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Thread: GPS Custom Maps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    172

    Default GPS Custom Maps

    Just curious if anyone has tried to make a custom map from either an NPS trail map or maybe one of JoeFred's fishing maps through GE and then downloaded it into a GPS unit. If so, what did you think of the results of meshing the two onto the GPS unit? I am just starting to learn how to do this and would love to look at trying it with one of these resources.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,558

    Smile I made a few attempts

    after seeing a post on Go Smokies, and the fact that I just recently had to replace my gps and was reading the manual led me to give it a shot. I first tried to copy the Sierra Club 70's map off Tom Dunigan's site (one that has most smokies manways on it), and while I succeeded in making a .kml file, the resolution of the photo was so big that it didn't work. I then tried to make a small one which was a snippet of the 36 map in upper raven fork hoping to find reminants of the old trail leading up middle fork of three forks to Dashoga. Should be remains of a cabin up there, and I have never heard of anyone going there in the last 30+ years. It was low resolution, but it still didn't work. I usually somewhat tech savy, but I've haven't figured this out yet. I wish (hint hint Joe Fred, or Mr Kirk) someone would have something out that we could load as I'd be willing to pay and save the hassle of the learning curve. If anyone has ones to share, I'd be happy to host the file if you have no way to share it with others

    Good Luck, and someone in thier 20's or younger would most likely laugh at me since it really doesn't look that hard.
    http://gosmokies.knoxnews.com/profil...our-hiking-gps

    Hope that helps,

    James

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    201

    Default working on it

    We're about two projects away from the maps like you are talking about. I just completed a book on Smoky flies and fly patterns for Stackpole, and one more book to do on N. Ga/NC for Wilderness Adventure Press. The latter has asked me to do a map book, but I do not believe print for maps is a good long term approach.

    This week I received books by Steve Moore and Davis Ellzey. Moore does guide books on fishing streams in VA and MD. His four books are map/GPS heavy. Ellzey does guide books to the river in TX--again all three books are map/GPS heavy. In terms of an entertaining read they are light, but these books are chock full of hard info. There is certainly a trend here.

    I believe that in long run, which is not too much in the future, the maps will be hosted free by people such as us at Southern Trout Magazine. The maps will be free because they will drive traffic to web sites, which is key to making money. It’s still a bit in the future, but it will happen sooner than your think. Paper, ink and postage are going the way of the buggy whip.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    172

    Default

    Thanks for the info. I agree I would be willing to put up something for quality resolution downloads, but I will mess with it a bit over the holidays and let you know how it goes.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Lenoir City, TN
    Posts
    993

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier View Post
    Just curious if anyone has tried to make a custom map from either an NPS trail map or maybe one of JoeFred's fishing maps...
    Hoosier, thanks for the mention. Good topic. After looking into the options, I decided that since my maps are uniquely rich in content (using the original USGS quadrangle topo backgrounds) – as opposed to most GPS apps – to create PDF downloads for use of Acrobat Reader. Reader is now available from Adobe for Apple mobile devices, as well as Android. One of the downloads will be that of all 44 park maps plus interactive indexes. As with our printed ones, the stream maps will have latitude-longitude coordinates in the margins and full UTM grid. In order for the file size of the application to be reasonable for downloading, the backgrounds will have to be reduced to screen resolution. However, all the overlays (roads, trails, color-coded streams, etc.) will be vectorized, permitting liberal zooming. I hope to announce the availabilty of the product in about a week.
    Last edited by JoeFred; 12-11-2012 at 09:37 PM.
    “Joe” Fred Turner
    Southern Appalachian Stream Maps sasMaps.com
    Formerly SmokyStreams.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Hillbilly Hollow, NC
    Posts
    1,050

    Default

    I'm not a trained cartographer or anything, but I can draw some pretty good old school type maps. All you need is some scratch paper and some colored felt tip pins. Here is an example of one of my maps to my favorite fishing stream
    "Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it."
    Salvador Dali

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Knoxville, Tn
    Posts
    706

    Default

    I use Avenza PDF maps for the iphone. I think it is $10 and you can download any USGS quad for the entire US for free. The iphone gps receiver works well enough in the park that I have been able to track myself everywhere I have been this year (regardless of if I have cellular service (different antenna) and had a fix on my location. Sometimes it takes a while but it works. If you have a KML file for that quad, you can import it/overlay it. It also allows you to add your own Geotagged photos to your quads and the way the quads are processed, each only takes up about 20 MB (trivial on an iphone)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,558

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by flyman View Post
    I'm not a trained cartographer or anything, but I can draw some pretty good old school type maps. All you need is some scratch paper and some colored felt tip pins. Here is an example of one of my maps to my favorite fishing stream
    So it seems you must fish in Pigeon Forge.

    Those aren't rescue copters, but you get extra points for the use of felt (hope you properly sanitised it so you don't spread the didymo) so I won't harrass you about that. And let me know if you are willing to teach these skills, my 3 year olds can use some more training, and it's never too early to teach good map skills

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Lenoir City, TN
    Posts
    993

    Default Park Map PDF Set for Mobile Devices

    Hmmm. flyman's is a tough act to follow.
    Last edited by JoeFred; 09-01-2013 at 07:20 AM.
    “Joe” Fred Turner
    Southern Appalachian Stream Maps sasMaps.com
    Formerly SmokyStreams.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    257

    Default

    JoeFred,

    Wow, Its been a little while since i last visited your website. You sure have made a lot of changes. I guess you have not been sleeping or out fishing all last year.

    My Xmas Stocking is getting fuller.

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