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Sprint Mapping

Good practice, issues, solutions for mainly urban mapping

This page covers up to 2010. Make current contributions to Sprint Mapping which covers from 2011.

MT: Michael Posted: 9 December 2004, 1:18 AM

The Czech Republic has published a critique of the draft specification for sprint-o maps, due to come into effect next year. Its on the Cz website, and many of the points seem to make good sense. Ales Hejna is involved in the critique, he was here a couple of years ago and did some mapping in Auckland including the sprint champs map.

MT: addison Posted: 14 January 2009, 10:02 AM

I've just had a quick look at the Oceanias maps, they look brilliant (well for the main competitions).

However, for the Sprint I must point something out. You CANNOT have an indistinctive boundary on the map to olive green. There MUST be some distinctive boundary to make something olive green, otherwise use the pink out of bounds symbol.

I saw one of the cricket ovals as olive green. Any competitor would have been well within their rights to run straight through this as it didn't have a distinctive boundary on the map, even though I hear it had a tape around it. It should have been pink out of bounds not green.

MT: Bryan Posted: 14 January 2009, 10:31 AM

What would one regard as a distinctive boundary? On an urban map I'm doing at the moment I've used olive green for many parts of the map.

Two examples: - flower bed/shrubs which is adjacent to forest but no real definite boundary - property boundaries - I know from the legal cadastral maps that areas are owned by private residential owners but as the properties are next to bush there sometimes is no fence and the boundary is murky.

MT: svendp Posted: 14 January 2009, 9:57 PM

Re sprint map and olive green it appears that the mapper has mapped everything exactly to the Sprint Mapping Specification. However, that is not to say that I agree with it.

MT: Michael Posted: 15 January 2009, 9:37 PM

There would seem to be no guarantee that the edge of a forbidden area has to align with some feature visible on the ground - whether in a sprint or any other discipline.

The purple OOB symbol includes a bounding line if the boundary is marked, but not if there is no marking on the ground. Which indicates that it is OK to have no marking on the ground. The settlement symbol definition doesn't say anything about boundaries that I can see - in either the main or the sprint specification.

We are reliant on the good sense of planners and controllers not to put competitors in a situation where a measuring tape would be necessary to ensure compliance. And on mappers to show forbidden areas clearly, perhaps by exaggeration. A tiny gap in a forbidden area would be unfair.

Is this a reasonable view of the situation?

MT: addison Posted: 15 January 2009, 10:28 PM

If there isn't anything distinctive then one cannot enforce the out-of-bounds then? This is particularly important for flower beds etc. You can't all of a sudden half-way along a flower bed go from some area symbol defining the runability, to olive green without there being some distinctive cultivation boundary.

If there was taped used to define the area for the event, then a fence should have been marked on the map or something similar. I am getting at the point of enforcement here.

MT: Martin Posted: 18 January 2009, 12:24 AM

Competitors must have some way of interpreting, on the ground, where out of bounds areas are. placing olive in the middle of nowhere doesn't achieve this unless there is some form of marking on the ground, if it's on the ground then put it on the map! if we rely on map reading then individual interpretations of the map will occur and parts of the out of bounds areas could be crossed.

there will often be a distinctive cultivation boundary - the boundary between gardens/shrubs/trees and grass is the prime example and one which most frequently occurs on our sprint maps.

one of the main emphases of ISSOM2007 is legibility, olive green needs to stand out to competitors that this area is out of bounds and having a border around olive green does makes it more legible.

looking ahead to the Massey Uni sprint map to be used at waitangi weekend… it can be very hard to distinguish between olive green and yellow.

MT: Michael Posted: 23 October 2009, 11:04 PM

Most sprint maps are of urban terrain but I'm working on a rural one. I'm not feeling good about the unpaved track symbols. According to my reading they are chocolate sandwiches - except for “small unpaved footpath or track” which is a dashed black line. So at some width the character of the symbol changes hugely, quite out of proportion to what happens on the ground. In fact I'm not that happy with the chocolate sandwich at all for unpaved tracks, since the black edge lines (I guess necessary to make it stand out) imply a definite edge on the ground which is generally not there.

Any thoughts? Any suggestions for what constitutes “small”? My guess is: significantly less than the minimum width of the choc sandwich: 0.35mm plus two times 0.14mm equals 0.63mm which is about 3m.

MT: HeadHoncho Posted: 24 October 2009, 7:37 AM

I would use the choc sandwich for 4WD/vehicle tracks. The dashed black line for bike/foot tracks.

