Zoom Zoom Zumo!

I’m a Jedi navigator for the most part, able to find my way around even without a map or any prior familiarity with the area. But sometimes I get lost. I got lost last year in Missoula trying to find my motel. After an hour of riding around town, I somehow discovered I was on the wrong side of the city entirely. Just a few weeks ago I got lost following Washington state’s road signs that led me to a closed road. Their signs misled me.

Anyone that knows me is aware that I’m somewhat fond of gadgets. Maybe not at the chronic “Hi, my name is Steve and I’m a gadgetaholic” stage, but I do like electronic gizmos. The solution to my getting-lost-on-the-bike situation was to install a Garmin Zumo 450 GPS.

The Zumo 450 and 550 models are specifically designed for use on motorcycles. They can be used entirely with the left hand, with buttons that are bigger than most and have plenty of space between them — handy when you’re wearing gloves. They even come with a handlebar mount in the box.

It took me about 30 minutes to install my Zumo, with most of that time snaking the power cord through the fairing, under the tank, and over to the battery underneath the seat. I gave it my first test ride to work and back today and really like it. The screen is very easy to see, the buttons are easy to use, and the directions are easy to follow. It’s just easy.

I paid $403 through Amazon.com, with another $13 in shipping. The day it arrived, someone sent me a link to Costco’s web site where they listed it for $349.99 with free shipping. Figures.

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