ClubWiki:Creating a Trail

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Getting started adding a trail page[edit]

Steps to creating a new trail (or filling out a referenced one that has no page)

  • See if the trail name already exists, search the site, browse the map, or browse the trail list
    • POLICY: This wiki will not list trails on private land unless the owner has given global permission for all groups to use. Trail listing must have specific contact information, including person's name and telephone number.
  • Many park pages have their trails entered as stubs. These are pageless trail descriptions that live on the park page. They are edited by using the park form. If you would like to create that into a dedicated page, simply follow the red link from the park's trail table. It will open the trail editing form with available information already prefilled. Use the tips below for completion of the trail form.
    • If a park trail stub is then converted to a dedicated trail page, when complete, return to the park and using the park editing form, remove the trail stub. If the Park's trail table detects a name collision of a trail stub name and trail page name, it will flag it for correction or removal.
  • To create the trail page using the form go to Form:Trail, enter the trail name, then start editing using the tips below
    • An existing completed trail is always a good reference to help understand how to edit. Warriors Path - Sinking Waters will try to be kept up to current standard for copying from.
    • The standard Park and Trail templates will make it easy to add kml files (by using Template:Park trail map) and photographs (by using Template:Park trail gallery) right from the finished pages. The typical process is to create the trail page using the forms, then use the template links to add KML's and photos from the page.
    • Trail difficulty guidelines ClubWIKI:Difficulty Rating

Using the form[edit]

Editing a trail page with the form

To make trail (and park) page creation and editing easier, forms were created. To access the form to create a trail use the Trail Form page. To edit an existing trail it first must be in in the current format. If it is the "Edit with form" button will appear for use as seen to the right.

For trails, the form editing comprises three main parts separated into tabs on the top.

Note: If the tabs don't load, refresh the page and they should appear. This should be safe even if some information has already been entered.

My typical order of operations are (it reads as harder than it really is):

  1. Create page using the Trail Form
  2. Fill in basic information of park, highlight, map markers, and trailhead and parking locations. (Wait on distance, elevation changes, etc.)
  3. On the Page Text tab, copy and paste the suggested format (this provides the links to KML's and pictures). Add as desired.
  4. Save and view page. Using the "Upload KML" Red Link below the map, upload the file (if you have it).
  5. When returned to the page, use the link to "Create Profile Chart" and "Draw Chart" on the following page. Save the chart for later uploading and note the trail distance and elevation info (I use Windows Screen Snip to grab a temporary copy)
  6. Return to the page and upload the trail profile and any other pictures
  7. Select "Edit with Form" and enter the information from the trail profile chart and select the desired headline/banner image. Then on Page Text add a link to the profile chart in Route Description by placing this image link at the top of the section [[File:"uploaded file name".png|thumb|"desired caption"]].
  8. Save and view the page for other updates and tweaks.

Info Box[edit]

three editing tabs

The Info box tab is where most of the information on the right side box is entered or selected. Most fields are optional but highly desired are Park if appropriate, distances, elevations, and gain/loss. The last three are preferably gathered by processing a hiked GPS log through by following the instructions here.

The Banner Image will only have picture names that have already been tagged with the trail being edited. For new trails, the easiest way to do this is to finish creating the trail page. Then using the Upload Image button that will be at the bottom of the page. Once complete return to the new trail page's editing form. The added and tagged photo names will appear as options for selection as the banner image (in addition to showing in the photo gallery).

Trail Highlight is a chance to give a short descriptive highlight of either the trail's function or draw. "Alternate route to peak" or "See stream disappear into a sinkhole" are two examples respectively of function and draw. They show up in the right hand summary box as well as trail tables created for other pages.

If you assign the trail to a park, it will default to retrieving the city from the park. This may be overridden as appropriate. Whether overriding or simply entering, enter just the city name (no comma or state). Once the page is saved and being viewed, if the city page doesn't exist it will show a red link. Clicking it will take you to a different form to create the associated state page.

The "quantity" fields like hike time, distance, and elevations are units aware. For best results simply type them with the number. For example enter 0.927 mi or 1,923 ft into the field. Yes, commas as a thousands separator are acceptable for entry (and preferred).

One note on trail distances. "Trail Distance" is intended as the strict mileage of non-repeating trail and does not include access if not beginning from the trail head. Its intent is for keeping track of unique miles of trail to be explored. The second, "Round Trip Distance" is the typical, or shortest, hike from your vehicle, access the trail, hike its entirety, then return to your starting point. Ideally the basis for the Round Trip Distance would be explained somewhere on the page, typically within Route Description. This should primarily be needed on Trail Segments when the trailhead is not near the parking location and other trails are used to access this particular trail. On some occasions this round trip was the one way end-to-end distance between two separate trail heads. It was done this way as the trail was well suited for a shuttled hike and was the way it was typically enjoyed.

Trail type is a simple designation. If the trail does not begin or end at the parking location (i.e. must be accessed by using other trails) it is a segment. In-and-Out is as it implies and Loop is if at least half of the trail is not repeated and brings you back to the trailhead. Lakeside Trail is a prime example of a loop hike.

The coordinates of parking and trailhead can be entered by searching an address or place location, entering the coordinates, or moving the pin on the map. Just ensure if you type in the coordinates, you press the green check or press enter to "commit" the edit to that field. This would be done prior to actually saving the page changes.

Page Text[edit]

The Page Text tab is where the bulk of the page is defined. It uses the standard wiki markup which I condensed for this site on a help page. The top portion of the Page Text tab describes desired page layout on the left and editing tips on the right of both templates and the use of simple tables entry. Tables are commonly used for route descriptions with information by each mileage. The Simple Tables Extension described on the Page Text tab permits typing it into Excel (or copying into Excel of an existing table) make your edit and save it as a tab delimited text file. Simply place the generated text between the <tab>…</tab> commands for including your simple table.

For new page creation, simply copy the example text on the left and paste it into the "Free Text" field, then edit as desired.

Map Markers[edit]

GPS change that needs to be committed

Third tab is the markers that are shown on the map when using the template {{Trail Map}}. Simply enter rows as desired and ensure you hit enter or the green check after each edit to "commit" the edit (in addition to later saving the changes).

If you are editing an existing page, often the map marker table layout will be mashed to the left. Simply press the large green plus (+) to the right of the Marker Location column heading and it will adjust.

Adding a KML[edit]

After Creating a trail KML, adding the KML is simplest by first creating a trail page and viewing it. If the page's title with the extension KML isn't found, a link to "Upload KML" will appear beneath the map shown by using the {{Trail Map}} template. Note! You may see pages with similar appearing maps, but no link. These are not using the {{Trail Map}} template and are hand coded in the page text.

On the upload page that appears (must be logged in with an account for file uploading), simply navigate to your KML and upload it. You may enter file comments, but do not modify the name of the file to be created on the site. It defaults to being the pagename.kml and is the only way it would be found.

Upon upload, it may take a refresh or two, plus a couple of minutes to begin showing up on the page map.

Adding photographs[edit]

The easiest way to add photographs is to use the {{Park trail gallery|Trail={{PAGENAME}}}} template in your page then viewing the page. The template adds the button to "Click here to upload an image" to the page (at the location the template code was entered). Using it will bring you to an upload page form. It will default to tagging it to the page it was loaded from. Simply find your picture to upload, add a caption if desired to be shown in the trail photo gallery and save the page. The Free Text field is only shown on the file page and can be used to provide more detail as desired.

Reminder: Once photos are tagged to a trail, in addition to showing up on the trail page if the {{Park trail gallery|Trail={{PAGENAME}}}} template is used, they will appear as options for the upper right banner image on the trail edit form.