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Monday, October 14, 2019

Garmin Edge Explore

After our cycle ride to Weymouth and the soaking we had on day 3 my old Memory Map 3500 packed up, in that it would no longer charge.   When I came home I bought a new battery for it, but no luck, it still wouldn't charge.  

It was a quite few years old and although it wasn't a "sat nav" by today's standards it suited me as it used OS maps, had a large screen,  used gpx files, and was compatible with the OS maps on the PC.  In all fairness to it it got us through many cycle tours.

The downside of it was that it was slow and the battery only lasted about 4 hours so on a days ride so you always needed a back up battery pack.
Memory Map no longer sell them,  and finding someone to repair it would have been difficult and so I looked into alternatives. 

The OS shop sells cycling GPS's complete with 1:50000 maps installed, but after looking around I  finally settled on the Garmin Edge Explore as it's a basic navigation device and a cycle computer.  It uses Garmin maps but as I have the OS maps on my phone I was happy with this and you can add OS maps if you wish.   

It took me a while to get used to it but it has many advantages over the Adventurer 3500, the battery life is well up to a days riding and its waterproof.
I can plot routes on the PC and transfer them as tracks to the Garmin and also vice versa.  I do prefer OS maps to navigate by, but as I said they are on my phone if I need them.


  1. Well I guess you know what works for you, Dave. But I have always used OS maps and always will, although they can be a bit of a pain in high winds/rain!(But their batteries don't run out)

  2. Avus, when were leading a group we always have OS maps of the route as back up, and the route usually has been reccy'd. The good thing about the club being in the CTC / Cycling UK, is that there are strict rules for leading rides, including risk assessments. But Garmins are very useful.

  3. Too bad your memory map went kaput, I am on my 3rd Garmin GPS in my car, they don't seem to last long... the soaking didn't help your old you put it in rice I imagine to dry it out good. I follow a lot of Backpackers on You Tube and they make small GPS for hiking it has 2 way communication, and weather reports too Garmin has a one called Inreach Mini but it's expensive at $325 US.

  4. Sondra I have a Garmin nuvi in the car that's lasted a few years. It has lifetime maps updates. The Garmin for the bike can link to your phone via bluetooth and in emergency can send messages. I disabled this as I didn't want it to send a message if I dropped it.

  5. Welcome to the world of whistles and buttons, HaHa. It looks great. I haven't used a paper map in a long time. Kinda sad. Loved sitting in the back seat as a youngster, and reading the map as we traveled along.

  6. Sat navs are great but you cant beat a map for holding and reading it. All the best.

  7. I am still using the Garmin Edge 605 cycle computer that I purchased way back in 2008. Battery life is still running at about 13/14 hours. The mapping on the unit has guided me across Europe a number of times as well as throughout the UK. I always use paper maps for planning and backup but have been well served by my Garmin Edge. I will only replace it when it finally stops working. Out of interest when Backpacking I have always preferred to use map and compass only...

  8. Thats good to hear how long you have had your Garmin, hope mine lasts as long. Yes paper maps are an essential back up. When walking you have more time to look at a map and you can read it as you walk, not so easy cycling. Even if you have the 1.50000 attached to a bar bag you can soon come to a fold or need to turn over.


As you have taken the time to read my blog and comment then whenever possible I will always reply. Thank you. Dave