Tuesday, March 29, 2016

New Pricing and Points System

We created Paddle Planner five years ago. What began as a unique and useful resource for paddlers has gotten even better. We have refined and added many things to the website. Reactions have been positive, some of which can be read on our testimonial page.

Any young business needs to review its pricing at some point. We want to thank the many people that have given us suggestions and helped us with the new pricing and points systems.

New Prices

Starting March 30, 2016, the following will be the new membership prices:
  • $19.99/year for Map Enthusiast
  • $29.99/year for Premium
  • $49.99/year for Outfitter
We have not researched or looked at the outfitter pricing yet, so that will continue to be the same price for the time being. You can look on the membership levels page for details on each.

Discounts for Contributing Members

Members will receive a lifetime* annual discount based on their contributions to Paddle Planner. Contributions are measured using the points system. The discounts are as follows:
  • $5/year for 400 points
  • $10/year for 1,000 points
  • $15/year for 2,000 points
  • $20/year for 5,000 points
This discount system replaces the current system where members receive a one-time free membership for attaining point levels. Those members that have already received the free memberships still are eligible for the lifetime discounts.

*The pricing, discount, and points systems are subject to change, but we only anticipate changing the discounts to mirror any future price changes. Even if we have to revise these systems, we will always have something in place that rewards those people that make Paddle Planner a success. 

One-Week Trial

Starting March 30th, we will be offering a free one-week trial of the premium membership to those that have never had a paid membership before.

Old Pricing for Current Members - One Year

For one year, current, paid memberships will continue to receive the old prices ($4,99/year for Map Enthusiast, $19.99/year for Premium).
  • You will not be able to use the new discount system using the old prices. You will pay the lower of the new prices with the discounts or the old prices without any discounts.
  • If you are a registered member but do not have a current, paid membership, you have until April 15, 2016, to upgrade and use the old prices. You would then be able to renew next year using the old prices, too.
  • The old pricing will completely phase out on April 15, 2017. If you renew after this date, you will receive the new pricing. If you renew before, even if your membership expires after this date, you will receive one more year at the old price.
  • Those that are not yet registered are not eligible for this offer.
The purpose of this offer is to give current members the chance to renew at least one more time using the old prices. You can renew/upgrade on the membership levels page.

Points System Changes

We are making some small modifications to the points system to better reflect contributions by the members:
  • Different point values will be given for campsite ratings with and without comments. Comments are much more valuable than just a star rating, so we will reflect that in the points given.
  • Photos that are chosen to appear in the home page rotation and in our Facebook Photo Friday will receive bonus points.
  • Forum posts in which you are "thanked" by other members will receive more points.
  • Administrators and moderators will be able to give bonus points for thoughtful contributions. This will be especially helpful with trip reports, where some obviously take many hours to put together. A great trip report will receive many more points than the minimum.
The points system changes have not yet been implemented. Some of the changes will be retroactive and will increase your current point total. Other changes will only be put into effect going forward. Your current point total will not decrease.


If you have any questions about the new pricing, please contact us.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Reel Paddling Film Festival

I am representing Paddle Planner tonight at the Reel Paddling Film Festival (reelpaddlingfilmfestival.com) in Asheville, North Carolina. This is an amazing series on a world tour, independent films on a variety of paddling places and topics. Best of all, it is being done tonight at a brewery! Paddle on. Jay

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Paddle Planner Affiliate Program

Paddle Planner is excited to announce our new affiliate program! We look forward to working with many of you to grow the Paddle Planner community. We pay a 15% commission on all sales made within 30 days of a referral. The program is free to join.

What is an affiliate program?
The short definition of an affiliate program is one in which the affiliate (you) helps a company (Paddle Planner) attract customers and make sales. The affiliate does this by writing reviews, promoting products, and posting links on blogs, websites, and social media. In return, the company pays the affiliate a commission on referrals that lead to sales.

How does Paddle Planner's program work?
You post links to Paddle Planner and/or display ads on your website or blog. These links have your affiliate ID, which is used to keep track of which people you refer. If someone clicks on the link and purchases a membership within 30 days, you receive a commission of 15% of the sale. Paddle Planner provides tools for creating links and ads that you can post. You will be paid via PayPal for your share of the sales.

