macOS Big Sur 11.4 and other random questions

Patty Duffy's Avatar

Patty Duffy

06 Jun, 2021 08:51 PM

Hello I am running macOS Big Sur 11.4 and seem to be having problems with your website. I don't know if it's the latest update or something else. The website was indeed running well back in April, the last time I used Caltopo and prior to updating Big Sur. Could you let me know if there are known issues here? The website is just not loading quickly, and the map often goes blank with a grey color. Sometimes the page will even turn black, not just on the map but also here, on the help page. Reloading randomly fixes the problem and when in map view, usually not for long.

In addition, I have a few other questions. Is there any plan to incorporate NatGeo maps? They are really beautiful over on Gaia but I do love using CalTopo more for planning purposes and would LOVE to do this on NatGeo overlay. Also, is there a way to hide or archive previous maps so that I can easily jump to and access the one for planning a current trip? This helps reduce clutter as my collection grows. Also, my iPhone storage is starting to pile up and I would like to delete all the dowloaded tiles I have on my phone that I am not going to be using in the near future. Could you advise on how to do that. Also is there a setting that only syncs a current map to my phone and not old,previously used or currently irrelevant routes?

Thanks so much for all your help.

Patty Duffy

  1. Support Staff 1 Posted by Meghan on 07 Jun, 2021 05:36 PM

    Meghan's Avatar

    Hi Patty,

    Thanks for reaching out! You packed a lot into one ticket so I'll do my best to address each question:

    • I am running Big Sur 11.4 as well but I haven't seen the issues you are reporting. What browser and version are you running? If you use a different browser (I.e. Safari instead of Chrome), do you still experience the same issues? If you clear your browser cache, does that resolve the issue?
    • We do not currently have any plans to incorporate NatGeo maps, however you can sometimes bring outside sources into CalTopo depending on the data source and format. I can't speak to how you would do this with NatGeo specifically but you can learn more about the options we offer for bringing in outside data sources here on our training site. Just be aware that some of the options in that chapter do require a certain subscription level.
    • Currently you can't hide or archive previous maps although we are planning to add some features to allow you to better organize and manage account data (such as maps!) so keep an eye out for that in the future!
    • The best way to delete downloaded tiles is to navigate to an area you had previously downloaded tiles for (such as opening a map for a past trip). Then check for any existing downloads in that area and then delete them following these instructions.
    • Currently there is not a setting to allow only the current map to sync on your phone.

    Thank you,

  2. 2 Posted by Patty Duffy on 08 Jun, 2021 08:26 PM

    Patty Duffy's Avatar

    I am using Safari 14.1.1. I don’t use Chrome at all but did download it to see if CalTopo works on that. It does work fine with Chrome. But the problem is, I use Safari for everything. I DO NOT use Chrome. So switching just for CalTopo is a PITA. You know what I mean? I also cleared the cache and that did nothing to fix the problem.
    Also, neglected to mention previously...I just came back from a backcountry trip and was experiencing some of the same grey/white outs on my mobile in airplane mode. I had to completely close out the app and reload it, which fixed the problem 99% of the time.

    Thanks for your answers on the other matters.

  3. Support Staff 3 Posted by Meghan on 09 Jun, 2021 06:40 PM

    Meghan's Avatar

    Thanks for the additional information. So far neither myself nor a coworker have been able to reproduce the issue you are reporting on Safari 14.1.1- can you provide some more information so we can try to reproduce the issue and dig into it? Specifically:

    • Turn off any plugins that you have for Safari. If you have plugins, does turning them off resolve the issue?
    • Try accessing CalTopo in an incognito/private window. Do you still encounter the same issues?
    • Do you notice the issue occurring when you use a particular layer, tool or feature? If so, which ones? Or does the issue appear to occur at random? The more detail you can provide, the better. Please provide screenshots as well.

    As for the issues you had with the mobile app, can you confirm that you had base layers downloaded for the area you were using your phone in? If you don't have base layers downloaded, the map may disappear when you zoom in/out or pan around will in airplane mode. You can learn more about downloading base layers for offline use as well as viewing what base layers you do have downloaded here.

    Thank you,

  4. 4 Posted by Patty Duffy on 10 Jun, 2021 04:24 PM

    Patty Duffy's Avatar

    Hi Meghan,
    Not running any plugins. I’m not sure what an incognito/private window is. Regarding mobile, I definitely had the layers downloaded as I was out on a 60 day trip and in airplane mode. The problem did not arise until well into the trip. The app was working well enough initially.

    Back to the .com version, I just tested it again now. I can login. Then I can choose the map I want to work on. Everything is fine thus far. But as soon as I try to add a marker or waypoint, or switch to a different layer, things go haywire. It doesn’t matter what layer I am in. Here are 2 screenshots of what happens. Its not the exact same thing, as you can see, the screen turns to dark mode in the 2nd shot, which was my 2nd attempt at trying to something in the program. But basically, there is a huge lag in loading, it seems….you’ll see the layer I was in is in the background on the right. In the 2nd, you will also see some of the menu bars have also disappeared….
    Hope this helps, let me know what else I can do or provide you with to assist.


  5. Support Staff 5 Posted by Julie on 10 Jun, 2021 05:57 PM

    Julie's Avatar

    Hi Patty,

    Sorry this is happening for you. Thank you so much for the screen shots and additional description. It definitely looks like it's having some trouble loading the tiles.

    For the moment let's work on the Safari stuff, and we'll come back to the mobile issue later. Since we are unable to reproduce the problem, I need you to do some more digging. First of all, to open an incognito window, open Safari and press Shift + Command + N. That will open a private browsing window. Navigate to CalTopo in that window, login, and try working with the map. See if you can reproduce the issue there.
    If you are unable to reproduce the problem in the private browsing window, please let me know and we'll go from there.

    If you ARE able to reproduce the problem in the private browsing window, continue with the following:
    How much RAM memory does your computer have and hard drive space do you have left? Have you restarted your computer recently? If you go to Launchpad and search for and open Activity Monitor, take a look at the CPU, Memory, and Energy tabs. See if any program is using an inordinate amount of any of those. You can also look at the bottom of the CPU and Memory tabs for overall CPU use (system and idle) and for "used memory" on the memory tab. I just have a suspicion that something else running on your machine is not allowing Safari enough CPU or memory to deal with the tiles.


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