Saturday, November 20, 2010

Oooh Garmin, I hate you

Friday I had a lovely ride with ~C and the critters. She came out to my place and picked us up, then we headed about 5 miles up the road into Antelope Valley and parked. We took the horses, of course, and the dogs.

The howling winds gentle breezes were still caressing the land, so I wasn't really sure how Dixie would act. She loaded well and even stood well to get her neck clipped. She started off a little giraffe-headed, but we walked for the first couple of miles and she settled into work very well. Diego was completely horrified about C's windbreaker, which was making some alarming crackling snapping sounds, but he eventually got his game face on too.

It's funny how our horses are so different. Dig is completely sweet, a little squirrely, and needs to be asked to slow down in order to calm down. He responds to the normal advice you get about horses - ask him to slow down, ask him to move his feet, get his brain back. Dixie is independent minded and distrustful, and she needs to go faster in order to slow down. If she spooks or starts off hot, I have to let her go forward. Trot or canter, it doesn't matter - she has to have the freedom to move for a few strides. Then I can ask her to slow down, and she will. If I try to boss her around without letting her have those few strides of freedom, we just get in a huge fight and get angry with each other.

Cersei is an old hat at endurance training. She stayed near us the whole time (and kept Diego on edge.) C's dog Molly is much younger and more excitable, so she covered WAY more miles darting off to chase rabbits (and popped back up to keep Dixie on edge.) I don't know how Molly is feeling, but Cersei has been an exceptionally snoozy dog today!

The area is where Rides of March is held, but we took a new trail. It's not really suitable to run a ride over, but it was super cool to train on. We found trees! They were junipers, so they're more like overgrown shrubs, but they're big enough to feel like you're in a very sparse forest. We followed a cow trail up a hill, then found a dirt bike trail, then eventually popped out on this absolutely lovely ridge. The path down was very narrow and dry, so we walked the horses down the hill again. It was SO pretty.

Friday's ride was pretty much my one-year Garmin anniversary. The stupid Garmin Connect site isn't working correctly for me right now, or I'd show you my pitiful stats. Instead, here's the post from a year ago. We really have come a long way, and I'm so proud of Dixie.

Here's Friday's ride. Almost 14 miles, tooling along at a calm steady pace.

Garmin Connect has "teamed up" with Microsoft to "improve" my "experience" by using Bing maps. I hate Bing maps. I like Google Maps, or even topo maps - the whole thing about Nevada riding is the hills! What good is it if I can't see the hills? And it's not like GC was ever very useful to play with aggregate data. The only interesting thing I can tell you is that in the last 365 days, Dixie and I have done 577.49 miles (with the GPS on.)

So I'm looking for a new GPS analysis program for the Mac. I am trialing rubiTrack, TrailRunner, and Ascent. Does anybody know of any other options? All three that I'm trying out seem to have pros and cons, but they use REAL maps and let you play with the data.


  1. Anyone with any suggestions about products to use instead that have exceptional map and tracking/metrics/statistics feel free to make them. SOMEONE is being picky about how they dont want anything for christmas.

  2. Good sounding rides!
    ...moving moving more helps my TB to settle too...foreward and onward. Dixie and you are such an awesome team...good miles this year, and you got to ride in a"small Juniper forest"! In calming breezes...with a true trail dog!

    Well hell, hate it when your favorite "working" piece of equipment gets changed for the newer model. I'm waiting on what you find out about the GPS...before I buy one.

    Take care

  3. you answered my question of what to use with the Garmin and Mac. I'll try these!
    - The Equestrian Vagabond

  4. Don't you love it when they do that? I mean, it's in your best interests to use what they say you should use. So be a good little consumer and do as you're told. ;)

    577 miles... Wow! That's impressive. I bet it's a lot of fun to look back at that data and see just how far you've come.

  5. You can upload the file to google maps and totally bypass garmin and bing altogether. 8)

  6. Excellent idea, Richard!

    Kaci - I still think I'd buy a Garmin, for what I want out of a GPS. Older models are cheap and they work just fine to track where I've been. I haven't really looked at the newer GPS's with big color displays, the ones that show you where you are - that's not what I need.

    I still think I want a program on my computer to look at trends and totals. I'll update this when I pick one of the three...

  7. Don't know nothin' about the Garmin thing (mine doesn't upload anywhere). But may I grumble about my deep seated jealousy that you have a training buddy? I'd almost trade one of my grandkids for one (almost). ~E.G.

  8. Have you tried the Trailguru app for iPhone? It glitches sometimes but the website is kind of good.


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