How do I get started?
If you have any questions about the program, please feel free to contact us.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Ability to Export Maps to Image

I added the ability to export maps to a custom-sized image (PNG file) for Map Enthusiast and higher. On the interactive map menu, set the background, features, and zoom you would like in the image. Then select "Menu" and then "Export Map." A window will pop up with some instructions. Select your dimensions and press "Export to Image." Wait for the map to be exported, and then... Presto! You have an image of the map (with a small Paddle Planner logo in the corner).

Export to Image Example

The larger the image, the longer the process will take. Most of the process runs on your computer, so if it is a large image, it will also take up a lot of computer resources. In my tests, though, "normal-sized" images (page size or less) don't take too long to process.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Finished Atikaki and Whiteshell Route Finder

I finished the Route Finder for all of the parks on the Manitoba-Ontario border, which includes Atikaki, Nopiming, Manigotagan River, Whiteshell, and Woodland Caribou. Go to the interactive map to try it out!

There are some "problem areas"
  • As you can see, I was only able to complete the Route Finder for the southern portion of Atikaki Provincial Park. I don't have any portage or campsite information yet for the northern or western areas of the park.
  • I didn't have any portage information for the Eagle-Snowshoe Conservation Reserve (the area between Nopiming and Woodland Caribou). To make the Route Finder work between Snowshoe Lake and Eagle Lake, I just "assumed" there were no portages on the river. This is obviously not true since there are rapids and falls on the river, so keep this in mind if using the Route Finder in this area.
  • The map that I had of Whiteshell Provincial Park just noted that there were many portages, rapids, and falls on the Whiteshell River. I don't know where most of those portages are, so I did not complete the Route Finder on this river.
Portage and campsite locations are approximate. If you have any GPS tracks of portages or exact campsite locations, please contact me so I can make the maps more accurate.

The Route Finder is a unique tool that you can get estimated paddling times and distances between any two or more points. The distances and times are broken down between paddling and portaging, and the map shows the shortest route between the points. Right now it works for the Boundary Waters in Minnesota, Sylvania Wilderness in Michigan, Quetico and Woodland Caribou in Ontario, and Atikaki, Nopiming, Manigotagan River, and Whiteshell in Manitoba.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Woodland Caribou PP Route Finder Finished!

I finished the Route Finder (paddling time/distance calculator) for Woodland Caribou Provincial Park! I worked hard the last few nights to finish up the northern half of the park. You can use the new Route Finder on the Manitoba-Ontario Wilderness paddling map.

Completed Canoe Routes in Woodland Caribou and Nopiming
If you are new, I should explain what the Route Finder is. The Route Finder is a unique tool that you can get estimated paddling times and distances between any two or more points. The distances and times are broken down between paddling and portaging, and the map shows the shortest route between the points. Right now it works for the Boundary Waters in Minnesota, Sylvania Wilderness in Michigan, Quetico and Woodland Caribou in Ontario, and Nopiming and Manigotagan in Manitoba. More areas will be added soon!

The Quetico Route Finder took me a year to create. Woodland Caribou is slightly larger than the Quetico, and it only took me about a month to finish. I must be getting better at this! Next up are Whiteshell and Atikaki.

Monday, September 29, 2014

WCPP, Nopiming, Manigotagan, and Atikaki Route Finder Progress

I completed the Route Finder for the backcountry canoe routes for Nopiming Provincial Park and Manigotagan River Provincial Park. You can now calculate time and distance estimates for the routes in these parks.

I have also continued working on the northern Woodland Caribou Provincial Park routes. You can see my progress in the image below. Along with this, I have connected Wallace Lake in Atikaki Provincial Park to the Obukowin Lake and Wanipigow River entry points in Woodland Caribou. Wallace Lake is the usual starting point for these two entry points.

It shouldn't be too much longer until I have Woodland Caribou completely finished and I start working on Atikaki and Whiteshell.