Garmin GPS 62S

I need a GPS for when I go canoeing in unfamiliar areas so I make sure I find my way back…

does anyone know if the above GPS has a ‘bread crumb’ feature to use so I can turn around if I think I am getting lost.

I am not the best at reading a map but I can follow a bread crumb trail.



Pretty sure
it does. Not 100% certain.

seems to along with all others
Even the bottom of their current handheld line, the Etrex 10, seems to have basic track recording that you can see on a map.

fear of becoming lost

– Last Updated: Mar-18-12 10:35 PM EST –

Yes, most current GPS units, including the Garmin 62 series do have a reverse track feature, if you have had track recording turned on. But if you fear that you might get lost, better advice is to rely on good map navigation skills ahead of thinking reliance on the GPS to save you. The GPS should be thought of as a secondary backup reference. Always know where you are at all times and you will not become "lost". As a long time navigation instructor and SAR crew boss, I always have to cringe when someone thinks they need a GPS as necessary to keep from getting lost, rather than to look to it as a tool assistant.

But -
people have literally died because they relied on GPS units that failed for one reason or another. GPS is a real convenience - but you absolutely should NEVER rely on it. If you are going into an area that has the potential to leave you isolated with no way to contact others for help if you get lost you MUST first develop the skills needed to navigate without GPS and the skills necessary to survive if help does not arrive for an extended period of time.

It does record a track which some refer to as a bread crumb trail.

All Garmin hand helds leave tracks.

If you simply can’t read

– Last Updated: Mar-19-12 11:39 PM EST –

If you can't figure out north, south, east, west
on a 10 dollar compass, the GPS won't help either.
THINK , look at compass before you launch .....
it's worth everything to know where you are first.

Yes it does
It’s a good tool Jo. Also capable of displaying satellite imagery with a subscription to ‘Birdseye’ for $30 a year. Free from Garmin is Basecamp which allows you to draw a track on a topo map and download it to your 62s. Also free maps available online.

…to read a map.

Map works wet, torn, in really bad weather when you might have trouble with a lock-on, it does not need batteries and you can have 3 on you for redundancy.

“People have died relying on GPS”. Well-said.

I always like to have a map with me even with the GPS.

and fortunately

– Last Updated: Mar-20-12 11:33 AM EST –

no one has ever died getting lost w/o a gps, 'cuz we're all just oh so expert on those foggy grey days,with variable tide conditions and no real distinguishing features for miles around, aren't we folks?.....;-)

I love those breadcrumb trails, especially mountain biking when I'm seemingly hanging a 90 degree turn every 20 feet, and looking up every 20 minutes....

Note: I navigated my sailboat near and off shore for over 40 years, from RDF days, through LORAN and GPS, and always with Charts, Compass, Compass/Dividers, Eldridge tide books and dead reckoning skills....GPS ROCKS!!

You get expert opinions here. You should know that.


GPS rocks…

– Last Updated: Mar-20-12 1:19 PM EST –

...when it works.

When it does not, for whatever reason, without a map you are skewered.

If I had a choice between having either only a GPS or only a map for any given trip I'd take the map. Of course, GPS + VHF + map + compass is better than a map. But I've seen idiots wander off 20 miles off course on a sunny day in a sailboat simply because they can't understand how to work GPS and can't read map either. I've also seen GPS "go out" in a thunderstorm in the mountains.

Bottom line being - if you can't read a map, you don't need a GPS, you need brains and common sense - because this is what keeps you safe, not GPS.

well, prior to gps
offshore sailing race boats generally had openings for a…navigator. That was your job…navigator. It was full time.

Now with gps we put smart bombs through open windows of bunkers.

We’ll be in serious trouble when they figure out to shut those windows :wink:

I totally agree -

– Last Updated: Mar-20-12 9:49 PM EST –

for a guy like you GPS is wonderful. I too have been through all the various changes, from map and compass to Loran etc. The problem is that now people who have not been through all that, people who have no clue how to navigate or stay alive, go out and buy these wonderful gizmos and put themselves in places that they could never go to or get out of without the gizmo. Then the gizmo fails them and they are sunk. Don't make the mistake of encouraging people without the skill that you have, to buy a gps and go somewhere that they can't handle. This is dangerous stuff. I doubt you would send your son or daughter out with no skill and a gps. Seriously, think about it.

Reading a map/compass
I can read a map and a compass, just not that great at it over the water.

I traveled all over the country in 2010, from E coast to W coast to Canada and back south again - no problems. Using my maps and my GPS systems.

I rarely get lost (although I did lose my car once at a mall…) but I always know the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. (At noon, if I’ve had a glass of wine or two at lunch - well, maybe I’d get a ‘little’ confused for a minute!)


The GPS is a great tool if used
properly. However, you can’t expect it to solve your navigation problems without some study. For example, is the map’s datum NAD 27 or WGS 84 and how do you change your GPS so that it uses the correct datum for the map you use. Tracks are great but do you know how to use the tracks when you really need them in the field.

I’m a SAR member and have been on many searches. Maps aren’t too helpful without a GPS when bushwhacking in the dark, thick fog or in a dense forest. The newer GPS units don’t have much of a problem losing the satellites anymore. I’ve been on searches in the dense forests of the Pacific coast and never had a problem with the GPS. I carry a SAR radio, a FSR radio, a compass, whistle, GPS, a multi-tool, headlamp, flashlight, flag tape and spare batteries all in a chest pack. We also carry a 24 hour pack on most searches. Just the basics but enough to let you survive the night if you get separated from your team.

Anyhow, a map, compass or GPS doesn’t do you any good unless you know how to use them. Check out your local SAR unit and they might let you attend their academy even if not interested in joining the unit.