ExplorOz General Newsletter 481

11th December 2018

Hi ExplorOz Reader,


The West Australian 4WD community is excited about a new series of tracks that have been opened up for recreational 4WDriving and touring. In its entirely, the "MundAl Track" covers about 900km of trails and enables drivers to travel from Perth to Albany avoiding the major highways and instead offers a unique opportunity to explore areas that have not previously been accessible for recreational driving.

The track passes through lands controlled by various user groups, including the Water Corp, the Munda Biddi cycling track, State Forest, National Parks/DPaW, and areas that are prone to prescribed burning operations. This means that there may at times be access restrictions that you must obey. The management of pests and diseases in areas managed by DPaW (Department of Parks & Wildlife) involves declarations of areas known as DRA (Disease Risk Area) and under the rules of DRA, no vehicle is to enter a DRA forest during or for three days following rain. Travellers of the MundAl track must respect the rules and regulations of using the track and ensure that they check local warnings and check conditions immediately before travel.

The WA 4WD Association have championed the management of track updates via a download of waypoints and a run sheet which can be obtained from their website for free. See https://wa4wda.com.au/thetrack/

We have also added the entire Mundaring - Albany route to the ExplorOz website and ExplorOz Traveller app - see details below for these New ExplorOz Treks and how you can easily download them into your existing navigation device for offline use ready to go. The Track is promoted ready for travellers now.


For your convenience, we have created 6 ExplorOz Trek Notes for the new 4WD touring route between Mundaring and Albany so that rather than attempting to download the files and deal with the extremely complex process to put them into compatible mapping software and work out the routing you can simply view it on our website or use it within our app. These Trek Notes are available both online and offline.

When viewed online via the ExplorOz website you can view the route on an EOTopo map at a scale of 18K. In the Trek Notes we include lists of Places to See and Where to Stay (the list links through to a separate reference page for each Place), plus turn-by-turn driving notes, a detailed reference to the Wildflowers you might encounter during season, and historical notes where relevant. Go here to view ExplorOz Trek Notes.

The new Trek Notes are:
Please note that as with all ExplorOz content, as travellers use our resources and add photos, comments via the app or website, more information will appear live within these Treks. We encourage the first visitors especially to therefore share your experiences and help others that follow.


If you have our app ExplorOz Traveller, then you already know that the ExplorOz Treks content is downloaded to your device via the Data Manager. This means you can get these latest Treks onto your device simply by pressing one button and waiting 2 minutes. Trek Notes are used in the app simply by pressing GoTo which launches the navigator and provides guided navigation. You can also modify the route to suit your needs - by reordering, deleting or inserting/adding additional Places to the Nav Plan.

When you download ExplorOz Treks into the app, you not only get all the route and waypoints but the full trip planning and text content as it is displayed on the website. The route line is shown as a purple line on the maps - and because it is a data overlay, the route line is shown no matter what source you select (EOTopo, Streets & Paths, or Satellite).

Because we display Trek routes as a data overlay on our maps, this means you have the latest tracks on your maps, without having to purchase any specific new map and it can easily be updated when things change.

To get our app, go to the ExplorOz Traveller page for more info, pricing and links.


If you use any other third party mapping software (not produced by us), such as OziExplorer, a Hema Navigator, or any other mapping software program that allows you to import GPX files then you can download the raw data files (route and waypoint) for any Trek Note - simply open the Trek page, and click the Download Trek button shown just above the "Description" section. Downloads are free but files can only be downloaded one at a time, ie. each trek separately.

Alternatively, for $10 you can buy a zip file containing all Trek Notes (currently 187 Treks). This avoid you having to manually do each one separately. Go here to purchase the EOTreks Route Files for just $10.

VISITORS/NON-MEMBERS - if you want the EOTreks Route Files you will pay an additional $49.95 to include a 12 month Membership subscription because unless you have a Membership you cannot download from our site. The price will be calculated automatically for you based on the account profile you use when logged into the shop.


Managing Place data is a daily, ongoing task in the ExplorOz office and over the past few months we've made a few minor tweaks to Place "Types" to ensure we offer categories that are as relevant as possible. Trends in tourism are always changing and we are now seeing more food, shopping and accommodation in smaller, regional areas such as cafes and gift shops and more self-contained accommodation options such as Chalets.

We've therefore changed the name of our "Food/Shopping" Place to just "Shopping". We've changed Resort/Motel to Chalet/B&B, and we've added 4 new Place Types being Cafe/Bakery, Winery, Picnic Area, and Carparking Area. Not so long ago we also added Dump Points as a separate type - previously this information was contained as a sub-feature of a caravan park only, but now that some towns are providing stand-alone public dump point facilities we thought this was an important addition.

In total, there are 61 different Place Types and a total of 98,200 Places. This data is digitally managed and is live on the server offering our users instant access to the latest updates, all free. Whilst our administrators are constantly working on it, the real input comes from the contributions of travellers out there using our app.

