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Old 05-04-10, 10:43 AM   #1
Kstreet
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Trail signage question

This morning I inquired about volunteering for the county to help build and maintain trails in my area. I talked to the man that is in charge of the trails and he mentioned that he could use help with the signs on the trail. His biggest concern was for someone that was injured on the trail to be able to know their approximate location to speed up the time for help. At the same time he does not want to clutter the trail. So, does anyone have any suggestions or maybe experiences on your own local trail that you find helpful for this type of situation.

The trail system is a multi-use asphalt trail that goes around a lake(Smithville Lake in Smithville, MO)

I personally think the trail is great but I guess there has been a situation where a biker had fallen and injured his knee and not be able to inform the rangers of his location. In his case it wasn't serious but it raised the concern.

Thank you for any input in advance.
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Old 05-04-10, 10:50 AM   #2
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Some of the trails around here have posts every half-mile or mile specifying the distance from the western end.
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Old 05-04-10, 11:20 AM   #3
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I suppose that depends on whether you assume that the person calling for help is looking at the sign when he calls, or whether he's lying on the ground trying to remember the last sign he passed.

If the former, you can put whatever you want on the trail, such as the latitude and longitude.

The latter is more realistic and helpful, I think, and also allows you to minimize sign-clutter. The trick is you want people to remember a sign they may have passed some time ago. Just being an armchair psychologist here, among the things that it seems would make a sign more likely to be remembered are: it's meaningful to the reader, it's different from other signs, it uses words and names that have associations, it has pictures. Example: something like "Joe Jones Hill Ahead," with a picture of a guy wheezing up a hill would be memorable, particularly if Joe Jones is someone of local reknown and the picture looks like him.
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Old 05-04-10, 11:35 AM   #4
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numbers ... miles or GPS coordinates - also ask the EMTs. maybe they would color coding. meaning north = red markers south = blue markers, etc so the injured biker calls the EMTs and says: "hey guys, I'm in the blue zone" ... something like that
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Old 05-04-10, 03:24 PM   #5
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Some trails have posts with numbers, but if you were on the ground, you'd have to crawl a good ways to find one. And, they don't say why they are there, either. One trail I'm familiar with is on a power line easement and they just numbered all the poles.
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Old 05-04-10, 03:33 PM   #6
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An idea that I got from a backpacking forum was to simply paint the trail every 1/10th of a mile. What do you guys think of this from a biking aspect?
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Old 05-04-10, 04:07 PM   #7
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Use a numbered marker system like Hilton Head Island does on the beach. I think there is one every 100 feet. EMS and law enforcement would have a marked map.
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