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Gps to measure distance


I'm looking for an affordable handheld GPS unit for hunting. My main concern is measuring distance between two waypoints. I was initially looking at an etrex 10 but read that it doesn't have that feature. I don't need anything super fancy , just somewhat accurate.


  • Boyd 1999 Points
    edited January 2016
    You will find similar accuracy on most consumer devices, typically +/- 5 meters (16 feet). Think of it this way, if you record two waypoints, the straight line distance between them can be off by as much as 10 meters (32 feet) and the device will be performing as expected.

    But are you talking about straight line distances between points, or the distance following a trail/road? If following a trail, that makes it more complicated. You would need a routable map if you want it to give you a distance estimate and tell you when to turn as you navigate.

    If you just want to record the distance between points as you walk, then you would record a tracklog. These can be subject to some pretty significant errors for a variety of reasons.

    If you can explain exactly how you want to use it, then we can probably be more helpful. Do you want to see a map on the screen? Satellite imagery? Also, do you have a smartphone?
  • Thanks for the quick response. I'm interested in straight line distances. No need to see a map on screen or satellite imagery but wouldn't be opposed to it. I have a LG G2 smart phone.

    My hunting spots have to be atleast 250 yards from our feeder location. I just need to be able to measure the distance from feeder to my treestand.
  • sussamb 829 Points
    Then you've been misinformed as the Etrex10 will do that.
  • Boyd 1999 Points
    edited January 2016
    For what you describe, I don't see why you wouldn't just use your phone. There should be many Android apps that can do something this basic. OruxMaps is a very powerful and free GPS app. It has the ability to use many kinds of map that can be pre-loaded at home using wifi so that you don't need a cell connection out in the woods.

    There are many other apps, some are simpler if you don't need all of Orux's features. The GPS on your phone is probably accurate enough for what you describe. You can get a rugged case for your phone, possibly even get one that includes a battery, for less than an eTrex.

    If you want high accuracy, you can get a Garmin GLO for about $100 new or even less as factory refurbished. It's a small external GPS receiver that wirelessly sends data to your phone. I wrote recently about the GLO here:

    Now there is certainly nothing wrong with getting an eTrex either, if you prefer a separate dedicated device.
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