|Submited By: Alarmed Mutant on 05/02/2010|
I had the Garmin Foretrex 101 and it worked great until it got stolen. I have the 301 now and it works just as well. The only problem I had with the 101 was the strap. It was held onto the GPS unit with crappy watch pins. I m in the military, so if you have to put a heavy ruck on and off quickly, and you get the ruck strap caught on the GPS, the unit would pop off the strap. Then, you are trying to find a tiny watch pin with NVGs on a mountain. Also, the strap that comes with it is just a bit too short, but the extension strap makes it too long. WTF?! It will barely fit on your wrist with nothing under it, but if you have a uniform on (ACU/BDU) you will have to use the extender and then it s too long and will move around.
For the 301 there is a better design to hold the strap onto the GPS. It uses screw in pins, so I think that problem is fixed and it shouldn t pop off. However, the strap length is still too short or too long. I am going to just buy a case where you can take the GPS and put it inside of a clear case and that has a Velcro strap.
I used the 101 on every mission in Afghanistan and it was really great to get quick grids of your location. Projecting points on the 101 and the 301 isn t that easy though. You can only choose distances at 100 meter intervals, so that s as accurate of grid as you will get. It s also not very easy to navigate the menu to get at the project waypoint screen. I just used it to quickly find out where I was, and for that it was fantastical.
The sensitivity of the receiver is awesome. You can pick up signals when it s sitting on the passenger seat of your car or when your in the woods walking. I ride mountain bike, and it seemed to work OK when I was under moderate cover at all speeds. When you get into really thick cover and you are going pretty fast the accuracy degrades a little, but it still tracks satellites. Your speed won t be that accurate though.
Hooking it upto a computer is easy too. It just loads as a USB mass storage device, so you don t need serial ports anymore. For military, I m not sure if it will still be compatible with moving map on Falconview, haven t tried it.
I definitely recommend this. The only problem is the crappy strap that s not meant for human-sized wrists. On a bike mount, in a different case or attached to your body armor or whatever it s awesome.