My Attempt at Finding a way to Navigate in Colorado/Wyoming, help needed.


Vehicle: Nissan Frontier and FWC
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Goal: (Starting in Massachusetts) then- Mt. Rushmore, SD, through Wyoming and then about 3 weeks in CO. As much off road as possible (within the limits of my truck), and only using 1 app.

So far: We have spent some time out west roaming around, MT, CO, and a little ID, can't wait to get back out this summer
Our best resources have been the Fun Trek books and maps, Benchmark maps, and MVUM maps, and reading the threads.
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Hardware: Samsung Android Tab E with cellular and GPS, assorted cell phones.

What I would like to do: Upload the maps that I made in Google Earth to Back Country Navigator. Here I have been able to overlay in semi transparency the MVUM maps for the area, see pic below. But I have not been able to upload my map to Back Country, I have tried as a KML and KMZ, but does not seem to be supported. I have taken a look at Gaia but before I drop $39, what is the interface with the MVUM maps like? Does it give all the information that is on the maps? Or, like Back Country Navigator, is it just a lot of lines?
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Below: The Tablet using Back Country Navigator, with overlay of MVUM Data, lots of lines, no visible key and none of the info that comes along with the MVUM maps, like which side of the road to camp on, etc. The blue flags are from the FunTrek books.

To summarize, looking for one app that I can use a base map, MVUM maps, and upload my own maps if needed.
Thanks in advance,


Expedition Leader
I currently view GeoPDF MVUMs in the Avenza Maps app.

However, I'm only using my iPhone for this since I'm just starting to look into an integrated tablet solution for mapping (my GPS navigation is still a Garmin handheld GPSMap 78). So I'll be interested to see what you find out.
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New member
If you are looking for one app for route planning and vehicular navigation I would point you to GaiaGPS. It has US Topo maps, open street maps, and MV Use maps. You can upload KML or GPX routes from google earth as well. What I love the most is the ability to auto route on roads/trails using the web app. This means that I click on two points and it routes you between the two on roads. Anyway, I certainly think it is worth the $20 per year for overlanders.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


I use Locus Pro. You can find open maps that allow you to quickly add the US. You can also download google earth hybrid (satellite with road) maps with the free Locus Maps tweak app. I learned about it on advrider and there is a thread going with something like 2k+ posts you can read through and learn just about anything you can imagine about it. Only downside is it isnt very good for on road navigation, but to be honest, for on road navigation just use google maps and download the maps off-line.


You may want to get the *Northern* Colorado trail book too, if you haven't yet. It's just as good as the one you've got.

When are you planning on being out west? As I'm sure you know, snow pack (and mud from the melt) can really put a damper on offroading even in the middle of the summer. Bushducks is a good website to check for trail conditions.


MVUM is an overlay in Gaia. So if there is a forest road which is on a map and it is also a legal road to use, MVUM, Gaia will add a line/overlay on top of that road. You can tap on the MVUM layer for info. It give the number and type of vehicles approved for it. You need a Pro subscription for the MVUM map layer. The layer will not show which side and distance is legal to camp. You will have to reference the paper map.

You can view MVUM maps in Avenza. They are free to download. If you want to import your own geo-referenced PDF maps it's expensive, $99/year.

Maplets is a pretty good app. You can get get a lot of park specific maps in it. All of the maps are free. For example, San Tan Regional park is near me. I can see all the trails in Gaia but no park information. The park makes a PDF map available. It is available in Maplets. Maplets will show your location as well.


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