W Trans America Trail GPS tracks

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - West & PNW' started by retired motoman, Oct 22, 2008.

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  1. ktm530russ

    ktm530russ Adventurer

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    This post makes you look like a spoiled, rotten, petulant child. ("So I removed my updates for Oregon..." sounds like "I'm taking my toys and playing somewhere else").:huh

    As stated by another above:
    1: Nobody is suggesting STEALING Sam's maps or route, ONLY getting GPS TRACKS (and hopefully PRE-RIDDEN, versus hand-drawn, so no deadends...) to SUPPLEMENT Sams maps.
    2: Accurate? No, I agree they cannot be 100%, BUT... Sam has had feedback and AMPLE opportunity to take literally HUNDREDS of re-routes around dead-ends, impassable objects, etc. and update his maps. He has chosen NOT to do this, so I believe his "value-added" is losing some...
    3,4, and 5: From what I have heard on many other postings (as I have not ridden the TAT yet) is that Sam has Not done a lot on updating, especially the Western end. Problems have been identified, and yes, you CAN (could now that YOU have "removed" all the helpful information) update your own by a LOT of work, and searching hundreds of TAT threads.:ear
    What would make more sense is an EFFICIENCY in the TAT riding preparation, instead of forcing EVERY TAT RIDER to duplicate the efforts, hand draw GPS tracks/routes, and run into the SAME issues on every ride, UPDATE the TAT Maps at the SOURCE, and provide proven GPS tracks for the riders.:doh
    All I am looking for, personally, is the BASIC, PRE-RIDDEN, GPS track. No waypoints, no VIAs, no remarks regarding camping, gas, food, lodging, special trails, extra loops, etc. THIS information is the meat of SAMS maps.
    I would believe that almost every person who is going to ride the TAT will purchase these maps, if only for additional information and resources. (same as you would not cliimb Mt. Everest with only a map of the trail used).

    Another note/gripe: One poster stated that TAT riders should pay for Sams maps for EVERY RIDE and EVERY RIDER. Does that mean the "2-up" couple that just ran this last year should have purchased TWO sets, for a single ride? That just doesn't MAKE SENSE!
    Also, if you purchased the maps, made the ride, and then wanted to do it again next year, does this person need to purchase the maps a second time? I DON't THINK SO....(If you SOLD your set, maybe, but not otherwise).

    Summary:
    1: SAM needs to take all this feedback and update.
    2: GPS tracks are NOT the end of the TAT, just a supplement to it.
    3: Purchase A SET of Sams maps. Add GPS ridden track to it.
    4: Everybody calm down just a little bit?
  2. Jeff@TheQuadShop

    Jeff@TheQuadShop TAT survivor

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    Sam has been updating the maps and charts! Remember that he has a full time job and does what he can. Like I said earlier, he was in OR a few months ago making changes.
  3. ktm530russ

    ktm530russ Adventurer

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    Drawing a track on the map, and actually having roads/trails exist are two completely different things. The proof is in the pudding, so to speak... If it has not been ridden, you cannot know if it is even passable, let alone "better than what Sam had".
    There is a site that has all the TAT GPS tracks, the link is posted in another thread. (I will NOT reproduce that link here!). I downloaded them, and they are HAND-DRAWN in MapQuest, and not all that accurate. Possibly worse than not having GPS at ALL in some places. I still advocate Purchasing Sams maps, and then having the PRE-ridden GPS tracks made available to avoid blocked passages, dead-ends, and much back-tracking.
  4. ktm530russ

    ktm530russ Adventurer

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    ...and we applaud his efforts. I hope that when I purchase them in April, they include Oregon updates... I think the main gripe was that there had been feed-back to Sam for YEARS, with updates, re-routes around blockages, gps tracks, known "gotchas", and yet Sam did NOT update any of his maps during this entire time...(well, I did hear he did Eastern portions, but I believe that was him going out and riding it, not from feedback).
  5. LongCliff

    LongCliff Bagger

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    In case Sam does happen to read this thread at some point, I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed riding the TAT. Without his help, I would have never experienced riding through some of the most beautiful areas of the USA, and I am very grateful.:D

    I also had fun using his maps/charts, along with google earth to route the TAT on my GPS. It took me many, many hours to complete the route, but I learned a lot about my GPS, latitude & longitude, and the geography along the TAT.
  6. Jeff@TheQuadShop

    Jeff@TheQuadShop TAT survivor

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    I don't believe he doe's, last time I talked to him he said he isn't on the internet much at all.
  7. EnduroRdr

    EnduroRdr Woods Racer & D/S Rider

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    [​IMG] [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG] Well said, and I agree with your whole reply.


