As spring quickly approaches many of us will start to set our sights on spring and summer trips. Planning these trips can take a significant amount of preparation and coordination amongst a number of different people; this is where the map and flap comes in. That being said, some of you may be wondering what the hell a map and flap is. Simply put a map and flap isa seldom used term for a group getting together for a trip planning session. Generallymaps are used and theflap portion refers tojust talkingthroug the plans. Here are some tips to help make a perfect map and flap.
Make Sure Everyone Can Be There: It can prove difficult to coordinate schedules, but it is important that all stakeholders are in attendance so that they can have a voice in the planning session. It’s an awful waste of time to plan an entire trip and find out after the fact that someone has a problem with it.
Do Some Preliminary Work Before: Having a rough idea of what the group wants to do can help you prepare for your map and flap. Bring some knowledge of possible activities, routes, schedules etc. can make your time more efficient.
Maps: It’s in the title of the event so obviously it’s important to have maps. The more maps the better as far as I’m concerned. Maps will help you visualize the trip and experienced map readers will be able to glean a lot of valuableinsight about a trip.
Allow Everyone The Chance To Contribute: Think of your tripping group as a team. Every member of that team should have input on where you go and what you do. Most trips are built around some level of given and take, but make sure that it’s a balanced effort. Be open minded to other’s suggestions and fully explore all options before making final decisions.
Good Food and Drink: Need I say more?
Dial in the Details: Some people have a set amount of time for a trip and it’s important to find a route that matches that need. For others they will look for the route and then determine the time and resources required. Either way is fine, but make sure that it’s a topic of discussion. Other details to dial in: who’s driving, number of people, gear lists, food lists (samples found HERE), permit requirements andreservation / booking responsibilities.
Enjoy The Whole Experience: A map and flap is not just about planning a trip, it’s about getting together with good people and having a great experience. Enjoy the planning process, relive trips of old, review other’s trip notes and laugh as often as you can.
For some other great trip planning information check out these articles:
Selecting a trip partner: https://quickescapes.ca/trips/10-factors-consider-when-choosing-backwoods-trip-partner
Jeff's (awesome) Maps: https://quickescapes.ca/trips/jeffs-maps-invaluable-resource
Early season trip planning: https://quickescapes.ca/trips/early-season-canoe-trip-tips
First trip of the season: https://quickescapes.ca/trips/first-hike-season