Chicago Skyline from the Bicycle Illinois Ending Location

Advantages of GPS

Real Time Positioning, Getting Lost, and Getting Back on Route
Advantages Over Cue Sheets and MapsPost Event Analysis

Riding with a GPS device provides so many significant benefits and advantages over other traditional navigation methods such as paper cue sheets and maps and painted road markings that we believe once you ride with one you won't be able to ride without one again – we know we can't! Riding with a GPS unit will totally enhance your cycling experience forever!

Because of the significant benefits of GPS, we will either paint Dan Henry markings and put up orange flags over the entire route or rely on every participant to ride with their own handlebar mounted GPS device.

  • Click Here for more information about GPS devices or painting and flagging.

Real Time Positioning, Getting Lost, and Getting Back on Route
It is impossible to get lost when using a GPS unit because you will always know exactly where you are and on track on our route at all times!You never have to worry about getting lost again!

Using a GPS unit you can easily see if you are off route and if so also see where you got off the route and how to get back on route most of the time. Having participants be able to do this themselves makes our job significantly easier because we don't have to figure out where someone is or tell them how to get back on route and significantly decreases the chance that we will have to go pick a rider up if they get horribly lost in a worst case scenario. It also allows us to be allows much more efficient and able to handle other problems on the road that we definitely need to address in person such as medical or mechanical issues.

Advantages Over Cue Sheets and Maps
One fatal flaw with using maps and cue sheets that can never be overcome is that if you don't actually know where you are they are effectively useless. GPS units completely solve this problem by showing you your exact current position at all times!

In fact because all you need to do is to track your progress along the route overlaid on the GPS map, paper cue sheets and maps effectively become unnecessary. As you follow the route on the GPS you can intuitively see the next direction you need to take and the distance to it just by looking at the map. Road names and road name changes also become effectively irrelevant which is great because sometimes the name that is actually on a road sign does not match what is printed on a map.

The maps loaded onto the GPS units have detail down to individual streets and rivers and contain infinitely more information than any paper map or cue sheet ever could. By zooming in and out on the GPS map you can show as much or as little detail as you want, from showing exactly how far you have progressed across the entire route to the name of the nearest cross street you'll be passing next.

As opposed to paper cue sheets and maps, the GPS map screen automatically adjusts and moves to be centered on your exact current position while riding so you'll never have to stop and refold it or change it over. In addition, GPS units are waterproof and can't blow away and get worn out or destroyed from rain, sweat, or being rubbed bare in your jersey pocket.

And as opposed to painted road markings that can fade or get worn out or torn up and orange flags that can easily come off, the route information on a GPS unit on remains completely within our control and cannot be affected by any external factor such as weather conditions, traffic, road construction, or vandals.

Post Event Analysis
Out GPS units log the actual progress across the route of the participants we provide them to. After the event is over, we download this data and analyze it so we can see the route they actually took in order to indentify tricky spots on the route where they may have gotten lost or confused and improve our navigation means accordingly. In addition, we also analyze their riding paces and times in order to assure efficient and complete route staffing and support coverage for future events.

Financial Benefits
In addition to making it easier for participants to follow the route, when we decide that every participant will ride with their own GPS device instead of putting up signage on the route there are some significant financial benefits as well.

Painting is long, hard, backbreaking work that must be done every year.

Even though it cost a lot of money for us to initially buy a large amount of GPS units, we can reuse our GPS units we can use them over and over again for all of our events as opposed to only being able to use the painted marks and flags one time for each event.

having using GPS devices helping the recurring cost savings and significantly decreased amount of work

The bottom line for this is that using GPS devices instead of singage saves time and money which we are able to pass on to our participants to keep the cost of our events as low as possible.

Because we don't need to spend nearly as much money painting and flagging the route, our break even point becomes lower and we are able to run our events with fewer participants.

Using GPS devices is also much faster and easier, and more efficient for our staff. We also don't need to spend nearly as much time . After our final route scout we can just load the routes into our GPS units at home. It's also better for the environment since we don't need to put nearly as much paint on the roads.

When necessary we are also willing to invest in purchasing more of our GPS units and/or rent GPS units from another company to supplement the number of GPS units we already own.

  • Click Here for more information about using GPS devices instead of signage.

P.O. Box 8454 • Chicago, IL 60680 • (877) TOUR-ILL [868-7455]
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