Garmin Topo Canada

Looking for advice from anyone who’s actually used Garmin’s Topo series of maps covering Canada, specifically Ontario and the Lake Superior area.

I’m planning a week-long trip on the north shore of Lake Superior from the Sibley Peninsula to Rossport (“Rossport Islands”) this year and need a GPS resource as my Garmin Topo maps for the U.S. don’t cover this area.

I’ve considered the Blue Water series (for boaters) but have heard you only get a very small portion of actual maps and need to purchase multiple unlock codes to access the full contents of the CD. Furthermore, I like being able to reference prominent landmarks from the water that a topo map affords and I haven’t seen enough detail in marine charts to satisfy my kayaking exploits.

Any recommendations or warnings on this product?


Well worth the money
The Canadian maps have worked VERY well for me in Georgian Bay, the North Channel, and along the east shore of Superior. If you have Garmin US topo you’ll find it very similar.

The only problem I have with the product is that I haven’t been able to upload the canadian and US basemaps at the same time when paddling along the border in the Detroit area.

Have a great trip.


Yep, I agree
I’ve also used them with great success along the east coast of L. Superior (Lake Superior Provincial Park and Pukaskwa National Park). Also used them for a week long trip in the Georgian Bay.


Mapsource data for Canada
The lake, shoreline, and island data for Canada is the same great detail in both the Topo Canada and the Metroguide Canada software packages. If you don’t have City Navigator North America, Metroguide Canada will give you uncluttered Canadian road info (topo lines can be confusing), Canadian city, and service info as well as the detail for Canadian waterways.

try this website first
they will work with your garmin and are 1/24000. not sure if the maps are avialable for the area you need but worth a shot.

Are you sure you can’t
load them both in the GPS receiver? The map setup page on Garmin receivers usually gives you the option of turning specific map sets on and off, so it could be that only one can be turned on at a time, but you could switch from one to the other if you needed to. Not sure, though.

Thanks all
for the opinions and suggestions. The mapset is now on my birthday list…

Ibycus Topos
For the benefit of any others who may stumble across this thread in a future search, I followed rfiler’s suggestion and looked into the Ibycus Topo project and was glad I did!

Though it took a looooooong time to download the 1.6 GB file from their website (must be a slow server on their end) I was able to add the open source Canadian topo mapset to my Garmin MapSource software and lay out a route with waypoints as if it were part of Garmin’s original package. Though I can’t yet speak for the accuracy, the detail is very high and it operates exactly like my US topos from Garmin.

Thanks, rfiler!

You are welcome

– Last Updated: Apr-09-08 3:00 PM EST –

I am glad that you were able to use them. the info is out there and free to use its a shame that garmin puts out maps that have a lower resolution and charges a $100 bucks for them. He is also compling maps for the US. Check out this forum
to try