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The Northwest Trails Project


Moun10Bike
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No, it is a limitation of Mapsource that you can only view one mapset at a time. If I would ever get off my sitting part and finish Northwest Topos, you would get all of the data (roads, contours, hydrology, etc. along with the content of Northwest Trails) in a single mapset, though.

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so did anyone ever answer the question "can i view NW Trails with topo" in mapsource? i love this product and it would be very handy if i could do that.

 

Mapsource doesn't support viewing multiple maps (which I think is kind of lame). It's a "Duh" kind of thing to me. You can look at your topo's with out your trails, or you can look at your trails without you topo's.

 

What would be even cooler, is if you could put the NWTrails in to Google Earth. But you can't do that either.

 

If there's a particular trail that you want to see in Mapsource, check www.redtrails.com, to see if they have a *.gpx for that trail available. Download, then drop that into Mapsource. It works pretty good...

 

Sam

Edited by SamSpade47
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No, it is a limitation of Mapsource that you can only view one mapset at a time. If I would ever get off my sitting part and finish Northwest Topos, you would get all of the data (roads, contours, hydrology, etc. along with the content of Northwest Trails) in a single mapset, though.

 

Hey Jon,

 

Just an idea here...

 

Is there any way to break it up (Northwest Topos) into chunks and have multiple people/machines working on it at the same time. I'd be willing to do some of the work...

 

I'm using Washington Topos that I downloaded from www.gpsfiledepot.com. It works fine, and I appreciate that those guys (whoever they are) put it together, but it's not that polished. You could do much better, and with people helping with some of the more mundane stuff... you get the idea...

 

 

Sam

Edited by SamSpade47
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Is there any way to break it up (Northwest Topos) into chunks and have multiple people/machines working on it at the same time. I'd be willing to do some of the work...

 

Thanks! That would probably be a little cumbersome, though. I have all of the data in big files covering the state and surroundings (Northwest Topos will only cover those areas covered by the USGS 100k quads that include Washington, at least initially). I have scripts that go through the files and pull out the data by tile so that I can edit in one place and then automatically generate the source data for Northwest Trails, Northwest Topos, etc.

 

The big issue is that I'm just hesitant to release before I have things "perfect". Unfortunately, with limited time and the vastly more complex data for NW Topos, that is proving to be a huge hurdle. For example, I have city parks data from a multitude of sources. As you might expect, some sources are better than others, but sometimes it takes a lot of work to determine if one source is better than another for a given park. Same with road data. I think I'm going to have to just release things warts and all (which might include overlapping areas and lines while I work to merge data sources) and let it be a true "work in progress" project with changes and improvements coming gradually over time.

 

I'll do my best to get a couple of Seattle-area tiles out sometime in the next two weeks.

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I've been busy the last couple of weeks integrating a wealth of new data from several users and the new version of Northwest Trails is now available for download. Full details are available in the Switchbacks Forum.

 

One of the more significant changes in this version in terms of functionality (as opposed to data) is that I've changed the zoom level at which the trails appear both in Mapsource and on the GPS. They now show up at 7 mile zoom in Mapsource at "Medium" detail setting. I've posted a poll in which you can vote your impressions of this change.

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I've been busy the last couple of weeks integrating a wealth of new data from several users and the new version of Northwest Trails is now available for download. Full details are available in the Switchbacks Forum.

 

I have a bunch of trails I intend to upload to the site tonight and have never done it before. Since the trail to upload is on the top of the page, what would an example of what you would need for "Accompanying attachments:" at the bottom of the page?

Thank you.

Russ (PastorDIC)

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I need to reword the "accompanying attachments" field since it is confusing the way I have it now. The field was added to accommodate users who have been sending me explanatory documents, such as screenshots, digital drawings, PDFs, etc., along with their data. You can leave the field empty if you don't have any such documents. (Or, if you have more than one, you can zip them up and upload them as a single .zip file.)

