Auto-peak bagging

In an excellent blog post on his site ( discussing all the route logging options out there, Steven Horner mentioned a site he started developing called Ziggymap. One of the cool features of the site was that it automatically looked at your routes and identified which peaks you had bagged. Steven has kindly allowed me to shamelessly pinch the idea for Social Hiking.

Despite being a keen hiker (I even have my own blog and everything –, I am not really into peak bagging – mainly because I live no where near any mountains (so my total bagged is about 4!). However I appreciate that this would be a really handy feature to have, but I really need your help in working out how best it should work.

Here is what I have come up with so far…. please let me know what you think!

  • Social Hiking will have a database of all the mountains – initially in the UK, although this can be expanded in the future), their position, name and type.
  • Each user can go through the list of peaks and mark off the ones they have bagged – this information will appear on your user profile.
  • Each time a location is received (initially via a ViewRanger beacon, although I am looking at also supporting tweet geotagging), that location is checked against the database to see if it is a peak (with a certain tolerance).
  • If it is a peak, then it is added to the user’s bagged list provisionally (to be confirmed by the user later).
  • On your Social Hiking map, a mountain icon will appear for that location showing that you have bagged a peak.
  • There will also be a general peak map, showing all the peaks in the database.

I don’t suppose anyone has access to a spreadsheet of all the peaks do they…?

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4 Comments on "Auto-peak bagging"

  1. Steven Horner says:

    The spreadsheet and database links on the OCD post are to the UK Hills database that contains every hill, along with each category. Several sites use this data for their hill bagging. Id link direct from this comment but using my phone.

    My idea was using GPX routes after the walk. Did also consider using Gowalla or FourSquare to check in on the hill but need a live connection for those. Obviously the live connection isn’t needed with BuddyBeacon I know it will submit later when a connection is available. If you need anything let me know. I may think of other stuff when I reread on a computer. What you listed sounds perfect though đŸ™‚

  2. daylightgambler says:

    Hi Steven – I forgot to mention that the feature would also work when the import GPX functionality is added!


  3. Andy Bryant says:

    It would be cool to extend this beyond the UK.

    Have you found the Peak.AR app? They’ve processed the openstreetmap data to extract all peaks (140,000 world-wide), and have this in a database on their site. Their app pulls this regularly to help you identify peaks via an augmented reality app on the phone.

    They also mention that they pull elevation data from the astergdem webservice of geonames. I guess they use this to double check or replace the openstreetmap data.

    I wonder if the chaps at Saltsburg Research might be willing to share either their peak database, or their methodology. The source data is all creative-commons after all…

    On second thoughts – this might be easier. If I tweet: I’ve just bagged Moucherotte #sh – then you could search the geonames database for Moucherotte – and if that database returns a peak or mountain of the same name within the vicinity of my tweet or viewranger beacon – then you record it as a bagged peak. Not sure how this would work with no GSM coverage though…

    You’d probably want to pull the following feature-codes
    HLL , HLLS, MT, MTS, PASS, PK, PKS, RDGE, VLC (to include passes – popular around here… and volcanoes – because I’m planning to go to Iceland next year!)

    Looks like the geonames database is downloadable – so you could pull the whole thing, and process out the peaks/mountains yourself

  4. daylightgambler says:

    Hi Andy – thanks for all the useful links.

    For speed the easiest thing is to do the processing locally (this also gives me the details to add additional functionality). I am in the process of downloading the full database, and will take a look and see if I can get it all imported.

    The peak.AR looks awesome – looking forward to giving it a try!

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