Driving the backroads

Does anyone have any sequences they’d like to point out for the community of examples of sequences involving driving off the beaten path?

This is one of a few sequences from driving in the Cumberland Mountains ( Crab Apple Mountains, too ) last night. Rough roads that you’ll never see a google streetview car go down. It was a perfect sunny spring evening for it, too.



Great thread you opened @allen! Hope to see a lot of diverse examples here soon to feature them on our blog :wink:

These are great photos. What is your setup?

Thanks for creating this thread. The neatest I’ve stumbled upon was a “proper” jeep driving narrow mountainous track somewhere in South America (with a spare tire visible in the photos) – but I didn’t bookmark that and haven’t been able to find it again :frowning:

But I need to post others. Latest today I came across this neat sequence that is a drive up the mountain from the city of Jinotega in Nicaragua. Captured just two days ago by a brand new Mapillary contributor. I included this sequence in my commentary regarding “bad” photos, which points out a few IMO interesting bits from this drive up the hill – from a mapping perspective mainly, though. This is not a “photographically beautiful” sequence – “merely” very useful for mapping :wink:

It’s just an old Garmin Elite. IIRC they’re going for $188 on Amazon now as the new XE’s been out for awhile. As you can see it does well in good light. And I was in the valley ( Smokey Creek ? ) late afternoon / early evening including the golden hour. That was by chance but in hindsight made for good lighting.

@jaakkoh was this the one you had in mind? http://www.mapillary.com/map/im/wNLluCkczI68QjrqvoXvHg/photo

No. I found the sequence(s) by scouring through first the country stats of Ecuador, which I was sure it was from and then Colombia where it actually is from. The contributor is colombia_tour and the sequence(s) are this or this. This might also be interesting. I haven’t actually looked completely through any of these and haven’t gotten to see the fully “crystallized” photos of the sequences as my connection has been a bit rough lately.

Anyways, the first two links at least are some pretty darned neat backroads sequences, I think.

When returning from a recent trip, I decided to take a detour to a state forest area. While there, I discovered that there are a lot of no-motor-vehicle horse trails criss-crossing the area. https://www.mapillary.com/map/im/Kyox9UoWX4T9ptpM-gj9Gg/photo

Now that I have a new place to shoot sequences…does anyone know where I can rent a horse…? :smiley:

Also found some trail sections that definitely required 4-wheel-drive to get through. This spot doesn’t look bad, but it was soft, deep sand.

On my way to nearly getting stuck in the sand, I found a hidden campsite. It appears to be intended for people pulling horse trailers from what I could tell.


I’m glad to see you didn’t get stuck in the sand. Years ago I was an idiot and went down a backroad on the Navajo Nation and my rental car sank to the axle in sand. Big time idiot move.

If there’s a lot of sand, you might have fun finding a place to rent a pugsley ( big, fat tires ) and riding those back roads.

I love driving the backroads as long as my car can handle them… :smiley:

One of my backroads:



It must be nice being able to drive through those southern pine forests.


I’ve driven more back roads in the almost-2-years that I’ve been Mapillarying than in the decade before that.




me too :smile:


Wow. Harry, that road sorta reminds me of a lot of the ones here in East Tennessee. If it wasn’t on a map, you’d think it was someone’s driveway.

The one looks like a normal backroad. The 2nd looks like some of the roads in eastern North Dakota by my grandmothers. They’re still a road, the township still owns / maintains them, but they’re signed for minimum maintenance. Were their any signs for it? I’m just curious.

A pic of what I’m used to:

@allen At least they put signs up about that where you are! In Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida, your first clue is when the dirt ends and grass begins.

IIRC that one you shared the other day is a good example.

The difference between someones driveway and a road is not that big in Sweden (legaly)

In Sweden you have the allemansrätten (every mans right) which gives you the right to walk/cicle everywhere in the country as long as it isn’t or looks like somebodies private yard/garden. So att the countryside you can use someones driveway to get where you want.

This doesn’t apply for cars, but even then there are a lot of roads privatly owned or owned by a local organisation (a group of neighbours). If there isn’t an explicit ban on motortraffic you can use these roads by car. A lot of these roads get a maintanance contribution of the state or municipality, and then they have to allow all traffic on the road.

I probably are the first car in a very long time on some of the roads I map, but it is great fun to explore them :slight_smile:

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Not really a backroad, but a barely beaten path here, a buttery smooth dirt road here and to be on topic, a back road here.


Wow particularly to the last one!