Illustrating the average utilization of trails by hikers

by Johannes Naumann   Last Updated April 25, 2018 13:22 PM

I have a question about illustrating the average utilization of trails by hikers.

I have made a survey where I asked the participants which trail they used for hiking.There are a lot of trailoptions (stretches) that can be used.

For example "hiker 1" used trail 1 (stretches A,B,C and D). "Hiker 2" used trail 2 (stretches A,E and D). Is there a tool to map all these used trails in one shapefile and to calculate how many of the hikers used stretch A, stretch B, etc. (in percantage terms) or is it only possible to analyse the use of stretches in excel and to map the ratios in the shape in QGis (2.6)?

Answers 1

You could try to model this in a spatial database with 4 tables:

  • Trail_Use: store the survey of trail usage
  • Tracks: store the lines of each trail, have the lines split into segments and assign the stretch (this would be your shapefile that you are using currently)
  • Trail: Name and any details relating to the trail
  • Trail_Stretch: This would be a table that links tracks and trail to assign each stretch to a trail. Would look something like the table below


 |Stretch| Trail |
 |   A   |Trail 1|
 |   B   |Trail 1|
 |   A   |Trail 2|
 |   C   |Trail 2|

Then you can create a view which would count the number of times each stretch is used by using the Trail_use table to count how often each trail is used, then using Trail_stretch to count how many times each stretch is used.

You can then import and join this table to your tracks layer in QGIS and symbolise off the joined field.

The great thing about setting this up is you can keep adding surveys and you won't need to do anymore processing with excel if you need to update the map. If you aren't familiar with spatial databases, try using Spatialite, you can create a database using the Spatialite plugin for QGIS. You can then use this plugin to import your shapefile that you are currently using.

Liam G
Liam G
March 29, 2016 21:40 PM

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