Proposed features/trailblazed

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Status: Proposed (under way)
Proposed by: vibrog
Tagging: trailblazed=yes
Applies to: linear
Definition: A way is marked with trailblazes
Drafted on:
Proposed on: 2010-06-03


Provide a simple boolean property to classify a trail as being marked, wikipedia:Trail_blazing. This is to provide a simple tagging scheme, not competing with the symbol, colour attributes to Relation:route.

We need a simple tagging scheme, as several trails may not necessarily be part of a given route. Some regions may have a standard convention for marked hiking trails that may or may not be part of a route network, but not a specific route itself.

The proposal intends to replace the simple uses of Proposed features/Marked trail, but not to describe route specific trailblazing of routes, as these can be covered by Relation:route where colour=* and symbol=* can be used to describe route specific trail blazes.

Such simplified tagging will make implementation of consistent looking hiking maps easier.

Applies to

Any road, but especially relevant for highway=path and highway=track.

Usage, Tags and Values

Add trailblazed=yes to indicate that a way is marked using trail blazes.

Marked trails are often indicated on maps with various visual methods:

  • Red lines or blue dots (conventions used in Norway).
  • Colored lines - Purple markings == purple line on map (convention in USA)

Relevant mentions


  • marked_trail=* or any other tagging scheme is not established or widely used.
  • implementation of marked_trail=* and relation:route:colour is combersome.
  • maps implementing the actual colours and shapes may be noisy, and not generic.
  • marked_trail="colourname" are insufficient in occurences where specialized trail blazes are made for a given route, which are more suitably mapped as a relation.


Numbers for related tagging schemes from osmdoc at the time of writing, (#ways/#relations, dominating country/region):

  • marked_trail=*: 1411 / 15, Austria, Slovakia
  • trailblazed=yes: 1167 / 0, Slovenia, Norway
  • marked_trail=blue: 1076 / 6, Norway
  • marked_trail_blue=yes: 1303 / 12, Slovakia, Poland
  • osmc:symbol=*: 42 / 1894, France, Germany, Switzerland
  • color=*: 72 / 298
  • symbol=*: 209 / 3348, Alps (German speaking)




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