Saturday, January 2, 2016

New Year's Day ride, 2016

Just to get myself back in the habit... I headed out at 11:00 am (35 degrees) figuring that the frost would have left the pavement and the heated gloves would do the trick...  Yes to dry pavement.  Yes to heated gloves, until about 3PM.  Lithium batteries kept the fingers toasty until my fuel stop.  After that I could feel a chill working its way into my body, but not enough to spoil the afternoon.

One of the things I wanted to do was follow the "wine trail loop" that I had mapped on google maps last month.  Some of the route I had seen from the car.  The others I found on Google Maps by connecting the dots between wineries and landmarks.   Worked pretty well... except for leaving home with only one gallon of fuel in the tank.  Adds to the adventure, and the reputation...

As long as I was traveling somewhere new, I turned on a bunch of tracking devices to see how they would compare... and let my honey see where my phone was... just in case.

Here's the original plan...   Heading from home in top right counterclockwise and finishing in the middle of nowhere... until further planning.

Here's the actual result, as shown on the BackCountryGPS app.  Results can be filed directly in your Google Drive account. Tracks with waypoints and photos are also stored and can  be downloaded from your phone to your computer. 

I also used my Spot Tracker, RealtimeGPS phone app and Rever phone app. 
BackCountry (imho) gives me the best visual result of where I have been. You can change the backgground from topo to mapquest and others, depending on your need.  When hiking the topo gives you good perspective on the mountains and valleys ahead.  BackCountry takes some time to learn.  Check the online training to get yourself started.  I'm using the paid version which is about $12. The maps can be downloaded in advance in case you loose cell service.  The app will run off-line using GPS and stored maps.

 Rever is really easy to use.  I have the free version.  Paid app is about $5/month.  The resulting map is pretty accurate and it lets you see your data while you're traveling.  The resulting maps are stored in the app and also can be accessed to "ride this route" later.

Spot Tracker

This shot is the result from my Spot Tracker.   One position every ten minutes.  No trail, but it has live online viewing by your friends and several pre-programmable message settings for emergencies or "all clear"  info to your contacts.   The GPS positions can be downloaded for use in other programs, but it's clumsy to do that and only accessible online.   Spot tracking is a out $150/year.
Where am I

This view is from .

This online service takes your Spot Tracker data and connects the dots.  It's a way to see where you have been but, as with Spot Tracker, doesn't tell you how you got there. The service is free.

Last on my list is, which has the RealTimeGPS app. (free) It runs an online track in real-time that is great for spectators to follow riders during an event.  It updates every 10 seconds or so as long as your device is moving.   What you see here is the 4 hour trail that comes with the free version.  There's not much history at the end of the day, but when viewers click on your icon they not only see your GPS location but your MPH speed and time at that location are shown.  We used this data to follow riders on the LA-Barstow-Vegas event for two years now.   One rider lost his phone in the mountains and a guy went out a week later and tracked it down from the data.

There you go...   My vote goes to BackCountry for the best to have in your hand and to Rever for simplicity.

That being said... here are the photos from the day!  

Travel safe.   and Happy New Year!!!!!!

Pomona Natural Bridge (gravel in and out)

Boderline out of gas

Little Grassy Lake

Flood at Pomona Winery

Stone Fort Bluff

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