Author Topic: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running  (Read 3634 times)

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #50 on: January 09, 2019, 02:08:22 pm »
The same way you ensure no one jumps on a train for part of an audax.

I guess difference is none of us in Audax get prizes nor competing but fell runners are

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #51 on: January 09, 2019, 02:59:47 pm »
I have some sympathy for their financial argument, which seems to be that running is a simple sport and they don't want to hand a small competitive advantage to those with another hundred quid to spend on a fancy watch.  Audax is already a much more equipment-based sport, before you even start the argument about modern traffic and use of minor lanes.

Indeed.  Rejecting GPS for audaxing (or any form of road cycling) would just be Luddism.  Would there be bans for other significant advances, like LED lights or clipless pedals?  (Well, I believe some events in the U.S. do sanction against battery lighting.)

Really though there's no comparison between navigating undefined and very 3-dimensional terrain, and navigating the road network.  Just apples and oranges.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #52 on: January 09, 2019, 08:21:27 pm »
(Well, I believe some events in the U.S. do sanction against battery lighting.)

Nothing RUSA sanctioned though. It's just a bunch of hair shirt types who have come up with their own awards system based on how quickly you complete an Brevet (as a percentage of the time limit) with penalties for using battery powered lighting.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #53 on: January 09, 2019, 09:22:31 pm »
Navigation as a skill is not an intrinsic part of audaxing.  We'd have to ban blind tandem stokers if it was.

I have known and ridden with (although not on 200s and the like) blind stokers who were far more aware of where they were than their sighted pilots (they were very competent with a smartphone, and all by voice command).

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #54 on: January 09, 2019, 09:33:34 pm »
When I'm following a line on a Garmin I am less aware of where I am than when I'm using a map.

Agreed.  Routesheets are even worse, in this respect.

In most cases, I've had to do an event two or three times to have any sense of where I was. Whether with route sheets only or, as in recent years, with GPSs. This is in spite of loving maps and spending time beforehand poring over the route (which is always short - the longest I've done is a 200). Personally I'm waiting for head-up map displays for bikes...
Before I got a GPS, I used to study the route sheet against maps work out where I'd be going. Sometimes I even used to trace the route on the map in pencil. And carry the maps, particularly if it was an area I didn't know. A 200 can take up to 4 OS 1:50000 maps, so it's a fair wodge of paper! But it meant I always had an idea where I was and what was coming up. When I first got the GPS, I tended to do the same, but quickly learnt to just follow the line. This meant I didn't really know where I was in relation to whole route – how much I'd done, how much was still to come, what direction I'd be heading in next, what places we'd be passing through – and it's actually quite good to know those things. So I reckon I ought to start paying more attention to the route before starting the event. A paper map gives you the best idea of your surroundings but a GPS gives you some idea. A route sheet which you haven't compared to a map beforehand gives very little. IME.
The earth is vast and beautiful and contains many miraculous places. (Chekhov)

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #55 on: January 09, 2019, 10:21:03 pm »

As for the AUK Orienteering style event, I've pondered this. I really like the TCR style with "these bits are mandatory, work the rest out yourself". I've been trying to work out if it would work for an Audax. The Calendar events I've done in .NL and .BE are I believe mandatory route events, and being GPS based they do tend to wiggle around all over the place down beautiful country lanes. But on the .BE event before xmas, I had to divert from the route for the final 50km, as the back roads were just ice. I cycled down main roads to get back to the finish. The ride organiser seemed entirely fine with this given the conditions, the bruises, and the obvious damage to the bike from crashing on the ice.

The Brugge 200 was a good example why in the French text there isn't written that you should follow the route but that you should respect it. This wording allows for some deviations of the route if the situation requires you to do so.
Unsafe roads due to very bad weather is an obvious one, escorting a rider with issues to a nearby railroad station another valid one.

Redlight

  • Enjoying life in the slow lane
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #56 on: January 09, 2019, 10:46:24 pm »

I don't for one second think that AUK will ban GPS in my lifetime.

