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post #16 of (permalink) Old 03-18-2015, 04:25 PM Thread Starter
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where do you get beta for rarely visited areas?
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post #17 of (permalink) Old 03-18-2015, 08:09 PM
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where do you get beta for rarely visited areas?
Recon. trips. : )
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post #18 of (permalink) Old 03-20-2015, 03:24 PM
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I just joined bivouac. I figured if $25 can save me a navigational error on a backpacking trip, it's more than worth it.

One warning: It's addictive and can turn short trips into really long trips! One of my relaxing backpacking scramble trip ideas to go up 3 peaks in 2 days now has 7 peaks on the to-do list over many more days!
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post #19 of (permalink) Old 03-20-2015, 04:02 PM
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As a peak-bagger from Alberta the main reason (and probably the only reason) I check bivouac is Rick Collier's trip reports. I don't pay for it though. It costs me 18 bucks per year in total to run my own site and I don't like the fact I need to pay more than that to use another website... Especially considering a good number of Collier's trip reports are now "corrupted" (all merging into a different trip somewhere by Pincher Creek after a couple paragraphs...). Without purchasing you can still view the "abstract".

The majority of my obscured trip ideas comes from just gazing at the topo map, the satellite images and pictures I can find (including myself's). Collier's report will conform the route as "go" or "no go". A difficulty rating is useful and a broad ascent line is also very useful. So in the end it is useful but up to you figure out if it's worth to pay...
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post #20 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 04:05 PM
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...It costs me 18 bucks per year in total to run my own site and I don't like the fact I need to pay more than that to use another website...
Wow! That's cheap! I pay $100 USD / Year just to host verndewit.com as an off site backup for my photos...

I like to buy guidebooks and support other's efforts to generate good trip reports and travel ideas, because in the end I would like to think (some?) people would support me if I did a guidebook or came up with an idea that could save folks many hours of thrashing around aimlessly when there's a perfectly good route nearby.

But maybe that's not the case...

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post #21 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 04:42 PM
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I'll chime on this one...

I think most, if not all, of these sites start as personal "trip report + photo" storage areas. Once bitten with mountain bug there is often no way back and as you start exploring on your own amount of info grows and becomes usable to large(r) audiences. Prime example is old Dave Stephens site (what a shame it is not around anymore), then of course Spirko, Vern and now Steven (scary to look at sheer amount on this one for kid in his early 20's) to name a few. But, as maintenance costs, logical idea is to pass it on to consumer as this type of info is often not available anywhere else.

Main problem I see in "anti-bivouac" camp is notion that you have to pay something. It is not the amount (5 trips to Starbucks), it is that it is not free. I think Eric also considered making summitsearch paid site, but gave up not wanting to "become bivouac".

At the end I'll agree with Vern -- take something then give back approach. If you used someone info, give credit and support the author. If you have something interesting, make it available to others. But as soon as $ comes into equation, can of worms is open and opinions will be polarized, no matter what.
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post #22 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 06:01 PM
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It is pretty odd if there's only one site asking for $ and nobody else does, so that's why people are against it. In other words, there isn't a culture of asking people $ by publishing trip reports and photos online yet. For me myself it's mostly about my personal passion and the desire to "expose" these mountains to more people. That's different than publishing guidebooks. And TBH, expect Collier's TRs and some selected mountain data bivouac isn't the most user-friendly site out there, not even close.
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post #23 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 07:49 PM
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There's a big difference between a website that is providing information on many mountains, roads, trails, routes, pictures, mapping, gpx files, trips etc. and someone's personal website detailing all their trips. No ads on Bivouac either.

People are against Bivouac not just because of the fee. Many have had issues with it's owner. For me, it's a great resource and I have no qualms paying $50 for three years.
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post #24 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 07:58 PM
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If every website charged money, nobody would put up with it, because then you'll have to be paying fees to ever website.

