View Full Version : Mapdanna's

11-17-2005, 11:18
I have been looking at AntiGravityGear's "Mapdanna", and am wondering if anyone uses these with confidence, instead of using maps. I have searched the threads, and have found no real concensus on the product. Thanks for the help!!

Almost There
11-17-2005, 11:32
Go with the maps put out by the ATC, after awhile people only use them for the elevation profiles, which also have the distance listed as well. The AT is so well marked, you don't need super detailed maps! Also I checked out your TJ site, and I reccommend that you carry less food! You don't need it all! Don't carry more weight than you have to!

11-17-2005, 11:32
The detail is insufficient for use for a map, compared to the ATC's offerings. However, you have phone numbers, road crossing info and other data that really makes it a reasonable substitute for guides/databook.

In the best of all possible worlds, I'd make the Mapdana with the borders an elevation map of the section of the trail on the bandana. Of course, that could make the bandana a yard square.

max patch
11-17-2005, 12:36
The mapdana is a really neat bandana that is inadequate as a map.

11-17-2005, 13:46
That's the info I needed, and I will order the map set from the ATC. Thanks for the great input.

max patch
11-17-2005, 15:41
That's the info I needed, and I will order the map set from the ATC. Thanks for the great input.

All the maps, guidebooks, and data book is on sale at ATC thru 12/22 for $190 for members.

Uncle Silly
11-17-2005, 16:46
I met a couple of folks on the trail only using mapdanas. It is possible to thru-hike with only mapdanas. Even if you need additional information, you can often borrow other sources (Data book, Wingfoot's guide, maps) from the hikers around you.

Personally, I'm not willing to give up the detail of the actual trail maps for the weight savings. I do like the mapdanas (I have all four and used them on the trail) -- but for me they were only one piece of the information puzzle. I carried mapdana, maps, and the data book; next time out I may leave the data book behind and just use the 'dana. But I won't give up my maps!

11-18-2005, 07:53
mapdana is nice can you can easily pull it out and check and re-check that you're not making any progress. Then you realize wow-I'm slower than I thought.

As others mentioned an elevation profile is useful especially when I can visually match it with the elev profile on my watch to see how far i've come...

Using my hacking skillz, I've gotten access to the secretly "free" copy of ALDHA's pdf guidebook---(I actually own the paperback, and if you don't buy the book but use the pdf--kick them a few bucks). j/k it's on their site

Anyways, it comes in 6 sections or so and you can tell your printer to print 4 pages to a sheet and voila. Cut into the 4 pieces, double whole punch at the top and tie w/ string. Now you have a condensed 6pt typeface book at about 1/4th the weight...

I also have a version that is all the city map jpgs saved out of the pdf online.

When you print-look under page handling and change page scaling to multiple pages per sheet. You can print 6 per sheet but you need some reading glasses for the small font...

11-18-2005, 10:17
Thank you Max Patch, Scotsghost and Soulrebel. I have been to the ALDHA's webpage, but I guess my Adobe was not working properly, so I removed and re-installed it and was able to download the pdf Guidebook without any problem this time. Thanks all for the great input.

Uncle Silly
11-18-2005, 19:10
Soulrebel, that's a great idea. Do you print the 4-pp-per-sheet doublesided as well? On the one hand you'd save even more paper, on the other hand you could use the blank reverse side for notes....

the goat
11-18-2005, 19:16
no need for maps, really. databook is all you need.

max patch
11-18-2005, 19:36
no need for maps, really. databook is all you need.

Unless, of course, you get injured or sick and need to get to the nearest town ASAP. Or you get lost.

Original question was could a mapdana replace a map. It can't.

Could you/should you hike without a map is a whole different question.

SGT Rock
11-18-2005, 20:04
Simple answer: No.

Slightly more complex answer: The mapdanna can replace a databook and a bandanna. So for 1.2 ounces, you save about 4 ounces of weight for the databook. And, some of the profits still go to the ATC, so buy one.

Even more complex answer: A first aid kit is like insurance, you can get by cheap without it until you need it, then you wish you had more. And a map is like a first aid kit. I wouldn't recommend you go without a first aid kit because even though you may never need it, you will kick yourself for saving a few measly ounces and bucks if you ever really do. A map, at least, can also give you an idea of what is coming up, what some of the land marks around you on so you learn more about what you walk through, and if you are like me, you can spend hours looking at one anyway, so it is like getting a dual use item since there is a lot of entertainment in looking at one as you go along.

11-19-2005, 16:28
I liked my mapdana. It was very useful. I used it a good bit, but I also used a map and a databook and individually printed pages from the companion PDF. I guess that I'm a belt and suspenders kind of guy.

BTW, TinMan gives a goodly percent of his mapdana sales to the ATC. So whatever you buy, you're helping the trail.

11-19-2005, 20:36
I appreciate the great input, thanks. I believe I will skip the Mapdanna's and go with the Data book, maps, and Companion Guide in PDF form, giving a donation where possible for it's use. I agree with SGT Rock about wanting/needing it and not having it. Best to be prepared. Thanks all for helping me decide.

11-21-2005, 18:23
I used the mappdannas for a entire thru-hike. You have to be in the mind set for them. They pretty much tell you shelters, water and general data like P.Os. For the most part you have an idea on how far you have gone that day, but not detailed. However it's all you need to plan your resups. The map portion is usless unless you want to see what cities surround you, which the data books don't have. I just listened to or borrowed other's wingfoot if i really needed to. They are more expensive and harder to find on the trail.

11-22-2005, 10:43
no need for maps, really. databook is all you need.

But goat if you took the maps you'd have more to eat.;)


BTW I heard the databook tastes like chicken.