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May 23, 2010

Garmin e-trex Venture on Ram Short Arm Mount

I've always loved owning a GPS for the way they can navigate out on the trail. My old gps was good in it's day, but compared with today's technology it came up lacking. On our last outing we found that it only seemed to be accurate within about 200 meters or so. Another downside was it's inability to track a trail and plot it on a map. Finally, it didn't seem to have the units that I needed to easily enter and record waypoints. After some research I found that you could get a gps that was accurate within 15 meters, could track in real time, and do much more for under $100. The one that I chose also came with a color screen that is easy to read even in bright sunlight. The Garmin eTrex Venture Handheld GPS comes in a few different models, but the one I chose was the Venture HC and was around $120. It is WAAS enabled to be accurate within 15 meters, has a 256-color TFT display that can be read in direct sunlight and is backlit for easy night viewing, and saves 500 waypoints and 50 routes, stores your favorite waypoints using names and graphic symbols. The automatic track log saves up to 10,000 points and 10 tracks, and TrackBack lets you reverse tracks to navigate back to your starting point. The software allows you to save these tracks on your computer, make maps, and save the file on your hard drive. The data can be saved in different formats, but the one I found useful was gpx format which is easily shared and/or uploaded to google maps. RAM-GPS Bike or motorcycle mount is how I chose to mount the unit to my dirt bike. It is stronger than any others I've seen and has ani-shock attributes that protect the gps. I purchased the shorter arm version motorcycle mount and was able to mount it in a safe place within easy reach. This mount allows many different options with the two pivot points and it's strong enough that I'm confident it will hold up. I've tested this mount on a few very rough trails and was not disappointed.

I did have to remove my original gas vent line and replace it with the short tusk vent line in order to make room. I could have mounted it in a number of different locations, but this one seemed the less likely to get damaged and the easiest to see.


  1. Are you still liking this GPS unit? What type of maps does it come with, or did you have to purchase them in addition. Does it give an approximate altitude? I understand it doesn't have an altimeter or compass. Do you miss not having these options. Does it have enough memory to save your maps and track without have to load and unload them all the time? Im looking at the DeLorme Earthmate PN-40, but its $250 and comes with topo USA. Just wondering if its worth the extra cost. Thanks

  2. When I bought this I was looking for something less expensive because I thought it would get beat up when the bike was. tipped or toppled or whatever often happens..having the mount setup I have now it's protected so I would definitely spend the extra money. I have had problems with this god turning off randomly. I'm actually on my third one..under warranty. I'm seriously thinking against garmin next time. I don't miss not having the altimiter etc. It didn't come with any maps to speak of, but normally I like to load up my own routes that are specific to where I'm going. I haven't had good luck with pre loaded maps etc. I think It has enough memory for me for sure...all that said, I would still get a more expensive unit next time since I have it protected on the bike...preferably not garmin.

  3. I mean this ONE turning off randomly...damn auto correct.