Below you will find some common questions and answers that are likely to be helpful.
Q: Do you rent motorcycles or other vehicles?
A: No, we do NOT provide any rental vehicles. For specific rides, we may suggest locations where you can rent vehicles but generally, you are on your own.
Q: I placed an order online, how long does it take to get it?
A: It depends a lot on where you live. Normally we make and mail it within 3 days from California. Mailing times on the west coast are only a couple of days but mailing to the east coast can take up to 7 days. So it could take up to 10 business days to get your order.
Q: It has been too long and I have not received my order, what should I do?
A: Send us an email and we will check into it. See the Contact info.
Q: I am in the middle of a big ride and someone has stolen my GPS. Is there a way I can get another MicroSD card fast?
A: Send us an email and we will try to help.
Q: How can I do a rush order?
A: No real process here, Send us an email and we will try to help. If we are home, we can sometimes arrange overnight shipping.
Q: What are Custom GPS Ride Maps?
A: Custom GPS Ride maps are electronic maps designed specifically to show the paths and path choices for a particular ride. The maps show the paths as clear bold lines so the riders can easily see them even on small screens. The lines are often comprised of groups of arrows or chevrons so that riders can easily tell the recommended direction of travel. The lines come in multiple colors so that riders can easily choose between Hard and Easy options. Custom ride maps make ride navigation much easier than ever before.
Q: I am not sure I understand exactly how gps Maps on SD card really work, Can you explain that to me?
A: Best way I know is to show you, try watching the short video. Custom Ride Maps SD Card Example
Q: How do I check my GPS to see if the Ride Map on the MicroSD Card is working?
A: There are two ways you can check your GPS.
See the trail on the GPS yourself. Turn on the GPS and zoom out to about 50 or 30 miles. Use the cursor to pan over to an area where you know the trail should be. Now begin zooming in. Wait for the gps to refresh its screen as they can be slow. As you zoom in, you should see the trail as a Wide Bold Blue line made up of arrows. OK, good job, you did it right.
Check to see if the map is in the GPS unit's memory: The steps to do this vary depending on which Garmin gps unit you have (and there are hundreds). Most work like this:
Option 1: From the "Map" page select Menu. Then select "Setup Map" then scroll down and select "Select Map." Now you can scroll down and read the maps in your unit. You should find a map called "TAT gpskevin." Make sure it is enabled and you are done!
Option 2: Some GPS units (like Nuvi's) work like this. Select "Settings" then "Maps" then "Info" and now you should find the map "TAT gpskevin." Make sure that it is checked and you're done.
Option 3: Some work like this. Select "Tools" then "Settings" then "Map" then "Map Info." You should find the map "TAT gpskevin." Make sure that it is checked and you're done.
Again, your gps may have a different way to access the maps, but the microSD Card does work in all Garmin gps units with a card slot. Sorry, there are just too many Garmin gps units for me to go through them all.
Q: I have multiple Customs Ride Maps on my MicroSD Card. How do I enable or disable each map?
Note: It is important that you only turn on one custom map at a time or they will likely overlap and cause confusion. When you insert a new card with multiple maps into your GPS all the maps by default will be enabled. So you will need to go in and disable all the maps except for the one that you want to be current.
A: Garmin makes many different GPS types and there are several different way to do this depending on your GPS model. The best way is to consult your manual. However, I will list the common ways to do this below:
Older Style GPS's like the Garmin 60, 76, Etrex Vista, and others: Starting From the Map page, select Menu, then Setup Map, then cursor across the top of the screen to highlight the circle icon (second one from the right). Select this icon and then cursor down to the Map Name box and begin selecting the maps that you would like. Do this by checking or unchecking the maps listed. Done.
Newer Style GPS's like the Garmin Etrex 20, 78, and others: Starting from the Map page, select Menu, then Setup Map, then Select Map. Now you can cursor through the map list here and by selecting each map, you can enable or disable as you would like. Done.
Automobile Style GPS's like Nuvis and older Zumos and others: From the main page select Tools, then Settings, then Maps, then Map Info, Here you can check and uncheck the selected maps.
Motorcycle Style GPS"s like the newer Zumo's and others: From the main page select Settings, then Map and Vehicle, then my Maps, Here you can check and uncheck the selected maps.
Q: Why do the ride lines show up as White Lines rather than the expected Blue, Red and Green?
A: There are two possible reasons for this:
You have your gps in Night Mode or Auto Mode and you are seeing this after the sun has set. Solution is to put your gps display into Day mode only. See your manual to do this as it depends on which Garmin GPS you have. Or wait and it will work fine during the day.
