830 Routing Tips - Navigating a Course without Map Features

New to the 830 and really struggling with the basics on routing on a course from a previous activity.  Had a 130+ that worked flawlessly, highlighting significant turns with audible and visual prompts.  First go with the 830 had it constantly recalculating and beeping but no audible of visual prompts when appropriate.  Tried simply navigating a course as well as Race an Activity with the best case scenario showing a route to follow but constantly prompting turns where no significant turns were present while not prompting any when they were.  Had route calculation errors and tried turning off recalculations with no real success.  Do I have to turn maps off when navigating a course that doesn't use any map features?  My route is rather circuitous and covers much of the same track in both directions.  

  • Welcome to the 830. Sounds like you're having a typical experience. I've complained before about my 830 failing to properly navigate routes with loops, calling out turns where there is no turn, re-routing from my planned route, etc.

    1) How did you get your route on the the 830? Fit file, gpx or tcx? Fit is the best format to use.

    2) Was this a route that worked on your 130?

    3) I don't know what you mean by having a route that doesn't use map features.

  • 1)  Course created from track on 130+ and transferred to 830 through basecamp

    2) Yes

    3) My route is single track game trail that doesn't exist on any map.  The route crosses a forest road but does not use it in any way.

    Obviously the 830 has a lot more features over the 130+ with built in maps and ability to route by them, but I'm only trying to navigate on an existing track log (in the form of a course).  I think I'll have to disable the maps to simply navigate the course.

    As I understand it, the only reason the GPS would ever need to recalculate is if you went off course or deviated from the original course.  If there's additional map data the unit may look for another routable feature to get back on course.  With out any other routable features, maybe it won't be so confused.

  • I've used routes that go off map with no more problems than routes that use map features.

    When you load a course the 830 calculates the route and it doesn't always follow the planned route. This has nothing to do with the GPS it's a function of the poorly designed routing and navigation algorithms that Garmin implemented in the 830.

    If you go off course, and allow a recalculation, then the 830 will direct you to re-trace your path back to the point of deviation.

  • I created a profile that disables the routing maps and we'll see if there's an difference on the next ride.  My issue is that I'm simply trying to retrace a course created from a tracklog from my normal ride.  There shouldn't be any need to calculate or recalculate anything more than where I am relative to the start or end of that tracklog, as long as I don't deviate significantly from that track log (which is nearly impossible given it is single track).  Obviously the 830 has much greater capabilities than the 130+, but it should be able to perform the same basic function.  I shouldn't have to dumb it down to do that though in my mind.

  • You want to turn off "turn guidance".

    This is in the settings item (three horizontal lines) at the lower left of the courses list.

    You can also turn off the "recalculation" (that's under the profile settings).

    If you are using a path that is not on the map, you definitely want to disable turn guidance.

    Off course warnings will still work without turn guidance.

    You don't need to disable the maps. (If you don't disable turn guidance, you'll get an error without a routable map enabled.)

    If you are OK with just seeing the line, you can enable Always Display for the course (and not load it as a course for navigation).


    The 130 (not having maps) can only do "track following" (and "course point") navigation.

    I believe the 130 can detect turns in the track. The other units really don't do that (except for the "sharp turn" warning).

  • When you load a course the 830 calculates the route and it doesn't always follow the planned route. This has nothing to do with the GPS it's a function of the poorly designed routing and navigation algorithms that Garmin implemented in the 830.

    This is actually the result of the track not following roads/paths on the installed map. (That is. it's an "incomplete map" issue.)

    Activities can be a bit messy for the unit to follow.

  • OK, so I just did another ride with no routable maps and still ran into numerous issues.  Part of the issue is my track covering both directions on the trail causing confusion with the GPS wanting to go the opposite direction.  I also found that it must not be "navigating" most of the time as I had set text to come up when navigating and it only seemed to come up after it thought I was off course.  Still ran into other times that it kept beeping incessantly at times like it was navigating the course when there wasn't significant turns while using the show map while navigating with an arrow showing up on the map but no text guidance.  Further, I found it would beep and black out the bottom of the display on the compass navigation page, without showing anything in the blacked out area, which almost leads me to believe there is something defective with the unit (bought as factory refurb).  Ultimately, I believe most of the issue is that this unit is more like an automotive unit than an outdoor unit and only seems to do a proper job navigating streets.

  • I was actually wanting turn guidance, but it obviously doesn't work the way I would want.  It would seem that an 830 should be able to do everything a 130+ can do and then some, but it doesn't appear so based on my results.  As I said in another post, unfortunately the 830 works more like an automotive unit than an outdoor unit, only seeming to work as intended when navigating streets.

  • If you're navigating to a location, it's certainly understandable that it uses a routable map to find the "best" route to that location.  If you're navigating a course, it shouldn't be using any routable features beyond following the course.  Obviously what is should do and actually does is another story but, like most Garmin issues, you need to figure out why it doesn't do what you want and figure out what to change until it does.

  • It doesn’t have to be streets but the track had to follow roads/paths that are on the map. 

    The Edges that use maps always worked this way. 

    The ones that don’t use maps do something else.