We have spent a lot of time riding chairlifts lately and we have been noticing one glaring item from our short term friends on the chair. While everyone is trying to figure out where to go next they are having navigation challenges in where they are vs where they want to be. Now imagine the groups of people huddling in the lodge around folded maps trying to do the same thing. It seems like it’s everywhere. What do you do?
With being lost such a widespread thing you think there would be all kind of possible solutions for the masses. While there are many solutions out there the core issue comes from figuring out where you are vs where you want to go. Most people will try this visually by looking at their surroundings and some will use some form of map and most surrounding ski resorts are more artistic representations vs actual reality. This is a location question pure and simple.
One notable quote we heard on the chair while looking at the resort map was, “I can never follow these trail maps when they stretch them. I can’t relate to it and find where I am let alone lunch.” Others mentioned they wanted a more realistic version including topo based markers they could follow. Both things do not exist on the trail map of today.
How do you help people overcome their navigation challenges? We suggest making their location easier to understand. Helping them trace their tracks from starting point to ending point. The faster you can do this the faster you can project forward to the next step.
We do this with standardized skimaps that have consistent markings and true world scale and directions. Also being GPS enabled knowing where you are is just a button push away at any time. All making where to find lunch much faster and easier. Leave the challenges on the mountain up to the terrain in front of you, not in how to get to it.