- Feb 20, 2020 at 9:42 am #3632256
I had spare time and felt there was an audience for a solid Philmont digital planning map. So, at CalTopo I have a pubically-shared map:
It has the four new 2020 camps that are listed on PhilTrek.com, plus the 2019 (actually 2017 data) edition of the Ranch GIS Department file. The 2019 GIS file included the camp boundary, camp locations, the turnarounds, and numerous peaks marked. I also added several peaks and secondary camp markers using the Open Street Map data. I drew in boundaries for the surrounding land that PSR uses, and cleaned up the ranch boundary corners. Includes a down-sampled copy of the PSR-provided perimeter for the 2018 Ute Park Fire “No-Go Zone”.
With the Itinerary Guide, and the OSM or TF Outdoor base map, you could get a decent map for any trek. In the samples I looked at the PSR GIS trail and the OSM trail differ within one or two tenths of a mile.
CalTopo can export a GPX file if you need that. I have made no comparisons to the GPS File Depot file that has been mentioned in the past, because I don’t have anything that needs GPX files. My map has NO TRAILS, just (many!) locations and boundaries.
HOWEVER, CalTopo has a good Open Street Map layer/option that does have most trails. CalTopo also has an autotrace (called auto-route) function that can draw a custom (and exportable) line along OSM routes. One “gotcha” to watch out for is that the CalTopo auto-route will pick whatever route is shortest, including fire roads and so-called “staff trails” (non picturesque short-cuts) that the ranch does not “encourage” campers to use. The routing behavior can be over-ruled by clicking on “good trails” along the way so the function stays on good trails. There is a brief explanation of the function here:
I had great success using PhilTrek.com to find out what sub-routes connect camps if you search for camps by name. The trails in OSM are named/labelled by what camps are on the ends of them.
On the trail at Philmont, Scouts should buy and use official PSR-printed maps for navigation. This file is provided for planning purposes and might not match the latest documents published by Philmont Scout Ranch. If you use this as a primary navigation tool at Philmont, you are on your own.Feb 21, 2020 at 7:27 am #3632394
Just an update – the Ranch released a new data file yesterday Feb 20. It had the new camps and listed 12 Day, 7 Day, and Cavalcade Itineraries.
However, in the middle of the day, they became aware that the itineraries in the file were incorrect. So they swapped out the file for one without the itineraries which is much smaller (but imports easier into programs).
When I opened the new file up, they did not just remove the itineraries, they had re-arranged and renamed some layers/feature groups. So, I am going to go through and synch up my previous maps with the newest file over the weekend. (They still don’t use meaningful names for trails and roads in their data file)
Long story short – the current map I have posted of just camps and other points is still probably fine for planning purposes.Feb 28, 2020 at 12:24 am #3633533
OK, I went through the new PSR GIS file, and saw no noticable differences from my map except for the way things were organized. Their boundary lines look odd and don’t match several other sources. I think they just put them in for illustrative purposes.
I went ahead and put a version on Caltopo in case someone is interested. Their “trails” were still disjointed, unlabelled, and not even complete, so I dropped them. I also dropped the roads.
For this map I experimented with dividing the camps in to “North Country”, “South Country”, and “Fire Zone”. So you can quickly eliminate over half the markers when making your own version or just looking around. Makes a big difference in graphics performance. I will probably go back and do that to “my map”.
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