Very nice looking design. I'm curious to hear how you built in the hypsometric tints. I've been making a bunch of these for a guidebook project and I'm also matching the colors in the profiles to my maps, but my workflow involves: gpsvisualizer.com, Photoshop, and Illy. I have a gradient of my hyspo tints in Photoshop set up as a template and then I cut out the range of colors appropriate for each trail profile. It works well, but I keep wondering if there is a better way to do it.
A couple of quick comments:
-I really like how you have the trail symbolization along the spine of the profile
-I'm sort of confused as to why you mention "4x vertical exaggeration"
-I'm sure both ways are acceptable, but "North Bound" caught my eye. I usually think of it as one word, "Northbound" (Also, why are the labels for southbound italicized, but northbound are not?)
For me the hypsographic tint was simple. I just used a linear gradient to fill the profile in Illy. The bottom value was my lowest CMYK value and the top was the highest. I just used the eye-dropper tool in Illy to get the lowest/highest value from my map. I wasn't exact science, I just clicked approximately where it was lowest and highest.
I used 4x vertical exaggeration because the map is to scale (left to right) I put the trail miles on there, and I wanted it to scale as far as the elevation is concerned (if you do the measurement those mountains on the profile would measure about 20,000'). I don't know if it is right or wrong, but it is true. I like the exaggeration because it helps with the visualization process, i.e. this trail goes uphill in a hurry.
I have the miles delineated on my map, and at each mile-tick there is the mile marker coming from the south and north. the north miles are in regular and the south miles are italic. I kept that the same on my profile so it matched the map.
Good luck and thanks for the comments,
"Ah, to see the world with the eyes of the gods is geography--to know cities and tribes, mountains and rivers, earth and sea, this is our gift."