Posted by: manitou14 on Oct-28-12 2:42 PM (EST)
I bought a used map76 gps for use in areas where there are many small islands that mostly look the same. It has many features, but really what i find most helpful is to use it along with a chart or map of the area.
It allows me to pinpoint my location on the map. It has a compass. It shows speed, time, distance to any point, etc.
I dont rely on it solely for anything other than checking day paddle distance covered, but on week long trips its invaluable as a tool with a chart. Keep in mind that you will likely need to buy mapping downloads separately for the areas you will paddle.
It helps me improve my navigation by showing my path during the day and could be helpful by showing a "breadcrumb" trail back to where i put in if fog where to become an issue.
I get about 4 full days use out of a set of rechargeable batteries. I could benefit from a compass navigation course.