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Rex Sanders
(Rex) - M

Locale: Central California Coast
More observations of DeLorme inReach SE performance on 08/25/2013 23:09:56 MDT Print View

Took my inReach SE on a day hike through Big Basin Redwoods State Park in California today. For those who know the park: Gazos Creek Road, Sunset Trail, Berry Creek Falls Trail, Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, Middle Ridge Road, Gazos Creek Road.

I was in thick, tall second-growth redwoods and fir trees virtually the entire hike, and in the bottom of a canyon for much of the hike. I had 10-minute tracking turned on, sent 3 messages, and carefully noted my time and position at a couple of spots for comparison later. Total hiking time about 5.5 hours for 11 miles (I'm not fast).

When I got home, I reviewed the locations on DeLorme's maps, and copied-pasted lat/lon into Google Maps for a few locations.

Results:

- Some tracking points were delayed or missing. I would track at 10 minutes for a while, then jump to 14, 10, 16, etc. Biggest jump was 26 minutes.

- The messages I sent were delivered in 2-15 minutes.

- All were pretty close to where I was at the time. Hard to tell for many locations, because the trails are not marked on either DeLorme topos or Google Maps.

- Google Maps and air photos are more accurate than the DeLorme street maps or air photos. For the handful of locations I checked in Google, the offset was less than 20 feet. Same locations in DeLorme's online maps were off by 100 feet or more.

For example, I parked near the bottom of Gazos Creek Road, just west of the bridge, in a pullout on the south side of the road, and sent two messages from there.

DeLorme screen shot showing both messages:
DeLorme screen shot
Google screen shots showing one message:
Google screen shot
Google screen shot
The suggested Google Street View even showed the 2-car dirt pullout I parked in!

The DeLorme Export button has an option for KML, so you can open in Google Maps or Google Earth, but the KML is points only, no lines connecting the dots in time.

Pro tip: You can display most KML/KMZ files in Google Maps, without using Google Earth. Put the KML/KMZ file on a public web site (e.g. Dropbox, Google Docs), copy-and-paste the URL into a Google Maps search box, and your KML/KMZ info will appear in your browser.

Overall the inReach SE performance was very good in a very challenging setting. DeLorme's maps – not as good, but adequate. Astounded at the accuracy of Google's maps and air photos.

-- Rex

Edited by Rex on 08/25/2013 23:20:28 MDT.