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Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 8:15am
by MIB2020
Hi, I had some good advice on what GPS to buy in the past, thanks. I purchased a Garmin edge explore. The fact it failed and the refurbished replacement sent to me is an old model is just bad luck but my credit card legal team are sorting it.
But now I need the right app. I don’t so much want to plan routes but enjoy following routes others have done, the free versions I have seen are ok but limited.
Strava seems to be set up for athletes, I am not interested in times, heart rates etc, Kamoot seems more suited to me but wondering what you all think before I spend my hard earned cash.

Thanks

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 10:00am
by al_yrpal
Have a look at cycle.travel lots of route advice there and it will suggest routes for you.

The OS map subscription gives you excellent uk maps plus lots of cycling and walking routes to follow.

Using cycle.travel you can plan routes and export them to a gps or Osmand+ on a phone which will give you visual and spoken directions on your bike.

Al

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 10:49am
by Jdsk

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 11:09am
by MIB2020
Thanks , so far, already have on OS subscription for hiking but very limited routes on there for cycling (some road routes but very few for gravel/off road.

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 11:12am
by MIB2020
The cycle travel site does not seem to come with any reviews from people who have done the routes it comes up with. Did try one earlier this year but it felt like a computer generated road ride and was a bit boring. Am I missing something?

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 11:26am
by mjr
MIB2020 wrote:The cycle travel site does not seem to come with any reviews from people who have done the routes it comes up with. Did try one earlier this year but it felt like a computer generated road ride and was a bit boring. Am I missing something?

Yep. I have done several tours based mainly on cycle.travel routes. Often I tweak the routes to have fewer turns, use more waymarked routes (I don't have a GPS on all ride and "follow CS1 to Durants Park, head east to join NCN1 then follow 1, 61 until Ware centre" is easier than a 30 mile list of turns and street names) or visit more town centres (which c.t often prefers to avoid due to motor traffic levels), viewpoints and attractions, but the first two are required less than they used to be.

What one did you try?

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 11:41am
by Richard Fairhurst
MIB2020 wrote:it felt like a computer generated road ride


Ultimately I guess that's what it is! But I'm working on some really fun route quality stuff for cycle.travel at the moment. Watch this space...

(and Happy New Year!)

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 1 Jan 2021, 3:50pm
by sjs
MIB2020 wrote:it felt like a computer generated road ride


People/s tastes vary. I've found CT pretty reliable, ie often chooses routes I might have chosen myself. In the end though the best way for me is to spend time with paper OS maps spread out on a table, to pick my own set of yellow roads, and then to turn them into a gpx. A bit time-consuming though.

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 8:03am
by MIB2020
Thanks again all, I should add I don’t have a computer, after 35+ years on one I never want to use one again :D, A Cycling gps gives you more confidence to roam further knowing if you need you can either return the same way or go directly back to the start. Kamoot seems very good with loads of routes being added all the time. Planning my own routes seems more often than not to run in to issues, closed/blocked tracks being a regular thing.

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 11:04am
by Psamathe
MIB2020 wrote:.... Kamoot seems very good with loads of routes being added all the time. Planning my own routes seems more often than not to run in to issues, closed/blocked tracks being a regular thing.

Regarding Creating Routes:
I have a couple of "test routes" I put into the web based cycle routing systems, the main one being a route I've actually never ridden but have regularly driven and all fail disastrously except for cycle.travel. Just tried main test route Komoot (bicycle mode) again and takes you on roads I drive on but would never cycle on! Whereas cycle.travel choses nearby quiet country lanes (over a 60 mile route, cycle.travel is a couple of miles longer but uses roads that you'd be prepared to actually cycle on (and survive).

I've used cycle.travel for several months cycle touring in France, Germany, Belgium & Netherlands, using it daily to create route for the following day and never had a route that I have any problems with (on a couple of occasions I has cycle paths that had been overgrown - but that is a local maintenance issue not a cycle.travel issue).

I have no experience of using these sites as a database of routes others have cycled.

Is OP cycling in many different areas or new to a local area? When I took up cycling again I found cycling round my local area actually meant I learnt the local area, all the small back roads and it was only after a few years that my routes "settled down" - and in some respects that became a bit more boring (always knowing what was round the next corner). Just setting out and making a decision at each junction can be good fun.

Ian

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 11:12am
by Boring_Username
MIB2020 wrote:Thanks again all, I should add I don’t have a computer, after 35+ years on one I never want to use one again.


Surely you're using one now? :D

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 12:02pm
by ChrisButch
sjs wrote:
In the end though the best way for me is to spend time with paper OS maps spread out on a table, to pick my own set of yellow roads, and then to turn them into a gpx. A bit time-consuming though.


So why not just carry the paper map?

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 1:48pm
by philvantwo
I bought the 3 OS landranger maps local to here and using Garmin connect I can then plan a route. I've found that its best to end the course about 100 yards short of the course.
If you've not got a laptop or chromebook then you can plan routes on the Garmin connect app and Bluetooth them to your device.

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 2:10pm
by Jdsk
ChrisButch wrote:
sjs wrote:In the end though the best way for me is to spend time with paper OS maps spread out on a table, to pick my own set of yellow roads, and then to turn them into a gpx. A bit time-consuming though.

So why not just carry the paper map?

As always I recommend every individual to try lots of methods and discover what works for them in different situations.

But are you genuinely not aware of the disadvantages of paper maps?

Thanks

Jonathan

Re: Best route planning app.

Posted: 2 Jan 2021, 4:52pm
by sjs
ChrisButch wrote:
sjs wrote:
In the end though the best way for me is to spend time with paper OS maps spread out on a table, to pick my own set of yellow roads, and then to turn them into a gpx. A bit time-consuming though.


So why not just carry the paper map?


Good question. I did exactly that when I did Lejog, using the (now discontinued?) OS 1:250000 maps. But it's more convenient to follow a line on a small moving map than to keep stopping to look at a paper one, especially if it's wet and/or windy. And with a gps you always know exactly where you are of course. I do think it's worth carrying paper maps on a tour; they give a sense of the "big picture" which a small screen cannot.