Touring - Route planning tips?
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03-14-13, 01:14 PM
B. I. (Before Internet) and after , too I've used Delorme gazetteers and local maps to plan routes. Now I'm looking into using Google Maps/Earth to do my route planning. I was wondering what programs/sites you all have been using to plan routes for tours/trips and any tips to get the most out of them. At some point (soon, I promise!)when I get a GPS to replace a cue sheet it'd be nice to load it all up and just go.
I know you folks are doing just that so can you help me join the 21'st Century?
This thread has an extensive list of sites and other recommendations: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php/674713-on-line-bike-mapping
03-14-13, 03:13 PM
Still not a Tech type Having Ordinance Survey Maps bought in Book sellers in UK and Ireland
Even the Delorme maps , lack the sites of Castles and the like, noted on them.
rodar y rodar
03-14-13, 07:18 PM
Mostly by large scale paper maps for me. I often peek at roads on internet satelite imaging sites (not particular about which I use), frequently carry pages photocoppied from DeLorme or Benchmark atlases, and occasionally plot out short sections on Mapmyride (used to use Bikely, but can`t get it to work any more). My portable GPS receiver went back to the store it came from when I realized that making it cooperate with my computer was beyond my technical grasp.
03-14-13, 07:47 PM
If a good state/county bike specific map is available, great. They can easily be found via an internet search, for example next door to me in Wisconsin I can use their bike maps either in printed form or online.
But some areas don't have good bike maps (right now, Minnesota hasn't updated its state bike map for over a decade, and even then it wasn't good). So what to do?
Now this is probably more than what some people are willing to do, but I look online at county maps from the state DOT to find out what minor roads are paved (these county maps almost always are downloadable). I also check out possibilities on Google street view to get a flavor of the area roads (where I can). But perhaps most important to me, I get traffic count information from the traffic count maps available on most state DOT websites. If a road doesn't have a decent shoulder, I look for roads with less than 1000 vehicles a day, and preferably less than 500.
03-14-13, 08:11 PM
I rough out a route on Google maps, usually using the 'bicyle' routing and maybe looking at some street level photos. When satisfied, I copy the map(manually)to www. ridewithgps.com for transfer as a .gpx track file to my Garmin eTrex. The track is supplemented with a state map that I occasionally consult. Works well for me. 'Couse state/county maps will work fine also with no need for a gps. Pesonal preference.
I don't bother with traffic count info. Too tedious. County, state, US highways away from metropolitin areas are nearly always ok for cycling. They can be checked out with Google satellite/street views.
I use Google maps for a rough idea.
And then I use good paper maps for a more detailed, and more accurate picture of where I want to go.
03-15-13, 05:52 AM
I used paper maps for years, Google maps and Google Earth are great resources, along with local special interest maps put out by local Chambers' of Commerce, hotels or attractions. I have started using a Nexus 7 tablet, I can download a route map to that and save it to review later if needed. Still like paper though.
Along with the above, BLM Back Country Byways (http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/Recreation/recreation_national/byways/blm_back_country_byways.html), state scenic drive routes, and surprisingly (or not so surprisingly) area motorcycle clubs such as Oregon Motorcyclist (http://oregonmotorcyclist.com/ridepage.php?page=statemap) have lists of interesting low traffic roads.
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