Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

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TheFifeBand
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Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by TheFifeBand »

I am considering buying a Zumo XT so that I can stop using my phone for navigation. However, the one feature I really want, but can't tell if it exists, is the ability to determine the road surface on a map. Specifically I am interested in riding exclusively on gravel and dirt roads. I don't want to ride on pavement. I know there are features to prefer pavement when routing, but I want the opposite. I want to be able to look at the map and based on color or some other indicator, know that a road is gravel or dirt.

I have watched dozens of videos and searched hi and low, but I just cannot tell if this is a feature or not. Can you tell me if the Zumo makes this possible?
Stu
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by Stu »

Possibly use bird's-eye view to see what the road looks like?
rbentnail
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by rbentnail »

The only way I can tell is to use Google maps. They generally do not travel down dirt roads. Then I move the little man onto the road to see what the actual view is. Google Earth is also helpful. But each is time consuming and not on the zumo.
Russ B. Zumo 595,
2007 & 2013 USA Yamaha FJR1300A
TheFifeBand
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by TheFifeBand »

If the Zumo knows which roads are paved and which roads aren't (which it must if it can route based on preference for paved), then shouldn't it be able to show the surface type on the map? Does no one care if a road is paved when looking at a map besides me? Does everyone just let the machine tell them where to go?
Oop North John
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by Oop North John »

Some tracks etc get shown in Basecamp, especially at the higher detail levels and this is using the same mapping as the XT. Or use Topo maps which tend to show the type of surface better?
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by rbentnail »

TheFifeBand wrote: 25 Oct 2020 01:01 If the Zumo knows which roads are paved and which roads aren't (which it must if it can route based on preference for paved), then shouldn't it be able to show the surface type on the map? Does no one care if a road is paved when looking at a map besides me? Does everyone just let the machine tell them where to go?
Man, where I'm at BaseCamp sometimes can't even tell if it's an actual road or not. The zumo has absolutely no clue. Ticking the avoidance for unpaved roads makes no difference in how it routes for me- I'll spend half my day in mud and gravel if I let it route. For a long time I used the DRIVING mode exclusively just so I wouldn't be sent through cow pastures and river crossings. I found last year that BaseCamp maps are different from zumo maps are different from Google maps are different from.... I spend much time on the computer comparing to find what roads and surfaces I want.
Russ B. Zumo 595,
2007 & 2013 USA Yamaha FJR1300A
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by sussamb »

Not sure I follow all of that. BaseCamp maps and Zumo maps are the same provided you've used Express or something else to install the same map on both your Zumo and the PC/Mac.
colirv
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by colirv »

Theoretically I suppose you could try routing with and without unpaved roads, the difference being unpaved. However, you are at the mercy of the maps which Garmin buys in, and in my experience these can sometimes take you down unpaved (and even non-existent) roads, even with unpaved marked to be avoided! You could look at other Garmin products, designed for trails and so on.
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by Hati »

TheFifeBand wrote: 25 Oct 2020 01:01 Does no one care if a road is paved when looking at a map besides me? Does everyone just let the machine tell them where to go?
Many care, especially those of us on road bikes. I don't know how you do your planning, but that's where the "care" happens. Many here use Basecamp. On that I can't comment, can't stand it. I use MyRoute with lifetime membership to draw my track. You can (with appropriate membership level) use satellite views with most maps to check on the type of the road you plan to travel. I usually route on Here maps and have another window on my web browser open with Google maps to check and compare.

Obviously this kind of planning assumes you do all your tracks ahead of your trip, at home. You can then download the gpx file to the XT and get it to turn it into a trip. Your mileage will vary pending on the detail level of the maps available to you for you area.
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Re: Gravel and Dirt Roads - How to Tell?

Post by Breezly »

Delineating between dirt/gravel and paved roads is not related to the GPS. That data is in the maps and unfortunately the gis data used in making maps often does not delineate between gravel and paved. You could try using topo maps for the area as they may be more helpful.
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