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Is it easier to view paths on your satellite picture now? (Read 1124 times)

    I run on a lot of dirt paths in the forest.  It was only about a month ago that they were very hard to view.  All of the sudden now, it's remarkably easy to view these paths with my satellite view.  I'm wondering if anybody else here has noticed this too and why that is?  My only guesses as to why it's easier to view the paths is either the pictures were shot sometime during the Winter or perhaps they're using some kind of infrared technology that improves the picture.

      Google periodically updates their aerial images; remarkably often in my city, it seems to me.  In the more populated areas, they use imagery taken from planes as opposed to satellites, for greater resolution.

       

      A couple of years ago, they updated our city's images with summertime shots, and lots of the trails were covered with trees; then just a month or so ago, we got wintertime pictures, and much more of the trails became visible.

       

      Can you zoom in as far as the map control can go?  Could you before?

      Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.

        I understand how Google constantly updates their maps.  I've been using them for years now to trace my path.  That's why I'm surprised that i can finally see the paths in the woods that  were very tough to see before.  If these are Winter pictures, I don't understand why they haven't shot them before after all these years?

         

        As far as zooming in on the map, I've always been able to zoom in and out as far as the map control can go. 

        xor


          The satellite view of google maps hasn't been around THAT long and the US is a big place.

           

          I suspect that it took them awhile to figure out that pictures of trails should be part of their feature set, how this would work, and how to organize resources/logistics to get good shots.  For lots and lots of real estate.

           

            One thing that's annoying me about it for the time being is I can't automatically trace the new trails I can see now.  I'm stuck with using the old manual mode to trace them with.  After all the miles i ran, I know that sounds lazy of me, but like anything else I have my preferences.


            A Dance with Monkeys

              You could run the trail with the GPS and then upload to GPS to create the map.
                You could run the trail with the GPS and then upload to GPS to create the map.

                 I've thought about that.  I'm watching the price drop on GPS watches now.  Thanks to the Timex Marathon GPS prices are getting lower now.  This reminds me of when digital watches first hit the market and at first prices were high for them at the time, whereas now they can be had for dirt cheap. 

                nrainey80


                  I've noticed that some trails are digitally rendered in hybrid map mode now in my area.  Also, I would highly recommend a GPS watch for trail-running.  My old standby is the Garmin 205/305, but I'm pretty impressed with the FR 210 I just got for my wife.  It doesn't have as much info on the fly (elev, for example), but it records it all and is super easy to upload to RA.

                    Google has dates on their images so you can tell when they were taken. When they updated ours a year or so ago, it was dramatic because of all the new construction features that were present now and not then - like sewer and power lines plus expansion of a gravel pit right up to the boundaries of state park. Fortunately, they did it after the snow had receded in lower elevations, so there's only a few pockets of late-lying snow. Higher elevations though are all snow.

                     

                    What was amazing was how fast they got the imagery online - maybe a couple weeks, less than a month for sure.

                     

                    In contrast our local borough (county, which is size of state of WV) had high res imagery (much higher than google) and Lidar taken last year, and they're just now getting close to distributing it.

                     

                    I don't know how google does the trails usually, but locally, some guy thought he'd help out our local trails by adding them to the map - BUT with somewhat arbitrary names - after we'd spent a couple years and several thousands of dollars installing directional signs. He had to hand trace them and code the names in. (we already have them gps'd) Then he stopped partway through. Those types of updates have to be approved by Google. But they were clueless about the trails. Heck, getting the roads right for them in our area can be a struggle. So now, if we use google at all, we turn off the labels - incorrect trails and names go away, but so do road names. Actually, google used to route traffic through our non-motorized trail system because there's a thing called "Well Monitor Road" in there. Unfortunately, so many map apps are based on google, that it creates an issue.

                     

                    Where I am, the wide trails show sometimes, but the single tracks are hidden by trees.

                     

                    I do have to give google credit for the amount of imagery they acquire and provide. I was really surprised last year or year before to see a couple google vehicles running around, presumably collecting the "street view" images. I had always wondered how they did that.

                     

                    On our trails maps we're mostly trying to use ESRI stuff since that's where our original database is, and they've got some free online stuff that's much easier to add your own stuff to.

                    "So many people get stuck in the routine of life that their dreams waste away. This is about living the dream." - Cave Dog

                      Google has dates on their images so you can tell when they were taken. 

                       Where is this date?  I can't find it.  

                      'No matter how slow you go, you're still lapping everyone on the couch'

                       

                      "Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you, 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?'"  - Peter Maher

                       

                      "Running long and hard is an ideal antidepressant, since it's hard to run and feel sorry for yourself at the same time. Also, there are those hours of clearheadedness that follow a long run."  -Monte Davis

                        Using Google Earth on desktop, there's a slider bar in upper left corner (overlaid on the image) where you can adjust what date you want. The year, month, date is there for the most current stuff. It might help to click the bar in lower left corner to select the imagery, then go to upper left for exact date. I've never understood a lot of things with google so just click until I get what I want - assuming I bumped into it accidentally one time to know it's there. Wink

                        "So many people get stuck in the routine of life that their dreams waste away. This is about living the dream." - Cave Dog

                          I do have to give google credit for the amount of imagery they acquire and provide. I was really surprised last year or year before to see a couple google vehicles running around, presumably collecting the "street view" images. I had always wondered how they did that.

                           Last year when I was going for a run early in the morning I too saw a Google car cruise by me.  It was very noticeable with all the equipment it had on the top of it.  I thought my image would appear on the Google maps after that, but so far I'm still invisible.  What's more exciting though is yesterday while going for a run on the streets, I found a 50 dollar bill.  Stuff like that happens to you if you cover enough miles that is.  

                          xor


                            I run 300-400 miles a month, have for several years... never found a fifty!  SWEET.

                             

                            I better run more.