The past nine months have been a journey of energy, frustration, sweat, cold, wind, laughs, scree, sore feet, an icy tent, warm sleeping bags, a lot of lamb stew, hard work, failure, perseverance, and success. We’ve become intimately familiar with a huge, exciting, and breathtakingly beautiful place, the future Patagonia National Park. We’ve created and delivered an extensive, detailed, and (if I may) well-organized geospatial database that park administrators are excited to use in their conservation planning efforts into the future. We’ve designed and produced the first guide map to the park, which we can’t wait to print and mail to everyone who has pre-ordered one. We’re currently developing the interactive map that will allow people around the world to explore the park and connect with the place.
The one constant throughout this project has been the unwavering support of our friends, family, colleagues, sponsors, and all our backers. To every one of you, we sincerely thank you.
[An evening map editing session in July. Who needs good lighting when you have headlamps?]
Delays: We’ve recently encountered a hurdle that prevents us from printing and distributing the maps in September. Three weeks ago, we were two days away from going to press (we had already bought the celebratory ice cream) when we learned that all maps to be distributed in Chile must first be approved by the Chilean government. Because Chile has ongoing border disputes with its neighbors and place-name disagreements within the country, the government wants to make sure that maps in Chile show their version of things. It’s a gnarly layer of bureaucracy, but one we must comply with. We submitted our map for review three weeks ago and last week we received word that they are currently reviewing it. We don’t know for sure how long this process will take, but we expect to hear from them any day. What we can promise you is that as soon as we receive their approval, we will go to press and send out the maps! We can’t wait to get them in your hands. Thank you for being so patient. (If you aren’t one of our backers and would like to pre-order your copy of the map, send us an email at email@example.com. We’d love to send one your way!)
[The maps are all ready to go, we're just awaiting approval from Chile! Photo by Devon Jaffe-Urell.]
In the meantime, we’d like to give you a little teaser of some of the content you can expect to see in the interactive map of the park. Here’s an immersive panorama from Cerro Torres, a hill overlooking the Chacabuco Valley and Lago Gutiérrez, a deep and crystal-clear lake. Here’s the confluence of the Baker and Chacabuco rivers, a special place we wrote about in our recent post on the National Geographic Explorers Journal. We’ve made a total of 33 of these immersive panoramas from all around the park.
We’d also like to immerse you in the soundscape of the future Patagonia National Park. Here’s an example of one of the sounds embedded in the interactive map.
Thank you for all your support! We couldn’t have done this without you.
Marty & Ross
The Maps for Good team
[The Maps for Good team at work in the future Patagonia National Park. Photo by Rick Ridgeway.]