John Muir Way

So the John Muir Way has been open since the 21st of April, this long distance route is a Coast to Coast route between Helensburgh in the West from where John Muir setoff to the United States where he inspired the conservation movement and the creation of it’s national parks. To Dunbar on the East Coast where he was born and grew up.

We’ve covered most of the route in OpenStreetMap for while. But until recently we’ve had a tiny, gap missing. I was trying to figure out getting over to do it when I saw:

So with some not insignificant effort, we now have the complete route mapped, these can easily be seen by looking at a raw view of either the walking route or the cycling route on OpenStreetMap, but where OSM comes into it’s own is the ability to actually do things with the data, so to kick things off I’ve created a set of GPX files of the route.

These contain the full walking or cycling route and are suitable to be loaded into your GPS or phone app as aids to navigating the route.

Map wise, as always I’m disapointed to see the otherwise very nice John Muir Way website using google maps rather than an OpenStreetMap based map, originally I had planned on just displaying the GPX overlaid onto a standard baselayer. But I then realised that Andy Allen’s fantastic Outdoor Layer already shows the walking route, and rather than obscuring the path or road underneath with a fat line like on the “offical” maps his style shows if the route is following a path or a road which is a huge improvement. Have a look below (if you’re reading this via a feed you’ll need to look at the original article to see the map)

There are also tools such as Relation Analyser Interestingly this shows cycling distance as 206km and the walking distance as 213km while the route is offically 215 km (I guess they rounded up) as well as length of different route types, so I can see that 7% of the cycling route is following primary roads, and 36% dedicated cycleways!

As always this wouldn’t be possible without the hard work of the hundereds of OpenStreetMap contributors who have mapped all the roads, trails, paths and cycleways that make up the routes, so as always a huge thank you to all of them.