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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby lcarreau » Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:55 am

Sorry, but I don't understand ONE word being typed on this thread ..

Perhaps we should summon these folks ...??? ?

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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby CSUMarmot » Mon Sep 19, 2011 2:59 am

schmed wrote:Note also that I am suggesting the use of these UTM coordinates within a specific region, the Sierra Nevada, the climber's portion of which lies completely within UTM zone 11. Regardless, it's hard for me to understand the ambiguity issue, since many mountains in different regions (and sometimes in the same region) share the same proper names. Despite their other shortcomings, UTM coordinates will tend to be more distinct than even proper names. Note that an elevation-based naming scheme would not be particularly distinct even within the Sierra Nevada region.


So a bunch of numbers is more distinct than a proper name? Sure, there are multiple Bald, Sheep, Red, Table mountains in my area, but if someone said 'hey I climbed Bald Mtn today' I could at least narrow it down (or *gasp* ask them which Bald they climbed) to get an idea of where they went. If they said I climbed UTM1258945 who really knows what they're talking about?

The thing about unofficial names is they will someday catch on. I know where "Confluence Peak" is even if I cant remember the elevation or care what the UTM coordinates are. I dont like using Pt xxxxx or UN xxxxx as a name, but at least it is fixed on something we consider absolute given the quad elevation. I dont like trying to remember 30 UNs, but my mental map doesn't include a UTM grid where I can pinpoint a peak given a bunch of meaningless numbers.

Not to mention, if I wanted to find the exact summit block, a 100 meter square isn't going to cut it, especially if there are lots of false summits nearby. Perhaps I want to cut that down to a 10 meter square, but hey, the more x's you add to your UTM just makes the whole thing exponentially indiscernible.

The ponit I'm trying to make is, UTM is a navigational tool, not a naming one. It works great in many situations, but it doesn't work as a name without a map or a very good memory.
Dammit kid get off mah lawn!!!
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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby schmed » Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:00 am

CSUMarmot wrote:The thing about unofficial names is they will someday catch on. I know where "Confluence Peak" is even if I cant remember the elevation or care what the UTM coordinates are.


Note that I am in no way arguing for this UTM convention over unofficial names (please see my original post). I have posted several mountain pages using such unofficial names, and greatly prefer them. I was only trying to point out that concerns raised about the lack of a UTM zone, etc. seem misguided, since the UTM designations are at least as distinct as proper names.
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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby schmed » Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:10 am

Bob Sihler wrote:Until the system changes, help users by going with the system. It's very easy to show that the UTM format is not the preferred one, at least not on this site.


Actually, there are very few unnamed Sierra peaks represented here at summitpost.org. As I've stated previously, I am willing to follow the community consensus on this issue, but would prefer to do so after we've all become sufficiently familiar with the options to establish such a convention. This is why I raised the issue via this forum.
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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby mrchad9 » Mon Sep 19, 2011 9:01 am

Three of my Sierra Peaks are unnamed. In none of these cases, or any other, would I think it appropriate to dub a peak with my own suggestion regardless of how fitting (though some on the site disagree).

One is "Gem Peak" (Point 12,245). The unofficial name comes from the summit register dating back over 30 years, and has been accepted by many others signing the register. Since the name is likely to be unfamiliar to anyone looking at a map I also included the spot elevation from the USGS quad in the title, which should make it easy to find.

The other two are "Kuna Crest North" and "Kuna Crest South". Here I didn't include the spot elevation in the title because the names are more familiar, and Kuna Crest is easily found when looking at a map of the area. The elevation can readily be found when looking at the summary information on the page.

IMHO using UTM information is fairly useless. I don't use the system and there are many others who feel the same way. It is much easier to find a peak with some information more relevant to looking at a map of the area, such as a spot elevation or the elevation of the highest contour if there isn't one. I don't see the point of putting a cryptic number that stands for the coordinates, especially when the latitude and longitute coordinates are supposed to be listed on the page as well.

For peaks that have no unofficial names or identifying information other than a spot elevation, I've used a format that includes the location relative to the nearest named peak... for example Point 12767 (0.7 mi SW Lyell). Hard to imagine someone would have a hard time finding that one.
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Re: Unnamed peak pages

Postby schmed » Tue Sep 20, 2011 4:26 am

mrchad9 wrote:Three of my Sierra Peaks are unnamed. In none of these cases, or any other, would I think it appropriate to dub a peak with my own suggestion regardless of how fitting (though some on the site disagree).

One is "Gem Peak" (Point 12,245). The unofficial name comes from the summit register dating back over 30 years, and has been accepted by many others signing the register. Since the name is likely to be unfamiliar to anyone looking at a map I also included the spot elevation from the USGS quad in the title, which should make it easy to find.

