Talk:Tag:mountain pass

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Can you please explain this proposal, rather than leave it blank. Ben. 19:02, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Meaning of the proposal

Some sort of tag like pass=true could indicate that a street in the mountains has reached its summit (called 'pass', 'passo', 'col', ...) In many maps an icon like the following is used:

\  /
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/  \

(please excuse the awsome drawing - it's quick but dirty ;-) --Raschu 19:42, 16 October 2007 (BST)

Rename into alpine_pass

I've already mapped some passes, and missed the right feature for this (I used the peak tag). It's a good Idea to have this feature. But I suggest to have a more obvious name alpine_pass instead of the simple name pass. --Andy 07:44, 7 November 2007 (UTC)


Would highway=mountain_pass be more precise? I'm unsure if highway=pass might be too ambiguous. -- Ulfl 06:46, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

  • Talk:Proposed_features/Pass mentions "alpine_pass", that might be more natural for native speakers. --Colin Marquardt 12:42, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
    • As I'm not a native speaker - are you sure? Wikipedia (link above) uses mountain pass and doesn't even really know "alpine pass" -- Ulfl 19:46, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
      • No, not sure, just mentioning that it has been mentioned. :) But "mountain pass" seems to be used more indeed. -Colin Marquardt 13:01, 9 November 2007 (UTC)
    • Why ? alpine_pass refers only to the Alps, which is too restrictive. What about caledonian_pass, vogesen_pass, etc. I prefer mountain_pass --Gummibaerli 09:07, 21 November 2007 (UTC)

Since we already have bridge=yes and tunnel=yes, would not highway=primary|secondary|whatever, mountain_pass=yes be more appropriate? MikeCollinson 19:46, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

  • You've noticed a perfectly valid point that I just didn't recognized. That also fits well into the various different highway classes that might appear for a mountain pass (from highway=footpath to highway=motorway). I've changed the proposal accordingly. -- Ulfl 21:08, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

Is there some reason this cannot apply to ways as well as nodes? --Hawke 01:38, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

  • As mentioned in the rationale, a mountain pass is actually the highest point of the road going over a mountain - not the whole road - so it should be only a node. Or do you mean something different? -- Ulfl 14:34, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
From the rationale: "The term "mountain pass" is ambiguous. The meaning can be the whole road (or footway)...". I see no reason that it can't be used for both: tag the way that is the whole road (or at least the portion of it that is considered a "mountain pass") and then tag the node at the highest point. Also, the example given, if it is meant to apply to nodes only, applies "highway=secondary" to a node, which doesn't make any sense. --Hawke 13:24, 21 December 2007 (UTC)
There is a problem with tagging the whole road: How do you differentiate between this being a motorway or a footway then? You can't have a highway being both tagged as motorway and mountain_pass. So only the node should be tagged as mountain_pass=yes. Also see my comment on the highway=node tag below. -- Ulfl 13:37, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
There is no problem. If it's a motorway, then, highway=motorway, mountain_pass=yes. If it's a footway, highway=footway, mountain_pass=yes. How does this conflict with tagging as both motorway and mountain pass? --Hawke 01:57, 4 January 2008 (UTC)
You could use it that way, but you shouldn't do so. The mountain pass only marks the highest *point* of a way going over the mountain, *not* the entire way! I've checked against some maps, had a look at the wikipedia. If people use the term mountain pass and mean the whole road it's just plain wrong from what I've read. -- Ulfl 01:49, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
To quote "a narrow route across a relatively low notch or depression in a mountain barrier." To quote wikipedia's "Mountain pass" article, linked above: "...a pass can refer to a route, as well as the highest part thereof". Also from wikipedia: "The top of a pass..." and "Passes may be very short, consisting of steep slopes to the top of the pass, or valleys of many kilometers...". A point cannot be said to have a "top", and can be neither short nor "many kilometers" in length. As stated in the rationale, the term is ambiguous. --Hawke 08:10, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Well, let's get practical ;-) To my experiences riding a motorcycle a lot through the alps (germany, austria, italy, switzerland, ...) only the highest point of a mountain pass is actually signed - so this is a very unique point that needs to be tagged at least for motorcyclists - therefore the proposal. If you would like to tag a mountain pass as a way, this might just be a different proposal. You would need to indicate the actual start and end of such a pass. This is pretty difficult, as there's usually no indication (at least in the alps). There are often signs like "Umbrailpass open", but these are not indicating the actual start of the pass, but a very early indicator if the pass is open or not - while the pass being miles away. I don't know it this situation is different in the US or elsewhere - so you may have a clear indicator where a pass starts/ends. However, this proposal is about marking the top of a road passing the mountains. -- Ulfl 01:16, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
Practical? OK. Look at it this way: What is lost by tagging the entire pass route with "mountain_pass=yes", as well as tagging the highest node? I am not saying the highest node should not be tagged, I'm just saying the way should be tagged as well. --Hawke 18:22, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
I agree with mountain_pass being a node. We already have incline and even incline_steep which lets us to have even better description of the route. As a suggestion, I've seen some maps depicting mountain passes as dimmed grey (and sometimes red) circles around the top point of the pass. Easier and cleaner for renderers, I guess. --Xuacu 20:10, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Has this been accepted? At any rate, I disagree with the proposal: We don't usually tag highway nodes with the type of highway they're on, and the single tag highway=pass (or highway=mountain_pass) would be quite sufficient for specifying a pass. Robx 16:06, 24 December 2007 (UTC)
    • Giving the fact that a lot of people hesitate from adding new highway tags, and giving the fact that IMHO a mountain pass is more of a highway property than a special kind of highway, I guess the current proposal fits well into tunnel=yes and alike properties. Also see my comment on the highway=node tag below. -- Ulfl 13:37, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
  • The "apply highway=secondary to a node" is a missunderstanding - I don't meant to tag the node with it - although it wouldn't hurt :-) I've updated the proposal accordingly. -- Ulfl 13:37, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