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I noticed that "high res" and "low res" options are now not labeled as such when choosing the trail line type to install in Mapsource. I'm not sure that I picked the correct line option for my 60 series GPS.

 

I'm guessing that my 60Cx is NOT a "recent" gps that you use in the description and I should use the other option?

 

The description page for switchbacks.com still shows the "high res" and "low res" options instead of the new options.

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There's no "right" or "wrong" choice of type style; it all comes down to personal preference. That's why I decided to get away from calling the sets "Hi-Res" and "Lo-Res" (since everyone automatically assumes "High-Res"="better"). In general, people with Oregon and Colorado units prefer the "Normal" set while those with 60 series units prefer the "High Visibility" set. I've discovered exceptions to this, though, and I find that when mountain biking I like the bolder appearance of the high visibility set.

 

Thanks for reminding me to change the type descriptions on the web page; I had forgotten about that.

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I always prefer the "dashed-lines" in both my 60cx and oregon 400t. Easier to tell they are trails.

Me too. Are those "normal" or "high visibility" in the new version? (Haven't loaded it yet.)

 

I believe that's high visibility, as I've loaded it and was using it today at Grand Ridge.

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We have found the NW Trails Project to be the most useful tool we've ever found for NW geocachers and since it's been almost a year since we've donated to the project, we just sent another donation.

 

Thanks for all your hard work on this, Moun10bike!

 

Thank you very much for the kind words!

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I've been busy the last couple of weeks integrating a wealth of new data from several users and the new version of Northwest Trails is now available for download. Full details are available in the Switchbacks Forum.

 

One of the more significant changes in this version in terms of functionality (as opposed to data) is that I've changed the zoom level at which the trails appear both in Mapsource and on the GPS. They now show up at 7 mile zoom in Mapsource at "Medium" detail setting. I've posted a poll in which you can vote your impressions of this change.

 

outstanding! Makes it much easier to get a perspective on where you are when you can see the trails at that zoom level

 

another donation coming your way

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Jon, I finally got to the point where I could put NW trails on my 60CSx and see what it's about. It took me a few to figure out that it wiped my detailed street maps out due to the mapset transfer, but I put those back in, got the transparent overlay you mentioned, and it is looking really good! Nice job on it! Can't wait to try it out.

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My Magellan Sportrak started acting up enough after five years of faithful service, so I crossed over and bought a Garmin Oregon. The evening I got the Oregon out of the box I loaded it with the Topo 2009 Alaskan maps and the Northwest trails overlay (thanks for the great instructions in the switchbacks forums!).

 

Two nights later, two of my dogs and I went for a trail/georun and on the return were confronted by a very agressive bull moose that would not yield the trail. We tried to skirt around the moose through the head-high grass and alders and he kept marking our moves and bluff charged us each time we tried to return to the trail. I zoomed out a level or two on the Oregon and spotted another trail about two hundred yards to the north which immediately became Plan B for the return route to the georig.

 

Last night, I was trying to access a puzzle cache location and was confronted by a ditch of rank-looking water adjacent to a wetlands. I was about to retreat and drive around to another approach when I noticed a trail on the map less than fifty yards from my location. I wandered through the aspen trees and found an easy route to the cache.

 

So, over the course of less than a week, Northwest Trails has been useful in two very different situations. I've submitted one new trail/route will be submitting more including the new single track trails in Anchorage's Far North Bicentennial Park.

 

I'll be supporting this project for the longterm. Thanks, Jon!

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Awesome! Thanks for sharing those stories - that's why I wanted to create this mapset!

 

FYI, I posted a new version of Northwest Trails this morning that contains your trail submissions. You can download it at the Northwest Trails web page.

Do you have the space to post the txt format as well? Or should we transfer that to my Live account? If the weather keeps the way it is, I'll have plenty of time to convert for the DeLorme users.

Edited by TotemLake
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Ever had one of those days?