Or you have a Garmin 78 and it is in Marine Mode. To fix this: Disable Marine Mode: Select: Menu, Menu, Setup, Marine, Marine Charts Mode: Off
Q: When I purchase GPS Maps on a microSd Card what is included on the card?
A: The Chip will include the image files used to create the Maps and a gpx file that containing all the Tracklogs and Waypoints for the ride. This gpx file can be read by capable garmin GPS units or by Windows based PC's.
Q: Why do we use Custom Ride Maps and not Tracks or Routes?
A: Ride maps function the same as Tracks, however ride maps are made with much higher accuracy and clear line types and colors, The lines can also include arrows to help riders with direction of travel. Additionally riders do not need to know anything about tracks or which one they maybe be riding. So this makes it much easier for the riders.
Q: What are Tracks and why are they not recommended?
A: Tracks (or sometimes called Tracklogs) are a collection of electronic breadcrumbs that can describe the desired path. There can be thousands of these electronic data points to describe one path. Each ride can be made up of many sets of these paths. As a result, the number of Tracklogs for a ride with several choices can become very confusing. Therefore I do not recommend that riders use tracks as it can often create confusion. Tracklogs are often included on the MicroSD card for those riders that would like to import them to a PC and edit them to create their own ride.
Q: What are Routes and why are they not used?
A: Routes are paths that are created by your GPS unit based on the internal maps that you have. This enables your unit to give you turn by turn directions. Routes are calculated based on lots of different parameters like shortest distance, fastest time, and many others. However we as riders would like to choose our own specific path. And often our path does not include known roads that would be in your GPS mapset. Therefore, to avoid traveling on undesired paths and constant off route recalculation, we do not use Routes and force your GPS to display our desired path only.
Q: What are Waypoints? and how are they used?
A: Waypoints are sets of coordinates that identify a point in physical space used for purposes of navigation, otherwise known as a landmark. Waypoints are used to describe all kinds of locations on these rides like scenic points, river crossings, lunch stops, motel locations, and camp spots. Most of the microSD cards include a set of ride specific waypoints. Depending on your GPS model, these waypoints can either be automatically included in your GPS or you may need to import them into your GPS.
Q: I put my MicroSD card into my GPS and nothing happens. What do I do?
A: The most common problem is that the MicroSD card has not made good contact with the connector. Garmin has lots of failures here. There are 3 different types of card connectors that I am aware of. I will describe them below.
Connector with a small silver sheet metal door or latch. This small door both opens and closes and once closed, you must slide it back and forth to latch it. If it is not fully slid to latch position, it will not work properly.
Connector with a click to latch. On these types you must insure that you feel the click and that it is clicked tightly to hold the card in. I recommend that you put it in and out several times to ensure that you have gotten the feel of the click to latch.
Push in only style connector. On this style connector you just push it in until it stops, I recommend that you do this in and out several times and ensure it smoothly goes in and hits the stop. If it drags as it goes in, it may mean the connector is messed up.
If this does not solve the problem, either the MicroSD card is bad or your GPS connector is bad.
Note: See above to determine "How do I check my GPS to see if the Ride Map on the MicroSD Card is working?"
Q: I put the MicroSD card into my computer and I cannot open the maps?
A: The MicroSD Card contains an image file type that can only be read by Garmin devices. So don't expect to see any maps on your PC. The card should contain a folder named "Garmin." Inside this folder you will find the maps, but your PC will not be able to open these.
Q: Can I use my cell phone to navigate these rides?
A: Yes, some do, however, there are many issues. Cell phones are very fragile and have tiny small connectors that are easily destroyed by the vibration of the bike. In general cell phones cannot take too much rough pounding from the bike. Also the remote locations that we travel to often have no cell connectivity and this leads to spots that the device does not work well. I get that people love their phones and would like to use them as there are very familiar with them, but at minimum, put both devices on your bike. On my new Africa Twin I have both my cell phone and a cheap GPS. I use the GPS offroad and it always works great and I only use the cell phone when I am on road and it is smooth.
Q; What do I do if I don't have a Garmin gps?
A: Buy one, you need it. We will show you how to use it. You can get a great one for $100 bucks. ( See gpsKevin's gps recommendations.)
Q: Will the micro SD card work in a Garmin Inreach?
A: Sorry the Micro SD cards do not work with the Garmin Inreach. The Garmin Inreach is really a Delorme product that Garmin has purchased and is reselling with their name on it. As it runs Delorme code it will not work with any of the Garmin products. I do not recommend it for navigation use as a gps.
Q: Sometimes while riding my gps appears to lock or stop moving, what could be wrong?
