routing

How can I split a route or concatenate fragments?

TrailRunner mini offers options to work with route fragments:

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Trim
Select a route and also select a range in the elevation chart. Then choose the command to trim the route to the selection in the chart.

Split
Select a route and also select a location in the elevation chart. Then choose the command to split the route at the selection into two route fragments.

Reverse
Select a route and choose the command to reverse the course direction. In other words to make the end point the new start.

Concatenate
Select two route fragments and choose the command to join the two fragments into one concatenated route.

Adjust starting point
Select a route, preferably a round trip, and select a location in the chart. Then choose the command to set the starting point of the round trip to the select position making the old start point a simple transit location on the course of the resulting route.

How does TrailRunner mini import and export the GPX file format

The GPX file format (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/GPS_Exchange_Format) ist an open standard that describes geographic information.
Within that format there is a conceptual difference between three types of point information:

  • Track-Points: this is a raw recording representing a course. TrailRunner mini creates track-points as a result of a calculated route (the course you see on the map)
  • Route-Points: : this represents a stop point on a route and is represented as a transit location (routing pin) in TrailRunner mini. Given two transit locations, TrailRunner mini calculates a track between these using the OpenStreetMap Network.
  • Way-Points: this represents a landmark in TrailRunner mini.

Whenever you export files from external sources and import them in TrailRunner mini, try to keep the data straight within the expectations of TrailRunner mini. Some applications may export tracks as a series of wpt-tags which leads to serious misunderstandings within TrailRunner mini.

There are some type conversion tools out there that may help. Like http://www.gpsbabel.org

Read more:
What are landmarks and waypoints?



How can I adjust a suggested route course

Problem: When you place transit locations, TrailRunner mini always calculates the shortest path between those transit locations. But that may not exactly the course you had in mind.
Solution: insert additional transit locations to give TrailRunner mini a hints on the route course you have in mind.

What are landmarks and waypoints?

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Introduction: Landmarks in TrailRunner mini can be:
  • Just a geographic bookmark (or point of interest) you can set for yourself. Add landmarks to easily jump to a location by selecting the landmark in the landmarks popover.
  • A shortcut for routing. Within this context a landmark becomes a waypoint.
As the prior is pretty simple to understand, the latter requires some explanations.

Route and Landmarks. The following quick tutorial shows how you start a new route from an existing landmark. Then, during routing, the tutorial shows how a new landmark is being added and how the route returns to the point where you have started.



Please note that the route created used two intermediate transit location pins to direct the routing over the specific course of the demo.
So it's basically a route from the starting landmark over a transit pin to the newly created signpost landmark over a second transit pin and back to the starting landmark. (Expert users could have used the roundtrip setting in the left route planning pane to omit the last step)

Landmark Intelligence. When you connect two landmarks (even by placing intermediate transit location pins) TrailRunner mini remembers the course you have chosen to reach a landmark outgoing from a previous landmark. After this has happened (and as soon as you create a route that follows the same course of landmarks) TrailRunner mini will be able to directly connect the two landmarks — based on the memorized course. No intermediate transit locations required. The second quick tutorial shows how that happens:



Shortest vs. favored. If you are not very accustomed to how routing without landmarks works, just realize that routing in TrailRunner mini uses the shortest path to reach one transit location to another. But that's typically not what you want. So what happens is that you are always compelled to insert intermediate transit locations until the course matches your intention. Now as landmarks remember their connections to other landmarks, this manual correction is only required once. So what you could do now is that you place some hot locations on your map (that you regularly come along during your workout courses) and TrailRunner mini will automatically connect these with the courses you planned in the past — and not the course that is shortest.

Offroad-Routing. The other effect that comes in useful is that landmark to landmark courses can contain off-road transit locations. So whenever the underlying map source is incomplete, just layout an off-road course between two landmarks and TrailRunner mini will extend the map coverage by your means.

Offline-Routing. As landmarks memorize their past connections to other landmarks in the map, no network requests are being fired to route between two such landmarks. This effectively gives you limited off-line routing.

Export and Import. Routes created in TrailRunner mini that make use of landmarks will contain these as waypoints in exported GPX files. Importing GPX files containing waypoints (wpt-tag) will also import these as landmarks. To learn more about the GPS eXchange Format, read its wikipedia article.

Summary. That's basically all you need to know about landmarks in TrailRunner mini. To learn more, check out the additional information provided in the landmarks popover, next to the landmark attributes.

Live or let die. Please note that I create TrailRunner mini in my spare-time. So if you have feedback and questions, contact me directly via application feedback. If you like TrailRunner mini, please spend some stars on the AppStore review. Have fun.



Can you add more map sources?

Problem: The map data being displayed by TrailRunner mini misses some trails or streets. But these are visible in other sources like Google Maps. Can you add these maps to TrailRunner mini?

Explanation
: TrailRunner mini is based on the OpenStreetMap project. When you create routes, TrailRunner mini follows a hidden network of trails and streets that is based on OpenStreetMap data. The same data is being used to render the visible map. Would I add different map sources like Google Maps, the trail or street may be visible to you but you still cannot use it within the routing editor. This would be very frustrating and therefore I will not add this feature to TrailRunner mini — just because the App is supposed to be a simple route planning tool and no professional mapping solution.

Hint
: But what you can do is to contribute to the OpenStreetMap project and fix the problem at its root.

Update: In recent builds of TrailRunner mini and RaceBunny you can choose between different map Sources. But please understand that these still are based on the openStreetMap project data and therefore cover the same level of detail, though the design may differ.

Expert Hint: When you click on the map toolbar icon in TrailRunner mini, select the option to display more map sources. Then choose any of the available. But please understand that these may display different data than the routing editor can display. If that is the case you may use the off-road routing feature to follow these ways.



How can I edit an imported route

Problem: You have imported a course recording and want to edit the course.

Files imported in the format GPX, KML, TCX or FIT are typically recordings. These recordings are immutable in a way that they contain many recorded points with no logical connection to the OpenStreetMap network that underlies the TrailRunner mini routing editor.

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So when you try to edit such a route, TrailRunner mini gives you the option to create a routable approximation of the route by guessing good transit locations that resemble the original as much as possible. You can even choose to display the original recoding as a background route to compare and make corrections to the approximation.

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If you prefer to retrace the imported route from scratch you may also mark the imported route as flagged and start creating a new route. Flagged routes are always visible in the background. Then manually place and move your transit pins as needed.

Read more:



How can I create off-road routes?

Problem: TrailRunner mini uses the openStreetMap way network create routes along the transit locations you set. But sometimes the openStreetMap data is not complete or you really want to go off-road.
Solution: In the left editor panel, turn on the off-road switch. All now placed transit location pins are now green off-road pins that no longer follow the openStreetMap network. As an alternative, while moving or adding a transit-location, hold the (Command / ) key down to place an off-road transit location. TrailRunner mini will then create a straight connection between the last transit location, the green off-road transit location and the upcoming transit location.
HowTo: Watch this video guide on how this works.

Contribute: To improve the mapping coverage of this area, you may want to contribute to the openstreetmap.org project. Layout the "missing link", export a GPX file and upload it to the openStreetMap network. It may then take up to two weeks until the track is available within TrailRunner mini. If that's not the case, remove the TrailRunner mini Cache from your hard-drive.