We cannot hide behind our finger... in XXI century technology surrounds us and even us, bicycle travelers, have to deal with it. Even the most extreme and savage bicycle traveler has the need to be connected, everywhere and always. Other than the ethical question I'm not going to analyze here, this need is also practical: which are the alternatives to the electricity that can be used when this isn't available? In this article, we list some of the most common alternatives, like the dynamo hub connected to the lights system or, thanks to specific chargers, to your electronic devices, in order to charge them.
By now using a GPS for bicycle, outdoor activities or trekking has become very important, let me say essential. We have been using it for 15 years now. We started with a non-cartographic GPS together with paper maps, in order to track our routes, to then switch to a cartographic GPS more similar to a cyclo-computer. Now we are using a more generic one, more outdoor-oriented than bicycle oriented. Enough talking: let's see which are the best bicycle GPS on the market in 2019 in my personal opinion and online research.
As a traveler, I almost abandoned the use of old and dear geographic maps. Technology replaced them and thanks to our smartphone to navigate the internet and find points of interest and places to visit, everyone can easily travel. But how many times have you opened Google Maps App in some remote areas and couldn't visualize the map due to the lack of connection? In this article we'll see how to solve this problem, trying to understand how to download Google Maps offline maps, to then use them anywhere, even without a stable connection.
Lately, I've been experiencing a lot of curiosity about outdoor GPS Apps, in particular for Android OS. In general, what I like the most about these apps is their facility of use: I don't always have a lot of time to study and learn methods to exploit my smartphone at its best during MTB excursions or bicycle travels, mostly because I use a dedicated GPS navigator that is complete and satisfying. For emergencies, curiosity or urgency I don't disagree about using my smartphone with a good outdoor App, and recently some apps are remarkable. Today I'll present one of the most intuitive apps ready to use: Locus Map, very convincing and really powerful in its free version.
One of the GPS outdoor Apps I mostly use is Oruxmaps. It's a free, complete and updated App, really good for MTB excursions, outdoor trekking, for your first trips on secondary roads and for bicycle navigation in general. The only downside is its learning curve: it's not an intuitive App, it cannot be used and right away understood, but with some effort, you'll be able to appreciate it. It requires dedication to be fully understood, so I'll try to guide you, recapping som of its main features. At the end of this article, you'll find a short movie about this mountain bike App.
Since 2010 I started writing about OpenStreetMap and its features. Since then I have never stopped using it, with renovated satisfaction, but I couldn't find the time or the will to keep you updated on the great potentiality of this free cartography.
With this article, I'd like to start again writing about OSM and in particular its variation for MTB. We will see how to install OpenMTBmap on your PC and on GPS devices by Garmin.
I sometimes enjoy creating itineraries and studying new routes for future bicycle trips and however I believe Google Maps isn't the most professional tool, its intuitive features and potentials make it one of the best and most used software to create maps online. In this article, we will create step by step a map with Google My Maps, in order to then share, download or save it in your Drive and analyse a possible travel itinerary.
Among the many software that I currently use in order to plan our MTB excursions and our bicycle trips, lately, I'm mostly using Garmin BaseCamp, the free cartographic software by the most known company in the outdoor GPS devices. It doesn't matter if you own a Garmin GPS device: Basecamp can be used to create routes for any device. Down below I will try to show you shortly the main feature of this free cartographic software, really intuitive and easy to use.
Some years have passed since I started using my smartphone for my outdoor activities and among MTB Apps that I have been trying, there have always been some outdoor Apps with maps and GPS navigation. In this article, I'd like to introduce some of them (rigorously FREE, of course), along with the first impressions - positive and negative - after using them. I already own and use a GPS navigator, and I was curious to know if and how the use of my smartphone could be integrated with planning and tracking GPS routes on the field. Here is my review.
Modifying a GPS track can be useful for many reasons: merging routes found on the web to define an itinerary you want to travel, creating and viewing an altimetry of a specific route, reversing the direction of travel, splitting a trip by bike in more multiple stages, creating points of interest or even creating a track from scratch... well, the management possibilities of GPS files (whether GPX, KML or any other useful format) is, nowadays, wide and varied. Often though during my researches on the web I find it hard to find a complete overview of free programs to modify the GPS tracks therefore hereafter I grouped some programs that I recommend based on my experience.