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Orienteering & Route Planning
Old 09-15-2011, 07:14 AM   #1
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Orienteering & Route Planning

I figure we've got to have some map geeks around these parts!
I am accumulating the best paper maps I can find and/or print from the internet of the road system in Peru, in preparation for our trip there at the end of the year.

I realize that computer and GPS applications will be folly in the parts of the country we'll be going, and mostly we'll be relying on local information (ie the road is washed out and there's the detour) to make changes along the way, so I want to have the maps actually in hand on the mototaxi.

Our trip will begin in Cusco and end in Piura, a coastal town in Northern Peru. I've been trying to calculate distances and figure out a reasonable expectation of how far we can go each day (the idea is that you can make it in 2 weeks). There's a thread explaining the rally here.

I have been looking into a nifty little tool called a Scalex map wheel. We will also take a puck compass with us. Are there any other tools or suggestions for route planning that I should consider? I've written to the South American Explorers Club as well, as they appear to offer route planning assistance for members.

Thanks for any ideas. Also, how do you accommodate for terrain when plotting distance? We'll be up and down the Andes Mountains in these little mototaxies and I suspect we'll be pushing up the steepest inclines!

I expect that we'll be on mapped, paved roads for part of the time and mapped, unpaved roads a good bit of the time. Hoping not to spend a whole lot of time on unmapped, unpaved roads or in hostage negotiations either.
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Old 09-15-2011, 08:13 AM   #2
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Highway maps and rural Peru are not terms one normally reads in the same sentence.

Just joking. I bet there are decent print and GPS maps. Not sure how to get maps from there delivered here without spending a lot of $$, but it does bring to mind one thought - as you brush up on your spanish, learning terms common to maps but not normal conversation might come in handy.

I did a quick search and found this Mapas para GPS Garmin Lima y Peru, Mapa ruteable del Peru, Cartografia para Garmin. Maps of Peru for Garmin Not a recommendation, but it does look interesting. If there is one there must be others. I also found this website which looks interesting TRC: TURISMO RURAL COMUNITARIO It has a mile high view of highways and somewhere may have a link or recommendation to map acquisition.
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Old 09-15-2011, 08:32 AM   #3
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Thanks for the links and the great suggestions on learning terms. We found a good online spreadsheet that had all sorts of motorcycle parts translated into Spanish that we will likely laminate and carry with us, and we've been reviewing mechanical terms and some basic directions, but I think I might create another list of map and direction-specific terms with their translations.

I did find this site, which has some detailed maps of each region. MTC - Mapas de la red vial por departamentos
We already have a ITM road map of the country that is okay, but doesn't offer the detail that the above maps seem to provide. Of course the dates are 2009, so I don't expect it to be totally reliable.

One of the current Junket teams commented on how their Garmin GPS led them astray near Ayacucho this week. They are trying to get to the finish line in Cusco (they have had the reverse of our route) and apparently this last bit being uphill and having lots of unmarked roads is quite the challenge. I may be pretty happy that our final leg is in the desert by comparison.
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:34 AM   #4
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Wow, you are adventuresome. Is Shining Path still around?
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:47 AM   #5
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I hope we won't come across any Shining Path folks. The Summer participants that are wrapping up now reported a handful of bribe requests/shakedowns from various police/military folks along the way, but no dangers beyond being squashed against a mountainside by a bus or truck. Some rumors of narco-terrorists in the Northern Amazon region, but only a couple of teams even went into that area--Moyabamba.

The mototaxis require almost daily mechanical attention, so we'll get a prime opportunity to interact with a lot of small town repair shops along the way. From all reports, it seems these are some of the nicest folks you could meet anywhere.
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Old 09-15-2011, 05:16 PM   #6
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Sarah,

I'm not familiar with GPS availability in Peru, but an online search seems to indicate decent GPS mapping/navigation.

As for terrain distance, road slope is generally pct of grade. A 20 foot rise in 100 feet is a 20% grade. A 100 foot rise in 100 feet is a 100% grade.

A scaled map will not take terrain slope into consideration. You would need to calculate the slope distance to get true distance driven. This is where it gets tricky.

Say you have 300' of elevation difference (based on a contour map) in 1000' of scaled map distance. That would be a 30% grade. You square the 300' and square the 1000' and add them together. Then take the square root of that sum. In this case, the slope distance would be 1044' for 300' of rise in 1000' of map distance. Its the same thing as calculating the hypotenuse of a right triangle like we did in high school. Hope this makes sense. Most times in the US the difference between slope and horizontal distance is negligible because the road slope is usually under 10%. I'm pretty sure that your run of the mill auto GPS give horizontal distance - not accounting for relief.

I like the idea of hard copy maps and the scalex map wheel. Looks like fun. Have a great trip!
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Old 09-17-2011, 08:32 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
I hope we won't come across any Shining Path folks. The Summer participants that are wrapping up now reported a handful of bribe requests/shakedowns from various police/military folks along the way, but no dangers beyond being squashed against a mountainside by a bus or truck. Some rumors of narco-terrorists in the Northern Amazon region, but only a couple of teams even went into that area--Moyabamba.

The mototaxis require almost daily mechanical attention, so we'll get a prime opportunity to interact with a lot of small town repair shops along the way. From all reports, it seems these are some of the nicest folks you could meet anywhere.
If you still have contact with the summer group ask them how much they paid per encounter and if they tried to bargain. These things are negotiable and you could challenge your team to pay less than the others did. Just trying to put a better light on a regrettable but common aspect of life in much of the world.

There are always rumors of some type of danger and everyone has a cousin or childhood friend that was recently (fill in the blank), but you are much more likely to be affected by street crime or delinquency in a large city, in Peru and in the US.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
Thanks for the links and the great suggestions on learning terms. We found a good online spreadsheet that had all sorts of motorcycle parts translated into Spanish that we will likely laminate and carry with us, and we've been reviewing mechanical terms and some basic directions, but I think I might create another list of map and direction-specific terms with their translations.

I did find this site, which has some detailed maps of each region. MTC - Mapas de la red vial por departamentos
We already have a ITM road map of the country that is okay, but doesn't offer the detail that the above maps seem to provide. Of course the dates are 2009, so I don't expect it to be totally reliable.

One of the current Junket teams commented on how their Garmin GPS led them astray near Ayacucho this week. They are trying to get to the finish line in Cusco (they have had the reverse of our route) and apparently this last bit being uphill and having lots of unmarked roads is quite the challenge. I may be pretty happy that our final leg is in the desert by comparison.
The MTC site looks good. The laminate idea is great. As for that final leg in the desert …
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GPS IN PERU, What everybody is using.
Old 09-17-2011, 10:29 AM   #8
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GPS IN PERU, What everybody is using.

Go to Perut.org and you can download all the latest maps to your Iphone,garmin or whatever you will be using.
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Old 09-19-2011, 10:23 AM   #9
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The MTC site looks good. The laminate idea is great. As for that final leg in the desert …
Always the optimist!

Here's an update and glimpse into the madness of driving a mototaxi across the Andes, from one of the current group that just wrapped up Sunday:
"Hit some nasty weather over a pass this morning driving over and through some moody clouds, plus some freezing fog and rain. Lost feeling in all fingers. Now 80km from finish but stopped for a rest because bike overheating as day gets more and more scorching."

I can't speak for DH, but there is something humbling about a day that starts with frozen fingers and ends with scorching heat. Whew!

And thanks for the suggestion NYEx, but we'll be forgoing the electronica in favor of old-school paper maps for this trip based on the experiences of others. And of course relying on the ever-popular "ask 3 people" method of navigation!
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