Thursday, July 05, 2012

How to export a map from MapMyRide to your Garmin Edge 500

Garmin's Edge 500 offers basic GPS navigation, and it works very well for cycling purposes once you take a bit of time to try it out. This post explains the common scenario of exporting a ride from to your Edge 500 for a solo ride, or leading (or getting dropped from) a group ride. I won't spend any time describing how to use MapMyRide. Once you've created and saved, or looked up a map, you'll see

the option to "Export this Route (GPX, KML)." Export the route to a .GPX file and save it. Next, you'll need to convert the file to a .TCX file that the Edge 500 can use. Go to and follow the easy directions to convert and save your file. Finally, just drag and drop the .TCX file into your Edge 500. When plugged into your computer, you'll see the file system mounted as a USB mass storage device. Browse to the \Garmin\NewFiles and drop the file there. Once you unplug the Garmin and turn it back on, the file will be processed and appear as a "Course." To use it, hold down the Page/Menu/Enter button, select Training, Courses. There you'll see your route. Select it, and you'll see options; select Do Course. It will do some processing, and then display the route profile. Push the page button and you'll come to the course map.
It will be a simple line with a triangle showing you position relative to the course line. Press Start when you're ready to go, and just follow the line! There will be no street names or anything fancy; just follow the line. If you get off course, the Edge will tell you, and once you get back on course it will recalculate and continue on. It works very well, with no fussing around on your part required once you've started the course.