 

If you downloaded version 1.46 or the shortly-thereafter released version 1.47 today, you'll want to download version 1.48 now. There was an indexing issue in 1.46 that prevented upload of the map tiles to the GPS, and transparency was broken until version 1.48. All should be good to go now (I think? :D).

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I've added a page to the Switchbacks.com Northwest Trails site from which you can access a handful of graphical badges:

 

These can be used wherever you can embed HTML and provide a link back to the Northwest Trails page. I have a couple of geocaching-specific ones that I plan to put on those of my caches that are on trails included in the project. Hopefully they'll get the word out about the project and its purpose and help us build the database!

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I've added a page to the Switchbacks.com Northwest Trails site from which you can access a handful of graphical badges:

 

These can be used wherever you can embed HTML and provide a link back to the Northwest Trails page. I have a couple of geocaching-specific ones that I plan to put on those of my caches that are on trails included in the project. Hopefully they'll get the word out about the project and its purpose and help us build the database!

Most excellent idea!

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Yeah, I love the trails overlay and you've done a great job contributing to it, even mapping the park where I've hidden Gabby"s Run. I was going to send that in myself but you beat me to it.

It's not really a big deal toggling between the mapsets. I mainly use the topo when I'm in the woods and don't need it when driving.

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Northwest Trails is what is considered a "transparent" mapset, which means that it layers on top of most other mapsets and they can be seen underneath. Northwest Topos is not transparent, so it will cover other mapsets, or be covered by others, since it is designed to be able to operate in a stand-along manner.

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I'm cross posting in a couple of places, but my new website is now

 

http://www.wix.com/totemlake/hotm.

 

Currently it is very brief with a couple of pointers and doesn't feature the hikes but it will soon. Of particular interest will be the pointer to the NWTP for DeLorme users. I will typically have this updated within a couple of days when M10B posts an update. Current version is 1.53.

Edited by TotemLake
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Hello - we are going to Alaska this June / July.

 

Would this mapset be sufficient for our travels, without getting Garmin Topo Alaska or similar?

 

We'll be spending part of it (hopefully) travelling around by RV from Anchorage. We probably intend going no further North than Fairbanks and more than likely we'll be keeping to the South-Central area.

 

I assume we'll be spoilt for choice with regards caches!

 

Thanks

 

Nick

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Would this mapset be sufficient for our travels, without getting Garmin Topo Alaska or similar?

 

No, Northwest Trails only contains trails and does not include roads (except for those roads missing in most mapsets that are used to connect or access trails). It is meant as a complement to street mapsets and is transparent, meaning that when loaded it will overlay other mapsets and display in conjunction with them.

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Hello - we are going to Alaska this June / July.

 

Would this mapset be sufficient for our travels, without getting Garmin Topo Alaska or similar?

 

We'll be spending part of it (hopefully) travelling around by RV from Anchorage. We probably intend going no further North than Fairbanks and more than likely we'll be keeping to the South-Central area.

 

I assume we'll be spoilt for choice with regards caches!

 

Thanks

 

Nick

 

Nick,

 

The NWTrails map set only includes the trails. It is a transparent mapset, meaning it will display over an existing map. Below I've linked to images of the NWTrails maps overlaid on top of the Base Map, TopoUSA, and City Navigator North America for near Anchorage.

 

Here's the NWTrails over a Base Map:

AnchorageBasemapwithNWTrial.jpg

 

Here's the NWTrail over TopoUSA:

AnchorageTopoUSAwithNWTrial.jpg

 

Here's the NWTrails over City Nav North America:

AnchorageCN2009withNWTrails.jpg

 

 

There are some Caches around Anchorage:

CachesaroundAnchorage.jpg

 

 

I looked on www.gpsfiledepot.com for free Topo maps of Alaska and there weren't any. I personally wouldn't go with out Topos.

 

Hope you enjoy your trip.

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