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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone have or has used the Garmin nuvi 500 GPS with Topographic Maps. I want to get this because I should be able to use it in my Jeep and my snowmobile and in the wifes car.
 

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I have not used one myself but they are very popular in the ATV world with trails and off roading.
 

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I have been using it for years. On my Harley's,
in my pickup and also on my snowmobile.
I love mine !
This guy is local to me and I have even donated
some mapped snowmobile maps to him.
Great write up on the Nuvi 500 on his site.
Check out his whole site.

Nuvi 500 Review - eye toward snowmobiling | Umbagog Designs LLC

Rob ....
 

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I've never been that impressed with any of the Nuvi's. If your budget can take it, look into the Garmin Montana 600. Garmin's maps suck, in my opinion. With the Montana 600, you can download genuine 1:24K USGS Topo maps AND satellite imagery. The USGS maps and Birdseye Satellite Imagery each cost about $30 to activate for a year...but if you download everything you need in that first year, you do not need to renew.

The satellite imagery is invaluable out on trails...where the trail might not be on any map but will show up on the satellite image. It's also REALLY nice to see a daytime satellite image of the trail when you are out there at night. Resolution is good enough to see individual trees. When using the satellite imagery, bigger is better when talking screen size...and the Montana 600 has a larger screen than the Nuvi 500.

Depending on the mapping software you use, you can draw your trail route on the computer and transfer it to the GPS...then just keep the vehicle on the little line on the screen. I think the Nuvi may do that for you on known streets, but I doubt that it would do so on backcountry trails.

RAM mounts makes mounts for any application. I have mounts in my truck and jeep for the 600.

By the way, I have taught land navigation (maps, GPS, compass) for many years for one of the country's busiest search and rescue groups. I've used a LOT of GPS units...mainly garmin....and the Montana 600 is far and away the best I've ever used.
 

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The Montana 600 is very nice but a Nuvi 500 can be had for
under $200 and never had a problem with their maps.
Guess it all depends on how deep your wallet is ;-)
Rob ....
 

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The Montana 600 is very nice but a Nuvi 500 can be had for
under $200 and never had a problem with their maps.
Guess it all depends on how deep your wallet is ;-)
Rob ....
I guess it depends on what area of the country you live in and what you need your maps to do for you. For my use, which is mainly backcountry hiking and 4-wheeling, the maps have always been the weak point of any Garmin GPS...even after they re-did the maps 3 or 4 years ago. They lacked detail, terrain features were hard to decipher, and many trails just were not on their maps.

Until recently, Garmin did not allow any maps other than their own on their GPS units. With the introduction of the 62 series a couple of years ago and now many of their newer GPS units, they finally allow the user to import better maps, including the USGS maps that are pretty much the standard by which all other maps are judged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have been using it for years. On my Harley's,
in my pickup and also on my snowmobile.
I love mine !
This guy is local to me and I have even donated
some mapped snowmobile maps to him.
Great write up on the Nuvi 500 on his site.
Check out his whole site.

Nuvi 500 Review - eye toward snowmobiling | Umbagog Designs LLC

Rob ....
Thanks for the review that's just what I needed to make my decision on buying this. I have fought for years not buying one. When snowmobiling here in Michigan I don't need a GPS but wheeling I have gotten lost a few times and this unit would have helped me out.
I'm sure the other guy's suggestion would be nice if it was the same price. Thanks all
 
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