I agree.  Let's put it this way - if you print off the AUK regulations, which cover everything from whether participants should complete their rides using only human power to whether a specific ride undertaken by, at most, one person every six years, qualifies for both AAA and distance points,  the pile of paper is about an inch thick. It doesn't need to get any thicker.
Between the Disney abattoir and the chemical refinery

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #57 on: January 10, 2019, 12:09:10 pm »
Audax has always been technology-driven. The arrival of widespread photocopying in the 1980s was a good fit with the the need to produce small runs of printed documents. That technology was common to a whole range of activist-led groups, and dictated the structure of newsletters and communication through the mail.

The early days of the internet duplicated those established structures, and offered the chance offload the printing onto the end-user. Developments have gradually done away with the need for paper at all, relevant data can be on 'devices'.

One result of the de-linking of activities from hard copy is that information that used to be restricted to the printed page can be distributed more easily. Someone can be inspired by a run or a ride, download the route, record their own individual 'participation', upload it to Strava or the like, link to Facebook, and point to their achievement.

Whether that undermines clubs which are founded on validating 'challenges' is the interesting point. Validation usually requires adherence to some ethical constructs, and often has implicit rules about modesty. Part of the function of validation is to draw attention to personal achievements without seeming to be showing-off.

The current trends in technology lead away from a culture of activist moderation towards self-promoting freeloaders. The central problem is whether that trend undermines the desire of the activists to continue with organising the activities. We do occasionally see the exasperation from organisers when someone asks for a GPS track so they can do their own version of a ride.

The era when the photocopier played a central role was relatively short-lived, New technologies create new ways of working.

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #58 on: January 10, 2019, 12:15:29 pm »
The current trends in technology lead away from a culture of activist moderation towards self-promoting freeloaders. The central problem is whether that trend undermines the desire of the activists to continue with organising the activities. We do occasionally see the exasperation from organisers when someone asks for a GPS track so they can do their own version of a ride.

An easy faux-pas, given all the people on Strava self-promoting sharing their routes for free.  If someone's worked out a nice bike ride, why wouldn't they want other people to do it?
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #59 on: January 10, 2019, 12:31:59 pm »
And we've seen the opposite: organisers getting annoyed because someone who wants to do their own version of the ride has not asked them for the gpx.
The earth is vast and beautiful and contains many miraculous places. (Chekhov)

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #60 on: January 10, 2019, 12:33:57 pm »
The main way to counter the freeloading is to establish a brand. If you're not doing the 'official' version, you're not doing it properly. That costs, but people do like brands.

The alternative is to garner underground 'cult' status. Difficult to do if your 'mission statement' is to promote your activity more widely.

The use of GPS as a navigation tool is bit of a red herring. The main issue is GPS's role in how information about rides is distributed.

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #61 on: January 10, 2019, 01:08:25 pm »
The use of GPS as a navigation tool is bit of a red herring. The main issue is GPS's role in how information about rides is distributed.

I'll certainly agree with that.  While GPX was designed to standardise the process of transferring data to and from GPS receivers, it's become a de-facto standard for arbitrary resolution context-free routesheets.  A GPX file is far easier to perform statistical analysis on or render as a line on a map than a classic audax routesheet is[1], and you don't need a GPS receiver to benefit from that.

Strava and the like are just a function of the trend of moving applications from the user's computer to a commercial website for fun and profit.  The users generally benefit because it means they don't have to care about as much technical stuff, which means a bigger pool of their peers to share routes and analysis with.  There are also the long-term benefits of Big Data - you get access to a powerful tool without having to pay for it because Strava can sell you to interested parties, and the aggregate data can be used in positive new ways (the Strava heatmap-weighted route planning tool is excellent, as long as your idea of a good route matches the average Strava user's).


