The 365 Cyclist

Cycling Year Round in Canada

Archive for the category “Navigation”

Google has been slowly adding cycling paths to their mapping software. I figured that someday it will be awesome to bring up a map with bike trails and paths to allow navigation by bike and minimize streets.

Well that day is here. I have discovered This site maintains a map with more detail and bike paths than any I have found so far. The site is like a Wiki, meaning users can add to the site. If there is a path not on the map then anybody can step up and put it there.

The site shows major bike routes.

AND minor paths and trails.

It seems very accurate and useful. I even did my civic duty and uploaded a name label to the St. Claire School. If you zoom in on the school the label shows up.

I am going to look into how to trace and upload paths so if I navigate a missing path then I can add it. Good stuff!

Garmin Fit app for Iphone is Good

I found this app for Iphone. It uses the GPS built into the iphone to gather data similar to the Garmin 305 watch that I have been using. It’s no secret that I am a fan of the Garmin 305.  It has been a component of my motivation to get out and exercise more often. I have become used to downloading data to the Garmin MyConnect website to explore the routes that I have taken. I like that the Garmin is an odometer of all of my rides. I can compare mileage month to month. It is also nice to compare rides at different times of year, or with different people or different levels of effort.

The Garmin Fit is $0.99. It is simple, intuitive and does the job. I set up the app with auto sign in to the MyConnect website. When an activity is done it magically uploads the result to join the rest of my data.

Today I took a walk on the trails and tested it out. As I approached my driveway I pressed END on the iphone to stop the application. I went inside, logged onto the myConnect website and the map and data was there. It’s too cool.

I discovered the app while doing research in preparation for my upcoming Toronto to Niagara Falls ride. I’m concerned that the battery on my Garmin 305 watch won’t last as long as the ride will take. Riding in the cold weather shortens battery life even further.

I think I’ll use this iphone app for the ride. I plan to carry a zap pack so I can keep re-juicing the iphone along the way.

Toronto Bike Map – There’s an App for That

Just last night I was saying how much I love Steve Jobs and Apple products. Why? Because every time I think to myself … wouldn’t it be cool if … Apple delivers.

By example, last Sunday I was riding my Bad Boy downtown in Toronto. Earlier that day I had failed to find my printed map of the Toronto bike paths. In my excitement to get going, I decided to not waste time searching for a map. So I left home without it.

I had looked at a route on the computer before I left, but my brain just ain’t what it used to be. Midway into my city tour I inevitably lost my way. Admittedly, I kind of knew where I was. I pulled out the iphone and the GPS pin pointed exactly where I was. That’s a comfort. But I wanted to route a course on bike paths, not roads.

I was thinking, wouldn’t it be nice if my iphone could magically directly me around Toronto on bike paths.

Viola! – as if Steve Jobs (aka. GOD), sensed my need, this morning I discovered that once again Apple makes it possible.

Here is what I found in the App store … and it’s FREE. How cool is that?

What can I say. Love the iphone!

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