Each Place Type has its own icon, which is shown on the EOTopo online maps. Those who also use our app ExplorOz Traveller see these these Place icons when viewing the offline maps and when clicked will see the Place Name, Place Type, and can click the Show button to view the full Place page for photos, reviews and full descriptions.

The 61 different Place Types are sorted into 8 simple groups, which allows us to use the data in different ways. The 8 groups are:-
When searching for Places on the website from the Places index page, you can search by Place Name, or by one of these 8 groups. However if you use the map and search visually you will be able to see the different icons for all 61 types of Places.

Places are shown on the map as Overlays in the ExplorOz Traveller app so from the map screen you have the ability to filter which group of Place Types you want shown on the map. ie. you can turn off all Places or just groups of Places.

TIP: when you are viewing the map either on the website or in the app, you will sometimes see Place "clusters" instead of individual Places. Clusters are coloured dots with a number inside. The numbers refers to how many Places are in the cluster. The cluster system keeps Places tidy when there is insufficient zoom to display each individually but as you zoom in to enlarge the map view these clusters will expand and each Place icon will appear in the exact location of each Place. You can click on any cluster and it will auto expand to the correct zoom scale to view them individually.


Traveller App users can now import GPX waypoints as Private Places. Simply go to the Places home page on the website here - Places  and open the Private Places section where you'll find the GPX install, download, & delete options. During the install you have the option to label a set of waypoints together using a Group Name. Please be aware that at this stage, grouping is not shown from in the app (this is awaiting a new version update of the app which is not scheduled until the new year).

You then open the Data Manager in the app to update your Places database and all your imported waypoints will appear in your Private Places list. Private Places can be deleted or edited (renamed) from within the app or on the website. Changes to your Private Places made within the app will sync automatically to the website/server when you have sufficient internet service.

Note that any changes made on the website are not automatically copied to your device - you must go into the Data Manager and press Update (Places & Treks).


If you wish to convert a Private Place to a Public Place you can only do so from within the app (ExplorOz Traveller). Once a place has been made Public you cannot delete it, nor can you edit it from within the app. If you have changes to make after making your place Public, please locate it on the website and use the Alert Admin button to advise us of any changes required. Michelle reviews the logs of Place updates on a daily basis and validates each one but we do ask you to name the Place correctly, and select the most appropriate waypoint TYPE from the list of options. When creating Public Places please include as much information as you can - we prefer Places to include photos, descriptions and comments.

Notice that Private Places are symbolised by default with the Waypoint icon (and fall into the Infrastructure group of Place Types) and that the outer icon is always coloured GREEN for private, whereas Public are BLUE. These tips will help you identify your Private Place markers on the map, or you see them listed in the Private section of the Places List in the app.


Due to popular request, we are featuring links in our newsletters to various content updates across the site for those that don't visit regularly. However keep in mind that you can also use the Menu in the top left of the website and go directly to any part of the site - each section of the site has its own Index Page and features links to all the latest updates.

Member Baz - The Landy has put together a thought provoking piece on Weight Restricted Roads - Does it apply to me? Read it here. Member - Terry E (NSW) has recently been touring through the Riverina district of NSW and his latest Blog shows the highlights of his trip. Read it here.
Trending posts & highlights - Low Flying Objects, Obelisk Guessing Comp, E10 fuel, Bull Bars, Climbing Ayers Rock, Coonalpyn (SA) Silo Murals, Silo Art at Weethalle (NSW), Content Policy Rules - Friday Funnies, Midnight Oil Challenge, plus many more.
ExplorOz Traveller App users can now import GPX waypoints as Private Places. Simply go to the Places home page on the website here - Places  and open the Private Places section where you'll find the GPX install (and delete) options. If you're an ExplorOz Traveller app user, you can then update your Places database and they will all appear in your Private Places list.
2008 Concept Ascot XLS, Military dual cab landscruiser, Snow Chains, Darche 225 annex, NS Pajero Cargo Barrier, 2008 Range Rover Sport TDV8

Did you miss our October newsletter - make sure you read Edition 479.

Raffle News: Member - Sir Kev is managing the distribution of tickets to buyers however he has been away on an extensive remote trip. We will keep you posted when we hear more however the raffle sales have now closed and the draws have not yet been done.

Our EOTreks Route Files download product is designed for people that use mapping software other than ExplorOz Traveller and would like to get the raw GPS route file data for the full set of ExplorOz Trek Notes into their OziExplorer, Memory-Map, Hema Navigator or other GPX compatible mapping software systems. This contains a new extract from the ExplorOz Trek Notes database as at today's date and contains data for the 5 new MundAl trek notes. View in Shop Here.
The new MundAl treks can be found in the ExplorOz Treks section of the website. See the 6 new treks here. User Treks have also had a significant number of new additions as people have returned from their winter travels and saved their track logging. Browse by going to User Treks here.
NOTE: Trek downloads are free but are restricted to Members only.

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