[1] Many are impossible to render on a map without local knowledge.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #62 on: January 10, 2019, 02:10:41 pm »
Reluctantly, I have purchased a GPS despite my preference for route sheets.  On a couple of occasions of have ridden events where the route sheets have been less than accurate. In one instance the organiser expressed mea culpa as someone who never used a route sheet. 

Personally speaking, I quite enjoy composing route sheets ahead of events. It is a rather absorbing activity and it helps route composition.

I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.  I suppose that I will have to move with the times.
KIDDERMINSTER KILLER AND CLEE AUDAX, 20th July 2019; SOUTH SALOPIAN, 5th Oct 2019. http://beaconrcc.org.uk/audaxes/

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #63 on: January 10, 2019, 02:33:41 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.  I suppose that I will have to move with the times.

I'm already asking riders on my events to tell me in advance if they want a printed route sheet because most of them don't these days, so I don't bother printing them. Use of GPS is almost universal now.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #64 on: January 10, 2019, 03:06:25 pm »
Reluctantly, I have purchased a GPS despite my preference for route sheets.  On a couple of occasions of have ridden events where the route sheets have been less than accurate. In one instance the organiser expressed mea culpa as someone who never used a route sheet. 

Just bear in mind that you're equally likely to encounter a dud GPX provided by an organiser who has never used a GPS.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #65 on: January 10, 2019, 03:08:09 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.  I suppose that I will have to move with the times.

I'm already asking riders on my events to tell me in advance if they want a printed route sheet because most of them don't these days, so I don't bother printing them. Use of GPS is almost universal now.

Seen a few use route sheets but they do depend to be, let’s say, older ... nothing against that but those like me mid 40’s like their stats, data etc and all I ever want from Audax is a good route, good gpx and verification !

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #66 on: January 10, 2019, 03:11:53 pm »
nothing against that but those like me mid 40’s like their stats, data etc
You have simultaneously confirmed a stereotype, and placed yourself firmly in it!

[ Thank god for the variety present in the actual audax world  :thumbsup:  ]
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #67 on: January 10, 2019, 03:16:29 pm »
nothing against that but those like me mid 40’s like their stats, data etc
You have simultaneously confirmed a stereotype, and placed yourself firmly in it!

[ Thank god for the variety present in the actual audax world  :thumbsup:  ]

I totally agree but in my limited experiences of Audax when it comes to mapping there is a difference in age

Redlight

  • Enjoying life in the slow lane
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #68 on: January 10, 2019, 03:56:50 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.

I hope not. Although I have succumbed to GPS in the past couple of years and will download an organiser's track, I still like to print off a route sheet, use it to finger-plot the route on a map and carry it with me on the ride, in case of GPS failure.  I like to have a visual image of the route in my head.  A GPS track won't tell you useful things such was which railway stations the route passes close to or where you are likely to be passing reasonably close to somewhere that might offer other things that you unexpectedly need along the way.
Between the Disney abattoir and the chemical refinery

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #69 on: January 10, 2019, 04:06:24 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.

I hope not. Although I have succumbed to GPS in the past couple of years and will download an organiser's track, I still like to print off a route sheet, use it to finger-plot the route on a map and carry it with me on the ride, in case of GPS failure.  I like to have a visual image of the route in my head.  A GPS track won't tell you useful things such was which railway stations the route passes close to or where you are likely to be passing reasonably close to somewhere that might offer other things that you unexpectedly need along the way.

Erm, just load the track into your mapping software of choice and print it out?  Much easier (and less error-prone) than plotting from a routesheet.

Like you, I like to see the route on a map, to get an idea of what sort of terrain I'll be dealing with, possible bailout options, etc.  Organiser-provided GPX files are brilliant in this respect.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Karla

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    • Lost Byway - a Pacific bike ride
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #70 on: January 10, 2019, 04:45:12 pm »
Or if the GPX is already provided via some online mapping tool ...

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #71 on: January 10, 2019, 04:59:20 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.

