GPS advice

You know the drill..

Moderators: Redneck_Randy, badmoonrising, lakerunner

Post Reply
Message
Author
DocPit
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:34 pm

GPS advice

#1 Post by DocPit » Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:40 pm

I’m planning on buying a pontoon to use on Lake Murray (SC). I would like to get some type of simple GPS device that (1) shows me where I’m going and (2) warns me of low water, sandbars, and other hazards. I believe Garmin puts out a g3 map of Lake Murray. I don’t know if that map will work with some of their simpler GPS units like the Striker 4. Can anyone give me some guidance? I don’t want to spend $1K+ on a high tech unit with a fish finder and all types of 3D modeling capability. Just something to prevent my getting lost or getting stuck.

Steiner
Posts: 61
Joined: Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:51 am
Location: Lyman, SC

Re: GPS advice

#2 Post by Steiner » Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:25 am

Striker 4 does not have or support maps. It's a good cheap unit that gives you a depth finder and basic gps capability like marking spots, compass, etc but there will be no info on your lake and it's just a white screen. You have to move to a chartplotter to get the actual map with lake data...probably over $300 to start. I used to use a Striker 4 along with Google maps on my cell phone for getting around. My new boat (from Muddy Bay in Newberry) came with a Simrad in dash so it has everything plus the ability to be networked with the outboard for digital gauges and other motor data....I don't even look at my actual gauges anymore other than trim, but that can be connected as well..

For what you are doing....and what I probably would've done.....some of the apps that work on cell phone and tablet would be cheapest. Navionics for example. There would be no reason to subscribe because the lake map is not really going to change. Just pay once and download all the maps you want. Once you have the map downloaded you don't need cell service or wifi. There are several options for apps and some online articles detailing them.
https://www.navionics.com/apps/navionics-boating

You would still need a depth finder though. Maybe your boat will come with one but if not the Striker 4 is fine or there are other options in the $100 and under range.
Last edited by Steiner on Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
2019 G3 SunCatcher V322 SS tritoon, Yamaha F200 (purchased 07/2019)
2017 Godfrey Sweetwater 2086C pontoon, Honda BF90D (sold 07/2019)
2001 Sea-Doo Sportster LE 130hp Rotax (sold 05/2004, said I'd never own another boat!)

User avatar
Coldbrew
Posts: 220
Joined: Tue Apr 08, 2014 5:16 pm
Location: Bedford, NH

Re: GPS advice

#3 Post by Coldbrew » Sat Jan 11, 2020 7:30 am

I agree with Steiner. Here's a link to the app in the Play store if you have an android:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... ineLakesHD

They've combined a bunch of their apps into one now so it's a lot more simple.


Enjoy your new boat!
2014 Premier Gemini 201
Tow Vehicle: 2019 F-150
Home Port: Newfound Lake, NH

DocPit
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:34 pm

Re: GPS advice

#4 Post by DocPit » Sat Jan 11, 2020 9:07 pm

Thanks very much for the information. Much appreciated.

riplipper
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2018 8:00 am
Location: Jax Florida

Re: GPS advice

#5 Post by riplipper » Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:28 pm

I purchased the small garmin Eco Map that mounts on a very small post and placed it next to my windshield.
It easily snaps in and out if you do not want to leave it on the boat. I love this feature. Takes one second to snap in or out of cradle.
It reads bottom at 30+ miles per hour as well.
I think I paid about 250 or so for it. Maybe less as it was a year end model.
You can get a lake chip or coastal chip for it.
I am the guy at the boat ramp that gives you dirty looks when you are a complete idiot and too stupid to know it.

MattGent
Posts: 30
Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2006 10:27 am
Location: South FLA

Re: GPS advice

#6 Post by MattGent » Fri Jan 17, 2020 9:05 am

The hand-held Garmin units are nice and very versatile, but the screen is small.

Another recommendation for Navionics on a tablet. I have circumnavigated FL, gone to the Tortugas, and a couple times to the Bahamas using Navionics on a low-end Tablet. First I had a $100 Samsung, and more recently a $250 or so iPad. I also run it on my phone as backup or for reference.

If you buy a lower-end Tablet (which I recommend, you are around water) check the specs as many wifi-only models don't include the GPS. I use Bluetooth to a Garmin remote GPS antenna. Its a reliable connection, easier to set up on the iOS than on Android. I also use a water-proof sleeve if I think it may get splashed. There are RAM mounts, or I made one out of plywood.

May not matter in SC, but its good practice to update your charts once or twice a year. I did run aground once where Navionics said there should be 3' of depth.

If you actually want to sound bottom then you need a built-in unit or one of the fancy Bluetooth setups. I have a back-up built-in that I use to sound depth in shallow areas and to monitor NMEA engine data.

MattGent
Posts: 30
Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2006 10:27 am
Location: South FLA

Re: GPS advice

#7 Post by MattGent » Fri Jan 17, 2020 9:30 am

Navionics on the tablet, NMEA on the Garmin unit:
Image

User avatar
jrolin1
Posts: 355
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:42 am
Location: Lexington SC Lake Murray

Re: GPS advice

#8 Post by jrolin1 » Sun Jan 19, 2020 8:43 am

Lake Murray is my home lake. It is a boat friendly fairly deep lake that does not have as many hazards as some other lakes. Most hazards are marked so pay attention to the markers. I bought the navionics app and it is good. I just found it difficult to see in the South Carolina sun in some circumstances and I wound up getting a Lowrance Elite 5 HD gps chartplotter. That was several years ago. It works great. One good feature about a chartplotter is that you can save your trips. So if you are going out in the day and coming back at night you can follow your course. You still need to pay attention for other boaters etc. of course but you will know where you are and see the islands and other obstructions near you. Amazon has the Lowrance Hook2 5 inch including lake maps for 255 bucks. I would get something similar if I had to get another one. The models that end in X do not have mapping though!
DETAILED LAKE MAPS: The HOOK2 5 Fish Finder comes preloaded C-MAP US Inland Lake Maps with 1-foot contours for over 3, 000 lakes plus standard coverage of an additional 9, 000 lakes.

https://www.amazon.com/Lowrance-HOOK2-S ... 144&sr=8-7

this one is a little more but if you fish or dive you may prefer it. I do both so I might spring for it. (330 bucks)
https://www.amazon.com/Lowrance-HOOK2-T ... VGF03&th=1

Post Reply