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Thread: GPS Maps for inland waterway, lakes and swamps

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    Default GPS Maps for inland waterway, lakes and swamps

    Do any of you guys run GPS plotters in your airboats and if so, do any of the companies offer maps for the GPS for Alaska. Garman has maps for all 48 lower states but not Alaska. I'm really looking for a chartplotter that has available maps for Alaska. I've also heard that Google Earth can be loaded onto some chart plotters, anybody know about this? I want a good GPS plotter for my airboat, but want one with a map if available. Thanks in advance. Bud

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Bud,
    We run with a garmin 76cs (I think thats what it is...). For about $100- you can purchase the waterway charts or topo for Alaska.
    It has been great and the maps are fairly accurate. The ocean side of it has been very accurate while out in the Sound.
    BK

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    I know garman has ocean and costal waterway charts that are great. Are you talking about topo and waterway charts for inland or just costal. If inland, where did you get them? I talked to the guy at the Garman GPS store in Anch and he told me they were not available. I have a little hand held garman, not sure of the number, that shows a river outline, on a 1 and a half inch screen, but i was wanting to find something with more detail. Bud

    PS: Bkmail have you checked your pm box lately?

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    Member skip olsen's Avatar
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    Bud
    I Have The Garmin CSX That I Us In My Airboat And It Works Great I Can Come Home And Down Load It To Googles Earth And See Everplace I Have Been, It Gives You Miles Per Hour, How Long You Have Traveled And The Distance You Have Traveled.Skip

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    Member skip olsen's Avatar
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    Sorry Its A Garmin 76 CSX If You Get One You Will Like It.

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    Member akhilux's Avatar
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    There has been a few threads about this that you might want to read thru. In short most marine (boat) GPS's have very little detail on any of the rivers in Alaska. Your best bet is to get a hiking GPS that has topo on it. I went thru this about a year ago and settled with one of Garmin's hiking GPSs, I suggest getting the biggest screen that you can afford and/or find and use a bike/ATV mount.
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    Member MRFISH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akblackdawg View Post
    I know garman has ocean and costal waterway charts that are great. Are you talking about topo and waterway charts for inland or just costal. If inland, where did you get them? I talked to the guy at the Garman GPS store in Anch and he told me they were not available. I have a little hand held garman, not sure of the number, that shows a river outline, on a 1 and a half inch screen, but i was wanting to find something with more detail. Bud

    PS: Bkmail have you checked your pm box lately?
    Blackdawg, I'm in the same situation as you. I've got a garmin gpsmap520 mounted in my boat and would like to get a better basemap for the Yukon. Garmin's bluechart and vision are great for the salt don't have anything satisfactory for the inland waters where I'll be. Garmin has topo maps on their website for purchase. If I recall correctly, they don't have the fine-scale topo maps for AK, but I looked at online preview the larger scale and it's just fine for what I need. The topo's aren't compatible with my 520, so I have to put them on my handheld (the 60csx).

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    Member MRFISH's Avatar
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    akblackdawg...here's where you can preview the topo basemap. This seems to be the best map detail available for a Garmin unit that I've seen for interior AK.

    http://www8.garmin.com/cgi-bin/mapge...&rz=0&k=1&sc=1

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    MRFISH even that would be a great help. Do you happen to know what units that will work with that Garman has available? I'll check into it, just asking in case you know off the top of your head. Thank you for the information. Big help. Bud

  10. #10

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    There is a lengthy thread on this from last year that may help you with additional information. Personally, I use the Garmin 398 and uploaded the Garmin 100K topo maps with a data card covering about 90% of the state. It now works just like a hand held unit and is superior to any fish finder/gps unit I've seen. I can also upload Alaska's inland waterways maps (discontinued) but chose to have a larger range with the 100K topo maps. I'm very happy with its resolution, accuracy and ability. The 398 is not limited to Garmin maps but the process to install other maps is long and tedious so I haven't tried it yet.

    There are only a few other (two or three) Garmin units that will allow you to do this. The units are newer than my 398 but are discontinued so you will have to do a little research to buy one. If your up for the research and willing to spend a little money, what you seek can be done but it will take a little work. I would suggest trying some of the GPS hacking forums - you'll find a number of examples of additional maps being installed on select Garmin units.
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

  11. #11

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    I just answered a PM about this so here's an option for those interested. The GPSMAP 526/526S unit will take the TOPO Alaska Enhanced maps ($99) but I'm not sure what else as I don't own one. I don't know if it has the functionality of overlaying multiple maps as the 398 or not. The TOPO Alaska Enhanced maps will work with some Garmin units (a relatively new option) and may be the answer. (Look under the Compatible Devices tab for more information)
    "He should have been packing a more powerful gun...you have to be a very good shot or very lucky to stop a brown bear with a .357 Magnum." - Rick Sinnott, Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologist after a double attack by a grizzly.

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    I just ordered off ebay a garmin 520, with 5 in screen, factory refurbished with factory warrenty, for $362 I think it was. Reg retail was over $700 on it. Still need the topo map, which I had checked into, and will work with it. Bud

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