A few months ago, when I was purchasing paper maps for countries in South America, I was told to buy road maps for Venezuela in country because you can get better quality maps there. At the time I was not thinking about riding through Venezuela, so not having a map was no a big deal. Since then, I’ve decided to add Venezuela to the counties that I want to visit during my motorcycle ride through South America; I now need a map.
I wrote a review of GPS Maps of South America back in May, in which I compared the different GPS maps from mapsets by Wanderlust , Garmin, TCR-Brazil, ConSure, and MapEar. I didn't include Venesuela as I though it would not be needed. So, I did some searching for GPS mapsets of Venezuela. What I found was the mapset from gpsyv to be very sufficient.
gpsyv Venezuela Mapset
Map Detail and Routing
Using the Wanderlust mapsets as a comparison you can see the detail does vary between the different mapsets.
Moving on to the routing capabilities, the mapset from gpsyv, with the greater detail, produces the better routing.
Wanderlust 2r03 - Valencia
Wanderlust 1.6 - Valencia
gpsyv 4.7 - Valencia
At a map resolution of 0.5 miles the map details are even greater.
Wanderlust 2r03 - Tinaquilo
Wanderlust 1.6 - Tinaquilo
gpsyv 4.7 - Tinaquilo
Without question, the mapset from gpsyv is the way to go for GPS navigation in Venezuela.
Are all these different mapsets, from different websites, compatible?
So far, the maps I need for South America are. But, I did run into a problem with a topo map of Idaho and the Venezuela map.
When I first loaded the gpsyv map of Venezuela, it didn’t show up as a map that you could select in Mapsource. I uninstalled and reinstalled it several times without luck. Hoping time might fix the problem (yeah right), I set it aside for a few weeks. The other night I reloaded the mapset again; no luck! Thinking that the installer was not compatible with Windows Vista or version 6.15.6 of Mapsource I started searching for ways to load the map image files into Mapsource. That’s when I found the utility, MapsetToolkit and learned about Family IDs and Product Codes.
It turns out that the mapsets for Idaho and Venezuela had the same Family ID and Product Code, 218 and 1. I didn’t try changing the Family ID or Product Code but I think with MapsetToolket it would be possible. What I did was uninstalled the Idaho mapset and the problem was solved.
Compatibility could become a problem when using mapsets from different websites. Eliminating compatibility issues would be one of the advantages of obtaining a mapset from a single source, like from Wanderlust, with all the country maps. However, I have found no single source for all countries with the detail I want. I’m going to hang onto the MapsetToolkit just in case!