Garmin Oregon 600 Series Ė Geocaching Optimized

5 September 2013 @ 3:08 PM  / Trail Tech /


Want to maximize your geocaching experience? With the Oregon 600 series, you can load more caches and access them faster.

The Oregon 600 will do everything you read about below. The Oregon 650 adds a rechargeable battery pack, an 8MP camera, and a flashlight. With the 600t and 650t, you get built in topo maps.


The Brightest Screen Yet  

For years you had to choose between getting a touch screen, or getting a brighter display. The Oregon 600 combines them both. Immediately youíll notice how bright it is. In the sun or in the shade, itís easy to read.

The screenís texture, feel, and experience differ from previous Garmin outdoor handhelds. Itís made from a durable, chemically reinforced glass, so it feels and responds more like your smart phone. Pinch or double tap to zoom, and flick to pan the map.

But itís so much more than a smart phone display. Turn the backlight all the way off and youíll still be able to read your map thanks to transflective display technology. Talk about a battery life saver! The capacitive touch screen is responsive when you are using your bare figures or when youíre wearing gloves. Winter caching just got a little more practical.


Millions of Caches in the Palm of Your Hand

You can put a million caches on the Oregon 600, with full descriptions, ratings, and everything. Then, keep loading more caches. You never know when youíre going to find yourself on an unplanned caching run. Best just to load up all the caches you can.

To make this easier and faster, the Oregon 600 supports a new open file format called GGZ. Files in this format only take up about 15% of the space of a standard GPX file, and they load mush faster on your Oregon. Of course, we all love GPX files and the Oregon 600 will load geocaches from those as well.

Sometimes you have the cache loaded on your GPS, but someone else in your group wasnít quite as prepared. You can wirelessly transfer the cache to them straight from your GPS to theirs. All the details (description, hint, ratings, logs, everything) will be transferred.


Tabs Put Everything at Your Finger Tips

The new tabbed geocaching interface gives you quick access to everything you need to see.

The active cache tab provides instant access to everything you could want to know about the cache you are currently hunting. Read the description, check out past logs, or take a peek at the hint (we wonít tell) with one quick press. Youíll also find instant access to create your own log or enter coordinates for multis or puzzles.

The list tab, of course, lists of all the caches on your GPS. However, its real power comes from the third tab: the filters tab. From here you can choose which caches are shown on that list (and the main map) and which are hidden. Have your kids with you today? Letís not going any higher than terrain 2, difficulty 2. Feel like scratching your head a little? Show only puzzles. Hate micros? Hide them with one tap of your finger.


Give Your Favorite Action a Thumbs Up

When on the trail, fewer clicks are better. After all, the idea is to be finding caches, not wrestling with your GPS. When you hold the Oregon 600 in your hand, youíll notice 2 buttons that live right under your thumb. These buttons are fully customizable to make your most used actions available to you all the time.

In the geocaching profile, the bottom button (called the user button) is configured to make geocaching super fast. Many cachers like to be on the map when navigating from a distance, on the compass when they get close, and access the cache information (for description, size, hint) if the hunt goes long. Pressing the button cycles you from the map, to the compass, to the cache page, and back again. No need to go back to the main menu every time. When youíve found the cache, just press and hold that same button to start the logging process. Choose Found or DNF, then leave a comment if you want.

Thereís plenty of room to add more shortcuts. You can customize the tap, double tap, and press-and-hold function of the user button, and tap and double tap for the power button. This gives you five custom actions. The list of shortcuts is too long to get into here: launch application, turn on the flashlight, take a picture, and more.