Piste Maps

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Approval

Even though a voting never took place, this feature has been accepted by the community. In Europe over 9 000 objects are tagged with these features.

Summary

This proposal is for a whole set of tags to describe piste maps. Formerly there were few possibilities to map a ski resort. (Few) Information is given here: WikiProject Piste Maps, Key:aerialway. JOSM already supports parts of the proposed features here, like the piste:difficulty or aerialway=station.

In winter 2005/2006 some tracks were recorded and piste maps were tagged. This proposal builds on that experience but takes into account the development of new additional techniques (such as areas) since then.

Tag prefix

Piste map-specific tags use the piste: namespace to avoid conflicts with similar tags used in other contexts (e.g., capacity, speed, classification). The term Wikipedia-16px.png piste comes from the French word for track or trail and means a marked path or run down a mountain.

Areas

Ski lifts

aerialway=* has already been accepted onto Map Features, but this proposal involves making the following changes to that key:

  • Split gondola off as a new value, distinct from cable_car.
  • Split aerialway=drag_lift into several typically used types of surface lifts. All these can be considered aerialways due to the aerial cable, even though the stay on the ground. aerialway=magic_carpet isn't an aerialway at all, but it fits better here than creating a new tag for it. This means, that old aerialway=drag_lift tags are deprecated and should be changed.
  • additionally add a pylon node value.
  • add several attributes which aerialways may have.

The resulting set of values would be as follows:

Key Value Element Description Example Icon
aerialway cable_car Way A Wikipedia-16px.png cablecar or tramway. Just one or two large cars. The cable forms a loop, but the cars reciprocate as opposed to looping around. Cable car.png
gondola Way A Wikipedia-16px.png gondola lift. Many cars on a looped cable. Gondola.png
chair_lift Way A Wikipedia-16px.png chairlift. Looped cable with a series of single chairs or benches, exposed to the open air. Implies oneway=yes; where passengers can be carried in the reverse direction, tag with oneway=no.   Chair lift 2.png Chair lift 4.png
mixed_lift Way A mixed lift, containing both gondolas and chairs. Mixed lift.png
t-bar Way A Wikipedia-16px.png T-bar lift. Implies oneway=yes and aerialway:occupancy=2. Tbar lift icon.png
j-bar Way A J-bar lift, like T-bar but just on one side. Implies oneway=yes and aerialway:occupancy=1.
platter Way Wikipedia-16px.png Platter lift, similar to a J-bar, but with a disc instead of a bar. Single-person only. Implies oneway=yes and aerialway:occupancy=1. In discussion whether a platter lift is an aerialway or not. Alternate tag piste:lift=platter can be used instead.
rope_tow Way A Wikipedia-16px.png rope tow. Implies oneway=yes.
magic_carpet Way A Wikipedia-16px.png magic carpet. Implies oneway=yes.
pylon Node Supporting tower for an aerialway. May be numbered with ref=*.
station Node For stations, especially in the middle of a way.

Railways going up a hill are discussed and proposed separately: railway=incline.

Aerialway attributes

The start and end nodes of a way tagged as a piste:lift are assumed to be a station. These nodes may have their elevation documented with ele=*. Additional information should be tagged on the way (of the lift). Access may also depend on transport type(ski/foot/bicycle/?):

Key Value Element Description Example Photo
Wired ways
aerialway:occupancy People in each carriage (car, chair, etc.); numeric. Way Platter, j-bar and rope_tow implies aerialway:occupancy=1 and T-bar implies aerialway:occupancy=2.
aerialway:capacity People per hour; numeric. Way piste:lift:capacity=2600
aerialway:duration Minutes; numeric. Way Average/typical time for journey on that lift.
aerialway:bubble yes/no (default) Way If each carriage has a (retractable) transparent cover to provide weather protection.
aerialway:heating yes/no (default) Way If each carriage has heating.
aerialway:bicycle yes/summer/no Way If bicycles are allowed in carriages: all year round; in summer, or not at all. By default, cablecar, gondola, and mixed_lift imply yes, and chairlifts, t-bars imply no. Sesselbahn Marchner.jpg
Stations
aerialway:access entry/exit/both/no Node Main article: conditional restrictions

