Author Topic: Great Divide Paper Map Set Update?  (Read 447 times)

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Offline Mark Want

Great Divide Paper Map Set Update?
« on: July 04, 2021, 09:19:12 pm »
Hi, Does anyone know with any certainty when the paper versions of the Great Divide Map Set will be updated/reprinted? It seems the paper maps were last printed in about 2018. What is the "normal" length of time between reprints of route paper maps? Before you point out that updates are available online/electronically, I'm not asking about map updates in general. I specifically am interested in knowing if the next paper map set for the Great Divide is coming out in 2021 or 2022 or 2023? Is there a place to find expected release dates that you're aware of? How many years is "normal" for updated ACA paper maps? Thanks. I am not asking about Map Updates and Corrections online.

Offline John Nettles

Re: Great Divide Paper Map Set Update?
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2021, 11:11:29 am »
Hey Mark,

Welcome to the ACA Forums. While I will let ACA post the official response, historically, they only update and reprint (not just reprint) a map set only when 1) an update appears to be needed, i.e. the old route has become too congested with cars, lots of "addendum" have been added, etc. AND 2) they are running low on maps.  They do not automatically update a map each printing cycle if no update is needed; they just reprint the maps.

It takes quite a while to update and reprint a map believe it or not.  For instance, they are updating parts of BR66 now that will be available I "think" later this year or next year.  To update and print a route, ACA has to basically create a "new" route for any effected map panels and then possibly reroute adjoining panels.  Then they have to redraw the effected panels and the accompanying text which may radically change the overall (the entire folded printed map sheet) map layout to keep it all a printable size.  This is in addition to having to research the new panel's services.  Once all that is done, they have to do the actual proofing and printing process. 

All that said, it would be nice if the website had a "map status" page which showed when the next update, printing, etc. is being done. However, to be fair, such status should be highly suspect since lots of issues may pop up that could change the timing.

Tailwinds, John

Offline ray b

Re: Great Divide Paper Map Set Update?
« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2021, 10:06:44 pm »
If it helps, my prior set of GDMBR maps was 2011. 2018 happened to coincide with 20th anniversary of official route development.

Given the mature nature of the route and the increasing availability of updated and downloadable information in the ACA Bicycle Route Navigator (on the Frontpack platform) as well as the increasingly detailed .gpx files, my bet is that 2025 would seem the earliest for us to expect the expensive paper update.

That said - this seems to be a popular route this year. If that popularity grows - especially with older folks who love paper - all bets are off.

Safe travels.
“A good man always knows his limitations.”

Offline CMajernik

Re: Great Divide Paper Map Set Update?
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2021, 10:31:05 am »
Due to how many maps we sell we often don't update an entire route at the same time. For example, section 1 of the GD sells more than section 6. This summer we are updating section 2 with a few small route changes. But none of the other sections will be updated/reprinted.

We update approximately a third of our catalog each year. Spread over the 116 map sections that we currently have, at this point in time we are averaging about 3-5 years between map updates/reprints. We are working toward implementing real time updates in the digital data, but the process has multiple moving parts, and is taking time.

We don't list planned updates for the printed maps online since the list can change over time. For example, we are working on the fiscal year 2022 budget, and there is a projected list. It will most likely change by the time we are midway through the fiscal year due to map sales. If a major publication runs a news story on a specific route we sell more maps, and run out sooner. John is correct when he says "However, to be fair, such status should be highly suspect since lots of issues may pop up that could change the timing."

I can't predict when the GD maps (excluding section 2) will be updated/reprinted. I wish I could. You can always email us to check about printed updates at
Carla Majernik
Routes and Mapping Program Director

Adventure Cycling Association
Inspiring people of all ages to travel by bicycle.
800/755-2453, 406/721-1776 x218, 406/721-8754 fax

Follow Routes & Mapping on Twitter: @acaroutes