OpenStreetMap for Short Trips and Holidays with GPS

Last week I took my wife to Prague Where we enjoyed the Christmas markets and caught up with our Czech friends.

I had brought my Garmin along with Western Europe maps installed looking forward to trying out a few of the caches there. To my surprise, but more to my ignorance, The Western maps do not seem to extend as far as the Czech Republic, so there I was looking at a blank map background.

Thankfully, I did manage to pack the trusty netbook, and the hotel had a free wired Tubes connection so I fired it up and got looking for an OpenStreetMap image file.

A few minutes of googling and I was able to find this site, which provided a free routable gmapsupp.img file of the Czech Republic. Simply connected my Garmin, renamed the original gmapsupp.img and replaced it with this one and we were up and running with routable street names in no time!

the OSM wiki actually maintains a list of Garmin download sites around the world, which is perfect if you’re ever planning a short/holiday trips and don’t want to fork out for expensive proprietary maps.

I hadn’t really got interested in the OSM project before now, but I must admit, it makes me feel like getting my GPSr out and contributing if I find some spare time.

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