The Ordnance Survey has recently released information identifying the most popular grid squares for route planning on their maps, using 10 years of public routing data compiled in OS maps and its predecessors. It came as no surprise to me to find that the most popular square was in the Lake District – covering routes to Scafell Pike, England’s highest peak.
What did surprise me, however, was the fact that out of the top twenty grid squares to create a route identified, no less than 18 of them came from the Lake District – around the popular tourist locations of Keswick, Ambleside, Grasmere, Scafell, and Helvellyn. The remaining two grid squares came from Snowdonia and the Yorkshire Dales
More than 500,000 routes identified on OS maps have been illustrated in a series of stunning data visualisations created by Ordnance Survey Cartographic Designer Charley Glynn. The darker, thicker areas illustrate the higher concentration of routes and show their popularity.
All of the data visualisations created by Charley Glynn can be viewed in this Flickr gallery:
Top 20 1km grid squares (with number of routes):
NY2107 – Scafell Pike Summit – 2172
SH6054 – Snowdon
NY2308 – Allen Crags (Near Scafell Pike) – 1918
NY2208 – Great End (Near Scafell Pike) – 1908
NY2806 – Langdale Fell (Cumbria Way) – 1865
NY3415 – Helvellyn Summit – 1793
SD8072 – Horton-in-Ribblesdale – 1593
NY2514 – Rosthwaite – 1576
NY3308 – Grasmere (North) – 1558
NY1807 – Wast Water (North) – 1551
NY2623 – Keswick – 1539
NY2407 – Rossett Pike (Near Scafell Pike) – 1531
NY3414 – Nethermost Pike (Near Helvellyn) – 1527
NY3704 – Ambleside – 1520
NY3816 – Glenridding – 1519
NY2209 – Great Slack (Near Scafell Pike) – 1515
NY2906 – Langdale Fell (Cumbria Way) – 1491
NY3511 – Fairfield Summit – 1487
NY3307 – Grasmere (Centre) – 1467
NY2109 – Sty Head (Near Scafell Pike) – 1431
My most used grid square for route planning would either be somewhere on Exmoor (either Dunkery Beacon, the Doone Valley, or around Porlock), or perhaps locations along the Jurassic Coast (probably around the Lyme Regis area).
What would yours be?