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When I go out to tow a bike, I often hear a customer say, "I'm about 7-1/2 miles up the road from the intersection of (street #1) and (street #2) ..."

Currently, to try to figure out exactly where the disabled motorcycle is, I have to set a START point at the given intersection and take a wild guess at the END point based on the scale of the map. this is difficult to do when the road winds through the mountains! Then I calculate the route. If it says it is "3.5 miles," I set a new END point further along the road and try again. Sometimes it takes several tries to pin down the stated location.

WHY is this important? Well, in California where in many places the roads are like a big bowl of spaghetti, KNOWING where you need to end up can allow you to choose a county road or some other access road that intersects the desired road at, or very near to your destination. It would save me the trouble of driving TO the referenced intersection and then driving 7-1/2 miles up the road, only to discover that another county road would have reached that point by crossing over a pass or through a community, saving me some 10 to 15 miles of driving (and a lot of wasted time).

Also, how many times do people tell you, "Our driveway is exactly 2-1/4 miles up the dirt road ... you can't miss it!" only to discover that their idea of an obvious driveway entrance is a break in a wire fence!

So the feature should be:


You would set the anchor point (in this example, the intersection.) A small window would pop up. I would enter the distance I wish to travel from that intersection, in this example "7.5" (miles.) Then I would click on the road I want to use as I exit that intersection, and the program would automatically set the END point 7-1/2 miles up that road, showing me exactly where I will end up. THEN I would click on the routing function, and the program would route me from where I am TO that end point, even if it is not necessary to pass through the aforementioned intersection to get there!

THAT would be a great added feature!
Marvin Hlavac
bikerjoe, give the "Measure Distance" feature a try. It can be found by going to Tools => Measure Distance, or by using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+E. You would open your map to the desired intersection, you would then click on the point on the road from which you wish to start measuring the distance, and then just trace the road with the tool till you reach the desired distance.
Okay, that works! I haven't tried that before. That is still a manual method of determining a point, but it is close enough considering that my customers estimate their position anyway. That really did help! THANK YOU!
You can also use the radius tool that is part of the drawing tool bar. This draws a circle of your given, adjustable radius around your starting point. It also shows the length of the radius.

This has the advantage of including all roads in case you do not know the direction. Of course, at some point you have to figure that out. But it has the disadvantage of being only a straight-line radius whereas the measuring tool allows you to trace the twists and turns of the road to get your measurement.

This is unlikely to be superior to the measuring tool method in most cases, however.
A "snap to road" option for measure distance I think would solve this issue. That's a feature I would like to see also.

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