There's plenty of better websites out there than bivouac, the only reason anyone still talks about it is because of the good content put on there, that the the site owner decided to capitalize on by locking it up. Most of it is 10 years old though, and I think most people have moved on.
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post #25 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 08:25 PM
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There's a big difference between a website that is providing information on many mountains, roads, trails, routes, pictures, mapping, gpx files, trips etc. and someone's personal website detailing all their trips.
This might be a valid point, but line is not always so clearly drawn. Say for example you decide to run a site (are you?). Nothing different from what you already post here -- lots of routes nobody heard off, maps, gps tracks, wonderful photos. We are not talking "I drove up Duffey and hiked Joffre Lakes" here. Sure, for some of them beta came from elsewhere but I bet many you just researched and trashed by yourself. Would that really be so much different from bivouac?
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post #26 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 09:02 PM
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This might be a valid point, but line is not always so clearly drawn. Say for example you decide to run a site (are you?). Nothing different from what you already post here -- lots of routes nobody heard off, maps, gps tracks, wonderful photos. We are not talking "I drove up Duffey and hiked Joffre Lakes" here. Sure, for some of them beta came from elsewhere but I bet many you just researched and trashed by yourself. Would that really be so much different from bivouac?
Bivouac is being used as a resource to further a person's horizons, myself included. I don't give a **** about all the Bivouac Haters that are out there and the ones that knock it any chance they get. For me, it's a great resource and I get plenty of ideas from it for places to go and it is worth the price of admission. CT can be a great resource but it's different and for me I think the 2 sites compliment each other.

If you can get all your info from other sites for free and plan/execute your trips then fill your boots.
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post #27 of (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by zeljkok View Post

Main problem I see in "anti-bivouac" camp is notion that you have to pay something. It is not the amount (5 trips to Starbucks), it is that it is not free. I think Eric also considered making summitsearch paid site, but gave up not wanting to "become bivouac".
For me paying for bivouac is a problem because the content is user generated. I think that is also a reason the site has become stagnant.
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post #28 of (permalink) Old 03-26-2015, 11:48 AM
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For me paying for bivouac is a problem because the content is user generated. I think that is also a reason the site has become stagnant.
That's a fair point. But I did up a whole bunch of trip reports on Bivouac one boring December, and what I got out of it was $100 worth of free mapping software so that paid for a few years of my subscriptions!

On another tangent, related to paying for beta...

I recently chatted with both Bill Corbett and Allan Kane letting them know that I do NOT want their guide book sales to plummet just because of sites like mine. They assured me this wasn't the case.

I try to encourage people to pay for (good) guidebooks, because even detailed trip reports don't do justice to a mountain's history or all of its potential routes, etc. Someone like Bill put a lot of work into his book and I know that Allan also researches the **** outa his routes. Without these resources most of us would have no idea of the rich history of our back yards.

Bivouac really seems to attract haters, which I've never understood. Life is way too short to get so hot 'n bothered by such pithy IMHO.

I have to say that user paid sites are becoming the dinosaurs of the internet. The way to generate income is through Google Ads. Take camera review sites as another example. Many have tried and failed at a subscriber model and now there's only ReidReviews that is operating this way. Every other site is using ads to generate income.

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post #29 of (permalink) Old 03-26-2015, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by vern.dewit View Post
Bivouac really seems to attract haters, which I've never understood. Life is way too short to get so hot 'n bothered by such pithy IMHO.
Good point. I think it's also easy to mistake mild dislike with "hating" on the Internet, since people usually aren't bothered with being particularly polite.
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post #30 of (permalink) Old 03-26-2015, 03:21 PM
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User sites vs guidebooks is separate topic. It is just another form of phenomenon where every type of media is moving to digital format (CDs are obsolete; Kindle is much more practical than going to Chapters, etc). Everybody can now easily 'publish' without going through what traditional book authors must. This has both good and bad things attached. Internet has virtually no control so quality and accuracy can be both questionable and subjective. Other side of coin is instant availability and much larger offer. Personally I prefer printed guidebooks as well, but IMHO only one side can win the contest.

As for bivouac haters, it is 'normal'. Whenever something is so well known and used, it becomes polarized. But eyebrows are raised because of fee. ("why is it free elsewhere and he wants $"). It does not matter at all how much it costs, or fact that you get back your money worth with dividends. It is that it is not free that sticks out.

I agree that adds seem to be 'better' way of monetization. I could never understand the concept, and dislike it immensely but it is what it is. I know of guy who started company in US -- they electronically 'harvest' adds during sport events, such as Superbowl, then sell them digitally. Go figure.
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