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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 12:28 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I have a list of trails and stuff that i happen to acquire from the DNR but it is in a weird format and I can not find a program to open it. the list of trails is basically a map trail so they can put the trails onto a mapping program and stuff the files are in a DBF and PRJ SBN SBX SHP SHX that is all the list of files that they sent them to me any help would be great, what i want to do is open them up in like mapsoure or google earth and then overlay caches on them to see where they fall on trails and stuff and possible where i could put out another cache and stuff. I asked what program they have but they said they could not tell me. any help would be great


Scout

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kc9gbo
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-06-07
Posts: 254
Location: West Salem, Wi.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 2:22 pm Reply with quote Back to top

They sent you the files used in a GIS program, there are several programs that will be able to open them and let you view them. This is where I run into trouble because the ones I've found to use don't seem to export well into a .gpx file which we use in our gps'es.
One program I found is ArcGis if I recall correctly (at work and don't have my laptop to look it up) that will allow you to view them. I'm fairly certain there are other map people on here that will be able to help both of us out.
 
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CodeJunkie
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-07-21
Posts: 8239
Location: Berlin, WI

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:38 pm Reply with quote Back to top

That sounds like the standard files from GIS software. I've done a bit of reading / experimenting with some various files to import data to create map overlays and these are the types of files you need.

Keep in mind that a GPX file is specific to waypoints. Most of us primarily use this format for geocaches, but it can contain other "points" also such as trailheads, parking, etc.

A GPX file alone has no concept of anything other than single entities. When you're talking about a trail or a DNR managed land, it's really a set of points defining a bounding area (i.e. a shape).

That's the simple explanation, but the tough part is trying to merge it all together. The GIS programs do this because it's what they're designed to do. Most geocaching software (Garmin, Magellan, etc) is designed to deal with only single points and therefore doesn't have the capacity to deal with this other data.
 
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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:33 pm Reply with quote Back to top

So how do we solve this problem. My orginal plan ws to get all the trails and stuff mapped out and then share it with others so they can have the trails mapped out for them at least for the Kettle Moraine Southern Unit. Then maybe the WGA could get a data base of trails that we can all share with each other.

Scout

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kc9gbo
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-06-07
Posts: 254
Location: West Salem, Wi.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:47 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Here is a spot to start and maybe they will convert it for us to download: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/

Only downside with this site is people that don't have Garmins will have to do some more converting to get the files to be able to use on their gps. I've seen a few names I think on that site from here as almost powerusers. I did what you want to do for Pike Lake State Park when I was out there for the Cache Bash and used the trail map I made to guide myself right to the oldest cache without getting lost on another trail.
 
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kc9gbo
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-06-07
Posts: 254
Location: West Salem, Wi.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:49 pm Reply with quote Back to top

As a side note, I use QuantamGIS for doing some low level changing of what I can into files that the gps will read. It takes a bit and isn't just a drop it in and go type file change.
 
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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 9:58 pm Reply with quote Back to top

kc9gbo thanks let me know if you want a copy of the files and you can try to decifer them. send me your e-mail through a pm and I can send them to you.

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CodeJunkie
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-07-21
Posts: 8239
Location: Berlin, WI

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:04 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I got some help from the participants on GPSFILEDEPOT and was able to create a basic Garmin Compatible map overlay. It's not a simple process, but there is a process at least. The challenge is having very consistent data and the "basic" method takes a while to figure out only using GPX files.

Using the shape and other files would provide better results, but then you're into the map building world and need the higher end software and some expertise.

I dabble with it from time to time, but just haven't been able to get over the big learning curve hump into how we could make this a standard for WGA members to contribute data. The other challenge is that trails (and their associated trailheads, parking, etc.) change periodically which requires a refresh of the map.
 
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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:08 pm Reply with quote Back to top

i have already done the scuppernog trail but what i did was did a trail map thing on my gps as i hiked it and then downloaded it to mapsource and then i have a trail to go on if i wanted too so we could ask memebers to record there trails that they hike on or something and just keep making gps trail database. just my idea

Scout

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CodeJunkie
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-07-21
Posts: 8239
Location: Berlin, WI

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:14 pm Reply with quote Back to top

That would be the easiest basic start. Another thing to think about is identifying parking, trailheads, trail signs, mile markers, etc.
 
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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:18 pm Reply with quote Back to top

yea i have the trail head marked and stuff but would like to get all the rest of the trails marked and stuff. let me know junkie if you want me to send you a copy of the files to play around with.

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kc9gbo
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-06-07
Posts: 254
Location: West Salem, Wi.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:29 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Yeah, the hardest part is the figuring out the process and it would be great to just juggle everything once, but then the map making companies would go out of business.
Like CodeJunkie I've played with it enough that I can do it, but not gracefully.
 
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guidetoo
WGA Member



Joined: 2008-03-13
Posts: 78

PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:11 am Reply with quote Back to top

try delorme 8 0r 9 mapping program. it might do what you wish also its got trails marked already
 
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kc9gbo
WGA Member



Joined: 2009-06-07
Posts: 254
Location: West Salem, Wi.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 9:38 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I took a quick look this morning and it loaded the files into Quantam just fine, now I need to remember how to export them so I can convert them into something usable.
 
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Scrappy Scout




Joined: 2006-07-10
Posts: 540
Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2011 10:48 pm Reply with quote Back to top

lol where can i download quantuim software or is that a bought software.

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