    You can not stop the sharing of tracks, its going to happen. Besides if you look long enough you will find them already posted the internet somewhere anyway.

    The vast - vast - majority of riders that are preparing to do this ride will buy the maps from Sam. Especially if they are riding solo. But not many will ride solo. The fact of the matter is that most of these guys will plan this route with a buddy and although few would admit it here I bet most ride together but share one map package.

    I suppose technically that would be wrong too! So all this preaching is mostly hypocritical! And I bet most of them have downloaded music on their players too.

    This is the new millennium why not download music if its legal! Buy just the stuff you want. The courts have already sorted that one out, (for example if performer opts out then iTunes can not sell their music legally) so if you want to sell records these days you take less for downloaded copies than CD versions but sell more of them.

    I would still have no issue sharing gps tracks that I have ridden if the fellow rider is doing exactly that, gathering the best information he can get.
    I made the tracks, Sam and Rand McNally made maps & travel packages.
    What I do with them is my business. I don't agree with the selling of Photocopies of his package as long as he is still active. As I see selling the original I paid for though is OK. I buy used stuff elsewhere what would be different here?

    If you make a product that is marketable, people will buy it. If you don't improve it, then sooner or later someone else will.

    Sam is just really lucky most of us have some basic sympathy to compensate him for his efforts even with old data in it.

    If he doesn't try to improve that product then even sympathy grows weary over time.

    That obviously bothers some so much they will take their toys and go home. :cry

    Besides - why would you not want to help fellow riders out? Especially knowing most of them are paying Sam for his package anyway - current or not.

    Most of us asking just want reliable information and proven tracks, are we lazy? Yea most likely, but we will probably still spend countless hours reviewing routes on gearth even if we have someone else tracks.

    This is like trying to get liberals and conservatives to agree on politics, all of them already have their minds made up and nothing you say will change their attitudes.

    So Flame on!:mully

    .

    .
  8. bobzilla

    bobzilla Dirty Old Man

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    We drew up a set of tracks for a trip we took last spring somewhere around 1700 miles around the grand canyon. We had a few surprises but nothing we could not do. If you do your homework with USGS maps and roads and rec and topo you can draw some excellent tracks. I never use map quest thats just stupid to think you can use that and have a good off road trip. I have not really had much problem . I live out west and routinely go exploring 2 ,3, or 5 days out unsupported with little or no worries. Im just sayin anyone can make the tracks and quite frankly some of what Sam has is not near the best in the area out here. Most guys on KLR's or BMW's would hate the tracks we draw and ride anyway. Sam dont have too many horse trails or 40 mile sandwashes, but then again that is what local knoweledge is all about .......or get out there and explore!
  9. gasgasman

    gasgasman Been here awhile

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    wow!!!
    JUST FOLLOW THE ROLL CHARTS AND LEAVE YOUR DAMM GPS IN YOUR GEAR BAG AND GET UR DONE!!:eek1
  10. bobzilla

    bobzilla Dirty Old Man

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    Done it both ways and will always take tracks over roll chart. Leave the map at home ? NO WAY gps do break:lol3
  11. ktm530russ

    ktm530russ Adventurer

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    I don't know.......

    Roll Charts: Check your odometer every .1 to .4 miles (hope it started or stays accurate!), read the roll chart directions (hope it was clear and you don't mis-interpret the turn!), advance the roll chart every 4-5 turns. Reset odometer ("Oh, C*&^! I forgot to do that last time, what is the milage now?!?"):cry Miss a turn, and then where did I start from? Which "turn" do I roll back too? :huh
    (Pre-ride: Cut all the paper into strips, tape together, roll up and try to stuff into the holder. "D%$#", too much... cut some off, make 3-4 instead of 2. Roll them back up again. Stuff into the holder again. Store the others, hope they don't "unspool" in the bag.)

    GPS: Follow the little blue line... (or red line, or green line, whatever) glance down every little while to make sure your still on it. :nod If you get off the line, backtrack until you are "on it" again.

    Gee.... which one seems easier? :evil Maybe it's time to move into the 22nd Century?
  12. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    Whos "time to move into the 22nd century"?

    I assume you are going to go out and layout a 3-4,000 mile ride, then post the GPS tracks on the internet, then ask people to mail you $200 or something. I am sure you will pass Microsoft in sales your first year and people like me will be out of business!

