Garmin Debuts Oregon GPS Units for the Outdoorsy

Garmin introduces the Oregon 450 and Oregon 450t GPS handheld units. Featuring glove-friendly 3-inch touch screens, they're compatible with Garmin Connect, which can share data on Facebook and Twitter, as well its Custom Maps.

Garmin on Dec. 29 introduced the Oregon 450 and Oregon 450t, two new touch-screen GPS devices for fans of the outdoors-and of not getting lost.

Both devices feature 3-inch color displays with touch-sensitive displays that can be used while wearing gloves. Intended to be ideal for hikers, cyclists, campers and runners, they offer paperless geocaching, stopwatch and elevation functions, track navigation, and a barometric altimeter.

Both units have shaded relief base maps, and the 450t comes preloaded with 100,000 topographic maps for the entire United States, as well as three-dimensional elevation perspectives. Users can also wirelessly exchange tracks, routes, waypoints and similar information with compatible devices from Garmin's Oregon, Dakota, Colorado and Foretrex lines.

The new Oregon units offer 16 hours of battery life on two AA batteries and have high-sensitivity GPS receivers with HotFix that enable the quick calculation and storage of satellite-based location information. Both are waterproof, measure 1.53 by 2.55 by 3 inches and weigh 6.8 ounces with the batteries in.

"More than ever, Garmin offers intuitive touch-screen options for anyone exploring and enjoying the world around them," Dan Bartel, Garmin's vice president of worldwide sales, said in a statement. "Oregon 450t and Oregon 450 provide a bridge between the slimmed-down Dakota family and the top-of-line Oregon 550t, all of which work seamlessly with Garmin Custom Maps in planning your adventure and Garmin Connect for reliving the experiences and sharing the memories."

Using Garmin Connect, users can share activities, routes and the like on Facebook and Twitter, and Custom Maps lets users create custom maps and routes. For example, maps can be created to show the graduation ceremony site on a university map, to track parade or marathon routes, to show trailheads on a park pamphlet or even to show where items once stood on a historic illustration.

And better, users can take the maps and data with them, eliminating the need to print out the maps-as well as information such as terrain difficulty, location, hints and descriptions.

Both Oregon units are PC- and Mac-compatible, and with free utilities, such as Garmin's City Navigator, each can be used for pulling up turn-by-turn directions on city streets.

Each comes with 850MB of internal memory, which can be expanded via the MicroSD card slot. The Oregon 450 and 450t can store up to 2,000 waypoints, 200 routes, 5,000 caches and 10,000 interest points on 200 saved tracks.

The Oregon 450 is priced at $399.99, while the 450t retails for $499.99.