The access allowed to carriages at this node, entry means it is possible to board the lift here, exit means it is possible to disembark, both means both are possible (often the case for gondolas and cable-cars), and no means neither are possible (useful for beginning and ending nodes if the implicit assumption of being an entry or exit station is incorrect). Add :summer or :winter subkeys where seasonal rules apply (often in winter only ascending is allowed).

aerialway:summer:access entry/exit/both/no Node The access as above, but only during "summer". Similarly for "winter". Use no in all stations if the aerialway is not operated at all.

This table is a wiki template with a default description in English. Editable here.

Pistes

A piste may be a route through a variety of different terrains. It might consist of a meadow or a mountain road or part of a glacier. Therefore piste mapping has two levels.

  1. Underlying elements: meadow, mountain road, part of glacier, etc. These might be defined as ways Way or areas Area.
  2. The underlying elements are grouped together by a Relation relation route=piste.

In this way one piste can consist of multiple elements and one element (road, etc.) can belong to several pistes (relations).

Below, there will be discussed the tags applicable to the underlying elements. For more information on the piste relation, see route=piste.

Survey of some piste types like Nordic or skitour leave considerable freedom of judgement to the mapper of what a Nordic/skitour is. It is suggested to tag recommended routes by some tourism authority and pistes used by many people during a season. But do not add pistes that are only used by very few people (e.g only yourself), or that are dangerous (avalanche, etc.). Keep in mind that adding a piste is a recommendation to other people for using the piste.

Type

The piste:type tag can be used on any existing or new way. Specifically it is very useful for marking a piste that uses an existing way, like for example a track. This is very useful (e.g., in the Alps) where forestry tracks can be used in Winter for hiking, sledding, skitouring and Nordic skiing.

Key Value Element Description Example
piste:type downhill Area Way An alpine/downhill ski route. ways should be use for trails connecting the routes. This automatically implies oneway=yes. The direction of the way should be the downhill direction.
nordic Way A Nordic/cross country ski trail (also see #Style or kind of grooming). The direction of the way should be the preferred/compulsory skiing direction (see piste:oneway below). Nordic pistes are circular ways if the first and the last point are the same and cannot be rendered as areas. Currently implemented in this way by Osmarender. Nordic Icon.png
skitour Area Way A recommended ski tour way or area that is generally used by many skiers during a season for the purpose of a Nordic ascent and a downhill descent in the backcountry. Generally the descent is recommended near the ascent route for safety and terrain judgement and the descent is not mapped. To map an alternate descent, use piste:type=downhill with piste:grooming=backcountry. Implies piste:grooming=backcountry. Also defined in Wikipedia-16px.png Ski_touring. Rendered as area if first and last point are the same. If a circular way is needed, do not close the way (first and last point is not exactly the same). Skitour icon.png
sled Area Way Use this tag exclusively for a sledding piste or add this tag to a way or tack that is prepared for or commonly used by sleds to go downhill. Sleds are smaller vehicles that are pulled by a human or propelled only by gravity. Use piste:oneway=yes if the piste has a do not walk uphill sign. If the way is used also for ascending to the top (e.g., by foot) use piste:oneway=no. The combination with piste:lit=yes indicates sledding tracks with lighting that is only turned on in winter. Implied grooming is piste:grooming=classic for natural luge track grooming, but alternatively one can use piste:grooming=backcountry for ungroomed or badly groomed trails. Sled Icon.png
hike Way A piste for Nordic walking or hiking in winter (Winterwanderweg) that is usually announced by a tourism authority. A classic groomed piste (piste:grooming=classic) can be hiked with simple boots or can be used for running (default if grooming is absent). A piste:grooming=backcountry groomed piste requires snow shoes.
sleigh Area Way A piste exclusively for not self propelled sleighs. This might be horse/husky drawn sleighs (Santa Claus style). Definition: A sleigh is typically a partially enclosed vehicle with seats for passengers that is drawn by animals and slides on runners.
ice_skate Area Way A piste exclusively for ice skating. Ice skating icon.svg
snow_park Area A funpark with rails, quarter pipes, etc.
playground Node Area A ski playground is a designated location which has been developed or set up to assist children to learn to ski naturally, and which provides a variety of skiing discoveries. Skiing-playground-icon.png
ski_jump Way Area See Proposed features/Ski Jumping!
man_made piste:halfpipe Way Area A halfpipe. This automatically implies oneway=yes. Halfpipe.png

