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Route 66 Motorcycle Tour

Hi folks, it's my first post so please be gentle :-)
I am looking for a good GPS unit that i can program a VERY precise route into with many waypoints. I will be taking a number of fellow motorcyclists for a 2500 mile ride in the USA next year. I have a VERY detailed route to ensure we stay on as much of the old Route 66 as we can but it seems that many devices are not os easy to do this with.

I want to plan the route on the PC and load it onto the device and then i do NOT want the device to make any recommendations or changes. The old Route 66 road runs alongside new highway in many states and i do not want to get thrown off onto the freeway.

With +2500 miles there could be hundreds of waypoints... ideally i can preload each day as a new route. Maybe 50 or 60 waypoints a day for 14 days. What would be your recommendation for a cheap but functional unit to do such things ?

Thanks in advance ... Nick


  • Boyd 2028 Points
    edited July 2014
    The "cheap" part is going to be difficult. Garimin's Zumo series was specifically designed for what you want, but they aren't cheap. And even so, some people find reason to complain about the routes. No personal experience with these.

    The Montana 600 is another possibility - have had one for several years and really like it, although I use it in a car an on foot, not a bike. You have to buy the mount and City Navigator map separately, so you will be in the $400-$500 range depending on what kind of deals you can find.

    It will not modify a route if it was created using the same version of the map. Then on the device itself, you can choose three options for when you go off-route. It can either automatically re-calculate, not recalculate at all, or ask if you want to re-calculate.
  • Thanks Boyd. The motorcycle part is not so important. The ZUMO is very expensive but it is designed to cope with bad weather and gloved hands. I will be riding a Harley in the summer and mounts are not so expensive.

    The important thing is capacity to handle lots of waypoints and ease to pre load these from a PC. Preference would be to load from google maps but there is sufficient time for me to replan the whole route in some other software if needed.

    Thanks again, Nick
  • t923347 533 Points
    I'm not so sure there is a "SEND TO GPS" function in Google maps any longer but there still is in Mapquest. Mapquest can transfer both waypoint and routes.

    If your up to learning a new software package, Garmin's Basecamp is a free download and well suited for creating routes for your GPS. The learning curve to become proficient with it maybe more than you want to take on however and Mapquest is certainly easy to use.
  • Boyd 2028 Points
    Garmin uses Navteq ("Here") maps, so you are bound to have some routing problems if you plan routes on Google since they have their own proprietary maps. But there is a free program called "Tyre to Travel" which generate garmin compatible routes from Google Maps.

    Garmin's free Basecamp program was designed specifically to work with their devices and use the same maps as the GPS. Some people like it, others don't.

    I believe the Montana has a limit of 200 waypoints per route, but this is dependent on how long and complex the route is. You may hit an "out of memory" error calculating a long route, but I suspect you will be fine with 50 or 60 points. The Montana allows you to store 200 routes on the device, so that will let you break a long tip into as many segments as you like.

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