MT: Greg Posted: 24 October 2009, 9:28 AM

Read the spec and stick to it, nothing worse than a mapper making up his own standard. (an open patch of bare earth, is still open land to me) It says un-paved tracks have a dashed black line. The only difference between urban and rural is the colour of the brown, (which is just stupid) and its even worse when other mappers take that as free rein to make what ever parts of roads/footpaths different colours in the same area.

MT: Selwyn Posted: 27 October 2009, 11:52 AM

The specs for sprint maps need some specifying by IOF. Nowhere do they say what is meant by urban and rural in a sprint map context. Is it possible to have urban and rural on the same map? It makes the map look silly. Many of our sprint maps are of university type areas that often have an urban-type set of buildings and rural-type, extensive grassland and trees.

WMOC Sprint qualifier at Macquarie University used one shade of brown (looked like 50%) with some fine black lines to distinguish obvious changes. I could easily see what was a road, a path, a parking area or a tennis court by its context. The Sprint final at Sydney Olympic Park used two shades of brown (probably 30% and 50%). The 50% seemed to be used for roads and vehicle areas, the 30% for paved pedestrian areas some of which were rather large. As an orienteer I found this map harder to read while orienteering, but it looks OK at home. The colour difference between the two browns appears to more obvious than the colour difference between 30% brown and 401 yellow. But in the terrain the difference between a paved area and a grassed area is the most significant thing to notice.

I have generally drawn sprint maps a bit like the Olympic Park map, but having now competed on consecutive days on the two types of mapping, Im more inclined to stick with one shade of brown for paved areas. Then, could I reserve a lighter shade of brown for the bark chip play areas?

The other issue that would be nice to have guidance from IOF: What is meant by paved? If a track has been paved with loose gravel or broken shells, is it paved? Or if has been paved with bark chips, is it paved?

I can agree that the unpaved path symbol looks a bit strange. When orienteering I never notice its relevance until I study the map at home. The Macquarie University map had some small sections of this symbol, in one case just a hard to see track in the trees caused by students taking a short cut.

MT: Paul I Posted: 27 October 2009, 1:45 PM

I agree mostly with Greg, stick to the rules. You can have a rural bush setting small path as a dashed line as well as a urban park small unpaved path on the same map using the two different symbols. Obviously the dashed symbol anywhere near the urban area would be a big no no as it could complicate the look where only non crossable features should be thick lines. I appreciate there could be places where urban and rural mingle and would give the mapper a choice and decision to make. One option that I feel could work well in regards to the unpaved path symbol of the choc sandwich with skinny dashed border - would be to lose the chocolate altogether (probably wouldn't go down well with the girls tho)and just have the parallel dashes, so across grass, through trees or whatever it could give the impression of the terrain conditions. Just a thought. With the two browns for paved areas I am however in two minds… I feel that potentially dangerous vehichle roads should stand out against all other pedestrian typed paved areas for the sole purpose of safety awareness for young and old and inbetween. However we should never alter the rules/looks to suit our selves and get out of sync with the IOF. While I'm raving I wish for the sake of our elite that some of our less technical maps were printed at 1:15000 at least for the MWelite courses.

MT: Michael Posted: 8 December 2010, 9:49 PM

Just back from an afterwork sprint event, and as usual I found it really hard to see the unpaved large paths in bush areas, done with the black-brown-black sandwich symbol. Lots of others (with younger eyes) said the same. I've never liked this symbol for paths which don't have a distinct edge, and earlier in the year I got the controller's OK to use the black dashed line (506) at Roxburgh. The sprint speci DOES allow the black dashed line for the smaller ones (507) in rural areas.

Other opinions? Note that in rural areas the symbol is supposed to have thicker sidelines (0.14mm) and a darker shade of brown, and this is not always done. But I did so at Roxburgh and I still don't like them. Might be OK when you get to vehicle width as then the symbol looks a bit like the two tire tracks.

Talking of the shade of brown, it seems that you can use anything from white to 30% brown for these sandwiches (and paved areas) in urban areas, anything from 20 to 50% in rural. Has anyone played around with this and what would they advise?

MT: robert06 Posted: 9 December 2010, 9:02 AM

I agree Michael, those symbol is poor at best when used in anything other than open. To get around this problem, in the interim, I've created black dashed lines (as 506 & 507) and named them as the replacements for the wishy-washy black-brown black 506.* symbols. It makes them easy to change back then, when/if necessary.

mapping/sprint2010.txt · Last modified: 12:50pm Tue 25 October 2022 by