Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Having Garmin zumo XT problems? there is loads of help and advice in this forum
b1324
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Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by b1324 »

Hello everybody,
I have set up Garmin Explore with connection to Zumo XT with intention to easily create and transfer Routes (with guidance). Basecamp seems to complicated. But it is not working as I imagened so I am asking for your help here.

Garmin Explore on the PC (website). I can create Routes and the Routes are "automaticaly" transfered to Zumo XT. But when creating Routes on the PC, you select points and between points there is a straight line. The line does not follow the road. Also on the Zumo XT it does not follow the road. When starting the route, if I select the start to Coordinates (and not as default nearest entry point), a part of the Route goes on road, and mayority is still straight lines between my points. Weird, but I tried multiple times.

Then I installed Garmin Explore app on Android tablet. There I have no option to create Routes. But I can create a Course. It creates beautifuly! The selected points snap on the closest road and also the line between points is not straight but it follows the roads... perfect and done really easily. But Courses are not visible to Zumo XT so I cannot use them. I didn't find any option to convert Course to Route - not on tablet and not on the web page.

Is there some other trick or is Garmin Exlore just not the solution for Routes for Zumo XT?

Thanks and cheers :)
FrankB
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by FrankB »

As you will have noticed, there aren't many responses. My personal opinion, and I think of many others on this forum, Garmin Explore just doesn't do the job when you want to create routes for the XT.
I still like Basecamp, but that will require some learning. You can start here: viewtopic.php?t=1464
Others like MRA (MyRoute App)

Good Luck
TripleThreat719
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by TripleThreat719 »

I won't be much help here, but here is my experience...

Mac Studio running Ventura 13.0.1
Basecamp for Mac v. 4.8.11
iPhone 12 iOS 16.1.2

I'm a long-time basecamp user, so that is my preferred method of creating GPX files that I upload to my XT. I always create tracks in basecamp using the XT, not routes. I have recalculation turned off on my XT because when I plan a trip, I want to specifically follow preplanned roads or trails (which is why I prefer tracks).

There is an excellent Basecamp Tutorial Course put together by some of the guys on the New England Riders Forum that you can find here: https://www.newenglandriders.org/learn-basecamp/. I find that Basecamp is the most powerful route and track creation tool out there right now. Explore may eventually replace it, but for now, it's not as capable as Basecamp.

I have an Explore account online and I have the Explore App and the Drive App loaded on my iPhone.

I set up Explore because, unlike any other Garmin device I have ever owned, when you transfer a track to the XT, the custom icons for POIs and Waypoints don't transfer with the track. The only thing that comes through is a generic green square with a heart in it. That does me no good in marking water crossings, RR Crossings, Dangerous Trail features, Gas Stations, Bridges, or any other special feature I'd like to know to be looking for just from the icon type. As a result, I was forced to set up Explore, because those features get transferred as a part of a "collection" when a GPX file is sent to the XT and they are visible whenever the "collection" is visible. I wish Explore had the flexibility to turn on and off individual tracks within a collection, but currently that is not the case. Once a collection is visible, all tracks, waypoints, and POIs are visible. It's either all on, or all off...

Once I have the GPX file of my Track ready in basecamp, I export it to my desktop as a GPX file.
Then, I either Email it or Text it to myself.
Once on my phone, I open the GPX file. (When you do this, it's just a massive amount of text.)
Then, I use the Share button on my phone and share it with the Explore App on my phone.
It creates a "New Collection" in Explore (visible on the phone, or in the Web account via computer).
When my XT is near, and connected to my phone, the Garmin Drive App sends the "Collection" to my XT wirelessly.

You can then use the Explore App ( select "Where To?", and then "Explore" on the XT to View Waypoints, Individual Tracks, Routes, Activities, or Collections. It's here where I make the "Collection" visible, or not.

I also do one more thing, which is where the true beauty of the XT exists for me...

I convert each track to a "Trip" by selecting the "track", displaying it on screen and then using the wrench icon to "Convert to Trip". A Trip on the XT works like a "route" in that it provides spoken Turn-by-Turn guidance through my Cardo Packtalk Edge, whenever I am on a navigable road that my mapset knows. This is great when riding dual sport events where sections of off-road trail are connected by legal public roads. The XT will tell me when and where to turn to get to the next set of trail. Once off-road, spoken navigation stops and I simply follow the line on the screen while in the woods. Once I return to a known road on the "trip", spoken navigation resumes. To Navigate a Trip, you select "Apps" from the main XT Screen and then select 'Trip Planner" and then "Saved Trips" and then select the Trip you want to navigate.

