Properly designed, trail maps play an integral role in helping explorers successfully navigate off-the-beaten path routes. Commonly used by variety of parks and nature preserves, visitor centers, tour operators, resorts and other venue with paths to explore, trail maps can be accomplished with a very simple design – or incredibly detailed – leading many to get lost in the process.
Seeing the Forest through the Trees: Tips to Trail Map Success
As with any print project, planning your trail map creation route in advance can ensure beautiful, functional printed map results. Consider these key facets in-advance for a stellar map…
- Most Maps Benefit from Color
Nearly all trail maps benefit from full-color printing. Color not only adds visual appeal, but helps better differentiate the multitudinous features on your map. Learn more about using color wisely in your printed map.
- Paper Choice has a Big Impact on Design
Traditional, uncoated stock offers both an economical and beautiful option for many trail map projects, however it is important to note it will not hold up in extremely damp or rough conditions. Here, synthetic plastic stocks are ideal, providing a waterproof, tear-resistant surface, albeit at a higher cost. Be sure to consider your end-user and the real-world use of your map. Uncover the secrets to paper selection success.
- Photo Quality Matters
Clear, sharp printed results requires clear, sharp artwork and photography. That low-resolution art may look okay on your computer, but it won’t translate to print. Talk to your map printer about the ideal image resolution and file type for the size of your final printed map.
- Folds will Impact Your Digital Design
You should decide on your preferred map fold prior to digital file creation. Finding an example map fold style you love is ideal, or if one doesn’t exist, creating a dummy or model can greatly help you in the digital file placement process. At MapPrinter, we have the equipment and experience to accommodate a wide variety of map folds – so feel free to go hog wild!
- Map Size Effects Cost
Maps are typically large documents. Though this size comes at a price, educating yourself on common substrate sizes can help you achieve the ideal size without busting your budget, such as producing a trail map via a sheet-fed offset printer versus the added cost of wide format printing. Talk to your map printer about available options before deciding on your finished map size to ensure the best overall value for your map printing buck.
- Digital File Creation Comes Last
Though the creation of a digital file obviously comes before map printing, it comes last after making the above decisions. Calling a seasoned map printer before heading off on the path to digital file creation is also highly-recommended.
What Kind of Trail Map are You Creating?
MapPrinter has experience producing a wide array of trail maps for a variety of industries, including…
- Park maps
- Recreational complex maps
- Hiking & biking maps
- Walking, jogging & running trail maps
- Campground maps
- Botanical garden maps
- Water trail maps
- Mountain climbing maps
- Skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling maps
- Horseback riding maps
- Off-roading maps
Trail map needs leading you into uncharted territory? The map printing experts at MapPrinter are here to help, with directions and detours for circumnavigating common trail map printing pitfalls. Contact us before beginning your map printing journey today.