Garmin's CD Topo maps?


I took JM's advice, and bought a GPSMap 76CX, to use during hiking and kayaking. It's a powerful little gadget, and much harder to learn how to use than the Nuvi I have for street navigation. I just got it a few days ago, and haven't had a chance to use it in forests or on the water yet.

But, I'm wondering if anyone in this group has experience with Garmin's country-wide topos, which have a 1:100K scale. The reviews of it on Amazon are mixed. I'm not a heavy duty hiker, but would like to do some day hikes in various state and national forests and parks, and have an easier time following trails, etc.


Nuvi 350, GPS Map 76CX

topo cd

The US National Parks are 1:24000, much better detail and very good. The Topos are fair to good. Check locally for local maps and carry. Also check out this site and print from it: its free, would like donation thou, but worth it.

Thanks, but...

That's an interesting site. Unfortunately, I have a dial-up ISP, and it was too painfully slow to load a single map much less several. So, I'm going to probably break down and buy a Garmin Topo map CD ROM.


Nuvi 350, GPS Map 76CX

I own both the 24k topo and

I own both the 24k topo and the US Topo on CD that U used to use on the Garmin they run on the 550, downloaded fine with Mapsource...

on a 2GB SD I get all the 24k maps and most of the US topos with room for a ton of POIs, jpgs and mp3's

Id say that while the 24k maps are beautiful, thaey are mostly around the AT and a few national parks in the east... I'd agree that the US Topos do not have superb topo lines on them - but you can navigate ok... (it's still annoying to not have a point to point nav nor lat/long on a c550)... But really, it's useful - on Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland near me - there are no 24k maps - but the US Topos are still good enough to hike with some precision over the road maps...

the 24k just wont cover them all - but if you are an AT thru hiker.... they are all you need...


Paul, in Flagstaff AZ; Garmin Nuvi 255W, Kenwood (Garmin) 512, Garmin c550/traffic, c330, i3, V, III-Pilot, III+, many military models various mfgrs

MapSource US TOPO user

I have used the Western US TOPO when I was stationed at Fort Irwin California. 3 weeks out of every month a different Army unit would come fight against the 11th Armored Cavalry (my unit stationed there). I used the software on my Garmin Etrex Vista and could easily navigate the mountains and desert. The ability to track and save actual routes and use them again later is phenomenal. I have not used the 24k TOPO but I lovee the US TOPO


R/Tim NUVI 660, ETREX Vista, Rhino 120, zumo 660, nuvi 3790

US Topo

Paul, does the US Topo maps show up over the roads, or do you have to open them up separately on the c550? Where would be the best place to get more details on using the Topo maps with the c550?

I like to travel in the woods on occasion, but do not want to buy another GPS right away. Any info would be great.