I've had 3 separate trips on various parts of the TAT. 2 out east and 1 out west. The 2 trips east we only used GPS and it worked pretty well. There were some hiccups but we were always able to quickly get out the map and figure out where we were and where we need to be. The way we set up our files was to coordinate the file with the map. TN-01 was the GPS file and it coordinated to the first map in the TN set, AR-03 was the 3rd map in the Arkansas set. So, if we needed to refer to a map, all we had to do was to look at the GPS and see which file we were on. We got pretty good at changing files while moving (you kids don't try that at home).
Out west, I had a GPS and the guy I was riding with, Patrick, was using roll charts. I was having issues with the GPS power wise and he was having electrical issues with his odometer. Another problem with the roll charts is that unless your odometer is super accurate it won't match up with the roll charts. Patrick's was off as well and he would have to reset his odometer every few hours at a known location in order to keep up with the roll charts.
The final issue is the new color maps. Oregon in particular. Oregon is supposed to be the worst state to try and navigate through due to the sheer number of roads in the woods. The Oregon map that is provided is so small scale-wise that it makes it useless to try and use to navigate with. When I was creating my GPS files, I had to use the roll charts and not the map.
Are you planning to bring all that paper with you? I think you'll find that traveling lighter is a major contributor to a successful trip. Personally, I would go with GPS and the maps and make up your own Oregon maps.
RIding the TAT is a blast, I will be back in NM this June and start making my way west to the coast.
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