Autonomous GPS, A-Basin, and My New Found Backcountry Freedom

The last time I tracked my snowboarding runs at A-Basin was Nov 26, 2006, nearly two years ago. Since then, I've been using a CDMA device, and Qualcomm's GPS technology on their chipsets for these devices do not support autonomous mode.  They're dependent on assistance data placing the network in the middle, and since there's no coverage at A-Basin on either US CDMA network I've been outta luck. Without network connectivity, Qualcomm's server can't be accessed by the device, and without access, it's impossible to get a first fix, and without that, GPS simply doesn't work.  So much for wireless freedom...

Courtesy of the device giveaway at the RIM devcon, I'm now sporting a new GSM BlackBerry Bold (on AT&T), which contains a SiRF GPS chip supporting autonomous (i.e. connection independent) GPS.  I can now track runs anywhere I ride - even in the backcountry outside of wireless coverage. I should have switched seasons ago - the freedom is liberating. While I haven't been able to keep track of my run counts at A-Basin for the last 2 years, I'm guessing I'm at about 20. So, this is A-Basin #20 post. Tadaw!  

View Larger Map