    Obviously you don't enter Dual Sport rides. Roll Charts are the standard, and only choice for at least 30% of the riders.
  13. HogWild

    HogWild Scott Whitney

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    Well, you conveniently left out all the negatives that come with GPS, and you're "off track" on the looking down issue.

    - What do you do when your GPS craps out, go home?
    - How do you load the GPS tracks? They generally don't all fit, so now you have to carry a laptop or provide for some other means of loading the tracks.
    - What do you do when your laptop craps out?
    - How do you put notes, hazards, and other such valuable info into the GPS tracks?
    - How do you obtain a GPS track of TAT while still respecting Sam's wishes? Spend hundreds of hours on Google Earth and MapSource drawing the tracks (not "easy")!

    When following a roll chart, you don't have to look down any more than you do with a GPS. It might even be less often with roll charts than with a GPS, depending on your roll chart and navigation skills. When the roll chart says the next turn or navigation point is 10 miles ahead, you ride what you think is 8 or 9 miles and check where you're at. No looking down for a long ways! On the other hand, with the GPS you don't know how far you have to go to the next turn, so you have to keep looking down to see if you're still on course. Like you said, just follow the line on the GPS. The problem is, you have to keep looking down to follow it! Having a GPS and tracks can be a handy aid, but they are not a good replacement for the roll charts and maps.
  14. ktm530russ

    ktm530russ Adventurer

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    OK, I am not trying to get anybody upset... I just believe the technology is there to do away with the paper roll charts. "30% need roll charts" = 70% are good with GPS... I always back my GPS with Maps and other resources, and generally ride with others who do the same.

    Memory chips (for GPS maps/tracks,etc) are cheap, buy a couple dozen, put each section on their own card, and you could have a 5,000 mile ride without a Laptop or other "support" mechanisms. The new GPS models are a LOT more robust than previous years (Garmin 60 series!!) designed with the rough, vibration and crash testing that TAT riders provide in mind?


    "Obviously you don't enter Dual Sport rides. Roll Charts are the standard, and only choice for at least 30% of the riders."

    YES, I do Dual-Sport rides... (mostly day trips, or 2-day rides, not your week-long plus CDR) and experienced more accuracy and less issues with GPS vs. Roll-charts. Roll-charts WERE the standard, in the '80's through the '90's. I believe that there are ELECTRONIC Roll-charts available now for those legacy riders... scan the paper in, and you have the whole thing (all 3,000+ miles?) in a single "strip".

    HogWild, your points regarding GPS:

    - What do you do when your GPS craps out, go home?
    The new ones don't "crap out" much anymore. If it does, use your maps to get to the "next" stop/city and get a new GPS... Return the old unit after your trip...
    - How do you load the GPS tracks? They generally don't all fit, so now you have to carry a laptop or provide for some other means of loading the tracks.
    See above regarding multiple memory cards...
    - What do you do when your laptop craps out?
    Not an issue, since you don't need a laptop...
    - How do you put notes, hazards, and other such valuable info into the GPS tracks?
    uh..... Waypoints?
    - How do you obtain a GPS track of TAT while still respecting Sam's wishes? Spend hundreds of hours on Google Earth and MapSource drawing the tracks (not "easy")
    Get another inmate to provide the work they did after purchasing Sam's maps. (Hundreds of hours??? Why do so many state "I put Sam's Rollcharts into my GPS Route/Track in a couple of hours"...) I actually believe YOUR statement above over these other remarks.

    It appears there is still the assumption that anyone "asking" for GPS tracks of the TAT (ridden, drawn in, mapped out, whatever) are trying to "steal" Sam's work and effort. Nothing could be further from the truth... Almost every one seem to want these as SUPPLEMENTS to the TAT maps/charts, and/or want to eliminate the duplication of effort and pain of transcribing these into GPS tracks...
    I have found enough resources to get 80% of the TAT in GPS track format, but STILL would not ride it without getting SAM's information due to the details he provides re: fuel, food, etc.

    ...and Sam's maps are OUTDATED!!! Posted below are exerpts of a ride report last summer (these were cut/pasted, I hope they don't mind the use in this post...).

    "found the turn off and started the roll chart. Everything worked out at first. The turns pretty much coincided with the roll chart directions...some things were a little off, but not bad. The previous 9 days of the TAT had taught us that sometimes the odometer number didn't match, but it would work out in the end. Sometimes the landmarks would be missing, but it would work out in the end. Sometimes the signs would be missing, but it would work out in the end. There had been so many times when we were convinced that we were lost, only to go a little further and find that we were actually on the trail." (So the Roll-charts are "accurate"? the information "fresh"? NOT)

    "A GPS with topos would probably have saved us a lot of heartache that day." ('nuf said!)


