[talk-au] Hiking tracks: foot=yes or foot=designated?

Steve Bennett stevagewp at gmail.com
Sat Feb 27 04:11:54 GMT 2010

On Sat, Feb 27, 2010 at 1:33 AM, John Henderson <snowgum at gmx.com> wrote:

> A major advantage I see is little or no inconsistency in the way
> different people tag routes.  There will inevitably be disagreement
> about the RWN/LWN decision point, but that's better than having
> confusion about NWN/RWN as well.

I can see that being a problem in Europe, but since Australia has no
land borders, not a problem here. Consistency is a means to an end,
not a goal in its own right.

> In fact, a lot of those eyeing Aussie walking tracks online will be
> European backpackers, and they'll surely expect to see what I'm proposing.

Australia does not have any kind of international, national, or
regional trail network as far as I know, so it's totally moot. It has
individual long distance trails, but they don't form a network, as the
distances are just too great. We have local networks (ie, trails that
form a genuine network within a national park).

> Frankly, I see this as no problem at all.  When I first visited the
> site, It took be about two seconds flat to twig to that aspect.  I think
> it's fine like it is.  You've got to zoom in considerably to see the
> LCNs anyway - not that there are many yet.

You mean LWNs? I found when I mapped the overland as RWN, I had to
zoom in a long way to see it. Whereas it "should" show up at a
national level - it's nationally significant. But I'm repeating

> Overall, a similar situation arises with bicycle networks, and here NCN,
> RCN and LCN tags seem to have been applied largely on whimsy.  Canberra
> has (in my opinion) no NCNs, one or two RCNs, and lots of LCNs.  But
> have a look at the rendering on www.opencyclemap.org  It's a dog's
> breakfast.
> In fact, most of the LCNs on the north side of the lake are ways I've
> tagged as such.  I haven't changed anyone's NCN or RCN tags.

I wrote up proposed guidelines for LCN/RCN. My preferred scheme is
that major trails more than 20km long or so, and all rail trails, are
RCN, while LCN are basically local council routes. The ideal scheme is
one where a map of a given area has a good balance. Look at melbourne:

Almost all of those RCNs are major named trails, like the Bay Trail,
Lilydale-Warburton Rail Trail, Federation Trail, etc. Maybe there are
too many shorter ones (ie, Rosstown Rail Trail), and some could be
downgraded. Maybe non-urban rail trails should be upgraded to NCN, to
make them stand out more.

The point, again, is that we don't *have* a genuine network. We're
fortunate in melbourne that at least the trails do form a network, but
it's not managed at such. There are no route codes, no central
authority,etc. So we in OSM have to come up with our own scheme that
maps onto the British LCN/RCN/NCN scheme.


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