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MapsEvolved - A Map Viewer Optimized for Hiking and Ski Touring

MapsEvolved is a map viewer designed to make it easier to plan new outdoor trips or analyze past outings. Besides displaying maps, it can also read digital elevation models (DEMs) and extract elevation as well as slope orientation and steepness. Special relief display modes help getting a feel for the terrain.

MapsEvolved can display GPS tracks and analyze them to find metrics such as total distance covered or elevation gain. New GPS tracks can be drawn directly on the map and be similarly evaluated. This capability makes MapsEvolved the perfect tool for planning trips into the unknown.

Supported file formats:

  • GeoTIFF: A widely used format for topographic maps. Many other maps can be converted to GeoTIFF through freely available converters.
  • GVG: The map file format used by several Alpine Clubs in Europe.
  • GPX: The most common format for GPS tracks.


The main map display of MapsEvolved:
Map Display

The map manager where you can tell MapsEvolved about the location of your maps, GPS tracks and point-of-interest(POI) databases:
Map Manager

A Dachstein and Hochkönig regions in Austria in relief shading, which is computed directly from digital elevation data:
Relief Map

A GPS track of a tour from 2014. The coloring indicates terrain steepness. As can be seen, the track closely follows the most gentle slope up the mountain. Below the steepness shading is a 1:25000 map of the area.
Steepness Map with GPS Track


Currently, MapsEvolved supports only 32 bit Windows platforms.

Build requirements

Visual Studio 2010 must be installed.

Several other build tools and libraries are required, but they will be downloaded automatically as part of the build process. See the third-party folder for more information about this process.

Build process

The build process is super simple:

chcp 65001
invoke configure --config Release build --config Release

We change the command window to an UTF-8 codepage with chcp, otherwise we can't write all unicode characters to the console (Python Issue#1602). Then we create a virtual environment with, activate it, and execute the full build using pyinvoke.


Currently, we are forced to stay with Visual Studio 2010, as Python 3.4 is built with that compiler. Python 3.5 will switch to VS 2015. As soon as that happens, we will switch as well so we're able to finally use newer C++ features.


A Map Viewer Optimized for Hiking and Ski Touring







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