Articles, Blog

OS Maps – Route planning

December 2, 2019

In this video we will be looking at how to
create your own route in OS Maps. First of all, you have to be logged in – otherwise
you’ll be unable to save or print. Use the ‘sign in’ in the top right. I will be creating this route on OS Explorer
mapping available to Premium users, but you can also use the standard mapping available
to everyone. First, we want to go to the area for the start
point of the route. I’ll search for ‘High Wray’. Now we are in the right place go to Routes, Create Custom Route. And then click on the map to set your start point. Continue to click on the map to set subsequent
points. You can see how it draws a line from each
point to the next to create the route. If I make a mistake, I can use the ‘Undo’
button to remove the last waypoint. I can also grab an existing waypoint and move
it. If I’ve missed a corner, I can also add
an intermediate waypoint between two others… and then move it to the correct location. You will have noticed on the left as
I build the route, an elevation profile is updated. Above this is a list of the waypoints It only
shows the start, end and any waypoints that have been given a label. I can click on a waypoint and give it a label,
and this appears in the list and when I print – it’s ideal for highlighting key navigation
points or important places. I can change my route style by using the ‘Style’
button from the toolbar. Here I can change the colour, the line
thickness and transparency. Setting a high transparency is useful to see
the map detail underneath. Click the Style button again to close it. Now we want to save the route. Hit the ‘Save button from the toolbar, and
the left panel will change. Set the route type from walking, running,
cycling or other… Give the route a name… A description… A difficulty rating… What terrain it’s on… And who can see it. Routes set to ‘everyone’ will appear when
others search for a route. If you want to share the route with others,
it needs to be set to ‘Everyone’. Then hit ‘save’ and ‘Done’ to finish
saving the route. Close the left panel to end viewing the route. Snap to path makes creating longer routes
much faster. It’s only available in National Parks at
the moment. To use it, switch to ‘National Park Pathways’
in the map layer selector – it’s only available to Premium users. If you zoom out, you can see the areas where
snap to path routing is available. We’ll create a circular route from Grasmere. As before, go to Routes, Create Custom Route,
and make sure snap to path is on – the magnet symbol in the toolbar will be blue. Set the route type. Walking will use any path or road except motorways,
while cycling will use bridleways, cycle paths and roads. The potential routes are highlighted in pink. Click on your start point, then on your next
waypoint. A route will be created between the two. It always follows the shortest available route. If you don’t like the route selected, you
can add in intermediate point and then move it to force the route to go a certain way. If you want to move off one of the highlighted
trails, you can temporarily turn off snap to path function.
Plot your route manually and turn it back on again once you rejoin the path. The exclamation marks indicate potential risks. Click on the exclamation mark for more details. You can now save your route as normal. There are several options that are useful
for route planning. To access them click on your user name and
then select ‘Preferences’. You can set whether measurements are shown
in imperial or metric, your average walking running and cycling speeds to calculate estimated
route times, and whether the map automatically moves as you plot each point on a route. One you have finished changing the options,
click the ‘save’ button. In our next video we will look at OS Maps
printing options.

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  • Reply Terry White October 16, 2017 at 11:58 am

    This is excellent – thank you OS for these great video guides – you make it look all quite straight forward. I will be signing up right away – I just love looking at maps and route planing – anything to get out of the madness that is London.

  • Reply Geoff May 28, 2018 at 9:40 am

    Nice when working ok. However like many online apps, this crashes or just does not save any routes which is very disappointing after spending half an hour routing a map. Today I cannot save a route and cannot even bring up already saved routes…I pay £20 a year for this. It is a bank holiday Monday & it was the same yesterday for most of the day. Servers not powerful enough.?? I do not know

  • Reply Gordon December 17, 2018 at 9:38 pm

    At last i've worked out how to plot and print out a route on OS website…. thanks OS.. saves me having to fold my maps up and ruin them..

  • Reply WalkaboutWithRob May 14, 2019 at 1:07 am

    With the maps downloaded onto a mobile device, can 'pins' be added to maps to mark places I may wish to visit? I can add pins to Google Earth and they remain there for future reference. Thanks.

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