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Date/Time: 06/20/2024 10:25PM
Fisher Maps

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Previous Messages:
Author Message Text
arnesr 04/30/2024 11:38AM
That is quite impressive and detailed QPassage. It has been almost 20 years since I have been to Argo, but I hear it's emerald clear waters calling me back.


I too make my own maps. There is a ton of free or nearly free data available online these days to put together a decent map. I use QGIS(Free) to import the data as shapefiles to make my own maps. Here is a section of the Eastern end of Cirrus lake/Sue Falls complete with bathymetry.





I mirror much of this data and more in a custom map on my Lowrance Hook 4 unit.
QPassage 04/29/2024 06:38PM



That's why when I was goin to the Q I made my own maps like this. Fisher Maps can be very accurate if you update them. lol
qp
sns 04/27/2024 03:09PM
RC: "I agree with you 100%. That's why I started making my own maps both printed and for GPS. On my maps all the portages are GPS tracks made by someone who has walked the portage. The portage landings and distances are accurate. Email me if you want to discuss getting a map from me."


Count me interested.


I hate discovering inaccuracies on maps (and they all seem to have them) the hard way!
RC 04/27/2024 02:08PM
I agree with you 100%. That's why I started making my own maps both printed and for GPS. On my maps all the portages are GPS tracks made by someone who has walked the portage. The portage landings and distances are accurate. Email me if you want to discuss getting a map from me.
cburton103 02/20/2024 09:30AM
I’m always impressed when Banksiana says he navigates with the Chrismar map. Probably a testament to how much time he has spent up there. I’m in the camp of using the Chrismar map and PP to check portage locations and add campsite locations and ratings to my Fisher and McKenzie maps. I enjoy following along with the points, islands, bays, etc on the more favorable scales while I paddle through the Q.
tumblehome 02/20/2024 07:06AM
Well from the horse's mouth even. Thanks for sharing the reply from Chrismar.
I definitely like the Chrismar for an overall view of Quetico but do not use it to navigate due to the scale.
Tom
LarryS48 02/19/2024 08:58PM
sns: "LarryS48: " he said they were encouraging Chrismar to produce fours maps covering Quetico instead of just one. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen that happen. "



Well, probably won't happen...but I'd buy all four on a hot minute if they did make/sell 'em..."



I emailed Chrismar to ask about the project to produce four maps covering Quetico. Here is their reply.


“Hi Larry,


Yes, it was our hope to have those quadrants completed one at a time over recent years, but we were buried during Covid keeping up with printing existing maps in our series due to unusually high demand - everyone was racing into the countryside to get away. I think we reprinted almost every one of our series.


And we also had a few other new maps underway a couple for major northwestern Ontario parks that wanted us to replace their in-house maps with ours. Quickly. Also a couple of new maps for the greater population down this way, so now that those Sleeping Giant and Lake Superior parks are done, we in the process of completing Algonquin 5 and Temagami 5, as well as a Temagami Planning map (in cooperation with Park management, again to replace their old in-house version).


In short, between those and our variety of custom map customers, we were just swamped. But we certainly haven’t abandoned the Quetico quadrants plan, so we’ll be back on that as soon as we clear some of these new maps off our plate. If only I could clone myself : )


Best regards,


Mark Smith
Chrismar Mapping Services Inc.
P.O. Box 1277, Uxbridge, Ontario L9P 1N5
Tel.: 905-852-6151
www.Chrismar.com or www.AdventureMap.com”
sns 02/18/2024 07:21PM
LarryS48: " he said they were encouraging Chrismar to produce fours maps covering Quetico instead of just one. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen that happen. "


Well, probably won't happen...but I'd buy all four on a hot minute if they did make/sell 'em...
LarryS48 02/18/2024 03:40PM
I haven’t used Fisher maps for quite a few years, but I have been carrying the Chrismar map and the McKenzie maps in Quetico. I like the scale of the McKenzie maps but when it comes to the accuracy of portage locations the Chrismar is much better. When they disagree on a portage location roughly nine out of ten times the Chrismar is right. I think this is because Chrismar works with Ontario parks to have their maps checked. I talked to someone working at the Dawson trail office a few years ago and he said they were encouraging Chrismar to produce fours maps covering Quetico instead of just one. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen that happen.
AdamXChicago 12/24/2023 08:04PM
Prior to each trip, I mark up my Fishers with notes from PadPlan. That lessens the inaccuracies quite a bit. Thanks to everyone who inputs and updates on PadPlan.


