Jan 29, 2013 at 2:50 pm #1298594
I've posted this before, but Went Hiking just had its third birthday. It's a website I built in my spare time for logging, sharing, and discovering hikes. It keeps track of your mileage and nights spent out and gives you weather and mapping tools to plan future hikes. I've used it to keep a log of all the trips I've taken in the last three years and store photos. You can see my profile here:
It has a small user base right now but I'd love to see that change. The more people that join to contribute details of their adventures, the more useful this tool becomes for everyone.
Personally, I'm sick of seeing hiking and outdoor adventure blogs. Not because the content is bad but because the writing people are pouring their heart and time into isn't easily discoverable. Their adventures, notes about the weather, and their photos get buried into the archives of the internet with no way to search by map or search the photos. Went Hiking is my attempt to change that.
Feature requests welcome.Jan 29, 2013 at 3:18 pm #1948548
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
When I click on "map" it displays the U.S. – good
When I move the scroll bar, the scroll bar moves but the map doesn't change
When I click on "draw", the cursor changes from a hand icon to a plus sign icon, but doesn't draw anything, just moves the map aroundJan 29, 2013 at 3:23 pm #1948551
"Anyway, check out http://wenthiking.com/. It's free, open source, and stable."
I just checked out the website, and was intrigued by Angry Hiker's numbers. He listed 3 trips for a total of ~89 miles in 2013 and ~52,000' of elevation gain. One of those trips was Mt Si, listed at 75 miles and 50,000' of elevation gain. Now, I've done a fair number of training hikes on Si down thru the years, and the round trip is 8 miles and ~3300' of elevation gain on the main trail, and ~7.2 miles/~3300' on the old trail. Way off in either case. Ditto his Grand Prospect/Rattlesnake Ridge numbers. My point is there needs to be some reasonableness check on what gets posted if this website is to have any credibility at all, IMO. Just sayin'.Jan 29, 2013 at 3:30 pm #1948554
@Tom: Oh wow. Yeah that sucks. That guy is a new user as of a couple weeks ago and is apparently trying to be funny. All the other metrics to date seem pretty accurate, though. Individual metrics will be different depending on side trips, cut-offs, etc so I don't limit or typically "moderate" people's postings. That one I'll clean up though—thanks.Jan 29, 2013 at 4:54 pm #1948590
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
"Personally, I'm sick of seeing hiking and outdoor adventure blogs. Not because the content is bad but because the writing people are pouring their heart and time into isn't easily discoverable. Their adventures, notes about the weather, and their photos get buried into the archives of the internet with no way to search by map or search the photos. Went Hiking is my attempt to change that… Help make the wilderness more discoverable and I'll help you keep a history of your travels for decades to come."
Well my blog is only for my family and friends and I don't want to make a lot of the places I go to, or make the wilderness "discoverable."
Also the mileage and elevation numbers are going to encourage people to make it into a contest.
Just the humble opinion of a Contrarian Curmudgeon :)Jan 29, 2013 at 5:17 pm #1948597
@justin_bakerLocale: Santa Rosa, CA
This is a great idea. I will post some of my old trip reports on there.Jan 29, 2013 at 5:48 pm #1948610
Seems to be an issue with Most Nights as well – only 1 person with 1 night when several have done tens of miles so far this year?Jan 29, 2013 at 6:55 pm #1948635
"Individual metrics will be different depending on side trips, cut-offs, etc so I don't limit or typically "moderate" people's postings."
I totally understand, Kyle. I think you've come up with a nice idea, and I didn't want it to get sidetracked by credibility issues. I wasn't trying to be a website nazi or anything like that. In the end, I suspect community policing will be the best guarantee. You've put in a lot of work, and I wish you all success.
Best of luck!
TomJan 29, 2013 at 7:19 pm #1948645
"Also the mileage and elevation numbers are going to encourage people to make it into a contest."
Also known as the qualifying round for the annual Darwin Awards. Competition + mountains = toxic mix for weekend warriors. ;0)Jan 29, 2013 at 7:31 pm #1948654
@eugeneiusLocale: Nuevo Mexico
Keep doing your thing Kyle. You have put out a great resource for those looking to plug in and share what they're doing to a larger audience in a simple format. The interface is clean and intuitive which makes it a tool people will actually use. I can guarantee you we would see more member trip reports and photo essays here at BPL if the process of uploading and sharing our wilderness experiences was half as efficient as the resource you've put together.
Extending the member usage to other regions seems like a big challenge. Most of the members originate from the PNW. Breaking that impression of being a regional specific resource would maybe help draw potential users in. I was hesitant to post because I thought I would be "crashing the party", so to speak.
As far as the stat board (mileage/elevation gain+loss). It doesn't seem to add much to the quality of the website experience and takes up a tremendous amount of real estate on the home page. To say it encourages competition is a bit of a stretch, but it does add an element to the website that just isn't necessary- perhaps it could be removed from the front page? Personally, I want to read about what people are doing and how they're doing it, not the quantity of those experiences.
Consider relocating the "Most Miles" and "Most…." data boxes and replacing them with a photo gallery/slideshow showcasing user trip photos. These photos can be clickable, taking the viewer to that particular trip report. The front page needs more color and this would be one way to achieve that.
Not sure if this is already a possibility. I would like to see a full map that has every uploaded trip report pinned on the map. Seems simple enough for one of you guys to make this addition.Jan 29, 2013 at 7:32 pm #1948655
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
Some hikers like Nick maintain their own web site to their own standards, and then they pay the entire cost of it.
Others prefer to use a "community" web site like Went Hiking. There, they must follow the site standards, pay no cost, but then they get a big awakening when it suddenly goes off the air.
I'll stick with a known solution, thank you.
–B.G.–Jan 30, 2013 at 8:56 am #1948807
Eugene: Thanks for the kind words. I've been mulling over the idea of burying the leaderboards on a deeper page and using the full width of the site to offer a better map and bigger pictures. I'm going to give that a go soon! Fact is, the stats have caused competition among the community around Portland.
As for crashing the party, the site will localize to your region when there's enough people using it to do so. Since there's nobody in the SW, you're seeing a bunch of PNW hikes unfortunately. Please come crash all the parties.
Bob: Nobody's twisting your arm. But I will say that Went Hiking won't be going away any time soon. I'm a professional web developer running websites for money on the same server that Went Hiking lives. There are offsite backups of all data and images. It would never go away without giving everyone an opportunity to get their data out of the system at the least.
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