ZoomTopo: crags like you’ve never seen them before

Posted by Niall Grimes on 22/07/2014

Make yourself a cup of tea, sit down, and prepare to while away some time gawping at Stanage in a brand new light.

“It’s a whole new take on route information,” says ZoomTopo co-creator Dan Arkle. “It’s like bringing the crag to your computer. No, it’s better than that actually, it’s like transporting you to the crag!”

ZoomTopo is a new creation from Sheffield-based geeks Dan Arkle and Roger Brook. Combining three of their great obsessions – photography, programming and climbing – they have produced a resource for climbers the like of which you have never seen before.

ZoomTopo is a fully interactive way of viewing crags on your computer and tablet. Route lines, along with grade and stars information, are overlaid on superb, high definition pictures of the crag. Hover the mouse over the line and get the info. Filter your search for grade or stars and see what’s on offer for you and what appeals.

First to get the treatment is everyone’s favourite grit crag, Stanage. Have a look at this, and be prepared to be amazed. Scroll around, se what you like, then click to get closer… closer… closer… and even closer.

We think you’ll be amazed at the detail you can pick out. It’s even possible to see what size of runner you will need for the crux. Is this cheating? Probably.

Using it is pretty intuitive. Use the “Display” menu on the top right to select what filters you want. Deselect them all to see the rock in its full glory, or select All to see all the routes. Refine your search in terms of grade or stars to be more selective.

Best of all, just have a play around to see how great this new tool is.

ZoomTopo is still in development and should soon get even better. It currently works best on computers as it needs a bit of space to get all the information across, although it should also work fine on tablets and other touch-screen devices. It currently doesn’t work so well on phones, but we’re on the case.

There are more to come, so keep your eyes open for some of your favourite high-mountain crags. So go on, fill your boots with this amazing tour of Stanage Popular End on a busy day. As a little game, just how many examples of bad crag-craft can you spot?

VIEW: the ZoomTopo of Stanage Popular End
 


JOIN THE BMC: Save 50% on your first year's membership

The BMC works for indoor climbers like you. Benefits include:

  • Retail discounts
  • Access to BMC Travel Insurance
  • Register for Mountain Training award schemes
  • £10m worldwide Combined Liability insurance
  • £10,000 Personal Accident insurance
  • Discounted entry to many competitions

Find out more about BMC membership benefits

WATCH: Molly Thompson-Smith: Portrait of a Champion on BMC TV

Follow the BMC's competition climbing Twitter feed: @BMC_Comps

Find all upcoming competitions here.


« Back

Post a comment Print this article

This article has been read 25760 times

TAGS

Click on the tags to explore more

RELATED ARTICLES

Prince Edward recognises BMC efforts in the Peak District
0
Prince Edward recognises BMC efforts in the Peak District

The sterling efforts of BMC Peak District volunteers in sticking up for Stanage Edge were recognised by royalty this weekend.
Read more »

Welly done: curtain falls on summer of climbing and walking festivals
0
Welly done: curtain falls on summer of climbing and walking festivals

As part of the BMC’s 70th birthday celebrations, volunteers from across our local areas came together to host a series of climbing and walking festivals and put some welly into the summer.
Read more »

Cloggy ZoomTopo: see the Black Cliff in a new light
0
Cloggy ZoomTopo: see the Black Cliff in a new light

If you’ve been stunned by Stanage, then be prepared to be agog at the Clog.
Read more »

Post a Comment
Posting as Anonymous Community Standards
3000 characters remaining
Submit
Your comment has been posted below, click here to view it
Comments are currently on | Turn off comments
10
1) Anonymous User
22/07/2014
Interesting, but flawed, where is the route description explaining if its a death route?
How often will it be updated with new routes,
Does this not undermine your sales of printed guides
and what is the cost to the user?
2) Anonymous User
22/07/2014
Love the poser above Censor.
3) Anonymous User
23/07/2014
Liked the rescue chopper! Come to Stanage, go home in a Heli !
4) Anonymous User
24/07/2014
Wow this is a fantastic development, really good to see something new raising the standard. Top effort.
5) Anonymous User
25/07/2014
I truly like the idea of having such a resource. But would still take my guide book to the crag.
6) Anonymous User
08/08/2014
About 10-15 years ago I wrote a spoof piece on the demise of guidebooks which ended with them being replaced by a pair of glasses which projected the line of the route onto the crag whilst Ken Wilson's disembodied voice told you where to go and what size runner to use. Tie this up with Google Glass and it looks like we're there.
08/08/2014
A very cool thing. Agree with the first comment about route descriptions being needed but as they say this is still in development so I'm sure it'll come.
8) Anonymous User
11/08/2014
Still in development I'm sure. Will be interesting to see how they include the "hidden" routes such as Ellis' Eliminate, Good Friday, Right Twin Crack etc. which are left of Inverted V and right of Shuffle.
9) Anonymous User
28/08/2014
I hope the two guys who are developing this can make this pay, as it would be fantastic to oneday see all uk crags in this way.
10) Anonymous User
23/10/2015
What a wonderful tool.
This thing is great to have along side my guide book.
As a new climber it let's me view the routes and get a good idea on where to go while at home with a cuppa.
Then I look for said routes in my guide book (get some more info) so when I get to the crag I know right where to go for.

RELATED ARTICLES

Prince Edward recognises BMC efforts in the Peak District
0

The sterling efforts of BMC Peak District volunteers in sticking up for Stanage Edge were recognised by royalty this weekend.
Read more »

Welly done: curtain falls on summer of climbing and walking festivals
0

As part of the BMC’s 70th birthday celebrations, volunteers from across our local areas came together to host a series of climbing and walking festivals and put some welly into the summer.
Read more »

Cloggy ZoomTopo: see the Black Cliff in a new light
0

If you’ve been stunned by Stanage, then be prepared to be agog at the Clog.
Read more »

BMC MEMBERSHIP
Join 82,000 BMC members and support British climbing, walking and mountaineering. Membership only £15.72.
Read more »
BMC SHOP
Great range of guidebooks, DVDs, books, calendars and maps.
All with discounts for members.
Read more »
TRAVEL INSURANCE
Get covered with BMC Insurance. Our five policies take you from the beach to Everest.
Read more »