[Tagging] hiking and foot route relations - is there any consistent difference?

Joseph Eisenberg joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com
Sat Jan 11 15:00:43 UTC 2020

To clarify, I don't see any problem with the existence of multiple
tags with similar meanings.

But I plan to edit the wiki page to describe how they are actually
used, mentioning that there is a wide amoun of overlap in meaning.

On 1/11/20, Peter Elderson <pelderson at gmail.com> wrote:
> +1
> If don't see this as a problem.  If more clarity is needed, add tags for
> specific aspects. E.g "vigour" scale if one exists. Boot type recommendation
> scale, where 1=flipflop and 10=hoverboots.
> Mvg Peter Elderson
>> Op 11 jan. 2020 om 14:59 heeft Joseph Eisenberg
>> <joseph.eisenberg at gmail.com> het volgende geschreven:
>> ´╗┐Back in August there was a thread titled "Merging tagging scheme on
>> wiki pages of Hiking, route=hiking, route=foot and Walking routes"
>> which led to a new template
>> https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Template:Tagging_scheme_for_hiking_and_foot_route_relations
>> - used on route=hiking and route=foot pages.
>> However, I'm disappointed that the text ended up claiming this:
>> "route=foot is used for routes which are walkable without any
>> limitations regarding fitness, equipment or weather conditions. As a
>> guideline, you could say that walking shoes (at a pinch, even
>> flip-flops) are adequate for this type of walking trail."
>> This is all quite subjective. Folks here in Indonesia climb 3500 meter
>> mountain passes in flip-flops.
>> "route=hiking is used for routes that rather match Wikipedia's
>> definition: "A long, vigorous walk, usually on trails, in the
>> countryside"). As a guideline, you could say that a hiking trail needs
>> hiking boots because you will encounter sharp rocks and/or heavy
>> undergrowth and/or muddy terrain and/or have to wade through shallow
>> streams."
>> Again, very Western / European perspective to mention "needs hiking
>> boots".
>> I asked about this on the wiki talk page, and Brian de Ford said:
>> "Google walking versus hiking and you will get many results agreeing
>> that there is a distinction. No two of them entirely agree on what the
>> differences are, but there is core agreement that hiking is more
>> vigorous than walking. One insists that there must be a change in
>> elevation (just about every road and sidewalk around here involves
>> changes in elevation, so by that definition I hike to the shops).
>> Several agree that equipment required makes a difference (style of
>> footwear and need for a cane/stick). Many say that the nature of the
>> surface makes the difference. Others say it's the terrain. There's a
>> difference, but it may be hard to agree on definitions for OSM. BTW,
>> parts of the UK also have "hillwalking" (which appears to be hiking
>> where hills are involved) and rambling (essentially unmappable because
>> there is no route)."
>> It sounds like there is no verifiable difference between route=foot
>> and route=hiking, so database users should not expect these tags to be
>> used in a consistent way. Each mapper has there own idea of what they
>> mean.
>> - Joseph Eisenberg
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