Tracks and Routes

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By Jalanto on 18/10/17 at 10:39am

Can Tracks be converted into Routes for use on my eTrex? Or perhaps Tracks can be used as Routes but without the Waypoints. I could view the Track on one web page and then copy the Route onto another web page. What is the best method?

By TallPaul on 18/10/17 at 10:57am

Converting track2s into route1s is harder than one might think. In theory you can just turn every track point into a waypoint and you've got a route. Indeed if you've got a text editor (something like Notepad rather than Word) you can do this yourself, just open the GPX file and search and replace '<trk' for '<rte' and '</trk' with '</rte' throughout and it should then load as a route.

The problem is that you then have a route with a lot of waypoints, which makes it less than ideal for using on your GPS. Here for example is our walk Dow Crag and Goats Water converted to a route using that method and loaded into our application, which illustrates the issue:

A better solution is to load the track into our mapping application, make sure you're in "route mode" (which you should be by default), and then create a route using your track to guide you. That way you can add a sensible number waypoints where you want them. We typically place them at or very slightly after each turn or junction.

  1. A route describes where you are intending to go, point by point. For more information click here.
  2. A track records where you have been and when you were there. For more information click here.

By Jalanto on 18/10/17 at 4:27pm

Thank you TallPaul for your helpful reply. The method you mentioned at the end of your reply will suit me.

By SheepFarmer on 07/11/17 at 4:40pm

For me using Windows & an etrex I find that Garmin's Basecamp is good for all I've wanted to do with import & export of tracks & routes in various formats including GPX and will convert them either way, you can filter down the number of points in a track or if converting a track that has a lot of points to a route it pops up an options box. Plus a whole load more for editing. Plus it makes for easy sending & retrieval with your unit and if you don't want the expense of OS maps then the TalkyToaster maps are a decent option.

I normally use a track as a route on my etrex when walking as it avoids having the markers onscreen and therefore the number of points don't really matter, and only half the time having it as the active 'Where to' just a coloured line on the map with the track I'm creating by walking trailing me onscreen in a different colour.

Perhaps other people will tell us what they do as it's often the exchange of info that leads us on.

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