The other two are "Kuna Crest North" and "Kuna Crest South". Here I didn't include the spot elevation in the title because the names are more familiar, and Kuna Crest is easily found when looking at a map of the area. The elevation can readily be found when looking at the summary information on the page.


I agree with all of the above and have used a similar approach for several of the pages I developed for peaks without official names.

IMHO using UTM information is fairly useless. I don't use the system and there are many others who feel the same way. It is much easier to find a peak with some information more relevant to looking at a map of the area, such as a spot elevation or the elevation of the highest contour if there isn't one.


I would only quibble with your statement that it is easier to find the peak using the elevation. To do so, you must search for a spot elevation or closed contour with a matching elevation (hopefully on the same edition of the same map the author referred to, so that there will actually be a matching elevation). The UTM information indexes the peak location directly. I admit that the latter technique, though easier, is certainly less well known than the "hunt and peck for a matching elevation" method.

I don't see the point of putting a cryptic number that stands for the coordinates, especially when the latitude and longitute coordinates are supposed to be listed on the page as well.


The reason that the UTM designation has gained some (limited) favor is that it provides a much more compact way of referring to a specific location than does the latitude and longitude. No one would seriously consider naming a peak using a combination of latitude and longitude, because it would be ungainly. The 6 digits of the UTM designation are comparable to the 5 necessary for a spot elevation in feet.

For peaks that have no unofficial names or identifying information other than a spot elevation, I've used a format that includes the location relative to the nearest named peak... for example Point 12767 (0.7 mi SW Lyell). Hard to imagine someone would have a hard time finding that one.


This seems a very reasonable method as well, mitigating the elevation stability issue.
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Re: Unnamed peak pages (consensus)

Postby schmed » Sat Sep 24, 2011 11:02 pm

Hi Gang,

After reviewing a week's worth of feedback via this thread (as well as the posts that originally inspired it), I'm withdrawing the UTM<eeennn> proposal I floated for referring to unnamed peaks (i.e., those lacking even an unofficial name and which aren't simply a shoulder of some more prominent peak). Only 2 of 8 authors (myself included) had anything positive to say about the idea, and the negative feedback came from quarters that seemed fairly well entrenched.

As I argued during the thread, I think it's important to understand a proposal before you pass judgement on it. Sadly, the most vocal critics of the idea seemed to be the least informed about what was being discussed. As Bob Sihler pointed out, though, this is ultimately beside the point. If the summitpost.org community doesn't think the idea is worth consideration, then it's obviously not an appropriate convention to adopt here. Our conventions should be chosen both to meet the needs and match the proclivities of our authors. Personally, I feel much more at home in an environment like this one anyway, where I'm on the geeky side of the spectrum.

Here's what I intend to do with my own pages, which I offer as a strategy that I think matches the consensus position sufficiently:

  • Unofficially named summits - Use such names whenever possible, regardless of how widely adopted the name might be currently (as long as at least two people are using it, of course). We all prefer our summits to have names, and this is the process through which geographical features eventually acquire official names (i.e., people start using the unofficial ones.) There are certainly those here who don't think any unofficial names should be used, but they are clearly in the minority. Surround unofficial names in double quotes, so that the reader will not expect to find these names on official maps. Try to include some parenthetical expression identifying the range or referring to a nearby named summit, particularly for those names not in wide usage. Include neither the double quotes nor the parenthetical expression in the Query Name. For example, the page with Name “Mount Morgenson” (0.5 mi W of Mt. Russell) would have Query Name Morgenson.
  • Shoulders of other peaks - Use a geographic reference to the main peak like “East Barnard” or “Southeast Polemonium”, but (until it becomes official) surround the name in double quotes. Do not include any coordinate information within the name itself. List the main peak name first in the Query Name. For example, the page with Name “East Barnard” would have Query Name Barnard, East.
  • "Misplaced" official summits - Include information about the true high point of a mountain on the page describing the official summit rather than creating a new page for the true high point.
  • Other unnamed peaks - Use the Peak <map elevation> format, but include a parenthetical expression referring to a nearby summit or at least identifying the range (see above). Do not surround the name in double quotes, and exclude the parenthetical expression from the Query Name. Use the elevation from a printed map, as opposed to some other source of data (e.g., an altimeter reading or an elevation adjusted to the latest vertical datum). For example, the page with Name Peak 3994m (0.9 mi NNE of The Thumb) would have Query Name Peak 3994m.

Finally, I'd like to thank everyone who took the time to weigh in on the questions I raised. I'm glad I finally got around to asking, because I have so many affected pages. Though they may be the bastard stepchildren of the Sierra, I'd like to see each receive the most appropriate representation possible here at summitpost.org.

Best Regards,

- Chris
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