Welcome to the Bear Creek Survey Service web site.
The Colorado Trail Map Book
Complete spiral bound map set with detailed waypoint information
Notes from Jerry Brown:
I hiked The Colorado Trail in in 2001 to gather data for a CD map product, again in 2005 to write the trail descriptions for the 7th edition guidebook, then once more in 2007 to gather data for revising it to include several new major trail changes. On all of these hikes I carried professional grade gps equipment and gathered locations for about 600,000 positions. The data from the last two times, gathered in the summers of 2005 and 2007 were combined then culled on the basis of quality confidences to create the current database of about 100,000 points. These points were connected in an accurate line that shows every turn of the trail in remarkable detail. Here is an example - a piece of the trail where it descends into Elk Creek in the Weminuche Wilderness (Segment 24) The red line represents collected gps data imported into a Google Map. .
Click on this thumbnail to view.
In my most recent hike, I went in reverse of the usual direction in order to encounter and briefly interview most of the 2007 crop of Denver to Durango thru-hikers. (If you want to see more people along the trail - do it in reverse.) The majority of these individuals carried a gps and were using the waypoint data from this site. I met several who had purchased the entire 100 plus USGS maps covering the trail and had mailed several large packages of maps to themselves at post offices along the way. At $6 per map and 1.5 ounces each, that seemed to be a bit of an expensive and heavy way to go. (To say nothing of the fact that the trail is missing or incorrectly located on most of these maps.) Others were using our previous CD of maps published in 2001 which is accurate for much of the trail but missing the 26+ miles of changes and reroutes since then. It wasn't a particularly lightweight or inexpensive way to go either with about 115 individual maps that had to be printed with a home computer.
The number one thing that the hikers requested was to have an updated, practical, but not too heavy set of maps. After completing the trail last summer (29 days, by the way) I worked with Merle McDonald and George Miller of The Colorado Trail Foundation to revise and update the Official Guidebook, then worked on and published my "Mexico Silver Trail Guidebook". Then I teamed up with Mark Silver, the owner of Igage Mapping Corporation to create this guidebook. Mark is the unquestionable guru of digital mapping in the United States and knows more about building maps than anyone I have ever known. Our goal was to create a detailed, accurate resource that would contain usable maps yet weigh under a pound. We spent hundreds of hours creating maps, tables, etc. and this book is the result. At 11.6 ounces. the book meets our weight goal, and may be lightened considerably by removing sections not necessary for particular users.
We have donated this book. All proceeds go to The Colorado Trail Foundation to assist in their efforts to maintain the Trail.
Here is a sample map from the book:
(200 dpi scan of page 9. Actual publication is higher resolution)
Spiral bound to lay flat for easy use
Detailed full color topographic maps showing the trail route made by digitally cutting and seaming portions from over 100 USGS maps
Compass friendly - up to date localized declinations on every map - edges of maps represent true north
GPS friendly data set - formats will work with factory settings for most gps receivers
Maps are gridded in UTM to facilitate gps navigation
1200+ waypoints in UTM and Lat Long formats available for free download
Maps and waypoints for all wilderness bicycle detours
100% of the proceeds from this book go to support The Colorado Trail. You can't buy it here - to get a copy click the link at the bottom of the page.
Size 8.5" X 11" Total weight 14.5 ounces.
73 Pages of full color topographic maps - Hikers can remove 22 pages of bike detour information and save 3.3 ounces.
Scale reduced from 1"=2,000' to 1"=3000' to create a compact size without losing detail. Bike detours are 1"=6034'
Paper is not waterproof and it is suggested that the book be secured in a ziplock bag.
Bear Creek Survey Service home page
The Colorado Trail Foundation Store - click here to buy the book
The latest Colorado Trail Waypoints are available for download HERE