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Cycling Computers
Cycling Computers
Cycling Computers
Cycling Maps
Cycling GPS
Cycling Applications

Cycling in the Technological Era means you can now obtain as much ride data as you want in a much easier and convenient way than ever before. Although there is an increasing popularity in the use of smartphones to accumulate ride data, dedicated bicycle computers designed for bike riding purposes will not only provide accurate data, but it will make better sense for any cycling enthusiasts.

Still, especially while preparing for a major cycling trip abroad, it requires the use of good quality touring maps. While riding, using such maps can make you feel secure that you know where you are going.

Here, you will get several tips on choosing the best cycling navigation aids to get to know their advantages and disadvantages while preparing and while on your cycling trip abroad.

Cycling GPS

Bicycle GPS

The latest advances in bicycle GPS have elevated the cycling activity to a whole new level – making it more fun and safe. Many biking enthusiasts are also tapping into the latest cycling GPS systems to monitor their progress, all without taking away the pleasure of the ride.

Besides basic positioning features, bicycle GPS like the Garmin Edge 810 GPS-Enabled Cycling Computer is overflowing with many features you’d also expect to find on a cycling computer – current speed, kilometres or miles traveled, and average speed.

If you’re traveling in a relatively straight line to a known point the Garmin Edge can even estimate how long it will take until you reach your destination! And when you’re huffing and puffing your way up a hill that seems like it will never end, the GPS will illustrate on an elevation map you how much further until you reach the top!

Did you know…?

Biking GPS

Did you know that in order for a GPS to pinpoint a specific location, it needs at least 3 satellites and more often 4 in order to provide accurate results?

This is made possible through triangulation, which is the basis behind the theory of this technology.

If you are about to start another one of your bicycling tours – as soon as you leave the comfort of city limits and road signs, a cycling GPS system for your bike just might make the difference before getting back to the pub for an evening pint, and perhaps, enduring an unexpected camping trip in no man’s land.

What Features To Look For

With so many different models and brands available today, it can be confusing to choose which one best works for you. Here are some factors that you should consider:

  • Sensitivity – If you are planning to cycle under thick tree canopies or around tall buildings, you will want to choose a high-sensitivity bicycle GPS chipset. Among the most common ones is the SiRF-III, although there are equally capable types. Choose one with at least 12 channel receivers.

  • Mapping Capability – Your bicycle GPS should be capable of loading street maps and topomaps in order to make navigating around unfamiliar areas and terrains easier.

  • External Memory Card – If you plan to explore different places with your bicycle, choose a GPS that comes with an external memory card slot to store your maps. This will allow you to load topomaps to your GPS unit. There are also some GPS that comes with built-in memory.

  • Voice Prompts – With your eyes on the road, a GPS with a voice prompt can be very convenient in guiding you to your route. Most GPS only provide on-screen direction and direct you only with a beep as you are about to approach a turn.

  • Sensitivity – You need to make sure that your GPS is specifically designed with a bike mount to ensure secure fit even when navigating across rough terrains.

  • Waterproof – Any outdoor activity will require you to deal with changing weather condition. Choosing a waterproof GPS is highly ideal for biking to ensure total peace of mind.

  • Big Screen – Choose a screen that is big and easy enough to read, with backlight brightness. You should consider one that will be able to provide you clear information even under the sun’s glare.

  • Internal Compass And An Altitude Sensor – In general, a basic bicycle GPS unit is only designed to show direction when you are on the move. A built-in electronic compass will be able to provide you direction even when you are in a stationary position. Also, choose one with a barometric sensor, as it is known to provide more accurate monitoring of altitude.

  • Battery Life – The battery life can greatly vary from one model to another. If you enjoy long rides and weekend adventures, you need to consider battery life and the number of spare batteries you need to pack with you.

    Did you know…?

    Bicycle GPS

    Did you know that touchscreen bicycle GPS systems are growing increasingly popular?

    With the advent of touchscreen smartphones, touchscreen technology has improved by leaps and bounds and modern touchscreen GPS systems are a breeze to use. They’re much easier to use mid-ride than a GPS system with fiddly buttons.

    Where to Buy a Bicycle GPS?

    If you are interested in buying a bicycle GPS you can buy it on one of these trusted online stores:

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    Cycling Touring Maps

    Bicycle Touring Maps
    Bicycle Touring Maps
    Bicycle Touring Maps

    First things first, if you are pretty bad with taking directions, using mountain biking maps can help you on that part. Another thing, these maps focus on specific biking routes – the ones that the tour will be following.

    The directions are also narrative and very detailed, which is perfect if you have just started joining bike tours and reading directions is not your specialty. Accurate maps can keep you from getting lost.

    Take a look at the Mountain Bike Rides in the Peak District as an example for a useful mountain biking map.

    The Disadvantages Of Using Biking Maps?

    The Price – These maps are not that affordable, but if you are a serious bike rider, you will be able to learn how to find budget friendly maps from online shopping websites. Do not worry; there are accurate maps that even those with budget issues can afford.

    Tip: Place your bicycle map in a handlebar bag for easy access

    Bicycle Touring Maps

    Unless you have a photographic memory, you’ll definitely need to refer to your map every now and then to make sure you’re on the right track.

    It’s a real pain to have to keep stopping in order to dig your map out from your backpack, so purchase a handlebar bag to keep your map in. You can get it out while riding – isn’t that handy?

    Old Maps – Unlike some online information sources, such as Google Maps, paper maps are losing their validity over time. Make sure you have the most updated maps when going on a bicycling trip.

    Missing Information – Another downside to some bicycle touring maps is that the terrain conditions are not discussed. It is your task to look it up on the internet.

    Map Handling – Some maps are quite bulky, and hard to fold and read while biking. One common solution for map storage is to hold them on top of the bicycle handlebar bag.

    How To Use Biking Maps

    Bicycle Touring Maps

    Do not just purchase bicycle touring maps just for the sake of having them with you when you join a bike tour. You need these maps to know where you are and should be going; so in short, you should trust that your maps will not get you in trouble.

    You can also use the maps as your personal travel guide, since you can mark the spots that you want to go to – just like when coming up with an itinerary for your trip abroad. Don’t just pull out the map on the day of the tour itself.

    Say that you will be joining a bike tour in another country, it would really help if you read your maps ahead of time.

    Biking Maps Buying Tips

    Of course you can contact or order maps over the internet. But I strongly suggest that you read these tips first before making that purchase.

    • Tip number 1: Maps like the Cycle Europe Map: Germany, Austria and Switzerland biking map should be lightweight and handy. This means that it is important that your map fits the map holder on your bicycle.
    • Tip number 2: you wouldn’t want to have the rain dissolve your map would you? So be sure to find the ones made from weatherproof materials to avoid being easily torn apart by strong winds, or getting drenched in the rain.
    • Tip number 3: although you are looking for accurate maps, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they should be too large for you to handle. Look for a handy yet reliable piece of touring map.
    • Tip number 4: Some bike tours are broken into several sections; this means that there is a specific map for each section of the tour. Choose those that have separate maps for each section for easy reading and handling.
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    Cycling Navigation Applications

    The Final Word on Cycling Navigation Aids

    While cycling abroad, it is essential to use the best cycling navigation aids. Get yourself a cycling map and a GPS unit, or a smartphone navigation application. It might be just what you need to make the ride safer and make the unknown a little more known.

    “When you’re right, no one remembers. When you’re wrong, no one forgets.”
    (Unknown Author)