Peaks Visible from Calgary, Google Earth

September 30, 2008

This freeze screen includes some of the peaks visible from Calgary with Barrier Mountain to the north and Hailstone Butte to the south.

This freeze screen includes some of the peaks visible from Calgary with Barrier Mountain to the north and Hailstone Butte to the south.

From the Calgary Tower on a clear day we can see a radius of c. 200 km to the south west, west and northwest. Barrier Mountain is the farthest northwest peak and Hailstone Butte is the farthest southwest visible to the naked eye.

Web 2.0 has provided a number of useful tools for identifying mountain peaks visible from Calgary, situated them within ranges and regions, collecting information about geological formations, associated rivers, creeks, etc, recommended scrambles and hikes, photos, maps, directions and even wild life warnings and wild flower information. Google Earth has been very useful although many peaks are not yet indicated and cannot be found with a regular search. So I have used wikipedia for the larger peaks and when that fails I look to www.bivouac.com which invariably provides exact locations and accurate information on the various peaks. I can use their information to add GoogleEarth icons to my maps. I am also working with Google Maps so I can share a folder with these peaks as I add them. Both Google Maps and Google Earth have their limitations but these are mind-boggling tools for a bricoleuse in virtual cartography.

Although I do most of my work on photos with Adobe Photoshop CS, I prefer to sort and manage photos with Web 2.0 Picassa. It is much faster to work with. Picasa allows me to generate geotags easily. I’m not sure how many programs recognize this yet. Of course Google Earth does. But I have really made quite a mess with folders in my Google Earth .kmz files because of Picasa.

Adobe Photoshop CS allows me to add lots of metadata including tags, captions, descriptions, copyright notices, etc. I am not sure how many other programs can use the data but I am expecting that this will only expand.

I appreciate Web 2.0 Flickr feature of allowing for pop-up notes on photos which means I can identify peaks without actually embedding text as I do in Adobe Photoshop CS. Images can then be shared without adding textual information that others might not find useful.

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