Sunday, March 18, 2012

Garmin Connect now rocks

Garmin Connect Explore Okay, I’ve got to admit that I was a bigger fan of MotionBased than its successor, Garmin Connect. I used the former to search for .gpx track files or trails I wanted to ride or hike. I never had much luck with Garmin Connect for some reason. But a blog post from them yesterday caught my eye. Having checked it out, I want to call your attention to a couple of things…

First, searches work much better now. Go to the Explore tab and play around with it. You should be able to easily locate some trails if they are in the system. I pretty quickly found a trail I didn’t have a track for (pictured above) in the largely unmapped new Rocky Fork public land acquisition a half-hour’s drive from my office. (Warning, if you’re close enough to check it out: the track appears to fall partially on private land.)

Oh but my backcountry geek friends, it gets even better. Now that you have a search successfully entered, click the RSS link above the map and get notified when any new tracks are posted for it. If you’re not familiar with RSS, read this. Okay Garmin Connect, you got me. I’m a fan now. Time to hit the trail and explore.

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About Rich Owings

Rich is the owner, editor and chief bottle-washer for GPS Tracklog. Connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus.


  1. Kaylin Bradley says:

    I’ll have to disagree. It’ll rock once it searches from the map center, similar to’s map.

  2. Not sure what you mean. One thing I saw is that when you hit the back button on your browser, it loses the area you were searching for. But if you wait ten seconds or so, it returns to your previous view.

  3. I gave Garmin Connect a quick look after reading this post and had no problems either setting up an account (which some sites still use as an intelligence test) or using the service. As someone who remembers not being able to get detailed information without going to the library or ordering it through the mail, I sometimes wonder why people complain about minor quirks in good programs. Plenty of major quirks to complain about.

  4. Kaylin Bradley says:

    I’m not cerain how you can call it a “minor quirk.” When I recenter the map over, say, a mountain I plan on climbing, I would expect the map to automatically repopulate with tracks from that point out. It doesn’t do that for me, and using the search which often leads to hundreds of “me walking the dog” type tracks is not acceptable in my books.

  5. Unfortunately, Garmin Connect has switched to Bing Maps instead of Google. This might be good for some locations, but I live in China, where Bing seriously lacks Google for map detail.

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