View Full Version : Garmin Oregon 450 t or not to t

01-03-2013, 16:43
Looking at the (Garmin) Oregon 450. It is best to buy without the t or with it. Can I download better topo maps on line.

01-03-2013, 17:08
Don't have an Oregon, but I do have a Colorado. In my experience (have done a fair amount of geocaching) having the T means that the Topo maps are in the firmware and do not take up any of the storage (RAM) of the unit. If you have enough RAM and don't use it for anything else, this might not be a problem. Also, though, this storage probably means an SD card. I love my Colorado, but in cold temps, there seems to be an issue with the contact to the SD card (road maps in my case) and it "loses" these maps. My Colorado is a T and the Topo maps are fine. If it were me and you can afford the T option, I would get it myself.


01-03-2013, 18:27
In short, yes. The two best maps I know of both cost money. Garmin's 24k topo maps for hiking, and Garmin's City Navigator to help you on the roads.

The topo maps on the 450t are 100k maps. You can buy a disc or downloadable version of Garmin's 100k or 24k maps, but the 24k maps are sold for regions instead of the entire country and cost a lot more than the 100k maps.

Garmin's maps have roads that are route-able, which can help you get to the trailhead, or help guide your hitch. Their maps also benefit from having lots of points of interest, which can help you in town, but also help you find facilities nearby the trail.

Free maps have topo lines that are debateably just as good as Garmin's, and roads that look approximately as good, but I haven't found one that is good about routing. The last time I relied on a free map for street routing, I ended up wasting a couple hours on private roads. They also tend to have very few or zero points of interest except for the topo maps for a select few parks.

In my case, I had 100k maps from over almost a decade ago that I still use with my 550. I downloaded free topo maps as well.

You might as well go ahead and buy a microSD memory card. They're dirt cheap, allow you to store many different maps, and the excess space can safely store other non-gps files (books, music, pictures) in the ruggedized waterproof storage container that is the 450.

Gpsfiledepot.com has many free maps, but probably only a few that you'd want to use. Openstreetmap or opencyclemap have maps that are pretty good about showing roads accurately, but I still wouldn't rely on them for routing.

01-04-2013, 11:40
Garmin is now offering on an SD card the topo for the AT and the PCT for $49.99 each. The topos are the 24K type, but they map a very narrow path.

The rest of the national trails are being ignored.