I saw some tags highway=mountain_pass when editing Himalaya region and JOSM v. 970 uses that tag as well - so this needs a cleanup and probably conversion to mountain_pass=yes. By the way: what would mountain_pass=no mean? There is some redundance in this tag... ;-) --katpatuka 19:07, 21 September 2008 (UTC)


  • I approve this proposal -- Ulfl 22:12, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- --Skywave 22:24, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- EdoM (lets talk about it) 22:40, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal SlowRider 00:20, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- sadam 00:39, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- STA 11:15, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- Niccolo 10:35, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal -- ramack 16:01, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal as a node only -- Pieren 22:31, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I disapprove this proposal -- Robx 16:07, 24 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal, but I agree with Hawke to extend this proposal to ways as well --Cbm 08:35, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

Proposal updated: clarify that the mountain_pass=yes node don't need to be tagged with highway=xy. -- Ulfl 13:48, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

  • I approve this proposal -- katpatuka --katpatuka 18:43, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I disapprove this proposal, because it should be extended to cover ways as well as nodes. --Hawke 08:13, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal I approve this proposal. --Cohort 15:41, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal -- Robx 15:48, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal -- MikeCollinson 16:01, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal -- ramack 16:18, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal -- raphael 18:03, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I disapprove of this proposal; it should include ways as well as nodes. --Myfanwy 20:04, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal -- Nikolaj 20:44, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal --Cartinus 18:33, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal (See my comment on possible rendering) --Xuacu 20:12, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal, nodes only --Mgeiser 22:58, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve the clarified proposal --EdoM (lets talk about it) 23:01, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Voting ended, feature approved -- Ulfl 05:23, 8 January 2008 (UTC)

Conversation moved from article page:

The following discussion was put one the main page I'm moving it to here on the talk page --Keithonearth (talk) 18:47, 14 September 2014 (UTC)


A mountain pass is usually depicted with a "bridge like" symbol:

\  /
|  |
/  \

So with a way going trough it, this looks like:

\ | /
| | |
/ | \

If the symbol is not oriented along the way it can look like that Pass 1.png or with simple point with name and altitude.


Geomorphology vosges.png Flou col de la portette.png Flou col du rousset.png Flou col des limouches.png Flou pas du margeat.png Flou col des limouches 2.png

I don't know who put this image in, but the maps I had a look at used the pass symbol the way depicted as in the icon section - the bridge like symbol being along the way and not crossing the way as on this image?!? -- Ulfl 11:43, 11 November 2007 (UTC)

The bridge is along the way because it is a way (linear) property. A mountain pass should be a node property. In some case a mountain pass is depicted as a simple point.--Alban 12:55, 11 November 2007 (UTC)