How You Should Choose the Best Off-Road Navigation System for Your Off-Road Trip

How You Should Choose the Best Off-Road Navigation System for Your Off-Road Trip

How You Should Choose the Best Off-Road Navigation System for Your Off-Road Trip

0 comments 📅01 June 2016, 14:07

Having your own ATV or UTV is as exciting as it gets. You are on your way to having the best off-road experience as you already have a vehicle that can allow you to do so. No need to worry if your car can handle it or not. Your ATV or UTV is designed specifically to withstand whatever terrain you have.

But before you pack your stuff and prepare for the off-road experience of a lifetime, you have to remember that you still have to prepare your ATV or UTV for it. Sure, it is already built for that, but there are certain gears you need to have in your vehicle so as to ensure that your off-road trip will not be a nightmare. One important tool that you must have is a navigation system for your vehicle. It is important to take note that these are special devices. You can’t just use a generic GPS to replace your off-road navigation system. A generic GPS can only tell you directions. It might not even have the routes of your off-road route because a generic GPS is usually used in cities. To add to that, it will not know if you are near a lake or a cliff, and this is extremely dangerous for you. It also might not have good reception of signal because it simply is not built for off-road trips. As such, it is still advisable to get a navigation system that is perfect for off-road trips. The questions below should be a good guide in choosing the right off-road navigation system for your ATV or UTV.

How comprehensive should the mapping be?

Usually, off-road trips cover wide lands that are usually disregarded by maps. It is precisely why it is an “off-road” experience – it is literally the path less taken. But of course, for your trip, you have to have a map for this route, or else, you will not know where to go and how you are going back. It is always important to make a route for every trip you have. It is one of the things you have to do to ensure safety. In case accidents occur, this is how people will find you.

As such, you have to find a navigation system that has a comprehensive and accurate map of your preferred route. It has to show the topography of the whole area. It has to let you know if there is a lake nearby, if the area has contours, or if the area is actually a hill. It could save your life, really. You would not want to drive towards a dead-end, or worse, off a cliff. Professionals use a navigation system that is extremely accurate down to the measurements. There are navigational systems that show the latitudes and the longitudes of where you are.

Aside from having a comprehensive and accurate map, you have to check how your system obtains its information. Does it download it from a site? Is the site accurate and reliable? Will you be able to report inaccurate readings through your device?


How compact do you want it to be?

This bit is pretty much straight forward. Though ATVs and UTVs are used for off-road trips, sometimes you just can’t find enough space to mount your navigation system. But of course, there are systems out there that have solved this problem already. If you, however, have enough space, then the size does not have to be a problem. If you do not have enough space, a relatively compact-sized navigation system should do the trick – as long as it can do the things you want it to do.

Will it last the whole trip?

Off-road trips are not short. People cover miles and miles of land to finish an entire route, and you still have to think about going back to where you came from. For all devices, battery life is a huge factor to consider. You will be in places that, for sure, will lack people and electricity. You can’t just charge your device anywhere, except maybe if it is solar. Usually, though, the battery life of navigation systems last for up to 20 hours on average, but if your trip lasts for more than 20 hours, then you could perhaps bring an extra battery or a power bank to make sure your system does not go awry. Some devices can be charged in your vehicle, which is pretty convenient, while some are solar-powered.

How good is the device’s reception?

The topography of off-road trips is not predictable. Since these are the paths that are not always taken by people, reception can be damning. You might notice that your reception might fluctuate. It might not update your track in your in your device in real time. There are various reasons for this aside from the fact that you are probably miles away from the nearest tower, but one of the things that affect this would be the ability of your navigation system to receive the signal. Your device must be prepared for things like this.

Can it track your routes?

Although you have a map in hand, it is always best to keep track of where you came from. This is also a safety feature, among anything else. If you find that you are lost and have nowhere to go, you can always go back as long as you know how to go back. In addition, it also helps you fix your routes in the future, especially if you always go on off-road trips often. Some devices have advanced features that do not only track your route, but also the time you were in a specific place.

Off-road navigation systems for ATVs and UTVs nowadays have a lot of features that are extremely helpful, but these are some of the most important features that your navigation system must have—and not just at an amateur level. These are the must-haves of your device, and since they are the most basic features there is, you have to choose a system that has advanced levels of these features.

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