Chrome Extensions allow you to extend any website out there to provide additional features. There are a number of Strava specific extensions already out there with StravistiX being by far the most popular. I’d had numerous requests over the last year for a way to plan routes whilst seeing the explorer tiles so the most obvious way to do this was to use an extension that extended Strava’s Route Editor. And while I was at it I may as well add a bunch of other handy links directly back to VeloViewer as well.
Update (18th Sept 2018): Personal heatmap option added to the Route Builder.
- Head to VeloViewer extension in the Chrome Web Store (opens in new tab).
- Click the “Add to Chrome” button.
- Please leave a rating to make it easier for others to discover!
That’s it. Now when you visit the Strava site you’ll see the VV icon in the top right of your browser window light up to show that it is running.
When creating new or editing existing routes in Strava you will see a “Show VeloViewer Explorer” toggle in the “Map Preferences” that turns on the outlines of the explorer tiles along with your completed tiles, max square, max cluster and new tiles that would be ticked by the route. The colours can be configured in the map settings on your Activities List page in VeloViewer:
There is also the ability to create and download a KML file for the unexplored squares in the current view. You will need to have the Explorer option turned on and not be too far zoomed out otherwise the KML file can get too big. As long as you can see the explorer tiles on the map then you can create and download the KML file.
Update 9th June 2020: The KML export for unexplored tiles is now available from the map settings popup on the Activities and Routes pages on the VeloViewer website.
You can view this KML file in the maps.me app (available on both iOS, Android) which provides offline OSM maps when you’re out and about so you can confirm you have properly entered that required tile.
The option to view your personal Ride and Run (All-time only) heatmaps is also available. Personal heatmaps are only available to Strava Summit members and can be created on your Strava Personal Heatmaps page. Update 9th June 2020: Unfortunately the personal heatmap overlays are no longer available at this time.
September 2023: The latest version of Google Chrome has increased the default level of security meaning that cross-site (3rd party) cookies and local-storage are no longer accessible which has resulted in the extension no longer having access to your ticked Explorer Tiles automatically. To work around this restriction you will now need to grab a code from the Exploration section of your VeloViewer Summary page and paste it into a popup on the Strava Route Builder. More info on this post.
Deep links to VeloViewer
As you browse around the Strava website you’ll also see lots of links that direct you directly to the relevant pages in VeloViewer. These are from both the top level VeloViewer menu item and in the main body of the site wherever there is a the context of a segment, activity or route. Just look for the VeloViewer logo and hopefully you’ll see links everywhere you’d want them. For example:
Lots of people had asked about being able to view segments in VeloViewer that they hadn’t previously completed (so don’t appear in their lists). This has always been supported (you could create a Route and view that in VeloViewer to see its segments) if you knew the correct URL but now hopefully it will be very easy to do using this extension alongside the Strava Segment Explorer.
Let me know in the comments below (or via email) if you’ve any other ideas for what this extension could provide on the Strava site but bear in mind it would need to be things that link between VeloViewer and Strava rather than replicating bits of VeloViewer in the Strava site.