Frequently groomed Nordic tracks are dual (ab)used as hiking tracks and sledding tracks for skitouring and hiking. Some of these uses are unofficial. Currently there is no qualified way to tag dual use pistes.

Difficulty

Note: For showing signposting color of pistes (notably for crosscountry skiing and snowshoeing), user may wants to use the Tag:route=piste proposal, and keep the difficulty tag to give information on the actual difficulty of the way.

Key Value US, Canada, and Oceania Europe Japan Skitour: [1] Nordic (crosscountry)
piste:difficulty novice "Bunny hill"      Green L: inclination <30 degree, no sliding, soft hilly terrain, no narrow passages Strictly flat terrain, no effort needed
easy      ● Green circle      Blue (applies to Nordic, downhill, sled)      Green WS: inclination 30–35 degree, short sliding areas, open terrain with short steep passages and easily avoidable obstacles, short narrow passages. Soft hills, short steep sections
intermediate      ■ Blue square      Red (applies to Nordic, downhill, sled)      Red ZS: inclination 35–40 degree, longer sliding areas, terrain with steep passages that cannot be avoided, short narrow but steep passages. Steep sections are present in the piste, or short narrow on average slopes. User gets away with sweat. Used for the relevant sections only
advanced      ◆ Black diamond      Black (applies to Nordic, downhill, sled)      Black S: inclination 40–45 degree, long sliding areas with scarps below (life danger!), steep terrain with many obstacles, long narrow passages (short swings still possible). Steep sections are present in the piste, with narrow steep passages or sharp turns in steep passages, often icy pistes. Used for the relevant sections only.
expert      ◆◆ Double black diamond      Orange (Alps)      Double black (Scandinavia) SS: inclination 45–50 degree, long sliding areas with scarps below (life danger!), steep rocky terrain with many obstacles, narrow passages may require some crossjumps. Steep sections are present in the piste, with narrow steep passages or sharp turns in steep passages, often icy pistes. Dangerous terrain surrounds the piste. Used for the relevant sections only.
freeride (e.g., off-piste)      Yellow AS: inclination 50–55 degree, very exposed terrain, no spot to rest during descent, narrow passages require many crossjumps. Not relevant
extreme Climbing equipment required EX: inclination >55 degree, extremely exposed terrain, need to use ropes to go downhill. Not relevant

Grooming

Intended for use with piste:type=nordic, piste:type=downhill (classic, mogul, backcountry), or piste:type=sled (classic, backcountry) to describe the style of piste preparation.

Key Value Description Pictogram Suggested rendering
piste:grooming classic Groomed for classic style Nordic or downhill skiing. If omitted for sledding runs (piste:type=sled) it implies groomed as "natural luge(sled) track".

Default value is assumed if piste:grooming is omitted.

|| Pistegroomingclassic.png
mogul A piste:type=downhill groomed for Wikipedia-16px.png Mogul skiing (Buckelpiste).
skating Groomed for free style or skating. \/ Pistegroomingskating.png
classic;skating
classic+skating
Both classic and skating. (Note that classic+skating is not standard OSM notation.) Pistegroomingmulti.png
scooter Classic style groomed by a smaller snowmobile, which means that the piste is often much looser and single lane. ! Pistegroomingscooter.png
backcountry Off-piste cross-country skiing, often referred to as "backcountry touring", where tracks are made manually by skiers.

