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  1. #1
    Hiker Trash Downhill Trucker's Avatar
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    Default Mytopo custom maps - Any experience? Mine is going horrible...

    Hey folks, hoping someone out here has some experience with Mytopo custom maps.

    I placed an order on February 15 and I'm still waiting on my map. On February 26, I received an email that the map was being held up by the GPX overlay. They asked me to send the GPX file. I have no idea what a GPX file is! That is why I am willing to pay 16 bucks for a map! I built the map on their software linked through Backpacker magazine's website. I sent him a link to the site. I did not here anything back again. On March 17 I once again inquired about the status of my map. They responded that they were manually creating the map. So on March 23, I once again emailed them about the status of my map I have not heard anything back.

    To say I am disappointed is an understatement. I have been dealing with vendors in the outdoor industry for over 30 years. Most of these companies are very consumer oriented, so I have been spoiled. MyTopo has been completely horrible at communicating and getting me a map in a timely fashion Imagine if my trip was sooner? You would think a map company would want repeat business. Maybe they have just given up on my order???

    Sorry to rant, but just curious if my experience was an isolated one. I have never felt the need to complain about a company in the forum.

    MORE IMPORTANTLY... Looks like i need a company that can actually create a custom topo. Thankfully, my trip isn't until July.

    Many Thanks...DHT

  2. #2
    Registered User Studlintsean's Avatar
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    Check out Caltopo. I used it to create a route in the WRR for this summer. It's pretty easy to use once you play around with it a bit.

  3. #3
    Hiker Trash Downhill Trucker's Avatar
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    Thank you studlint, I will check that out. I remember meeting you many years ago. Glad to see that you are still hammocking!

    Sent from my SM-G900P using Tapatalk

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Studlintsean View Post
    Check out Caltopo. I used it to create a route in the WRR for this summer. It's pretty easy to use once you play around with it a bit.
    +1 on this. I have used Caltopo for a while now and like it. Though like most things there is a learning curve in using it, you can make up your own maps easily.

  5. #5

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    Another nudge towards Caltopo. I use that and some tear resistant waterproof inkjet paper. It's a great combo for small outings not covering a very large area.

  6. #6
    Registered User Studlintsean's Avatar
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    DHT- yea we met a few years back in SNP. Not a hammocker but still section hiking. Glad to see you are still out there also.

    I I hope you don't mind me piggy backing a bit off your thread here:

    Wanderlust- wha size paper do you use to print on? I'm gonna start doing some test printing for this summer shortly and trying to determine the best maps size w/ the least bulk. Glad to see another NoVA member.

  7. #7
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    I read this thread with interest, because I've been doing my own maps for quite some time now. Does anyone have a good reference for a service that will do printing on Tyvek (or other water- and tear-resistant material) in sizes larger than 8.5x14 (or possibly 11x17), but in small quantities? I can provide PDF with all the prepress done, just need setup and print.
    I always know where I am. I'm right here.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Another Kevin View Post
    I read this thread with interest, because I've been doing my own maps for quite some time now. Does anyone have a good reference for a service that will do printing on Tyvek (or other water- and tear-resistant material) in sizes larger than 8.5x14 (or possibly 11x17), but in small quantities? I can provide PDF with all the prepress done, just need setup and print.
    Have you tried your local Staples or office-supplies store? Mine has a couple of large-format printers. The man there said they charge about $6 per square foot.

    As for making the printed stuff weatherproof -- I use Krylon for that. Just make sure you do that outdoors.

  9. #9
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    Going a slightly different direction, I use GoogleEarth with topo maps added. Look at: http://equipped.outdoors.org/2012/12...c-maps-to.html or other places on the web. It drapes the USGS topo map over the GoogleEarth terrain model. Gives you the features (zoom, tilt, length measures, drawing trails, etc) of GoogleEarth for planning purposes. I add whatever I want and print them out 8.5x11 to fit ziplocks or Loksaks.

    Getting them printed out weatherproof/tear resistant would be interesting.
    76 HawkMtn w/Rangers
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  10. #10

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    I use caltopo, print to PDF, including any gpx files, lines or markers I've added, for 11X17, without index page. Then I take the PDF file to Office Depot for printing, Actual size, both sides.

    I keep meaning to order some of that waterproof paper in 11x17, but haven't done it yet. They usually have some glossy paper in 11x17 and it makes a real nice map, and I use map cases leftover from orienteering to keep them dry. The glossy paper falls apart when it gets wet though. I've done 8.5x11 in 28 lb bond, and that makes a nice map that holds up better, but they don't have that in 11x17.

    On Forest Service land, using the USFS maps on caltopo, gets you more detail, and much more up to date than USGS maps. I usually add a layer at 20% of normal relief for printing, and print at 1:24,000.

    The land management layer is also handy to see where USFS land borders private land, but I don't usually print that.

  11. #11
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    I just got some waterproof paper to print maps I downloaded in PDF format from caltopo. But I couldn't figure out how to get an AT trace on the map without paying for an upgrade. Any tricks?

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Odd Man Out View Post
    I just got some waterproof paper to print maps I downloaded in PDF format from caltopo. But I couldn't figure out how to get an AT trace on the map without paying for an upgrade. Any tricks?
    If you have the AT trace in GPX or KML format, then:

    1. Sign in using a gmail or yahoo account
    2. click Import in the top bar
    3. Click browse under GPX or KML file
    4. Browse to the file, select it, choose open, and wait.

  13. #13
    Registered User ChuckT's Avatar
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    Isn't the AT route available as a GPX file from the ATC website?

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    Miles to go before I sleep. R. Frost

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChuckT View Post
    Isn't the AT route available as a GPX file from the ATC website?
    Yes, but last time I downloaded it, it was already a few years old, and it is huge and disorganized. I cleaned it up and separated it by state for my own use, but it is still inaccurate where relocations have occurred.

  15. #15
    Registered User ChuckT's Avatar
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    You are discussing something that is either a volunteer effort or a Government effort.
    Neither group is anywhere near as reactive as anyone would like it to be.

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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by upstream View Post
    If you have the AT trace in GPX or KML format, then:

    1. Sign in using a gmail or yahoo account
    2. click Import in the top bar
    3. Click browse under GPX or KML file
    4. Browse to the file, select it, choose open, and wait.
    Quote Originally Posted by upstream View Post
    Yes, but last time I downloaded it, it was already a few years old, and it is huge and disorganized. I cleaned it up and separated it by state for my own use, but it is still inaccurate where relocations have occurred.
    From the ATC web page, their GPS Data link take you here.

    http://nps.maps.arcgis.com/home/item...5c2b14285a70df

    The AT centerline file lists a 2014 date and includes a number of formats, but not GPX or KML.
    So I googled for these and found another web site that had a GPX file to download. It seems to be dated 2008

    http://topofusion.com/at-gps.php

    That worked, but it took the Caltopo site forever to upload and then print. In my case, I'm just doing a 40 mile section in SNP. I'm guessing there haven't been many trail relocations there recently so this should work. But one of those cleaned up section files would be handy.

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