Using bikehike and bikeroutetoaster for laying out bike routes is pretty good if you have a pretty good idea of where you want to go. And they’re great when trying to map out an audax routesheet as you can work on small sections while trying to remember which way R@T is when you’re heading south.
But for longer audax DIY type rides where you want to work to a set distance they really aren’t quite up to Google Maps. Just pick the control points, set it to Walking mode for shortest distance between the points and then drag the route off the main roads onto an interesting course. All nice, quick and simple. But then how do you get the details onto your gps unit?
Until recently I’d been using the gmaptogpx bookmarklet, but unfortunately that’s been broken by the June 2011 upgrade to google maps. It worked great until then, create route as above, click link, and then cut and paste the gpx into a text file and save. Apart from some funnies with points being on the wrong side of a dual carrigeway or roundabout (google doesn’t see to be too fussy about that, but Garmin’s Basecamp is)
Since the break I’ve been playing with the “GoogleMap CueSheet” bookmarklet. Very impressed with it so far. Seems to have all the required options, and the fact it does elevation data is perfect. It saves having to copy the gpx into gpsvisualiser to get an idea of how undulating a ride was. It has a ‘send to garmin’ feature, but I’ve not tried that yet. Using Basecamp still seems to create a better routing output on the Edge 800.
Just been playing with it to lay out a 90 mile and 100 mile loop for a warm up before a 600km DIY up to Edinburgh. Had hoped to do a DIY 300km, but unfortunately other plans have inserted themselves so I’ll just go for 2 long rides instead.