Use with marked, cleared, ungroomed ski trails.

Use with often used, ungroomed sledding trails.

 !! Pistegroomingbc.png

Many providers of ski preparation data draw a line between tracks groomed by Wikipedia-16px.png snowmobile, and larger Wikipedia-16px.png snow grooming vehicles that produce cross-country ski-trails conforming to FIS standards (reference needed).

Discussion issue: There may be a need for a tag to specify the gap between the skis in a classic nordic ski track (NOR: sporlegger/sporbredde), such as (piste:grooming:trackwidth=15/17/22/adjustable [cm]. Background for this: Skiforeningen, the Norwegian (Oslo-area) grooming organization are starting experimentation on user preferences. At Sjusjøen, they are also conducting experiments, and will build a groomer that can set different widths uphill and downhill.

Map of 17cm wide ski tracks in Oslo-area winter 2010

Other features

Key Value Element Description Pictogram Suggested rendering
Nordic Downhill
piste:name Name as a piste; text. Any piste Alternate name for the piste. Use as alternate name if the piste is a track or way that has a name already and has a different piste-name. N/A Rendered as name if no name tag exists; rendered by pistemap renderers only if name and piste:name exist.
piste:status open/closed Any piste Use for pistes if they open for the season and set to closed during summer (this is most useful for single type pistes; e.g., sled). Use for live data feeds to OSM in the future. Do not use tag if data is guaranteed to incurrent (does not receive regular/live updates). There is no default. N/A Render always normally on general map. Summer sport specific maps may ignore closed pistes. Winter specific may use some special marking. Remember that data is probably only valid for some specific pistes that receive live updates.
piste:oneway yes/no Area Way If you tag a track or way as piste and the oneway specifically applies only if the way is used as piste during winter.
piste:certifications List of certifications; text, comma separated. Area Way Pistes that are certified for safety, grooming and quality by a local association. The seal of quality must be published by the association. The tag should be not present if no certifications exist. N/A Example: TRV Naturrodelbahngütesiegel 2009 ROT
piste:lit yes Area Way If you tag a track or way as piste and the lit specifically applies only if the way is used as piste during winter. -o- Pistelit.png Semi-transparent yellow underneath?
lit yes Area Way Lit for night time skiing. -o- Pistelit.png Semi-transparent yellow underneath?
piste:abandoned yes Area Way Former, now unofficial and unmaintained ski-trail.  : Pisteabandoned.png Dashed version of current?
gladed yes Area Way Pistes with trees or entire areas of thinned-out trees ^ N/A? Tree icons?
patrolled no Area Way Pistes that are not patrolled, though they may be marked and maintained NP The letters, NP The letters, NP

If a ski trail is ungroomed due to having no-one to groom it (e.g., a permanently-closed commercial ski area), abandoned=yes may be used. The difference between a backcountry, not groomed and abandoned may seem fuzzy: Important difference is that low vegetation can be expected, and lack of clearing could be due to issues with land owners.

Priority

Grooming condition and priority: Ski-trails can be marked with piste:grooming:priority=1-5 (or piste:priority=* ?) to indicate the order in which they will be groomed.

As OSM is not directly suitable for live-ski-trail-condition monitoring, this will allow rendering maps that have a static way of depicting ski-trails that will be more likely to be in the best shape under less fortunate snow conditions. One example of a such map in Norway use different line widths for this.

Start counting from first priority and downwards. Assume the priority is relative within each area.

Key Value Description: Expected grooming schedule
piste:priority 1 Daily, or nearly daily.
2 Daily if snowing. At least weekly, typically before every weekend.
3 Semi-weekly. Probably before weekends. Not when less snow, early/late in the season.
4 Every other week. May be three days or more after snow before groomed.
5 Only when lots of snow, or for events only.

Other

Routes

Rental

  • Sled rental (rental=sled or amenity=sled_rental)
  • Ski rental (rental=ski or amenity=ski_rental)

Amenities and related sports

Voting (not open yet)