I hope not. Although I have succumbed to GPS in the past couple of years and will download an organiser's track, I still like to print off a route sheet, use it to finger-plot the route on a map and carry it with me on the ride, in case of GPS failure.  I like to have a visual image of the route in my head.  A GPS track won't tell you useful things such was which railway stations the route passes close to or where you are likely to be passing reasonably close to somewhere that might offer other things that you unexpectedly need along the way.

Erm, just load the track into your mapping software of choice and print it out?  Much easier (and less error-prone) than plotting from a routesheet.

Like you, I like to see the route on a map, to get an idea of what sort of terrain I'll be dealing with, possible bailout options, etc.  Organiser-provided GPX files are brilliant in this respect.

I only (re)started looking at where route go when I started using a GPS. I used to check over every route for my first few events. Then I started doing a lot of events and just went wherever the routesheet sent me without looking at where it went on a map. Most rides follow the same roads as other rides in the same area anyway. Tracing a route on a map from a routesheet takes a bit of time. It takes very little time to chuck it on Bike Hike or whatever.

Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #72 on: January 10, 2019, 05:42:24 pm »
Reluctantly, I have purchased a GPS despite my preference for route sheets.  On a couple of occasions of have ridden events where the route sheets have been less than accurate. In one instance the organiser expressed mea culpa as someone who never used a route sheet. 

Just bear in mind that you're equally likely to encounter a dud GPX provided by an organiser who has never used a GPS.

I used to fall under that category but had somebody check the route ahead of the event.  Usually the plots loaded off Ridewithgps were fine though.   
KIDDERMINSTER KILLER AND CLEE AUDAX, 20th July 2019; SOUTH SALOPIAN, 5th Oct 2019. http://beaconrcc.org.uk/audaxes/

JayP

  • You must be joking
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #73 on: January 10, 2019, 05:50:14 pm »
I can see the day when route sheets become an optional requirement for event organisers.

I hope not. Although I have succumbed to GPS in the past couple of years and will download an organiser's track, I still like to print off a route sheet, use it to finger-plot the route on a map and carry it with me on the ride, in case of GPS failure.  I like to have a visual image of the route in my head.  A GPS track won't tell you useful things such was which railway stations the route passes close to or where you are likely to be passing reasonably close to somewhere that might offer other things that you unexpectedly need along the way.

I'm puzzled. For as long as I can remember the majority of events have had advisory routes

Erm, just load the track into your mapping software of choice and print it out?  Much easier (and less error-prone) than plotting from a routesheet.

Like you, I like to see the route on a map, to get an idea of what sort of terrain I'll be dealing with, possible bailout options, etc.  Organiser-provided GPX files are brilliant in this respect.

I only (re)started looking at where route go when I started using a GPS. I used to check over every route for my first few events. Then I started doing a lot of events and just went wherever the routesheet sent me without looking at where it went on a map. Most rides follow the same roads as other rides in the same area anyway. Tracing a route on a map from a routesheet takes a bit of time. It takes very little time to chuck it on Bike Hike or whatever.

I'm puzzled by all this? My understanding has always been that, (with the exception of Audax events specifically declared to have a mandatory route) , an audax is completely defined by the brevet card and the provision of precise route information, in whatever form,is at the organiser's discretion. In fact whenever an organiser has provided precise route info' the calendar page  has always prefaced it with sentence  ' the organiser has provided the following extra information.

   





Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: GPS ban for Welsh Fell Running
« Reply #74 on: January 10, 2019, 07:53:22 pm »
I've never heard of an event without either route sheet or gps. Most have both, but some still have only route sheet and on some the route sheet is very much an afterthought, perhaps created from the gps automagically and not necessarily corresponding to roads on the ground. There's an argument to be made for not making either obligatory, as JayP says, and certainly for not requiring both. Better no information than misleading information. Doubtless rider-made route sheets would start circulating for those events without oganiser-provided ones, just as gpses do.
The earth is vast and beautiful and contains many miraculous places. (Chekhov)