Etrex 20 Install Free Maps

Posted on
  1. Etrex 10 Maps Download
  2. Etrex 20 Install Free Maps
  3. Etrex 20 Gps
  4. Garmin Etrex 20 Map Updates
  5. Etrex 20 Install Free Maps Download

Here are instructions for downloading maps from the web onto a Garmin GPS. In principal, these should work for other hiking GPS systems. Essentially, the process is a Kafkaeqque nightmare with many disconnects. Below are detailed instructions.

How to Install Custom Maps for Free on a Gamin etrex GPS Unit On November 30, 2018 By Jack Haines In Uncategorized I recently had to setup an old Garmin etrex 10 for the coming field season, so I thought I would write a quick guide to streamline the process for other people.

Since I have two Garmin eTrex 20 units, I must have masochistic tendencies. I have one for myself, and I recently bought my daughter one. The eTrex 20 is a reasonable selection given the range of horrible choices of hiking GPS systems.

In addition to my eTrex 20, I have a PC running Windows 7. Although these instructions are for my configuration, they should be a useful guide for your particular PC/GPS combination.

Also, I suggest adding an SD card to your GPS—the largest one that the device will accept. The eTrex 20 only works with cards only up to 32 megabytes, though the GPS physically accepts larger cards. This is deceiving. I bought a 64 megabyte card, installed it in the eTrex 20, and was able to download the maps. The only problem is that the device could not read the downloaded maps. You would have thought Garmin would have blocked this. Marathi font free download and install. The last thing hikers need is a false sense of security. A word of advice: check to see you can read the maps when you are at home not lost on the trail.


Please note the following about the GPS.

  • For the Garmin eTrex 20, the user experience sucks. I suggest you play with the device at home with the manual to get used to it. Also, I suggest you print an extra copy of the quick-start instructions and bring them with you when you hike.

  • As shipped from the factory, the device itself is a raw device. It does not have hiking trails downloaded to it. The reason for this is the device may be used for different purposes. For instance, you may use it for hiking trails, whereas an employee for an oil company may use it for locating underground pipelines. You need to download maps onto the device. It is possible to overlay maps—for instance road maps and oil pipeline maps—and have them appear on the device like tracing paper.

The way to get maps onto the device is circuitous and obscure—a nightmare really.

Etrex 10 Maps Download

Overview for Getting Maps onto your GPS:

To do this successfully several things need to converge, and unfortunately there are gaps along the path. Maps are downloaded from the internet to a PC (or Mac). You then transfer the maps from the PC via a USB cable onto the GPS device.

The conduit on your PC is an application from Garmin called BaseCamp. BaseCamp looks like it was designed by the Department of Agriculture in 1956. It is horrible. Here is the link to can download Basecamp to your PC:

Etrex 20 Install Free Maps

If you have a MAC, poke around the Garmin website for the correct link.

When you download BaseCamp to your PC and run it for the first time, the installer may say you need to install Microsoft .NET. This is legitimate and will not harm your PC. Thankfully this happens automatically after you give the loader permission.

Etrex 20 Gps

Garmin sells maps, but there are many free maps. I have used ones from here:

Step-by-Step Instructions:

After downloading BaseCamp to your PC, here is the multistep process of getting the map from a website such as to your device.

  • Download map (e.g. in link at immediately above) to your PC. You will then need to “run” the map at the end of the download (screen pops-up, click to proceed). Make sure BaseCamp is NOT running when you “run” the map.

  • After you run the map, Open BaseCamp

  • Open Map in BaseCamp, per instructions here:

  • Load Map onto GPS device using instructions at link below.

    • Plug in GPS device into computer using USB cable included in box. See GPS instructions for location of plug on your model.

Before going to the next step, give computer a few seconds to identify the GPS Device. The computer should pop a screen saying something like “new device found.”

Transfer map from BaseCamp onto GPS, per instructions here:

Etrex 20 install free maps

Garmin Etrex 20 Map Updates

This completes the process for getting maps onto your GPS.

Disabling Maps on GPS:

With multiple maps overlayed on the devices, it is possible that you will have a cluttered display. You can selectively turn off the maps loaded onto your GPS device per instructions at link below. (Instructions vary based on the GPS model.) The first set of instructions at this link pertains to the eTrex 20.


Etrex 20 Install Free Maps Download

  • Check your maps from the comfort of your home.

  • Have an extra set of batteries when you go on a hike. This in case you forget to turn off the GPS and the batteries drain.

  • Take a copy of the quick start guide.

  • Whenever I hike, I always create a waypoint at the trailhead and turn on record a track. This shows me where I started and the route I have taken, just in case.

  • Remember to turn off the GPS at the end of your hike so you don’t drain the batteries.