GPS Logging

Since 2010, I’ve logged nearly all of my driving (both personal and rental cars) by downloading GPS data from Garmin navigation devices.

Map of North America showing driving tracks.

My driving, North America, March 2010–October 2020. (I’ve also driven in Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Germany, Iceland, Australia, and New Zealand.)

I’ve started adding annual driving maps to my recent Year in Travel posts.

I’ve also logged cycling, walking, and other travel data using iPhone GPS logging apps.

Technical Details

I currently log my driving using a Garmin DriveSmart 50 LMT automotive GPS unit that I’ve had since 2016. Prior to that, I used several devices from the Garmin nüvi series.

My primary GPS data storage is in GPX format, but some of my older data is still in KML. As it’s trivial to convert between them, I haven’t yet bothered to convert the old KML data to GPX. I’ve also been experimenting with OGC GeoPackage format; a long-term goal is to store everything in a GeoPackage database file, and then write some Python scripts to export to GPX or KML when necessary.


See my Mapping Resources page.