Delorme Topo GPS Systems - Delorme TopoUSA 6.0
Photography by Larry E. Heck
If you have ever been out exploring and found a trail or a particular location that you knew your friends would love to visit, you've probably spent hours trying to explain to them exactly where it was and how you got there. TopoUSA 6.0 has now made that as easy as saving a file and putting it into the mail or attaching it to e-mail.
The feature is defined within the software as log files and draw files. For example, mapping for "The Outlaw Trail" story in this issue was done with TopoUSA 6.0. A GPS was connected to our laptop during the entire trip, and the software kept a running log of our GPS positions from the beginning of the trip to the end. We then imported the log file into a draw file. The draw file is a transparent layer that covers the map. The entire trip appears on the screen as a track layered over the map. The track can then be color-coded. We are currently using blue for unpaved roads and yellow for paved roads. We touch up the draw file by adding a few notes that point out exact locations for points of interest we found along the way. That draw file can be e-mailed or snail-mailed.
Anyone who has a copy of TopoUSA 6.0 can import the draw file with a few clicks of the mouse. In less than a minute, they can be looking at the exact route you took, layered over a detailed map with all your notes along the way.
If a GPS is attached to a laptop, the exact route can be followed from end to end without ever wondering which turns to take. For more information about using TopoUSA 6.0 as a means to share your favorite trails with others, visit OutbackUSA's website at www.outbackUSA.com and click on the link for Mapping.
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