AdamX
Gaidin53 12/19/2023 07:34PM
Neither of those companies maps really include campsites in Quetico. Certain areas have some but overall not much. I was using all 3 maps on my Quetico trip and also Garmin Quetico BWCA map chip. I had also studied enough of my route and even changes that I knew problem areas. Like Trant to Kahsahpiwi being 2 portages with a short paddle in the middle.


I went through my maps and hand annotated the campsites with ratings. Was a lot of work over a winter but worthwhile!


Ryan
MyWaterzMyWoodz 12/18/2023 08:40PM
Both Fisher and Mckenzie Maps should do a portage and campsite audit on their maps. It's not an easy or cheap task but it's much needed to replace the outdated and misleading info. I would pay twice the amount for an accurate map.
Stumpy 09/19/2023 02:33PM
Lailoken: "I love Fishers, and no, they are not accurate. It's like someone told someone what it like, it's part of the adventure. Never used another map company, and don't use GPS either. It's wilderness. That's all I can say. "
Agree
The F series is not bad....for years I used the 100 series (which is still good for finding old portages, on remote routes).
Banksiana 09/19/2023 02:01PM
New territory requires a map. Not much new territory left for me, especially south of the Maligne.
gravelroad 09/19/2023 01:43PM
When I taught wilderness navigation, I told my students that they would know they were competent when they started noticing map errors and consciously disregarding them.


I also heard years ago that much of the field work for the original federal topographic surveys was performed in various bars across Northern Minnesota. You'll see indications of this when grid lines wander off course in ways wondrous and strange. :-)


If you think about the labor investment for commercial mapmakers to update and correct their maps, you'll begin to understand why it's more cost-effective to fool some of the people some of the time:


"Historical Topographic Maps (topographic maps published before 2007)


"USGS maps in the Historical Topographic Map Collection are historical documents and will not be revised or corrected. Historical USGS maps are often used as a base map for commercial map products that make modifications or add enhancements and put a current date on the map. The USGS has no control over those products."


I found an error on a map. How can I report it and when will you fix it?
Jackfish 09/19/2023 12:12PM
Banksiana: "I would say the Chrismar map has the same amount of detail as McKenzie (with the added benefit of accurate portage locations) or Fisher; whether you can see the detail is dependent upon your prescription.


I tend to not have my map out when traveling preferring to navigate by memory."

I'm not sure how you figure the Chrismar has the same amount of detail as the McKenzie when the scale is so much larger on the McKenzie. I agree that there could be specific details on the Chrismar that may be more accurate, but I think that's the crux of this overall thread. All maps have accuracies and inaccuracies. Part of the reason I carry multiples maps, but still use the McKenzie as our default navigation map.


As for not having your map out when traveling and preferring to navigate from memory... we've gone to the same place in Quetico so many times, I don't need a map either. However, I'm not sure how navigating by memory works when you're on a new route. I think I'm missing something here.
TreeBear 09/19/2023 10:35AM
The part that bugs me is that Fisher and McKenzie have errors, whether in Quetico or BW, that have been there for decades with the same incorrect information. Sometimes they even have information that was never right (like putting a portage landing 100 feet down the shore from where it ought to be. And then there's the misprints where the dots get printed a half inch off so every campsite and portage is bumped over from where they should be. Obviously, I understand how it happened, but how do those get through quality control? In any case, I find that most people learned to wilderness navigate on one or another and usually stay there. I grew up on the McKenzies and still use them, but I have started to appreciate the Voyageurs (for the BWCA) more. Better yet, if I am navigating a really tough section or a PMA, I'll print a laminate an air photo.


On the campsite side of things, I understand having old campsites. That makes sense to me because sites disappear as routes fade and it takes time for that information to get updated. The ones I don't get is when a long-term campsite gets removed from the map but not in person. Every now and again there are perfectly good campsites that just aren't on the maps. I do enjoy knowing about secret campsites because they can be a nice wild card on a busy BWCA day, but still.
Banksiana 09/19/2023 10:26AM
Jackfish: "In 35 years of traveling Quetico, I've always used McKenzie maps, but I always have a Chrismar with me for a large perspective of the park. The Chrismar DOES NOT get used for navigation. The scale is way too small to show enough detail.
I would say the Chrismar map has the same amount of detail as McKenzie (with the added benefit of accurate portage locations) or Fisher; whether you can see the detail is dependent upon your prescription.

I tend to not have my map out when traveling preferring to navigate by memory.
Jackfish 09/19/2023 08:35AM
In 35 years of traveling Quetico, I've always used McKenzie maps, but I always have a Chrismar with me for a large perspective of the park. The Chrismar DOES NOT get used for navigation. The scale is way too small to show enough detail.
McKenzie has the largest scale and the contour lines that I find helpful.


