Sep 052012
Google maps: only as good as its user input

Various trails around Lake Frank and the Meadowside Nature Center in Derwood are identified in Google maps.  Google has them denoted as paved trails, including the segments I’ve highlighted in blue: Is the blue portion really paved?  Last time I hiked it it wasn’t.  The official trail map (as of August 2012) also says it isn’t: So it appears that Google Maps has some trail mistakes.  What is their policy as far as showing natural surface trails?  This trail isn’t merely unpaved.  It’s a narrow and bumpy natural surface trail.  Showing it on a map would only confuse cyclists.  (Natural surface is not the same thing as unpaved; some crushed stone trails such as the Georgetown Branch Trail and C&O […]

Jun 242012
A few spines short of a skeleton

Montgomery County intends to put bike route signs along so-called “spine routes“, i.e. long routes for bikes that allow travel to other parts of the county as well as to key destinations like town centers or Metro.   Each spine route will have a start and finish, a set of mileposts and ultimately a number or other designator (once we figure out a designation system).  Rockville has a similar system of routes within the city limits, and has already posted signs along them. An original spine route concept for the county was developed by MoBike and MCBAG and includes many routes (probably too many).  The routes are generally meant to be roadways or high quality trails (Capital Crescent Trail), but sometimes […]