I choose to have both the track (via the collection being visible), and the trip visible on screen, just to make sure that the trip doesn't deviate from the purposely created "track".

This process seems a bit convoluted and complex, but once you learn it, it's a really quick process that is all accomplished wirelessly, which for me is great, especially when attending dual sport and off-road events where sending GPX files between participants is super easy, so long as someone has it on their phone, either as an email or in a text.
jfheath
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by jfheath »

I replied at length to this post a few hours ago. It's not there. 'Submit' must have failed without me noticing !

Not to worry, @TripleThreat719 has posted since and said more or less what I was going to say.

Except. Basecamp is not difficult. It might be an 'old style' windows interface, but as far as I am concenred, that makes it easier. Everything you need is there on the menus to investigate.

Google mapping for me is a nightmare to get to grips with. I use it once or twice, and it seems to change each time. Or my memory is more of a problem than I thought it was. Or both.

MyRouteApp is pretty good, but it too is a web based program and is subject to improvements and changes in the way you do things. Basecamp is a program that you have on your computer. It isn't going to be updated any time soon. What it does now, it will do for many years to come. I have a lifetime membership for MRA, but I still use Basecamp most of the time.

It is worth investing a bit of time in learning.


Chapter 6 of the above link posted by @FrankB is a good place to start for finding out about the 6 different ways in which you can use the XT to navigate. Sections 7a, 7b and 8 go into more detail about different aspects.
Have owned Zumo 550, 660 == Now have Zumo XT2, XT, 595, 590, Headache
Use Basecamp (mainly), MyRouteApp (sometimes)

Links: Zumo 590/5 & BC . . . Zumo XT & BC
guiri
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by guiri »

b1324 wrote: 19 Dec 2022 19:12 I didn't find any option to convert Course to Route - not on tablet and not on the web page.
In the Explore app (I have Android), I can select a Course, then on the menu accessed from the 3 vertical dots there is an option to Copy as Route.

Once copied as a Route, it then syncs across to the XT (in the Collection as per Explore).

This route can be selected for navigation, but as described by jfheath here "When navigating, this behaves exactly like a standard route - in that it gives turn by turn directions. But - it doesn't have any routing points to keep it in place. This means that if the route is forced to recalculate (say if you wander away from the plotted route), it will take you from wherever you are now to the end".

It doesn't seem possible to get the Route, with routing points intact, into the Trip Planner via Explore. I only achieved that by sending the gpx via Garmin Drive.

Cheers
guiri
b1324
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by b1324 »

Thanks for everyone's input. We have winter here so there is still few months before first serious rides of 2023. Let's hope there will be an update of Explorer app to be able to do a course with shaping and via points that will translate as we all need for the routes with voice turn-by-turn direction, even if you skip certain road due to traffic, construction works, etc.
Until then we can only use tracks with Explore and this works perfectly.
jfheath
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by jfheath »

guiri wrote: 27 Dec 2022 19:39 It doesn't seem possible to get the Route, with routing points intact, into the Trip Planner via Explore. I only achieved that by sending the gpx via Garmin Drive.
That is correct. The Waypoints that you create are just waypoints. You can put them on a route. You can even make sure that the lat / long coordinates are exactly the same place as a corner in the route (I've edited the Gpx file to confirm this) - the route does not recognise the waypoint at all.

BUT - the waypoints are synched with the XT, so they end up stored as Favourites. You can then use them to build a route on the XT trip planner menus. A bit tedious, but better than having to use that XT map interface, which places the points precisely somehwere else. I have used this ability a couple of times.
Have owned Zumo 550, 660 == Now have Zumo XT2, XT, 595, 590, Headache
Use Basecamp (mainly), MyRouteApp (sometimes)

Links: Zumo 590/5 & BC . . . Zumo XT & BC
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lkraus
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Re: Garmin Explore - creating Routes for Zumo XT

Post by lkraus »

I've not tried this since I've stayed away from Explore, but...

I would turn off recalculation if the route has only start and end points.

Would it help to create a track from the route after it is imported into the XT, and then navigate that track? I think that in that mode you can at least see which way you need to go to return to the track.
____________________________________
2006 R1200RT
Galaxy S10<>Zumo XT<>Sena 20S