[talk-au] highway=track update

Josh Marshall josh.p.marshall at gmail.com
Wed Feb 24 10:33:54 UTC 2021

This conversation reminded me I had forgotten to map a few dozen km of fire trail around Forster from a recent holiday… and it’s all sand. Some of which I had terrible regrets of taking my bike along (and some I even regret running), definitely smoothness=very_horrible.

Anyway, it seems from the discussion to be very clear that everyone expects surface=gravel to match the vernacular. What are the chances of getting a proposal through to actually change the wiki to match this expectation (and perhaps introducing a ‘rough_gravel’ for very rare case of ballast)? Slim to none, I’m guessing by the way people are talking.

> My take is that unpaved road surfaces change quickly and I don't want to be fussed with too much detail. So I tend to map then as unpaved. I think it more important to map the 'smoothness' (or roughness) of the road if it is certain it will stay that way for some time. 
> ...
>> Personally, I feel that there’s often too much emphasis in OSM on precision (i.e. use detailed sub-tags) at the expense of accuracy. I believe most of the generic unpaved tags are accurate. I wish I could, but unfortunately I don’t believe many of the specific sub-tags are especially useful. (Sand is a goody though!).

They do change quickly, but as has been touched on by yourselves and others, there appear to be two main categories that actually matter in the debate, both of which are compacted: those with added aggregates (fine_gravel? compacted?) and those that aren’t (dirt? also tagged as compacted?).

I did notice in the smoothness wiki for the first time, under ‘fine_gravel’: "If the topmost surface is eroded or loose gravel aggravate please use gravel instead.” Well, that’s a huge number of the roads I’m thinking of.

Maybe I should just stop worrying and use “unpaved”…

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