Los Angeles is a driving city. When we first planned a weekend in LA we considered sticking to public transit; however, knowing that it is a very spread out city we quickly realized that renting a car was the only way to maximize our two days in town if we were going to see any sights. Having a car also meant bringing my trusty Garmin Nuvi 765 that I previously used to Geotag photos [averagetraveller.com].
We used the GPS the whole weekend. Before we left I pre-entered some of the addresses of places we wanted to go to so that I could just bring them up on the “previously searched” waypoints menu. When we got back I exported all of the GPS track data and was able to generate this map showing all of the places that we went.
It’s a pretty cool map that I’ve already used to track down a sandwich place near UCLA that we saw but didn’t stop at. The place was lined up down the block and I’ve added it my mental list of places to check out next time I’m in LA. Each colour represents a different time that the GPS unit was activated. The green track shows our trip from the rental car centre to our hotel in Century City, and the purple track shows our half day of exploring the city and our way back to the airport. The light blue track shows my trip out the Grammy Museum near Staples Center downtown.
The first step to getting your trip mapped is to connect your GPS system to your computer using USB cable. Then fire-up EasyGPS [www.easygps.com], click on the GPS menu item, and select “Receive from GPS…”
If your computer recognizes the GPS that you’ve connected you should see it listed like so:
Select “Tracks” and click okay. That should bring you to the main EasyGPS screen and on the bottom left hand side you’ll see a list of the Tracks found on your GPS. If you hover your cursor over a track you can see the date that the track was recorded.
Delete any tracks that you don’t want uploaded to the Internet. This is important because any tracks from your daily drive will be listed and it would be easy for someone to determine your home address. Once you’ve cleaned up any tracks that you want kept private you can click “Save” and export a GPX file.
Once you have your GPX file you can then go to GPS Visualizer [www.gpsvisualizer.com] and upload your GPS Track. If you select Google Map it’ll add your track into a Google Map that you can zoom in and out of.
If all goes well you’ll have a nice Google Map like my LA Map above.