect enough details the map will not be useful and you will have to revisit. If you collect too much detail you will not be able to cover any ground, and you will get bored with it.

Also what base map will you start with? Most commercial datasets will not allow you to republish their maps so you will need to find a public dataset.

what format will you use? what type of equipment? how will you store the data? produce maps? display and distribute data/maps?

I am not trying to discourage you by any means, I have always like the idea of a wiki style map project.
here is an example(I have never really spent anytime with this site):
OpenStreetMap

This is pretty much what I do for a living, or at least a large part of it, so if you are serious about it and want some help I will be glad to help you get started.
 

retrofive

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Thanks for the reply.

I do see how this could get out of control.

For equipment I was going to start with Garmin, because that happens to be what I have. Im new to mapping so I my understand of base maps is limited. I dont think we would be introuble there in term of re-publishing the the base maps, becuase I figured it would be more of an exchange of a addiotnal transparent map over the base map. Here is what I did as a test playing with my new toy. I dont believe I ever touched the base map, and have a simple file I can upload to the device like an add-on.

First attempt I merely tracked a path up a backcountry road. Came home, received it MapSource (came with my unit). From there I simpley saved as a GPX format. Then used GPSMapEdit to "convert" my path into a road. Export using CGPSmapper, to create a .IMG file. Which I believe from what I read is pretty universal. Once I had the .IMG file I used SendMap to upload the path/road as a transparent level on top of my base map. Now I have a image of my road on my unit that I can track, path, route, whatever over.

Am I crazy for this method? Basically with the IMG file I could post or send to someone that had a unit that would accept .IMG files.

I own the domain name landcruiseror.com, and work in the IT field, setting everything up would be easy for me accept the coding of the actaully site.

Maybe I have huge flaws in my project :) I definitley don't want to dive into the licensing, commercial stuff getting in trouble. But it seems it would be more like just sharing a path you took and adding a few remarks and specific waypoint or something.

Thanks for your advise.
 
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you're right, I don't see any licensing problems with the process you are describing. I don't see where the coding of the actual site would be that difficult, it really would just be a repository for the gpx files or the converted .img files. If you want to create interactive maps you should look at mapserver or openlayers, although with this type of setup you are back to finding a good free base map.
 
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Hillsboro, OR
Southernb Oregon Mapping

Base maps for most GPS units are pretty poor, mostly due to the scant room for data in most units. I'm a Search and Rescue coordinator with the Washington Co. Oregon Sheriff's Office. Instead of using the GPS base maps, we use a product called Maptech Terrain Navigator which runs on a laptop computer that we have running in our rigs. Any GPS unit that has NMEA output, like your Garmin, can provide location data which can be overlayed on the Terrain Navigator screen.

Terrain Navigator uses USGS 7.5' quad maps, (24,000:1) that are identical to what you can buy from the gov't, so you get pretty good maps - at least to the date that the map was created and unfortunately that can be several years in some cases. I've used it around Hart Mt. and other areas in SO, so its not bad.

When exploring, you can track progress and then save the track to use later, plus you can print/save maps with tracks as .gif files to send to friends.

As you are new to GPS, take the time to get very familiar with your unit. Learn about map datum and what that means. Also, if I may, don't let your map and compass skills rust now that you have that new fangled gizmo. I can't tell you how many people we've gone looking for who have a new GPS and decided to leave the map and compass at home. Batteries die!

:cheers:

Doug
 
Joined
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Messages
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More info.

Base maps for most GPS units are pretty poor, mostly due to the scant room for data in most units. I'm a Search and Rescue coordinator with the Washington Co. Oregon Sheriff's Office. Instead of using the GPS base maps, we use a product called Maptech Terrain Navigator which runs on a laptop computer that we have running in our rigs. Any GPS unit that has NMEA output, like your Garmin, can provide location data which can be overlayed on the Terrain Navigator screen.

Terrain Navigator uses USGS 7.5' quad maps, (24,000:1) that are identical to what you can buy from the gov't, so you get pretty good maps - at least to the date that the map was created and unfortunately that can be several years in some cases. I've used it around Hart Mt. and other areas in SO, so its not bad.

When exploring, you can track progress and then save the track to use later, plus you can print/save maps with tracks as .gif files to send to friends.

As you are new to GPS, take the time to get very familiar with your unit. Learn about map datum and what that means. Also, if I may, don't let your map and compass skills rust now that you have that new fangled gizmo. I can't tell you how many people we've gone looking for who have a new GPS and decided to leave the map and compass at home. Batteries die!

:cheers:

Doug

Forgot to mention. Maptech can be found at www.maptech.com. The product costs $299.00 per state. Many people I know use National Geographic TOPO, which is quite a bit less expensive, but doesn't have many of the features that Maptech does. However, for you uses, it might be the ticket.

D
 
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Bend, OR
Contact me direct on SO OR mapping.

Maptech = about as good as you can get without getting into ARCVIEW.

I'm new to exploring SW Oregon. I can do much of SE OR without maps after 20+ years of working/playing. Its also just about time to get out and explore SWOR area. Bob in Medford
 

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