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Get Road Waypoints From GMap using Draw and Save # 1146 Back to Directory   Review Date:2018.06.10
Help Category: Roads and Trails

Summary: Specialized instructions to get road or trail waypoints from GMap.

These instructions tell you how to digitize roads that are visible on GMap. The road may be visible on satelite view Gmap "h" or on GMap "t8" which is Open Cycle Map (OSM) data. The best satellite display in GMap is called "Aerial Google Hybrid" because it also labels the roads if you zoom in far enough. On the Gmap menu, this is choice "h", the third from the bottom. But in other cases, the road may not be clearly visible on the satellite, but you can see it marked on GMap T4 display which shows the TRIM data in British Columbia. Don't be fooled by the name of T4, called "CalTopo Hi-res USA". T4 is labelled "CalTopo Hi-res USA", but what the CalTopo server displays varies with each province and state. In British Columbia, what you see is the TRIM data. The TRIM data shows logging roads as dotted lines. Another important "map view", especially for trails, is the "t8 Topo OSM Cycle World" display. It will often show trails not in any other place. Zoom in to see labels.


  1. Open Gmap
     To get a GMap for a given road, go to any nearby mountain, and click the GMap link. This brings up the topo map. You can then pan the map to the location of the road.

  2. Change GMap background display Investigate what other maps may show the road or trail. In the upper right corner of the topo map, change the change the dropdown from "My Topo" to the other main locations of road data, as listed below:

     - h Arial Google Hybrid (Satellite, zoom in to see labels
     - t4 CalTopo (in BC shows the logging roads, no labels)
     - t8 Topo World OSM Cycle (shows many trails, zoom to see labels

  3. Zoom in
     If using satellite hybrid, you must zoom in to 100m so you see the road labels. Look at the scale bar in the lower left corner, and zoom till it goes from 1 km to 100m. You should then be able to see the road, and any government label on the road.

  4. Draw and Save
     In the top right corner, click the dropdown for "Menu", and click "Draw and Save". Then start clicking along the road. If you want details see GMap Draw and Save.

  5. Label Junctions
     Every time you come to a junction, insert the point, then right click on it, and choose "Edit This Point". (the top menu choice). Then copy the second digit of the lat-long to make the "junction code". Eg: Jct 74

  6. Use Bridge keywords
     If you come to a critical bridge that you know is passable, put the keyword "BRIDGE_IN" into the label. This causes the bridge icon to appear on the map.

  7. Save Waypoints
     When done digitizing the road, right click on any one of the waypoint circles. This causes the same edit menu to come up. Scroll to the bottom of the menu, and click "Bivouac Display Waypoint Text". (This was described under Draw and save")

  8. Copy waypoints to road record
     Cut and paste the above waypoints into the input form for the road.

  9. Save the road record

  10. Put in Waypoint Change record
     It is desirable to keep track of where the waypoints came from on a given road. Therefore the road page has a link where you can insert a special "Waypoint Change" record. The link is at the bottom of the road record.