We might bring some Fisher maps with us as a backup or just to show a different perspective. Maps don't weigh anything so it's no big deal. However, McKenzies are the ones we have in front of us when we're paddling.


No map is 100% perfect. As someone said above, the maps "aren't to be used for navigation". LOL (Well, what exactly ARE they supposed to be used for?) That's just a standard disclaimer to get them off the hook when there is a mistake or wrong location for a portage, etc.


Dealing with maps is just part of the adventure. I'd far rather look at maps while paddling than deal with a small electronic screen.

Note for Marsonite: I've been on that portage between Shade and Gray. With or without a map, that portage has screwed up many a traveler. Not only a mucky, swamp-grass portage, but moose trails that look like portage trails can get a group going in circles. Fortunately, that didn't happen to us, but after we were done, we had a group come up behind us from literally nowhere who swore they were on a different lake than they were. It took some convincing, but we set them straight and got them going in the right direction. :)
tumblehome 09/19/2023 07:05AM
Lailoken: "I love Fishers, and no, they are not accurate. It's like someone told someone what it like, it's part of the adventure. Never used another map company, and don't use GPS either. It's wilderness. That's all I can say. "
I agree. I grew up with fisher and they are pleasing to the eye. There is something about the McKenzie maps with the color that distracts me.
There are a few mistakes on fisher maps and I don’t know if anyone tells them or not. But for the most part, I’ve traveled a thousand miles using them and I make it home every time.

I think fisher maps are more accurate than Google maps lol.

Tom
Lailoken 09/18/2023 07:35PM
I love Fishers, and no, they are not accurate. It's like someone told someone what it like, it's part of the adventure. Never used another map company, and don't use GPS either. It's wilderness. That's all I can say.
Banksiana 09/18/2023 02:40PM
Printed on Fisher Maps: "This map is not intended for navigational use."
Gotta read the warning labels.


In Quetico I only carry the Chrismar. In the B-dub (liquid water visits are somewhat rare) I've found Voyageur to be most accurate and easiest on the eyes. I cannot bear the color choices and printing of the McKenzie.


As for the portage from unnamed into Grey (starting at unnamed) the western leg is the preferable start. I was told that the portage crew would no longer be clearing the eastern leg (as was the case last year)- last year they had even piled brush on the eastern leg at the start of the swamp to discourage this choice (this year someone had moved the brush). People that "do the loop" don't cross the swamp but pass from the western choice to the eastern choice (or vice versa) in the hope of avoiding the swamp.
plander 09/18/2023 01:35PM
I feel they all (Fisher, McKenzie, Voyageur) have their own strengths and weaknesses. I use whichever ones makes sense for a given trip, but I tend to use McKenzie maps more than the others. That said, I use the maps and a compass in conjunction with GPS (iPhone).

Currently, I prefer using the GAIA GPS app with KMZ maps downloaded from PP - these map files have fairly accurate coordinates for the campsites and portages. In addition, I use the Navionics app (US and Canada) for lake contours.
marsonite 09/18/2023 12:11PM
May I rant about Fisher Maps? Why do I even carry these things.

I think it borders on unethical for them to still be selling these things, unless they do some updating . Yes I do carry a Chrismar map, but still.

I was going to take the portage between Shade and the unnamed lake before Grey. The landing is a little hard to spot, but with the help of my outdated Topo map on my phone, we found it, with a cut log and canoe scrapings and all. Except it wasn’t the portage. Petered out after 20 rods or so. Took a closer look at Chrismar and it was actually a bit further south.

I knew enough about the unnamed to Grey portage to pay close attention and get the landing right. Otherwise you might be one of the poor people who get over the wet swamp, turn left and wind up back at unnamed. I could see tracks of people who had come over the old portage.

And then there are distances. The south portage out of Khashawapiwi is listed at 180. It’s actually 270. The portage from Isabella to Side is listed as 25 rods on Fisher….maybe it once was that but it’s pushing 60 now. Kind of irritating when your planning your day.


The problem is that people are still relying on these faulty maps and leaving signs on these old portages, when they should be totally abandoned.

And the campsites on Fisher? Occasionally a red dot corresponds to a usable camp, sometimes there is an old long unused site, and many times there is nothing at all. What a joke. Just remove those red dots instead of giving people false hope.

Seems like at a minimum there should be a warning at Prairie Portage.

Anyway, that’s all. Are Mackenzie maps any better? Hate to haul out the reading glasses every time I open Cristmar.