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What is RideWithGPS?

RideWithGPS is a web-based bike route mapping tool that uses GPS navigation. It provides simple but incredibly accurate navigation via a smartphone "app". It also works with all Garmin Edge bike computers, Forerunner fitness devices and any GPS unit that can export a TCX or GPX file.

Using this system to provide our routes in an easy to use and convenient format means that, even if you have no map reading skills whatsoever, you won't get lost with Headwater! See GPS Route Notes for an overview and details of the holidays that include RideWithGPS navigation.

How do I use it?

In your pre-departure notes we’ll provide you with a web link to sign up to RideWithGPS. Once signed in, you’ll be able to view your holiday’s detailed route directions, maps and profiles. If you want to download your route notes to your smartphone or GPS device – so you can view them and listen to audio cues – you just need to download the RideWithGPS app and sign in. Once downloaded, they will be available to you "offline".

How do I download my route notes?

Downloading routes to your Smartphone (iPhone or Android)

  • Download the RideWithGPS mobile app (via App Store of Google Play)
  • Sign into the mobile app using your existing/newly-created RideWithGPS account ID)
  • Tap the upper left corner to go to the app drawer
  • Go to MY EVENTS
  • Select your holiday itinerary ("event")
  • Tap the Vertical Ellipsis (:) in the upper right corner then select : "Download All"

Downloading routes to your GPS (eg Garmin) Device

  • Different options exist depending on the type and age of your GPS device, so please go the "Help" tab on the RideWithGPS website and click on the "Garmin and other GPS devices" to learn about the recommended settings for your Garmin or other GPS unit, and how to transfer routes.

Should I download my notes before travel?

We strongly recommend that you download the routes before travelling as it’s more likely that you will have a reliable and fast WiFi connection. It also gives you the opportunity to check you’ve got the required storage capacity on your phone.

Do I need to pay to create a RideWithGPS "Account"?

No, when you sign-up (or sign-in if you already have an account), you will be offered some choices about what "type" of account you want to establish. You just need the "Basic" account, which is absolutely free of charge.

What’s more, when you are riding as a Headwater Customer, you will get the benefit of our "Club Account", which means that you will get all the features of the RWGPS Premium account. These include:

  • Clear "turn-by-turn" audio instructions – no need to dismount to read route instructions.
  • Downloadable route notes that can be followed "offline".

Is it like a Sat Nav?

It’s similar, in as much as it will track your position along the route and you will receive both visual and audible turn-by-turn route instructions along the way. It will also tell you very quickly if you have taken a wrong turn, but it won’t re-route you.

How much storage will the routes occupy on my phone?

As an approximate guide, we estimate that a typical 8-day Headwater holiday might occupy around 120MB of storage, so you’ll need to make sure you have enough storage capacity.

Will I need a data connection to follow the routes using RideWithGPS?

No, once the routes are downloaded to your smartphone you don’t need a telephone or data connection to follow the audio turn-by-turn cues. Your phone just needs to be able to receive a GPS signal, which it will be able to do with mobile data disabled.

How much battery power will I use?

We recommend that you disable all unwanted wireless connections, for example, Bluetooth, WiFi and mobile data, or switch your phone to "Flight Mode" whilst you are navigating. We also suggest that you allow your screen to go to screensave mode (the audio will still continue). These actions will preserve battery life and ensure that you have plenty of power to run on throughout the day. In our testing, we’ve found that the app is very battery-efficient – but you should also start the day with a fully charged battery. You could also carry a "power pack", which will charge your phone whilst on the move.

What if I lose signal or have technical difficulties en route?

We have thoroughly tested all our RideWithGPS routes and have not experienced any satellite "blackspots", so we are very confident that you won’t experience interference with the GPS signal whilst you are cycling. However, we do recommend that you download the route notes onto your smartphone or e-reader device in a PDF format just in case there are any other technical problems. You will find your routes as well as other useful holiday documentation attached to this email in PDF format for easy reading.

Additionally, your Rep will provide you with a hard copy of your route notes at your briefing.

Can I have a paper version of my route notes?

Yes, if you’d like to receive a paper version of your route notes prior to your departure, please give us a call or email and we will post these out to you.

Do you provide a phone holder for my bike?

Yes, we provide a "Universal" Weatherproof Phone Mount that attaches securely to your handlebars. It can be "angled" to suit your preferred view and has a plastic window so you can take photos along the way if you wish.

The holder is suitable for all standard size phones up to the dimensions of a Galaxy S7 or iPhone 7. If you have a "plus" size phone, you will need to bring your own holder with you.

Where will I find out about places of interest along the route?

We have marked places/sights of significant historical or cultural interest along the route and these are embedded in the route map as "POIs" or "Points of Interest". You just need to click on the little information icon on the map (this is the same whether you are viewing through the website or the app).

We have given additional audio "cues" to tell you about the POIs if they are off-route, so you can choose to detour to them if you wish.

Where possible, we have also embedded a link to the relevant website so that you can find out more and can pre-plan things like visits to museums, which might have limited opening hours or need to be booked in advance.

Do you recommend lunch stops?

As with the previous paper notes, we endeavour to notify you via RideWithGPS and the paper notes, of any particularly nice places to stop for lunch.

Want to know more?

If you have any questions about how it all works then why not give us a call on 1-800-267-3347 and speak to one of our experts. Alternatively, check out the RideWithGPS channel on YouTube to see how easy it is to setup and use.