View Full Version : Handheld GPS for Hunting

October 11, 2009, 08:36 PM
Hi All - Is anyone using a hand held GPS unit in the woods? Which ones do you like? I'm looking at the iFinder Hunt C. Anyone have any experience with this one?

October 11, 2009, 08:58 PM
They work on microwaves and will not penetrate the heavy overhead cover where I prefer to hunt. Out in the open they work great, there I can see and don't need it. I DO use it for fishing.

I could see it's use without an overhead canopy such as finding your truck/camp after sundown.

October 11, 2009, 09:14 PM
I use one,but I use it as a backup for regular map/compass nav.Sometimes ,if I lose track,terain does not let me see much to orient.Or,All those trees look just about the same.
I verify my location with a GPS.

On more than one occasion,when the sky socks in and the snow starts falling and I can't see far,the GPS does not work,like satellite TV.

October 11, 2009, 09:16 PM
SG, The modern GPS units are very much more able to get a signal than the early 12 parallel channel units. My father has the Garmin "Map 76" and it often hits sats when inside a building. They really have advanced. Garmin has a GPS dog tracker system and the radio signal from collar to unit is far weaker than collar to satellite or satellite to unit communication.
I prefer the Garmin line as the main features have always been similar. Many units are far harder to use in the first place and when upgrading, the features and operations are 100% different...

October 11, 2009, 11:35 PM
I've had a Garmin for 5 years and yes it does go down in dense cover but it does the job I want it to do, find the truck, but I still have a compass or two and a map. Garmin has a fast learning curve and its interface with a PC is nice. Two of my hunting buddies had Magellans and they now have Garmins.

October 12, 2009, 01:06 AM
I've had a Garmin 60CS for about 6 or 7 years and love it. I love the idea of tapping into all this incredible, almost science fiction, satelite technology. I love the interface with Google Earth, planning routes in advance on my computer and transfering them to my GPS - or vice-versa. But it is a gadget.

It doesn't replace good field skills if you are in remote areas. It doesn't make coffee on a cold morning or keep the beer cool on a warm afternoon. Unlike a compass, if the batteries run down, it's useless. All it does is give and store your positions - here in Chile to about 7 metres accuracy (better in the US, I think) - or the tracks you follow.

Models such as the one you are looking at have maps which either come with the GPS or can be downloaded through the computer.

How good these maps are doesn't depend on the machine - but on what the company or other suppliers offer. These electronic maps are generally not interchangeable between brands. Nor can you easily generate your own maps by, for example, scanning a paper map.

So a very important consideration is the availability of electronic maps for your area of use and brand of GPS.

Memory, too, can be an issue if you want to store several detailed maps for different areas. Although mine doesn't, the latest models have ports for additional memory chips.

October 12, 2009, 05:28 PM
I have a nice older model Garmin that I never really learned how to operate properly but it will find my truck in "track" mode when I've completely lost track of direction. Much nicer than spending the night rolled up in a survival blanket.

October 12, 2009, 05:49 PM
I've used a Garmin E-Trek since 06. Kept us from running out of fuel in our skiff, one night when we got our bearings screwed up in AK while trying to get my bear home after dark. Usually I just rely on a map but a GPS is great for marking a camp and a downed elk so you can find your way back.

I usually turn it on in camp and mark it then turn it off, mark good spots to hunt from then turn it off, and then mark any game I've shot and can't carry out whole. The only time I turn it on and leave it on is when I can't find my way back in the dark or going back to retrieve my game. No sense in killing my batteries, try to save them for when I need them, that is why I like a map and compass, they don't need batteries.

Brian Pfleuger
October 12, 2009, 06:13 PM
I use Motion-X GPS on my iPhone. $2.99 It does everything, map overlays, waypoints, tracks, amazingly accurate (especially considering that it's a phone first, GPS second, or third.... did I mention $2.99? It's awesome.

They work on microwaves and will not penetrate the heavy overhead cover where I prefer to hunt. Out in the open they work great, there I can see and don't need it. I DO use it for fishing.

The signal acquisition of the newer WAAS-enabled units is phenomenal. I doubt that there is tree cover in the world that will block them. Heck, my iPhone gets a signal better than my 5 year old Garmin and the iPhone is NOT WAAS-enabled, the newer, dedicated units are amazing.