Frequently Asked Questions

Who is BackpackOhio.com?
BackpackOhio.com is operated by Digital Cartographics, a small mapping company selling ready-to-use PowerPoint maps through MapsforPowerPoint.com. It just so happens that the owner is an avid Ohio hiker and backpacker.

Why was BackpackOhio.com created?
In the beginning, what is now this web site started out as a project to write a book on Ohio’s backpack trails. The last book dedicated only to Ohio’s backpack trails was published more than 20 years ago, and needless to say, some of that information has become a little outdated. A few newer Ohio hiking books cover some of Ohio’s overnight trails, but no one book covers all of them or only provides a limited amount of information. We wanted to provide a comprehensive, up-to-date resource covering all of Ohio’s backpacking destinations. Instead of a book, however, we ultimately decided to publish a PDF product called eTrailsOhio, which can be more easily updated and updated in a more timely fashion than a published book.

eTrailsOhio? What is that?
eTrailsOhio is a unique downloadable and printable PDF product developed by us, which details in text and maps most backpack trails in Ohio. Eventually, we hope to have an eTrailsOhio product for every Ohio backpack trail. As we complete each trail, we will make it available through our web site.

Each eTrailsOhio product is a PDF based file that you download to your computer and print. Each file contains multiple pages of text describing each trail in detail through text descriptions and descriptions, or notes, based on trail mileage. Each eTrailsOhio product also contains at least one professionally designed topographic trail map. Click here to learn more about eTrailsOhio.

How is each eTrailsOhio product created?
With a GPS, a digital camera, a digital voice recorder and a lot of walking. We physically hike each trail and map it with a GPS, while at the same time taking pictures and digital voice notes of important points along the way. These important points could include a trail intersection, a sign, a road crossing, a point of interest, a possible point of confusion and so on. All of this information is taken back to our office and rectified so that the published text matches up with the trail map.

How does your eTrailsOhio product compare to a book?
We feel our eTrailsOhio product is superior to a book in many ways: 1) Books are too bulky and heavy to carry in a backpack. With eTrailsOhio, you simply print the pages you desire, fold them up and put them in your pocket or pack pocket. 2) Books become outdated. It can be years before a new revision to a book is published; meanwhile, the information becomes more and more outdated. With our digital-based product, we can make updates and have newly revised documents immediately available for download on our site. 3) Book page size limits the use of good maps. Typically, the page cut size of a recreational guidebook is 6″ by 9″, plus you have to allow room for margins and binding. It’s hard to design a clear, concise map of a 10 or 15-mile trail in that amount of space. Our maps are designed to print at a standard size of 8.5″ by 11″ on your desktop printer, that’s just over 73 percent more area for us to work with in designing our trail maps.

How do I use an eTrailsOhio product?
You can use as much or as little of the information as you want. You may suffer from information overload after reading one of our trail reports, but we would rather provide too much information than not enough and let you decide what items are important for your trip. Since eTrailsOhio is downloaded to your computer as a PDF file, you have control over printing. If you want to read a trail’s text description on your computer screen and only printout the map to take with you, then the choice is yours. If you are hiking a trail for the first time and want to print and pack the map and the section highlighting important trail notes by mileage, you’ll have that flexibility as well.

How do I print an eTrailsOhio product?
Once you’ve downloaded an eTrailsOhio PDF file to your computer, simply print the pages you desire on your desktop printer. eTrailsOhio has been designed to provide quality printouts on both color and B&W printers. While on the trail, inkjet printer users may want to keep their pages in a plastic bag in order to keep the ink from running in wet weather.

Is eTrailsOhio a free product?
No. We have dedicated a great deal of time and effort into creating a unique, professionally designed product for Ohio’s backpack trails that you won’t find anywhere else. For that reason, we feel it is acceptable to charge a small fee for each eTrailsOhio download. Our eTrailsOhio products start at $4.95 per download and will not exceed $6.95. At this time, no multi-purchase discounts are available, but could be in the future.

To purchase an eTrailsOhio downloadable PDF file, visit the individual trail information page (links are found on our Home page) and click on the graphic at the top of the page. At this time, all orders are processed through our 100% secure MapsforPowerPoint.com web site. A link to download your eTrailsOhio PDF file is generated and displayed on the receipt page of the checkout process.

Can I link my web site to BackpackOhio.com?
Yes, by all means.

Can I use your information on my web site?
No. All information provided on our web site and contained in our eTrailsOhio products is copyright protected. Our information can be licensed for use in other applications or publications. Please contact us to discuss.

How do I contact you?
Go to our contact page. We are interested to hear how you feel about our site and our products. Plus, if you think we’ve made a mistake or have suggestions on how we can improve, we’d like to hear that as well.

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