GeoPDF maps on Don Edwards San Francisco Bay Refuge website
by Gregg Aronson, Refuge Docent
Did you know you can track hiking distances on maps that you can download to your smart phone? They are PDF maps that have geospatial data embedded in them (GeoPDF maps).
The Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge website currently has three such maps available on its website. These maps allow you to view your current location (within the map boundaries), track your hiking or biking distance, record your start time and duration, and place markers with precise GPS locations, just to name a few features. GeoPDF maps work without wi-fi or data connections, which means you can use them without incurring data charges. You don’t even need to be within range of a cell tower.
The maps are stored on your smart phone. To use the maps, you need an app such as Avenza Maps. Avenza Maps is available free of charge. The free version of the app allows you to import up to three GeoPDF maps at a time. Install Avenza Maps from your phone’s app store.
The easiest way to get the maps is to download them ahead of time to your own computer. To get maps from the refuge, connect to the following web address: https://www.fws.gov/refuge/don_edwards_san_francisco_bay/map.html After the map page loads, scroll to the bottom of the page where the links to the refuge GeoPDF maps are located. After you download the maps to the computer, connect your smart phone to the computer to copy the maps to your phone.
- GeoPDF Map of Fremont HQ Trails (5 MB)
- GeoPDF Map of Alviso Trails (5 MB)
- GeoPDF Map of Bair Island (6.4 MB PDF)
Come to the Intro to Geo PDF Maps program on Saturday, February 24 at 10:30 a.m. at the Visitor Center in Fremont for a slide show with on how to use the maps. Information on finding maps at other sites and creating your own GeoPDF maps will be included.