Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Fun with Google Maps

I'm planning a ride to the beach this weekend, and these days my first source for a cue sheet & route is Google Maps. When you use it in "Walking" mode, you get routed on to smaller roads. You can adjust the route by dragging it to the roads of your choice after Google does the preliminary route.

The problem, I've discovered, is that when you use Walking directions you often end up on roads that are either dirt or true walking paths. I've been caught off-guard a couple times by this problem.

As I drew this weekend's route, I noticed the camera icon next to many of the turns. Clicking the icon shows you what kind of road you're getting ready to turn on. Voila! I found this gem, the turn after Bud Geddie Road. Have a look. Notice the "road" is unnamed in the directions.

It appears to be a tractor path across a tobacco field -- in fact, you can see the tractor. It's only 1.3 miles, and may go through, but just in case I'll have a Plan B for that section.

Thank you, Google.


-b said...

Good thing Google has images for some of the roads -- could be a bit of an unpleasant surprise to find a dirt road when you weren't expecting it.

Hope you have a great trip down to the beach!

BTW: looks like the tobacco on the right is ready to be harvested.


david said...

the last few years i've found i really have a blast riding dirt and gravel on skinny tires. not so sure about that eastern sandy stuff.


skiffrun said...

Well, a tractor path through tobacco fields is better than some of the non-existant roads that google, yahoo, and mapquest insist exist.

DrCodfish said...

Um,yeah, ... that pic is the ultimate bike magnet. Looks like fun!

Yr pal, Dr C

Vance Ricks said...

Hi, Mike,

It might not be too long until Google does it right. It looks as though they have several tricycles mapping out bikeable routes: