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A National Geographic Young Explorer expedition to create a map-based visual portal for exploring the future Patagonia National Park.

Time is about to run out! We're trying to reach $12,000 by TODAY (12/1) by 3:25 pm EST. Note: If you are reading this and time has already run out, you can still back us and get the same rewards by contributing via PayPay on our website here. Thank you!

$12,000 is a big stretch goal, but if we can reach it we'll be able to do two important things: 1) cover a much larger portion of our printing costs, which means that we will be able to give away many more maps for free, and 2) do a special 10-Schools-in-10-Days tour across New England, getting kids excited about maps and conservation.

We feel so lucky to have so many great supporters. To everyone who has backed our project or shared it with friends, THANK YOU! 

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This January, we're kicking off a cartographic expedition to create a map-based visual portal for exploring the future Patagonia National Park from anywhere in the world. We're grateful to have received a National Geographic Young Explorers grant to partially fund our project, and now we're looking to supporters like you. Join the expedition today by becoming one of our backers.

The Project

With the support of the team behind the Patagonia National Park Project, we will produce an interactive visual manifestation of the park and its conservation mission, accessible worldwide. Our goal is to tell the unusual story of the future park through compelling cartography combined with rich multimedia visual content and spoonfuls of educational information. Using the content we collect, combined with open-source data and crowd-sourced content, we will create a print map and guide to the park and an interactive web map complete with rich visual and educational content.

The benefits of our project will reach beyond Patagonia to conservationists and educators around the world. We're exploring the future of new-media cartography for conservation, communication, and education. 

Check out Conservación Patagónica's blog post about our project here

The Plan

Our goal is to tell the story of the future Patagonia National Park through compelling cartography and rich multimedia content. Over the course of 8-12 weeks of field work in the park, we will collect geographic, audiovisual, and educational content. From the field, we'll be blogging to give our followers (including our backers!) a behind-the-scenes view of our expedition from start to finish. We'll also be blogging on the National Geographic Explorers Journal. And thanks to an Ambassador sponsorship from SPOT Adventures, we'll have a live map on the blog showing our location in the park at all times. 

When we return home, we will spend roughly four months integrating that content into our custom cartography to create a bilingual print visitors guide to the park and a bilingual interactive web map to engage a global audience.

Some of the printed maps will be sold to cover printing costs, while most will be given away to classrooms and the local community around the future park. We'll be working with educators to ensure that the interactive map is a valuable tool for teaching about conservation and geography.

Why maps?

A map is an ideal platform for storytelling because maps help us see and understand how patterns of space are related to patterns of events. They allow us to quickly and efficiently extract information about these relationships across space, time, and scale. Maps are abstract representations of places; they can be a medium for storing and triggering sensory memories of a place and sharing those memories with others. Maps can inspire us to explore new places, and stimulate our visions of those places long before we arrive.

A little background on the park

The future Patagonia National Park is being created in one of the last remaining wild places on Earth, a place with an incredible diversity of species and habitats that are recovering from a history of overgrazing and desertification. Located in Chile’s Aysen Region along the Argentina border, the park will bridge the gap between the existing Tamango and Jeinimeini reserves, forming a protected area the size of Yosemite National Park. This park sets a model for 21st century conservation by applying a whole ecosystems approach to the land, the community, and sustainability. Great maps are an ideal platform for telling this story and inspiring people around the world to feel connected to this place. For more information about the park, visit Conservación Patagónica.

The future Patagonia National Park is located in the Aysén Region of Chile. Map courtesy of Conservación Patagónica.
The future Patagonia National Park is located in the Aysén Region of Chile. Map courtesy of Conservación Patagónica.

Meet Marty and Ross

Marty combines her passions for the outdoors and design into one goal: creating beautiful maps that allow her and others to explore the world. She is a 2010.5 graduate from Middlebury College in Vermont, where she majored in Geography. Her Geography studies and involvement in the North Country landscape inspired her to pursue place-based visual storytelling. Before co-founding Maps for Good, Marty worked as a cartographer at National Geographic Maps and National Geographic Magazine. She first fell in love with the Patagonia landscape in 2011 on a hiking trip with her sister and friend. She is thrilled to return on this important assignment.

Ross pursues his passions for nature, exploration, and place-based education through visual storytelling. He graduated from Macalester College in 2011 where he majored in Geography and Environmental Studies. His education instilled a desire to examine the complex relationships between humans and the environment across space, time, and scale. Prior to co-founding Maps for Good, he worked as a cartographer producing print and web maps at National Geographic in Washington, D.C. While working on creative projects he follows Ms. Frizzle's mantra: take chances, make mistakes, get messy. 

