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Identical Turn by Turn directions for both bike & car

I organise a charity bike ride covering 1000+kms across both urban and remote areas. Our need is to provide turn by turn directions for the cyclists and provide exactly the same directions for the support vehicles. We have tried this in the past with mixed success using Garmin Edge 810's for the cyclists and Garmin Nuvis for the support vehicles. I map the daily routes with Ride with GPS into gpx files and transfer them to the Edge 810's (this all works well enough) but the problem starts when I then import the gpx files into Garmin Express to transfer to the car GPS units. It is very time consuming (cleaning up the route maps in Garmin Express is painful) and the outcome is never as accurate as I would like. We inevitably end up with confusion from conflicting directions between the cyclists and the support vehicles and when you have so many riders and support cars, confusion = risk.

Does anyone have any other ideas on alternate approaches or products that we could use to solve this problem?


  • sussamb 829 Points
    Express is an updater program, do you mean BaseCamp?
  • tbp7 0 Points
    Yes, sorry I use Garmin Basecamp to transfer the gpx files to the Nuvi's - but there always seem to be lots of cleaning required and with over 1000+km it is almost an impossible task to get it perfect
  • DaveM 160 Points
    I would use a handheld GPS that lets you can turn recalculate off.

    My GPSMAP 64s will let me turn it off so will follow the route. I know some other Garmin handhelds will allow this but I'm not sure which ones.

    My eTrex 20 won't let me turn it off so it will recalculate any time you go off route. If you turn around to help a cyclist, go around the corner to stop at a store, etc. it will recalculate and give you a different route.

    However I've found that GPS is not the best for support vehicles. On all the rides I've been involved in organizing and also the ones that I've rode the support vehicles will go the same way as the cyclists until they get in front of them and then turn around and go backwards until they are behind them then turn around and keep repeating this until all the cyclists are done for the day. With all the back and forth and the turn around moving every time a GPS giving turn by turn doesn't work out in my opinion. You could use a hand held that allows you to have a track on the screen you could then see the route on the screen but not have turn by turn. The other option would be to have two routes one forward and one reverse and switch routes every time you turn around.

    A second person in each vehicle that can look at map or the track on a GPS and navigate so the driver can drive and watch the road is a big help.
  • IMO....... you are dealing with a task that will not be possible with the current gps's unless you tailor it to only one device. As already mentioned some gps's will always want to recalculate the route. You also have to deal with subtle differences in the type of maps each user might have on their device as well as the subtle differences in the way the trip software has been "optimized" on each device.

    Again IMO, you'd be better off to just provide a track file of the course and let the participants figure out how to get their gps devices to provide them with the correct navigation information if they feel they need turn-by-turn guidance.

    As for me, I'd just display the track on my gps and us it as a moving map display.
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