Harvey - High Tech, Low Beams

A note from Susan Harvey of Harvey maps about maps for walkers.

I have known Susan Harvey of Harvey maps since the very early days of Anquet. I believe we had our first ever meeting at the first Outdoor Show at the NEC in Birmingham.

In a recent phone conversation Susan and I were contrasting Harvey maps with the massive organisation we all know as the Ordnance Survey.

Although I have visited the Harvey offices numerous times over the years, it was obvious as the conversation progressed that I didn’t understand quite as much about their unique map making process as possibly I should.

It’s true to say, it’s a very different approach, where the OS make a generic map, Harvey specialize in making maps for walkers and mountaineers. I asked Susan if she would pen a few words for our blog, which she has kindly done, and which are re-produced below.


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Harvey Maps

HARVEY Superwalker

These maps are based on original HARVEY mapping with all the information a walker would expect on a map at 1:25,000 scale.
The mapping is exceptionally clear. It is uncluttered by information irrelevant to the walker
The precise contouring gives an immediate picture of the ground.
Bright colours distinguish forest and farmland
The inclusion of marshy ground, boulder, scree and rocky ground help you choose where to walk.
Paths and tracks are shown in detail. Rights of Way information gives you confidence in where you can walk and the National Grid enables you to use your map with GPS.

HARVEY British Mountain Map

Clear detailed mapping for walkers, climbers and fell runners.
Includes all the features required for accurate navigation
The mapping is designed to be used at the distinctive 1:40,000 scale. This ‘Magic Scale’ enables it to show clearly the information most needed by people enjoying Britain’s countryside, hills and fells.
Uses layer coloured contours for easy identification of hills and valleys. This helps give a 3D impression.
Paths and tracks are shown in detail. Rights of Way information gives you confidence in where you can walk and the National Grid enables you to use the mapping with GPS.

Our Philosophy

Walking for pleasure is a glorious activity enjoyed by people of all ages. It is relaxing and good for the spirits and is now recognised as one way people can keep healthy and active throughout a long and satisfying life. It is the map that opens the door to exploration of new places enabling people to find enjoyment in fresh views, different countryside and interesting wildlife.

We set up the HARVEY Maps in 1977 to produce maps that would give people the freedom to enjoy walking and running in open spaces. From the beginning we sought to make our maps clear and easy to read. We passionately believe a map should be an aid, not a challenge. Later we applied this thinking also to cycling maps.

We think it vital that our maps are detailed, so users can find their way confidently. To be reliable they also need to be up-to-date. To achieve these aims we construct our maps from original air surveys. That way we can spend extra time on the contours, for example, and we leave off things you don’t need when you are using the map outdoors – so no parish boundaries.

For us, mapmaking is an art as much as a science. Our skilled team of cartographers concentrates on making each map pleasing to the eye, but above all serviceable and reliable.

This focus on practical use has been recognised over the years by 9 awards for quality and innovation. We are constantly on the lookout for ever better ways to show the information. Users tell us that HARVEY maps are the best in the field when it comes to navigating in the hills. This is our aim. We invite you to try them for yourself and we believe you will join our fan club!

High tech, low beams

Advanced technology plus traditional craftsmanship go into the creation of HARVEY original mapping.
The whole mapmaking process is focused on providing the best possible map for walking, running and cycling. We have used much the same craft method for over 30 years, though now it is digital, which speeds up the process and helps lower cost.



Every detail is accurately plotted with painstaking care, selecting what is useful to people navigating the terrain.

Because HARVEY mapping is not based on other mapping, we can choose what to put on the map. We leave off administrative information so the maps are uncluttered



The maps are given a ground field check to ensure they are up to date.
Our experienced cartographers are themselves hillwalkers.



On the computer (powered by solar energy!) the cartographer reviews the draft map, concentrating on ensuring it is clear and easy to read.

Layout and research

Extra useful information is added. We do the legwork for you.


HARVEY Maps are used by Scottish and Lake District Mountain Rescue Teams