A: Often times the screen has been toughed or the courser had been bumped. Common when people wipe the dust off the screen. When this happens the Courser arrow will appear on the screen and it is sometime hard to see. The gps is now waiting for you to move the courser or make a choice. To fix this select quit or return and your GPS should return to operation.
Q: My Garmin GPS SD card slot already has a custom map card in it, so do I have to remove it to use the gpsKevin custom card?
A: In most cases the answer is yes, however on many newer Garmin GPS models it is possible to use a PC and write the gpsKevin custom map directly to the hard drive of the Garmin GPS. To do this you will need to plug in your gpsKevin Micro SD Card into your PC and copy the file "gmapsupp.img" or "customridename.img" whichever is on the card. Next you will need to connect your Garmin GPS unit to your PC and open the hard drive folder: "Garmin" in this folder you will find other .img files. You can paste the gpsKevin ride .img file here. Disconnect the GPS from the PC and do a hard power reset and you should now have the gpsKevin ride in the internal memory of the GPS. Note do not erase files here as it can mess up you unit. Note this is not a method that I support and therefore I cannot offer any help. If you have trouble here I recommend you call Garmin HELP at 1-800-800-1020
Q: Will the micro sd Card work in a Magellan gps?
A: No the cards contain custom maps that only work on Garmin units. However the cards also contain complete gpx files for tracklogs and waypoints. These files are named userdata in the GPX directory. If you choose to try these files you are on your own and we cannot offer you any support with your Magellan gps.
Q: How does gpsKevin design a ride?
A; It turns out ride development is difficult and it is a whole process detailed below
Define the vision for the ride: Start with an imagination. Dream of experiencing an area. Carry the explorers mentality. Discover past adventures or stories in the area, then get creative.
Study Everything: Find maps of the area. Locate legal maps from Forest Service, BLM, land ownership. Find custom maps from other similar adventures. Understand the topography: where can I cross rivers, mountains and interstates. What are the attractions? Define the key points along the routes. What are the boundaries and areas to avoid? Where are the lodging and gas opportunities?
Get creative: Design test routes. Design route options. Review and understand difficulty. Review and understand route length. Understand weather effects. Balance route difficulties. Create routes in Google Maps and view on satellites. Make choices.
Ride: Make test gps files and go out and ride the adventure. Discover more exciting routes, discover ride weaknesses and any issues. Reexamine the ride vision and fit.
Revise: Update the ride with experience and feedback. Invite others to complete the ride and give feedback.
Common Zumo Problems: (on the newer style Zumos only: Zumo 3XX Style like 390, and 5XX)
After installing the microSD card you must do a Hard Power reset or it will not look for and read the Card. This means you hold the power button down for like 20 seconds and it should ask you to power off, "Turn Off the Device" Yes power it off, then wait and turn it back on. Now it will say loading maps and the map should be there. Next you will need to import the waypoints from the card. From the main page, select "Where To" then, Saved, then the Three Bar Menu in the upper left hand corner, then choose Import, and Wait, then Check Select All, then Import again. Ok when it finishes all the Waypoints will be in your saved section. So now when you select "Where To" you can select saved and you will be offered all the waypoints in the distance order from your current location.
Garmin gps units take different file format for their map files when using multiple maps: I call this Old Style and New Style code. Below is a list of units by type of file code:
Old Style Code: Garmin Etrex Vista, Etrex Legend, Garmin 60, Garmin 76, Old Original Nuvi's (Too many to count or list), All Zumo 6XX, Like 660 , All Zumo 5XX style, Like 550, Zumo 550, Zumo 220
New Style Code: Garmin 62, Garmin 78, Garmin 276CX, Garmin 396, Nuvi 30, Etrex 20, Etrex 30, Zumo 3XX Style like 390, and 5XX, like 590, Montana All, Oregon All, Navigators, all Garmin Drives
Rule of thumb, somewhere around 2011-2012 Garmin made product changes from old code to new code
Rule of thumb, somewhere around 2012-2013 Garmin changed to accept only 4GB cards and larger
Notes on SD Card sizes: The Garmin Navigator 6, Drive series, Zumo 395, 396, 595 and 596 will require a minimum 4GB SD card
Requires a FULL Size old SD card Adapter: Zumo 550,
Garmin : Formatting a microSD/SD Memory Card
Below My Notes in Progress and Question that I have received: (not ready for prime time)
Q: dumb question… I got the SD card in the Garmin 78 you suggested , turn it on and I see the path…. when I get close to the actual route w my GPS unit just follow th path and show me the way , or will I just travel off the screen and have to keep stopping to re adjust the screen picture thats what Im struggling w?
A: What should I say here????