Why we're asking for your support

We have received a National Geographic Young Explorers Grant, which will cover $5,000 of our project expenses. We're volunteering our time for this project, so we're looking to supporters like you to help us cover our remaining expenses. Your support will go directly towards transportation and equipment to make our work possible.

Raising funds on Kickstarter is all-or-nothing, so we need to reach our goal of $7,500 in 30 days in order to receive any of the funds. If you like what you see here, please share it around with your friends to spread the word!

Rewards

If you love...

  • beautiful maps
  • visual storytelling
  • photography
  • DIY panning time-lapses
  • conservation
  • the outdoors
  • open-source data and programs
  • crowd-sourced mapping

...check out our rewards for our backers! At a minimum, all of our backers get a behind-the-scenes view of the expedition from start to finish. Join the expedition by backing our project today. 

Outside of the rewards we list here, we're also available for presentations, workshops, and commissions. If you're interested in making a contribution but want to opt out of the rewards, you'll have the option to do that when you make your contribution. If you're interested in contributing more than $500 (our highest reward level) please contact us and we'll negotiate what we can offer in return. If your company or organization is interested in sponsoring our project, please send us a message! We are grateful for every kind of support.

Contact us at any time at marty@mapsforgood.org or ross@mapsforgood.org. To learn more about our work, visit our website here

Thank you

We are incredibly grateful for the support and enthusiasm we have received from the National Geographic Society, Conservación Patagónica, and the hundreds of individuals who have encouraged us. We are excited to gather the remaining support we need right here! THANK YOU!

A vote of confidence

"Mounted on the wall in the entrance way to National Geographic Maps' office
you will find a plaque engraved with the following statement "A map is
the greatest of all epic poems. Its lines and colors show the realization
of great dreams." 
Penned over one hundred years ago, this statement
still reflects the mission of the Society's map division—producing uniquely
scripted maps that portray a world in transition.

Having work first-hand with National Geographic Young Explorer grant 
recipients Marty Schnure and Ross Donihue, I can attest to the fact that
they both exemplify the very best of National Geographic's cartographic
tradition. In them, you will truly find "poets" in the making." 

- Juan José Valdés, The Geographer, National Geographic Maps

All photos on this page of the Patagonia National Park Project are courtesy of Conservación Patagónica.

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Risk: Field Work
When doing field work in the remote backcountry, there's always a risk of injury. We are skilled and competent outdoorspeople and are able to work safely and efficiently in rugged terrain and a variety of conditions. We are trained in wilderness first response and will be carrying an emergency satellite messenger at all times.

Risk: Schedule
As with all creative projects, there is always a chance that the development of our products will take more time than we have estimated. It's possible that partway through the project we may come up with a great idea for how to improve it, and that may extend our delivery dates. However, we are doing everything we can to ensure that we remain on schedule.

Risk: Delivery
There is a risk that the printing and delivery of the maps will be delayed by factors out of our control. We are having the maps printed by a company we know well and trust, which we hope will mitigate the risk of delays.

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    14 backers

    CARTOGRAPHER: Thank you! Your contribution helps make this project possible. We'll recognize you as a supporter on the "Team" section of our website and give you a shout-out on our blog. You'll have access to our expedition blog, which will include image galleries and video footage.

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    35 backers

    Everything in CARTOGRAPHER + We'll thank you in the form of a personalized photo note from Patagonia National Park.

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    46 backers

    Everything in CARTOGRAPHER + We'll send you our e-book, a beautiful digital chronicle of our expedition.

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    48 backers

    GEOGRAPHER: We'll recognize you as a supporter on the "Team" section of our website and give you a shout-out on our blog, and you'll have access to the expedition blog, as well as our weekly expedition report. We'll send you our e-book PLUS you choose: Pre-order a 12x18 print of your favorite photo from the expedition OR one copy of our custom print map of the park. (Canadian backers, please add $10 to your order for shipping. Other international backers, please add $30.)

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    Everything in GEOGRAPHER + You don't have to choose between the photo and the map: pre-order both! More into the photos? Get two different prints. More psyched about the map? Get two copies. (Canadian backers, please add $10 to your order for shipping. Other international backers, please add $30.)

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    Everything in GEOGRAPHER + Same as the $100 level PLUS we'll include an exclusive unfolded, frame-ready, signed copy of the print map AND an invitation to our Boston launch party as a special guest. (Canadian backers, please add $10 to your order for shipping. Other international backers, please add $30.)

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    EXPLORER: We'll recognize you as a supporter on the "Team" section of our website, give you a big shout-out on our blog, and send you the same goodies as the $250 level. We'll also invite you as a special guest to our Boston launch party AND the dinner that follows. (Canadian backers, please add $10 to your order for shipping. Other international backers, please add $30.)

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Funding period

- (30 days)