Testing My GPS Cycle Tour Data in Google Earth
A few years ago when I began all this cycle touring, the idea of a blog was pretty way out, uploading photos was considered very 'avant guard' and a compass and map was just about all my simple navigation skills could muster. These days the travel technology available to track and record your trip is mind boggling.
Google Maps, Google Earth and the advent of GPS make it possible to track every turn of the pedals, that is if you have the correct gear of course.
Somewhat of a technophobe I have remained a map and compass man through and through and think asking for directions should be part of every journey. However after cycling with my goog friend Lou in Laos he was kind enough to give me his old GPS.
About the size of an pager (remember them) it bleeps at me, tells me where I am in long coordinates that mean nothing to me and even lets me know how slow I am going.
But perhaps best of all it also allows me to upload KML data files to a computer which then show me where I have been on google maps and earth.
Somewhat of a 'ludite' and starting to understand how my father felt when we got our first video recorder, it has taken me a few weeks to get to grips with this glorious gadget. Even now I am not sure what I am doing, but after hours of downloading and fiddling here is a little bit of my route that I manged to extract from Northern Laos to the Chinese border. Sadly other data has been lost but from now on I hope to be able to provide you with these maps that will give you an idea where I am. "You have reached your destination."