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Make Annotated Maps of Your Hikes

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Pen & paper are especially good for drawing non-linear information, like mind-maps and trail-maps. Using them to make annotated maps of your hikes can deepen your experiences and build a rich record of your explorations that you can revisit in your notebook at any time.

Hobonichi mtn climbs

Above is a photo from the “usage examples” section of the Hobonichi Techo site, photo by Chiaki Usutani.

From the description: “This user fills her daily pages with the mountain-climbing paths she explores with her friends on her days off. The records include how she felt about the climb, information about the route for the day, the name of the mountain and peak, and things she learned from the hike, all separated by pen color. She always has the Hobonichi Techo on her, so she also likes to write about things she remembers while on the train to work or off at lunch.”

I like how she uses bubbles to enclose each of her notes, so she can fit a lot of information in a small space without it all blending together into a mess of text. Her example also shows how you don’t need to make your notes while you’re on the trail, but can do it later when you have the time. Not too much later though, or you’ll start to forget the details! I personally don’t like making my maps while on the hike; I find it’s best to fully focus on what’s around me, to impress it on my mind as much as possible, so the depth of the experience will make it easy to remember it later when I’m back home with my notebook.

hike guy stack

hike guy moleskineThese two (pocket Moleskine) examples are from Kolby Kirk, an inspiring trail-notebooker who blogs at www.thehikeguy.com.

Doing little drawings like this is great! They really help you slow down and see the details of what you’re passing by. This is a case where using your notebook on the trail isn’t a distraction, but a tool for intensive focus on your surroundings.

toshimitsu shiina sm

Above is a page from the 2015 Hobonichi Techo guide book, in a section of usage examples. Toshimitsu Shiina keeps some awesome hike notes, with photographs pasted in that are indexed to their location on the trail. On the right is an elevation map of the hike plotted over distance; circled letters along the path correspond to the lettered photos.

hike filo page

This is one of mine. First I write the date, location, how long the hike took & what the weather was like, then draw a map of the path taken. Anything interesting along the way gets noted with a word or two or a tiny sketch along the path, and beside the map are more detailed notes (in between are other random writings that aren’t connected to the hikes).

Nosy about the text? Nothing too exciting…on the left: “weed whacked trails, pixel house, quaint wooden signs, book of motion-activated photos of deer & coyotes near pixel house / Hidden place that reminds me of woods in Friday the 13th nintendo game – pixel house is one of cabins / New England Forestry Foundation? / Lots of broken & blown down trees / Jeff pushed down an old dead tree trunk / Coyote tracks? No sign of moose.” And on the right: “All the way to the bottom near the waterfalls & back. Walked past the end @ North trail to find a nice spot between 2 waterfalling rivers, took a nap on a nice reclining rock. / Lots of other cars, road closed sign so we all parked @ overflow area. Muddy road. / Carpenter bee (?) with full pollen baskets of light yellow pollen, crawling @ base of tree near nap spot.”

These hikes happened three and a half years ago, but when I re-read my notes, I remember being in my body when I had (most of) those experiences. If I hadn’t written them down, I probably wouldn’t remember any of it! It’s nice not to lose our silly little details…don’t you love remembering your own?


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Notebook Happy Surgery Fun

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The “notebook kingdom” of Japan publishes all sorts of books & magazines on stationery, notebook strategies, planner tactics…there are even several books about the joys of four-color pens. There are books on notebook surgery and notebook combat written by notebook therapists. It’s a 手帳天国 (techou tengoku, notebook heaven).

In future posts I hope to get my hands on some of these fine publications & share them with you, but for now, please enjoy a little translation-poetry courtesy of amazon.jp & Google Translate.
happy note
How to make a happy note that alone time is more fun
shining note

Notebook making to find yourself more shining

“notebook that people can freely customize each, not only as a self-management tool, will be ‘important partner of life’, depending on usage.”

graffiti notes
Graffiti notebook surgery

“Graffiti change your life!

When incorporating graffiti in life, your ‘to observe the things power,’ ‘imagination to power’ ‘to express, tell forces’ will increase dramatically!

This book, The Power = graffiti force get to learn graffiti (powers of observation, imagination, expressive power) to explain, we introduce how to draw graffiti immediately incorporated into the notebook.

‘I do not draw a picture from becoming an adult,’ ‘there is no artistic taste in his’ graffiti-packed draw easily even in such a person.

Graffiti force to change the life Why do not you try to experience.”

notebook weapon

Let Shinobaseyo weapons that notebook to bag

“Note surgery, notebook surgery, book on notebook surgery is, I love.

If there is a place to learn in each of the idea, I am very happy.

The thing you want to export, the thinking in the brain, by visualization with a strong presence, in its real character, great consciousness works.

Date and pocketbook of time the written action plan will be the life of the scenario.”

stationery 200 percent

Work get on! The result is immediately out! Stationery 200% utilization surgery

“Stationery is not only ‘tool’ of the work, it is also the ‘weapon’.

By mastering its functions to the fullest, not only the work of efficiency and accuracy is improved much, stress will also be greatly reduced.”

notebook surgery

Really notebook surgery one minute head becomes better

“Edison was left behind 3700 book notes. Leonardo da Vinci, had wrote a research note over to 15,000 pages in 40 years. Now, you, you wake up in the notebook surgery, it is the turn to become a genius.”

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