Mapping Systems & Software

Mapping Systems & Software

posted in: Elk, Mapping/GIS | 1

In gearing up for some upcoming hunts this fall I decided to check out the sheep and goat maps provided by HuntData.  They provide a service where they collect data (Big Game Hunting Harvest Reports) from Colorado Parks and Wildlife and bring those points into a map of the specified area you’re hunting.  They also provide maps with winter/summer/calving concentrations for both elk and deer.

Parks and Wildlife does provide much of the information included in the HuntData map for free, and as a dyed in the wool DIY guy it pained me not to go through the process of transcribing the points for myself.  But there were a couple reasons I decided to look for help from the folks at HuntData:

1.  Not all the points from Parks and Wildlife are defined with a single coordinate system and are mixed bag between lat./long., township/range and UTM’s.

2.  I couldn’t find a listed datum for any of the systems, for instance NAD27 or WGS 84.  I’m probably over thinking things as I doubt it would make any significant difference, especially for my purposes (understanding general herd locations) but it still bothers me.

Those reasons coupled with struggling through a summer in which I can’t seem to catch up, I swallowed my pride and purchased a map from Hunt Data.

The map I received was as promised, my hunt area with all the kill site information.  It also includes private, Forest Service and BLM lands, all-in-all a pretty handy map.  However, what really impressed me was the associated data file I was given which overlaid their map on Google Earth and is also downloadable to a iPhone, Droid or Garmin device.   Overall I was very impressed and found this service a great value for my hunt.


Here’s a quick little clip I pulled together, it’s pretty shaky but you’ll get the idea.


The second system I recently stumbled upon is an app for my smart phone, BackCountry Navigator Pro.  This app turns my smart phone into a backcounty GPS unit.  I still love my old Garmin Rhino, but one of the primary challenges for my upcoming sheep hunt is the unit is a checker board of public and private land.  I was considering upgrading to the Garmin Oregon but the units are not cheap and I lose my two-way radio capabilities.  I also considered adding a chip from, but for my purposes the phone app seems like a pretty good solution.  It also works without a cell signal which is slick.  I purchased the app and an add-on (Colorado Maps) all for about $20, not too bad!


Screen shot of Backcountry Navigator Samsung S4.
Screen shot of Backcountry Navigator Samsung S4.


Another great resources is the FREE maps available from USGS!

One Response

  1. Drew
    | Reply

    That is slick!!

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