    "The last roll chart for NV indicated that gas could be obtained at the Fort Bidwell general store on Bridge St.
    Good thing, because our fuel light had come on.
    We got to Fort Bidwell and quickly found the General Store. Closed! Crap. We figured it was because today was a sunday...
    But, after Matt stopped and talked to a mom in the park, we learned it had been closed for a few years. Actually, after doing a google search, I see that the Ft. Bidwell general store (built in 1876), has been closed since 2000"
    (Did I say OUTDATED above?)



    "We got off trail a couple of times ("does that look like a 'bear left' or is it a 'left turn'?")" (clear and concise?)


    "We were supposed to get on the trail just past those railroad tracks, but the gate was locked (mile 042.42). We were hesitant to trespass, but we really wanted to get on the TAT today. After a short debate, the tyranny of the trail won out and we went around the locked gate and skulked down the road.
    The numbers didn't seem to be working today and everything seemed to be off. We had a hard time finding "045.01 - bear LEFT dirt."
    (zoom in on a good GPS and see if the track is where you are, or somewhere else...)


    "We saw an opening in a fence here, between the sign and the power pole, just before the private driveway. It was just a little earlier on the odometer than the previous gate had been, but it kind of looked like the entrance to a road (this one didn't have a gate and we could see recent bike tracks going in, so it had a lot of potential).
    We followed the bike tracks across an overgrown field that had really tall weeds. I was nervous riding in a place where we couldn't see the ground - what if we ran over some sharp metal and slashed the tires? We followed the tracks to a closed gate. I don't think it was locked, but this didn't feel right either. As we looked around, we saw a guy watching us from his house. This was probably his field...He raised one hand in greeting - it was your typical brief, friendly, "hi" kind of wave.
    ***(cut out large portion of them wrecking by riding into a hole in the ground)***
    Randal told us to come up to the house and get cleaned up, and we were able to talk for a little bit.

    He said he was confused as to why we were out in his field. Randal has owned this parcel for three years and every summer he sees puzzled motorcyclists all over his property, looking at funny maps. He couldn't understand why it was never cars, but always bikes. So we were able to clear that up for him. That first gate we went through also belongs to Randal. It seems that many years ago, the road went all the way through, but since then the land had been sold. He rides and he didn't seem too upset by having TATers on his property, but it's terrible that the TAT roll chart directs people onto his land. Not just because it might be annoying for him, but because it can be dangerous for the riders."
  15. Black Mesa Offroad

    Black Mesa Offroad BRP Pilot

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    I'm sorry, but one shouldn't rely totally on technology. While I'm a GPS hound myself, I can also out land nav 95% of the registered members here with a compass and a map and even though I may trek out using GPS, I always have backup be it paper maps or my knowledge of the area. One just has to look at all the retards who are getting themselves into situations that require outside assistance because they thought the GPS was the end all, be all.
  16. Jeff@TheQuadShop

    Jeff@TheQuadShop TAT survivor

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    I stayed in Black Mesa park on my TAT ride! :clap
  17. Black Mesa Offroad

    Black Mesa Offroad BRP Pilot

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    <-------------------wishes he lived out there:D
  18. VTRally

    VTRally Been here awhile

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    I think it's been said enough but maybe not, tracks on a gps are a great way to verify you are on the route. You would be an idiot to not have a paper backup. I have not seen anyone in this thread advocate such stupidty.
  19. Black Mesa Offroad

    Black Mesa Offroad BRP Pilot

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    I really don't know the extent of your knowledge of the English language, but can you tell me how you interpret such words??????????

  20. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    No one is upset, just don't think you know what you are talking aobut. The title of the thread is "TAT tracks Wanted". The discussion quickly turned into "is it ethical to post TAT tracks on public forum", or "is it ethical to even get tracks form friend and not buy Sam's maps and charts"?

    You seem to be talking about totally different subject, Tracks vs Roll Charts for commercial Self-Guided Dual Sport rides. This is a long thread on the District 37 Dual Sport message board. Only one promoter has actually tired it. Family Adventure tours or something. He put on a ride in/near Yousemite and got lots of complaints. Roll Charts have lots of verbal information that can not possibly be delivered to customers by GPS. I do lots of invetational rides that are GPS only but like I said at least 30% of my commercial customers don't have GPS. Debate over Roll Charts are the only thing that works for a walk up customer.
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