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Old 06-04-2015, 06:49 PM   #1
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Best Atlas (paper copy)

What is the best hard copy atlas for the US?
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Old 06-04-2015, 06:54 PM   #2
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I've always been a Rand McNally fan:

The 2016 Road Atlas
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Old 06-04-2015, 08:11 PM   #3
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I just love the RAND McNally road atlas. We have a new one every year and I have one by my chair when I watch TV. Also have one by the computer desk. Can quickly look up locations that I read about on this forum. Loren
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:18 PM   #4
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We use Rand McNalley from Walmart. It lists locations of WM ans Sams.
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:27 PM   #5
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They make a spiral bound one that works great now - it lays flat. When we traveled from Chilliwack to Asheville, NC last year, we used that, phone apps, Garmin GPS, DeLorme Topo US and often an Excel Spread Sheet to calculate our stops! 6700 miles & 49 campsites, with no reservations and kept our drive distance down to 110 miles per day, so we needed it all depending on if there was cell service, Wi-fi or none of the above. The atlas was always "live."
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:57 PM   #6
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We like the Rand McNally spiral bound large format one.
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Old 06-05-2015, 12:44 AM   #7
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Thanks to all! we went to Borders tonight and were surprised they didn't have that one. We will give WalMart a try.
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Old 06-05-2015, 01:56 AM   #8
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That's hard to believe!

People can brag all they want about digital maps but the only really good digital map is Google Maps on a full-sized PC. Give me a paper map any time--that's why I need the biggest table in my Egbert so I can open up my maps to peruse them, mapophile that I am. And what's better than trying to fold up a map with all the ripping and cursing?? Such joy!
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Old 06-05-2015, 02:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
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Give me a paper map any time--that's why I need the biggest table in my Egbert so I can open up my maps to peruse them, mapophile that I am. And what's better than trying to fold up a map with all the ripping and cursing?? Such joy!
Karen, have you been to Metsker Maps in Seattle? Used to be in Pioneer Square, but they're now at Pike Place Market. Love that store!

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Old 06-05-2015, 02:28 AM   #10
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I have the last Metsker maps of Whatcom County in existence. Love Metsker maps.
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:05 AM   #11
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Thanks to all! we went to Borders tonight and were surprised they didn't have that one. We will give WalMart a try.

You may have trouble finding the spiral bound one at local stores - at least we did. Got ours on Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/052801...o6L&ref=plSrch

I had forgotten I have a photo of it I took one evening in Oregon. Love the large format. Many states take multiple pages.
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Old 06-05-2015, 08:31 AM   #12
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I too would like to get another atlas of North America. Ours is missing in action. I like an altas or paper map to get my bearings straight with an overview of an entire trip, or leg of it.

Otherwise, I love to use GPS. Either Goggle Maps on my phone, or my handheld Garmin Montana are the go to. I do use the one built in to our Pilot too, but now at 7 years old, there are lots of new roads around town that are not on the discs, and I kinda balk at spending $200 for new ones. I much prefer the free updates from Garmin, and Google.

I actually would set up and use just Google, but it requires data to work, so I am hooped in areas with no wifi or cell reception.
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:07 AM   #13
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While I do try to keep an up-to-date atlas in the car (usually from Walmart) I prefer individual state maps from AAA. While less handy, they are larger & show more detail than the atlases, and as a member, they are free. They hate to see me coming since I usually pick a batch up before each cross country trip (as well as the camp books - unfortunately, they got rid of the old ones and now use sectional versions of Woodalls. They also have an Indian Country map that shows many of the smaller roads of the southwest.
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Old 06-05-2015, 09:08 AM   #14
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I do understand the love of paper maps, but there's a wonderful coming-together of the "where am I" of a GPS and the "what's around me" of a map that comes with a mapping GPS.

We have an older hand-held GPS we use for hiking and geocaching, and an in-car we use for navigating, but on a recent trip a friend brought along her android tablet with a mapping application. She had downloaded detailed maps, so didn't need any network connectivity. This gave us the network-free functionality of our mapping GPS units, with the far better user interface (primarily the larger screen and touch interface) of something like google maps. It seemed to be an excellent alternative for navigating (when there was a co-pilot -- we had no way to mount the large tablet where it would be useful for the driver), and the ability to zoom in and out easily made it very useful for planning as well.

I don't currently own a tablet of any sort, but this experience has me thinking of looking for one.
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Old 06-05-2015, 10:43 AM   #15
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We like Rand McNally also...large print and lists all Wally worlds complete with the exit number!
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Old 06-05-2015, 11:38 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarenH View Post
That's hard to believe!

People can brag all they want about digital maps but the only really good digital map is Google Maps on a full-sized PC. Give me a paper map any time--that's why I need the biggest table in my Egbert so I can open up my maps to peruse them, mapophile that I am. And what's better than trying to fold up a map with all the ripping and cursing?? Such joy!
Hi, I'm Don, and I'm a mapophile.

We regularly visit AAA club for those wonderful paper maps. After each trip, there is one or two that have been custom folded and marked up so much we have to replace it.
We did just recently acquire a AAA road atlas for installation in our upcoming Escape; I wonder how much different the Rand McNally one is from that?
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Old 06-05-2015, 12:55 PM   #17
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National Geographic Atlas

We keep the Rand McNally atlas in the trailer, and use it to record all our adventures. $9.99 at Costco. A few years ago we found a National Geographic 'adventure' atlas that shows a bit more topography and has articles about several national parks. That is the atlas I use for dreaming and scheming. Like Jon, we use the AAA maps for navigation in the car.

I don't like Toyota's GPS. It's routing is not as good as Garmin's, and the voice recognition is abysmal. I hope the auto makers will build interfaces to our iPhone or android devices and leave the software to companies that do it better
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Old 06-05-2015, 02:07 PM   #18
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If you use an iPad or iPhone (and maybe Android), check out the TopoMaps app. You download the USGS quadrants you need from the web, and they're on your device permanently. They can be overlaid with other map apps as well, great for getting three dimensional perspectives of your drive.
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Old 06-06-2015, 08:27 PM   #19
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Countertop for map lovers:

Wilsonart Product

Yeah, yeah, yeah - I know they don't use this company for their countertops, but I thought it would be fun to share anyway.
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Old 06-06-2015, 10:45 PM   #20
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I don't like Toyota's GPS. It's routing is not as good as Garmin's....
Oh boy. My Garmin, my Garmin, lemme tell ya about my Garmin. Just from my current trip alone:

- It has an algorithm that detects the highest mountain pass in the area then routes me over it.

- It doesn't speak up on time, and lets me (e.g.) go through an intersection then says, "turn left" at the intersection I just passed by.

- On a quiet country road that never has traffic it will pipe up suddenly and say "There is little traffic on your route." Once when it did this the very next think I saw was a blocked lane resulting in a traffic jam.

- It gets words like "right" and "left" mixed up. Also "east" and "west".

- It's usually good for finding school zones, but when I was crossing the Idaho/Montana border on a isolated mountain ridge it piped up with the "school zone" alert. There was not one person in a ten mile radius who was not in a vehicle, except for the poor young woman at the visitors center. No schools anywhere around.

- The thing it's good for is finding a local store in a chain that is in a strange town. Like you need to find a Best Buy, or Walgreens, etc. But if you use it to find a business that is unique to that town, it might just send you to somebody's house in a residential neighborhood. To sum up, I'm not a fan of my Garmin.

Regarding hardcopy maps, however, if you're going to be in an area for a few weeks at a time, as I seem to be doing, the state gazetteers by DeLorme and Benchmark Maps are pretty good. They're expensive, though, at around $20.
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